FAQ for customers updating to BarTender 2021 Follow

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Domingo Rodriguez

If you have a current Maintenance and Support agreement, you can simply use your existing license key to proceed with the update process. BarTender 2021 can be downloaded from the BarTender Portal.

You will only need to contact your BarTender partner if your license is not under a maintenance and support contract. You can always reach out to us if you are unsure about your maintenance and support contract.

Creating a sandbox environment before updating is the best practice, but not mandatory.

Please review our guide Updating to BarTender 2021 and the “Making an Update Plan” section.

Documents created in an older version of BarTender can always be opened and used in a newer version. If needed, BarTender 2021 can save BarTender documents to an older version as far as BarTender 7.75.

In BarTender 2021, any edition of BarTender is able to work with concurrent BarTender processes under RDP / Citrix. Previously, with BarTender 10.1 or older you would need to own an Automation or Enterprise Automation Edition of BarTender in order to run concurrent BarTender processes over RDP / Citrix sessions. 

Note that in order to avoid printer duplication, you are required to install a component called License Server Remote Assistant. This component is still required for BarTender 2021. Click here if you want to download this component.

BarTender Web Print Server has been replaced with an improved web-based application called BarTender Print Portal. For further information, please check our technical document.

If your license is on active maintenance and support contract you will have access to standard or even premium support assistance (see available support plans).

Professional Services such as consultancy, training, template or integration design are also available. If you are interested in any of these services, please send us an email to ProfessionalServices@SeagullScientific.com

No, you don’t need a separate product key code when updating to BarTender 2021 if you have an active maintenance and support contract. You can simply use your existing product key code to activate.

For further recommendations, please visit our Updating to BarTender 2021 and What is Provisional Activation articles.

Provisional activation lasts for the following number of days:

  • Professional and Automation Editions: 30 days.
  • Enterprise Editions: 180 days.

No, you can’t. An active maintenance and support agreement is required for provisional activations. Please reach out to your BarTender partner or our sales team for more information on purchasing or renewing BarTender maintenance and support.

Provisional activations provide the same functionality as the edition of BarTender your license corresponds to. Please keep in mind that higher edition features can always be tested in BarTender 2021. Watermarks will be applied to any printed item utilizing these higher edition feature sets.

First, you would need to deactivate your previous production environment. Then, your BarTender 2021 environment will automatically switch to be your new production environment. See Provisional Activation for further information.

Each environment will have its own separate printer licenses, they’re completely independent from each other.

Yes, you will be able to provisionally activate BarTender 2021 on a test / sandbox environment and you do not need a separate product key code. Before you begin, make sure that your BarTender license is under an active maintenance and support contract in order to make use of your Provisional Activation.

Yes. Provisional Activation was a new BarTender feature introduced in BarTender 2019 and is available if for any reason you decide to update to 2019 instead.

Ideally, you would first install and provisionally activate BarTender 2021 on a different server. This will give you the chance of having a temporary sandbox environment. For further recommendations, please visit our Updating to BarTender 2021 article.

No, uninstalling BarTender is not required before updating.

We have simplified the BarTender Installer. By default, all the BarTender companion applications will be installed except Print Portal. You can optionally install Print Portal or the Licensing Service/Administration Console only. Additionally, BarTender 2021 can be installed as a 32- and 64-bit application.

If you have doubts as to which Installer architecture you should choose, please check our 32-bit vs 64-bit White Paper.

BarTender PCs do not require an internet connection but will require network connectivity in order to establish a connection to a centralized BarTender License Server. On the BarTender License Server, an internet connection is advised since BarTender Licensing Service will try to regularly communicate with our activation servers to check any upgrades you may have applied to your license (ex. adding printers or upgrading edition).

The Licensing method used by BarTender 2021 is compatible with BarTender 2019 clients, but incompatible with any previous versions. That’s why the concept of Provisional Activation exists. If you have doubts on how provisional activation can help you, please reach out to your BarTender partner or our sales team for more information.

In BarTender, under Help > BarTender Licensing Wizard, you can search for and select an activated License Server within your network. Within these settings you can also specify an IP address or a hostname.

When you use your BarTender 10.1 / 2016 product key code to activate BarTender 2021 (only available for licenses under active maintenance and support contract) the equivalent BarTender 2021 Edition will be:

  • BarTender 10.1 / 2016 Basic corresponds to a BarTender 2021 Professional, 1 printer license.
  • BarTender 10.1 / 2016 Professional corresponds to a BarTender 2021 Professional, 2 printer license.
  • BarTender 10.1 / 2016 Automation Edition corresponds to BarTender 2021 Automation Edition, same printer count.
  • BarTender 10.1 / 2016 Enterprise Automation Edition corresponds to BarTender 2021 Enterprise Edition, same printer count.

There are no license equivalence differences between BarTender 2019 and BarTender 2021

Once the connection to the centralized BarTender License Server is lost from a BarTender PC, you can continue printing for up to 72 hours. If you are printing directly through BarTender, you will receive notifications of the lost connection and grace period. Additionally, you can setup email alerts. Configuring email alerts can be especially useful for customers who leverage print automation.

For more highly available configurations, you can set up a backup server license or triad configuration. The secondary Licensing Server will be used to keep printing operational. For more details, check License Server Redundancy.

You should setup either a backup license or triad configuration for your Licensing Server so that BarTender automatically switches to the secondary server option. For more details, check License Server Redundancy

This tool is no longer needed in BarTender 2021. Viewing License Server information (remote or local) is accessible through the Administration Console. This method not only grants you visibility, but also provides additional tools for managing your printer licenses from any BarTender PC within your network.

Installing SQL Server Express is no longer a requirement. We use LocalDB for internal application related storage. However, there are some BarTender features and companion applications that require the use of a BarTender System Database stored on a local (for Automation and Enterprise) or remote (Enterprise Edition required) SQL Server instance, so the installation of SQL Server is still recommended.

In most cases this should be possible. Please refer to the “Updating the BarTender System Database” section of the Updating to BarTender 2021 article.

Yes, Integration Builder (the middleware package that replaced Commander) allows you to import and convert your existing Commander task lists. The transactional data you are currently submitting will still work with your newly converted BarTender 2021 integration.

Replacing Commander is also a good opportunity for you to improve your current automated print processes. If you need assistance in migrating your Commander implementation to the new Integration Platform or improving functionality, do not hesitate to reach out to our Professional Services team: ProfessionalServices@SeagullScientific.com

Print automation is handled quite differently than it was in BarTender 10.1 and previous. Creating an integration in BarTender 2021 provides an advanced toolset for testing integrations before they are deployed into production. These new tools allow you to see interactive dialogs and error messages in a console. It even allows you to capture sample data that you can later resend without the need for your ERP or WMS system to repeat transactions.

Yes, automating BarTender over ActiveX Automation is still available in BarTender 2021.

The .NET SDK is continuously improved and includes new APIs and functionality. BarTender 2021 is available in 32- and 64-bit architecture and is compiled against a different .NET Framework version than most of the previous versions of BarTender. In general terms you will need to set your project to the right target CPU and recompile.

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