Pearson PowerSchool

1 Introduction

PowerSchool was established in 1997 and acquired by Pearson Education in 2006. After a school purchases PowerSchool, accounts can be set up for administrators, counsellors, office staff, teachers, students and parents. PowerSchool makes it easy for teachers to record grades, take attendance, and check student profiles. Also, it is convenient for parents to check all of their child's grades as soon as they are posted.

The KEMP LoadMaster is used to load balance the Pearson PowerSchool workload. The LoadMaster offers advanced Layer 4 and Layer 7 server load balancing, SSL Acceleration and a multitude of other advanced Application Delivery Controller (ADC) features. The LoadMaster intelligently and efficiently distributes user traffic among the application servers so that users get the best experience possible. 

1.1 Document Purpose

This document provides the recommended LoadMaster settings used when load balancing the Pearson PowerSchool workload. The KEMP Support Team is available to provide solutions for scenarios not explicitly defined. The KEMP support site can be found at: https://support.kemptechnologies.com

1.2 Intended Audience

This document is intended to be read by anyone who is interested in configuring the LoadMaster to optimize the Pearson PowerSchool server.

2 Template

KEMP has developed a template containing our recommended settings for this workload. You can install this template to help when creating Virtual Services, as it automatically populates the settings. This is quicker and easier than manually configuring each Virtual Service. If needed, changes can be made to any of the Virtual Service settings after using the template.

Download released templates from the Templates section on the KEMP documentation page: http://kemptechnologies.com/documentation.

For more information and steps on how to import and use templates, refer to the Virtual Services and Templates, Feature Description on the KEMP Documentation Page.

For steps on how to manually add and configure each of the Virtual Services using the recommended settings, refer to the steps in this document.

3 Architecture

Architecture.png

4 Configure the LoadMaster

The deployed Pearson PowerSchool environment determines which of the following setups is used.

4.1 Enable Subnet Originating Requests Globally

It is best practice to enable the Subnet Originating Requests option globally.

In a one-armed setup (where the Virtual Service and Real Servers are on the same network/subnet) Subnet Originating Requests is usually not needed. However, enabling Subnet Originating Requests should not affect the routing in a one-armed setup.

In a two-armed setup where the Virtual Service is on network/subnet A, for example, and the Real Servers are on network B - Subnet Originating Requests should be enabled on LoadMasters with firmware version 7.1-16 and above.

When Subnet Originating Requests is enabled, the LoadMaster will route traffic so that the Real Server will see traffic arriving from the LoadMaster interface that is in that network/subnet not the Virtual Service address.

When Subnet Originating Requests is enabled globally, it is automatically enabled on all Virtual Services. If the Subnet Originating Requests option is disabled globally, you can choose whether or not to enable Subnet Originating Requests on a per-Virtual Service basis.

To enable Subnet Originating Requests globally, follow the steps below:

1. In the main menu of the LoadMaster Web User Interface (WUI), go to System Configuration > Miscellaneous Options > Network Options.

SCMONO002.png

2. Tick the Subnet Originating Requests check box.

4.2 Enable Check Persist Globally

It is recommended that you change the Always Check Persist option to Yes – Accept Changes. Use the following steps:

1. Go to System Configuration > Miscellaneous Options > L7 Configuration.

SCMOLC001.png

2. Click the Always Check Persist dropdown arrow and select Yes – Accept Changes.

4.3 Create the PowerSchool Virtual Services

The following sections describe the recommended settings for the Pearson PowerSchool Virtual Services.

4.3.1 Create a Pearson PowerSchool HTTPS Virtual Service

The following are the steps involved and the recommended settings to configure the Pearson PowerSchool HTTPS Virtual Service:

1. In the main menu of the LoadMaster Web User Interface (WUI), go to Virtual Services > Add New.

Create a Pearson PowerSchool.png

2. Type a valid Virtual Address.

3. Type 443 as the Port.

4. Enter a recognizable Service Name, such as Pearson PowerSchool HTTPS Virtual Service.

5. Click Add this Virtual Service.

6. Configure the settings as recommended in the following table:

Section

Option

Value

Comment

Standard Options

Persistence Mode

Active Cookie

 

 

Timeout

6 Hours

 

 

Cookie name

PowerSchool_SSL

 

 

Scheduling Method

least connection

 

SSL Properties

Cipher Set

BestPractices

 

Advanced Properties

Add a Port 80 Redirector VS

https://%h%s

Click Add HTTP Redirector.

Real Servers

URL

/admin/pw.html

 

7. Add the Real Servers:

a) Expand the Real Servers section.

b) Click Add New.

c) Enter the address of the relevant real server.

d) Complete the other fields as required.

e) Click Add this Real Server then click OK to the pop-up message.

f) Repeat the steps above to add more Real Servers as needed, based on your environment.

