Create Blackberry BES server on Amazon AWS windows server

To continue the theme of hosting servers in the cloud, we are building a Blackberry server in the Amazon infrastructure.

There are a few funnies with the installation and therefore as always I wanted to share them. There is some expectation through out this document of experience. In Window administration, DNS, Active Directory and a little MSSQL.

Please note that when creating users in the BES server choose the not active directory method as this will fail when the server is rebooted as the IP address changes. There is a solution I am sure to getting Active directory working when the IP address changes I am sure but as always I don’t have time to fathom that part out. If anyone ever finds out how to fix that part let me know.

Windows Server Installation

Once you have an active instance

Run the EC2 Service program

Un-check the Set Comuter Name tick box
Check the output event log (you can use the advanced button to specify more output here if you wish)

Change the computer name to the subdomain of the FQDN name that you will be using
e.g. BES — The FQDN will be BES.ACME.COM where the company is ACME.COM

You will need to restart the server.

We now need to promote the server to an Active Directory server as the BES server needs access to a doamin server

This is a windows 2008 server so Administrator Tools –> Server Manager

Click Roles and then Add Role

Choose Active Directory Domain Services

Next, Next, Install

The installation starts, when complete you are given a link to run dcpromo.exe

Next, Next, Create a new domain in a new forest

When prompted to enter the FQDN use the servername and the domain that you will use to contact the server.

When prompted for Forest functional level pick 2008 R2

When prompted for additional options, ensure that the DNS server is ticked, YOU need to use the dynamically assigned ip address as this is an Amazon server

An error regarding delegation will be displayed just accept with YES

The prompt is then for a strong password, make sure that this is noted down

Next until the installation is finished

The server needs rebooting


Log-on as the Administrator to the domain when rebooted

The installation of the Active directory service will create the server as a DNS server aslo, we need to allow PTR records to be created.

Launch the DNS manager and add an new PTR zone, because the IP range on Amazon is 10.x.x.x you can create a PTR zone 10.XXXXX

The DNS entries on the network adapter need changing to Dynamically assign, this allows the Blackberry phone to web browse

Now add the role of web server to BES environment, SQL requires some of the IIS functionality to operate. Again do this through the server manager tool. Include the FTP server element as this maybe useful when transferring files.

SQL Server Installation

Due to the size of the environment we are using the full SQL server version

Ignore the compatability error as the service pack will fix these issues, and install the server, there is no special installation, you just need the Database
services and the SQL management client

I like using mix moded authentication for the SQL server
Install the latest service pack that is applicable to the SQL server that you are installing

Outlook 2007 Installation

Because this server is for Google integration we need to install outlook 2007
Install the latest service packs for Outlook

User Set-up

The last pre-requisite that is needed is a user that will be used to run the BES server, this can not be the Administrator account

I have created a user called Bes Admin in both the active directory and Google, keep it simple 🙂
The user needs to be in the Administrators of the server group (normally a local admin would do)

Install Google Apps Connector

Install the google app connector, this must be done before you install the BES software.

Log on to the server as Bes Admin
Open up the Google Apps Connector for Blackberry and press File Locations
Set the Location to where you wish the data to be saved

Press the profile button and enter the details

BES Server Installation

You need to enter your own details on this part of the install but it is not hard.

To inport the CAL use the following command

bcp BESMgmt.dbo.LicenseKeys in D:\BESKeys.txt -c -T

Where BESMgmt is the datbase name, I took the default option when installing
D:\BESKEYS.txt is the license key file
NOTE the license keys need to be as follows


bescal-jlsjdflkjsdlf0234903290 0
bescal-jlsjdflkjsdlf02349032asd 0


5 Comments on “Create Blackberry BES server on Amazon AWS windows server”

  1. […] Please note that I am using the “BlackBerry Administration Service” for the authentication rules as per the installation of the BES server […]

  2. clementsm says:

    If you use a VPC (and an Elastic IP to get to the world), the IPs of the machine do not change, so your A/D issue becomes moot. I don’t think there is any cost for the use of VPC, although there is a cost for the static ip.

    • This is correct you could use a VPC this though not difficult does add additional complexity to the solution. I in fact use the VPC functionality in another build but with the hardware VPN option, this does cost money. Be careful if you do decide to use the VPC route and ensure that you choose the correct option without the hardware (VPC with a Single Public Subnet Only)

      With regards to the elastic IP address cost, this is free for the first address used costs

      $0.005 per additional Elastic IP address associated with a running instance per hour on a pro rata basis as per the AWS website ( Therefore this will set you back $43.80 a year.

      I would architect this a little different now and utilise the MSSQL RDS instances that are now on offer, you will still need to take care of the A/D issue though.

      Thanks for the feed back and home that you find the articles of interest


  3. QR Okes says:

    BES Express at a AWS micro instance. Is it possible/sufficient?
    Can Micro Instance support the BES Express?

    • I would not think so. It may depend if you back your database of to RDS. But then I still don’t think it will be large enough. Try it. If it does not perform. Just up the instance type

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