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Groupcall Xporter Requirements for Xporter on Demand

The information in this document will outline the necessary software and firewall requirements for the Xporter MIS sync agent to work successfully in your school for the purpose of providing data to third party education suppliers using Xporter on Demand.

We’ve split the info below into two sections; application and communications.

Particular information for your specific MIS will be provided in a separate guide for that MIS.

Table of Contents

Application Requirements

The Xporter agent has some straightforward software requirements to ensure everything works as expected.

Firstly, we always recommend that Windows Updates are kept up to date on the machine, especially ensuring that updates relating to the Microsoft .Net Framework are current.

Xporter Requires:

  • Windows Server 2008 or above (Xporter can be installed on Windows 7+ but we recommend using a server)
  • Minimum Microsoft .net 4.5.2 or above installed with latest updates applied. We recommend at least version Microsoft .net 4.6.2

Communication Requirement Summary

Xporter communicates with Groupcall’s cloud platforms to provide the data services for the Xporter on Demand platform. There are a number of locations that Xporter and its associated services need to be able to access to function correctly and receive important updates when they are issued.

The following table details the components that are installed and their functions:

Groupcall Xporter Groupcall Emerge Server Groupcall Heartbeat

MIS Connectivity:

  • Communicating with your MIS to retrieve authorised data

XoD Platform Connectivity:

  • Receiving and responding data requests from the Xporter on Demand platform

Reporting Health Status:

Providing updates to the Groupcall cloud platform including application versions, job statuses and configuration settings

Application Updates:

  • Retrieving software updates for installed components

Requesting Data from Xporter:

  • Instructing Xporter to generate data from your MIS

Receiving Management Actions:

  • Updating components, refreshing services

Xporter Component Communication Requirements

  • http://www.groupcall.co.uk/*
  • https://www.groupcall.co.uk/*

Some firewalls specify additional rules regarding content types that are permitted. The following non-standard content types are required for Xporter:

  • *.inf – text/plain – Used to check for updates
*.gcu – application/x-zip-compressed – The update packages that are retrieved

Emerge Server Component Communication Requirements

The Emerge Server service provides the communication channel between the Xporter on Demand cloud platform and the Xporter service. Emerge Server receives requests from the API on the channel it has open with the Groupcall cloud platform and passes these to Xporter to be processed. Once Xporter has processed them, it passes them back to Emerge Server which then responds to the request for data.

Emerge Server requires access to the following to perform the actions described:

  • https://xporter.groupcall.com (port 443) – To return data after it has been generated by Xporter
  • https://xodhub.groupcall.com (port 443) – To receive requests from the Xporter on Demand API
  • https://emergeen.servicebus.windows.net (port 443*)– Backup channel to receive requests from the Xporter on Demand API (Microsoft Azure ServiceBus)

* The connection to Microsoft Azure ServiceBus operates successfully over port 443 but operates optimally over the following TCP ports:  

 9350/tcp

5671/tcp   

9351/tcp   

5672/tcp   

9352/tcp   

443/tcp   

9353/tcp   

80/tcp

9354/tcp

 


It is not essential that these ports to be opened on your firewall as we will try other routes as a priority, however, opening them will only improve the robustness of the data sync service.

Heartbeat Component Communication Requirements

The Heartbeat service provides health and configuration information to the Groupcall cloud platform about your Xporter installation to help Groupcall manage and look after your agent for you. No MIS or otherwise personal data is processed by the Heartbeat component.

Heartbeat requires access to the following to support these functions:

  • https://dashboard.groupcall.com
  • http://dashboard.groupcall.com