Roadmap: Portal farm | HCL Digital Experience

The term "farm" refers to a series of identically configured, stand-alone server instances. The stand-alone servers allow the farm to be increased or decreased without having to worry about complex cluster configurations or inter-server awareness. Server farms offer a simple way to build and maintain a highly scalable, highly available server environment.

Remember: Ensure that you configure the web server plug-in after you transfer your database.

Who should use this roadmap

Use this roadmap if you are an organization with the following requirements:

  • An organization that requires a simple way to build and maintain a highly scalable, highly available server environment
  • An organization that requires an elastic environment where servers can be added or removed dynamically without much effort
  • An organization that does not want to depend on a Deployment Manager for deployments

Topology diagram

The topology includes a network load balancer to direct incoming traffic to the farm. Each stand-alone server has a database for JCR and Release domains. The JCR and Release domain cannot be shared between portal servers in a farm. However, the Community, Customization, LikeMinds, and Feedback portal database domains can be shared. The share portal database domains are depicted on a common database server.

Farm topology depicts a network load balancer directing incoming traffic to a farm of four stand-alone portal servers

Preparing for the installation process

Gather information and software before you install HCL Portal.


  1. Check requirements.
  2. Get the software.

Installing prerequisite

You can use existing prerequisite software installations. Verify that your existing version is supported. If it is not, upgrade to the appropriate version. Otherwise, install a web server, database server, and user registry server. Typically the database and user registry servers are already installed and configured. However, there might be specific configuration steps that are required to integrate them with the portal server.


  1. Install a web server.
  2. Prepare a database server.
  3. Prepare a user registry.

Installing the HCL Digital Experience

Installing HCL Portal involves preparing your operating system, installing or upgrading the installation manager, and running the installation program.

About this task

Documentation resource: Installing the HCL Digital Experience software

Applying the latest cumulative fix

Portal maintenance is delivered through two mechanisms: individual fixes (Fixes) and combined cumulative fixes. Fixes are provided, when necessary, for severe or security-related bugs. Combined cumulative fixes are delivered on a regular schedule. They provide a mechanism to deliver fixes faster, improve existing features, deliver new features, update documentation, and provide new documentation on a frequent basis. To deliver continuous improvements for your digital experience software, it is recommended that you apply the latest Combined Cumulative Fix Strategy to your environment.

About this task

Documentation resource: Roadmap: Applying maintenance

Setting up a stand-alone server

Start the Configuration Wizard to set up your stand-alone server. First, transfer your database. The Database Transfer configuration option in the Configuration Wizard assigns users and permissions, creates databases, obtains support for database collation, and transfers your database. After you transfer your database, enable your federated LDAP user registry.

Before you begin

Log in to HCL Portal to verify that you have a working portal:,
where is the fully qualified host name of the server where
Portal is running and 10039 is the default transport port that is created by DX® Application Server. The port number might be different
for your environment.


  1. To get the latest updates for the wizard, apply the most recent Combined Cumulative Fix. For more information about applying the latest fix pack, see HCL Digital Experience Combined Cumulative Fix Strategy.
    Note: Skip this step, if you have the most recent fix pack applied.
  2. Access the Configuration Wizard. Go to http://your_server:10200/hcl/wizard.
    Note: If working with HCL Digital Experience 8.5 or 9 software level prior to CF18, the wizard address will be: http://your_server:10200/ibm/wizard. After installing CF18, the configuration wizard will automatically be adjusted to http://your_server:10200/hcl/wizard.
    Restriction: There is a known issue with Chrome version 45.x and the Configuration Wizard. If you are experiencing difficulties, use a different browser when you access the wizard.
  3. Log in to the Configuration Wizard with the administrative ID for the configuration wizard profile, cw_profile.
    Note: The wizard user interface might not be available in all languages. If the language is not currently supported, you might see the English version. For details on the supported languages for all of the HCL Digital Experience user interfaces, see Supported languages.
  4. Select Set Up a Stand-alone Server > Database Transfer.
  5. Provide information about your environment.
  6. Save your configuration settings.
  7. Choose one of the following options:
    • Click Download Files to run the steps remotely.
    • Click Run All Steps to run the steps locally.
  8. Optional: If you changed the context root during the installation or configuration of HCL Digital Experience, then you must complete the optional next step from the Configuration Wizard to update parameters with the new context path after you complete the Create a Deployment Manager configuration option. For more information about this configuration option and completing the next steps, see Create a deployment manager.
  9. Log in to HCL Portal to verify that you have a working portal server.
  10. Select Set Up a Stand-alone Server > Enable Federated Security.
    Note: If you set Use Administrator IDs stored in your LDAP user registry to yes, the WebSphere® Application Server and HCL Portal user IDs and passwords are changed to the LDAP user ID and password. If you do not want to change both user IDs and passwords to match the LDAP user ID and password, set this value to no. After you configure your LDAP user registry, you can manually change the user IDs and passwords.
  11. Provide information about your environment.
  12. Save your configuration settings.
  13. Choose one of the following options:
    • Click Download Files to run the steps remotely.
    • Click Run All Steps to run the steps locally.
  14. Log in to HCL Portal to verify that you have a working portal server.
  15. Optional: If you want to shorten your site URL for search engine optimization benefits, you can modify your context root and remove navigational state information from your URL by using the Modify Site URLs for Search Engine Optimization configuration option.

Configuring the web server


Move the web server plug-in from the WebSphere® Application Server to the web server.

Tuning the servers in your environment

Tuning the servers is important to the performance of your portal environment.

About this task

HCL Digital Experience is not tuned for a production environment after installation and deployment. You can apply tuning now or prior to "production", but under no circumstance should Portal be placed into production without some level tuning.

When deploying Portal into a Farm or Kubernetes (e.g. non-WAS ND) where there is more than one (1) Portal instance, Portal must understand Dynacache updates in all instances even though Dynacache replication is a WAS-ND feature.


  1. Run the performance tuning tool to complete an initial tuning of your servers.
  2. Check the tuning guide for more instructions. Use the tuning guide for the previous product version when the tuning guide for the current release is unavailable.
  3. Set the Portal to replicate Dynamic Cache (Dynacache) in your HCL Portal and HCL Web Content Manager 8.5, 9 or 9.5 environment using the non_WAS ND method.
    You need to be on the HCL V8.5, 9 or 9.5 CF18 , or 9.5 Container Update release CF_171 or later to perform this task. Afterwards, configure the following property in the IBM WebSphere Application Server Resource Provider (REP):
    use.db.cache.invalidation.table= (Boolean, which controls whether or not Dynacache invalidation table is used)
    • For Single node HCL Portals, this does not matter.
    • Set to True for Kubernetes or Farming of more than one (1) POD instances.
    • Set to False in a “true” WAS ND cluster (e.g. to let WAS ND control Dynacache invalidation via the DRS manager)
    For further HCL 8.5 and 9, or 9.5 deployment guidance, see Replicate Dynacache service for HCL Digital Experience.

Choosing the type of portal farm

You can choose from two supported portal farm configurations when you set up your portal farm. You can set up a unique installation where each farm has a unique installation or you can set up one instance that is shared between multiple farm instances.


Configure a farm instance with a shared configuration.