How to upgrade Kerio Connect Mail Server


Most of the time, upgrading Kerio Connect involves nothing more than downloading the installer for the new version and running it. The process is quick and painless - a very brief interruption of services and then you are back in business.

Of course you should always have current backups before any upgrade, but there is an extremely low likelihood of any trouble whatsoever. Follow the general directions at How do I update Kerio Connect when a new version is available?

There are circumstances where a bit more planning and work may need to be done. One is when you are moving to new hardware or changing operating systems. Another is when you have delayed doing upgrades for some time. We'll look at both of those and more.

New hardware or operating system change

Most of that is covered in Kerio's KB article How do I move Kerio Connect from one machine to another (or change Operating Systems)?, but there are a few things that doesn't mention.

One is what to do when you plan a version upgrade at the same time as the hardware change. I suggest doing the version upgrade AFTER the physical move. You can download any older version of Connect; see How do I get older versions of Kerio software?

The other issue is how to get the Store data to the new machine. See my Unsupported use of KMSRECOVER for moving Kerio Connect and Transferring a Kerio Connect Server with rsync for more details on that.

Delayed upgrades

If you are behind by several versions, that's usually no different than a simple upgrade: just download the latest version and install it. You'll want to read the appropriate parts of connect/history and connect/history/older to get a feel for things that have changed. After any upgrade you will want to run through your configuration to become familiar with any changes there and investigate any new features you'll want to configure. I can help you with that if you are one of my customers - as with any support issues, there is no charge for that.

If you are really far behind - older than version 6.7.3 Patch 1 (January 2010), you'll need to do your upgrade in steps - see the How do I update Kerio Connect when a new version is available? article.

Client upgrades

If your users are not using the Kerio Outlook Connector, there is nothing to be done on the client side.

If you are running a recent version of Connect, the Outlook Connector will attempt to upgrade itself automatically. I wish I could say that it always succeeds, but unfortunately it doesn't.

One reason might be incompatibility - your Outlook might be too old or too new. See the End User tab at /connect/requirements for current requirements.

Your users can cause problems too. The Kerio manuals say this:

If a new version is available or the versions are different on the server and the client, a recommendation for update of Kerio Outlook Connector appears. Once this dialog is confirmed, update is performed, followed by an automatic restart of MSOutlook. The whole update including restart should take up to two minutes, depending on connection data-flow speed.

Did you notice the "Once this dialog is confirmed" part? Users sometimes ignore that upgrade message completely. And, of course, even if they do not, things can go wrong and the client update can fail.

If you are only going from the not-quite-latest version to the latest, that might not matter: the old software may work with the new server. It may not, though, or it may work but cause performance issues or subtle bugs.

So, what do you do if a client update fails?

Probably the first thing to try is a manual download and manual install. Use the MSI version rather than the .exe:

MSI versions of Connector

You should also kill off any running installs and check Task Manager to see if any msiexec.exe processes are running. Kill them if they are.

If that still fails, try removing both the Kerio Updater software and the Connector with Control Panel and then try a fresh install. Under some conditions, Kerio support may want you to use a special "ktuninstaller.exe" that they can provide. The Updater software requires Administrative privilege to install/uninstall.

Note: the MSI installer comes in 32 bit or 64 bit versions. The 32 bit can work with any version of Outlook, but you can't use the 32 bit with 64 bit Outlook.

There is also a separate MSI package available for just the Kerio Updater Service (this is the piece that runs as a service and is supposed to do the Connector upgrades when needed). You can try that, too.

Still can't get it working? Call me or Kerio, check the forums and research the KB articles. If the MSI package is failing, a little extra logging might help you or us figure out why:

msiexec /i kerio-connect-koff-(....)win32.msi> /lv C:\temp\kerio_install.log

See Command-Line Switches for the Microsoft Windows Installer Tool also.

There are more logs under %programdata%/kerio - Kerio Support may want those also.

The Outlook Cache

Several connector upgrades have required rebuilding the local cache. That can be a very time consuming procedure - the general recommendation has been to use webmail while it rebuilds.

There is another way, however. If you remove the cache before the upgrade, you can start using Outlook again immediately. Doing that requires a bit of work though. The first thing is to find your Outlook cache files. KERIO OUTLOOK CONNECTOR CACHE FILES ARE IN A DIFFERENT LOCATION THAN OUTLOOK CACHE FILES.

Under C:\Documents and Settings\YourLogin\Local Settings\Application Data\Kerio\Outlook Connectorwill be a ditectory for each of your profiles. You may need to turn on "Show Hidden Files and Folders" to navigate to there.

KOFF/KOC Cache files

Once there, it's the *.FDB files that you'd remove and you may need to kill off the KoffBackend.exe process to do that.

Remove FDB files

With those removed, Outlook will need to resynch, but you at least can use it right away:

Outlook resynch

Other strange things

If you experience oddities like the virus updates failing or any messages in Warning or Error logs about missing files, try re-installing. Sometimes the Windows installer just needs another pass at it. I've not seen that on Mac or Linux, but a quick re-install might fix it anyway.

I hope this helps and of course I am always available for assistance.

Got something to add? Send me email.

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