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Running two on the same box with the same port isn't something that would be tested but as long as all the clients always couldn't connect, they should be OK. If however some could sync'd but would sometimes then quit half way through sync that could potentially cause issues at client side or sbdata side. Look at some sbclientlogs and see.
Perhaps I'm not asking the right question. If a second SbDbServer process is started on the same machine, what are the effects?
For example, are current synchronization sessions interrupted? Do attempts to connect to the server fail (I saw 5c000011 errors in my client log)? What happens to the files in the database? Can the two processes run side by side without corrupting the database? Is this supported?
I assumed that starting a second process would be dangerous, but from your comment it looks like it isn't.
OK maybe I wasn't clear. Two process ARE potentially dangerous IF they are on the same port and running from the same dll and pointed to the same SBDATA.
However I don't believe this has never been tested so there is no known consequence, just possible. Likely clients would get partial sync's or other issues accessing objects possibly corrupting them.
However if you discovered that during this time, no client ever sync'd. Then it may be OK - but also maybe admins log in via a server service, not via a local connection, so here too could be a contention problem.
Normally you would only ever have one server service on a box of course. It is technically possible to have two in two completely separate installs on one box, both services running from their respective install, and with separate ports. They would serve completely independent databases though in this setup. However that is a deliberate, manual, editing of registry, paths etc. Not generally recommended as also upgrading could cause issues.
I don't think it's possible to start two servers on the same port, unless they are on different network addresses (again something there's no facility to configure).
I don't see how it would be harmful. It's not as if the traffic is going to get split between them. I expect one process was sitting doing nothing.
Probably right but it could be possible in various situations. You can have two services running from different folders (manual editing of registry of course for services after installing one), or have the server exe in another folder which I think would allow it, or even perhaps mixed services after an upgrade.
The question above says two services were both running though.
Actually, what the question says is there were two SbDbServer processes running, not services. This would be the case, say, if there were two different users logged in interactively and running EE Database Server.