Create a Pearson PowerSchool HTTPS Redirect Virtual Service

Clicking the Add HTTP Redirector button automatically creates a port 80 redirect Virtual Service. This is optional, but the purpose of this Virtual Service is to redirect any clients who have connected using HTTP to the HTTPS Virtual Service. KEMP also recommends changing the Persistence Mode to None.

4.3.2 Create a Pearson PowerSchool Scheduler Virtual Service

The following are the steps involved and the recommended settings to configure the Pearson PowerSchool Scheduler Virtual Service:

1. In the main menu of the LoadMaster WUI, go to Virtual Services > Add New.

Create a Pearson PowerSchool_1.png

2. Type a valid Virtual Address.

3. Type 2000 as the Port.

4. Enter a recognizable Service Name, such as Pearson PowerSchool Scheduler Virtual Service.

5. Click Add this Virtual Service.

6. Configure the settings as recommended in the following table:

Section

Option

Value

Comment

Standard Options

Force L7

Disabled

 

 

Persistence Option

Source IP Address

 

 

Timeout

8 Hours

 

 

Scheduling Method

Least connection

 

7. Add the Real Servers:

a) Expand the Real Servers section.

b) Click Add New.

c) Enter the address of the relevant Real Server.

d) Complete the other fields as required.

e) Click Add this Real Server then click OK to the pop-up message.

f) Repeat the steps above to add more Real Servers as needed, based on your environment.

4.3.3 Create a Pearson PowerSchool PowerTeacher Virtual Service

The following are the steps involved and the recommended settings to configure the Pearson PowerSchool PowerTeacher Virtual Service:

1. In the main menu of the LoadMaster WUI, go to Virtual Services > Add New.

Create a Pearson PowerSchool_2.png

2. Type a valid Virtual Address.

3. Type 5443 as the Port.

4. Enter a recognizable Service Name, such as Pearson PowerSchool PowerTeacher Virtual Service.

5. Click Add this Virtual Service.

6. Configure the settings as recommended in the following table:

Section

Option

Value

Standard Options

Transparency

Enabled

 

Persistence Mode

Source IP Address

 

Timeout

6 Hours

 

Scheduling Method

least connection

SSL Properties

SSL Acceleration

Enabled

 

Cipher Set

BestPractices

Real Servers

Checked Port

80

7. Add the Real Servers:

a) Expand the Real Servers section.

b) Click Add New.

c) Enter the address of the relevant Real Server.

d) Complete the other fields as required.

e) Click Add this Real Server then click OK to the pop-up message.

f) Repeat the steps above to add more Real Servers as needed, based on your environment.

4.3.4 Create a Pearson PowerSchool Report Virtual Service

The following are the steps involved and the recommended settings to configure the Pearson PowerSchool Report Virtual Service:

1. In the main menu of the LoadMaster WUI, go to Virtual Services > Add New.

Create a Pearson PowerSchool_3.png

2. Type a valid Virtual Address.

3. Type 8443 as the Port.

4. Enter a recognizable Service Name, such as Pearson PowerSchool Report Virtual Service.

5. Click Add this Virtual Service.

6. Configure the settings as recommended in the following table:

Section

Option

Value

Basic Properties

Service Type

HTTP/HTTPS

Standard Options

Transparency

Enabled

 

Persistence Mode

Active Cookie

 

Timeout

6 Hours

 

Cookie name

PowerSchool_SSL

 

Scheduling Method

least connection

SSL Properties

SSL Acceleration

Enabled

 

Cipher Set

Best Practices

Real Servers

Checked Port

7980

7. Add the Real Servers:

a) Expand the Real Servers section.

b) Click Add New.

c) Enter the address of the relevant Real Server.

d) Complete the other fields as required.

e) Click Add this Real Server then click OK to the pop-up message.

f) Repeat the steps above to add more Real Servers as needed, based on your environment.

4.3.5 Create a Pearson PowerSchool Database Images Virtual Service

The following are the steps involved and the recommended settings to configure the Pearson PowerSchool Report Virtual Service:

1. In the main menu of the LoadMaster WUI, go to Virtual Services > Add New.

Create a Pearson PowerSchool_4.png

2. Type a valid Virtual Address.

3. Type 443 as the Port.

4. Enter a recognizable Service Name, such as Pearson PowerSchool Database Images Virtual Service.

5. Click Add this Virtual Service.

6. Configure the settings as recommended in the following table:

Section

Option

Value

Comments

Standard Options

Persistence Mode

Active Cookie

 

 

Timeout

6 Minutes

 

 

Cookie name

PowerSchool_Images

 

SSL Properties

SSL Acceleration

Enabled

 

 

Cipher Set

Best Practices

 

Real Servers

Checked Port

7980

 

Advanced Properties

Add a Port 80 Redirector VS

 

Click Add HTTP Redirector

7. Add the Real Servers:

a) Expand the Real Servers section.

b) Click Add New.

c) Enter the address of the relevant Real Server.

d) Complete the other fields as required.

e) Click Add this Real Server then click OK to the pop-up message.

f) Repeat the steps above to add more Real Servers as needed, based on your environment.

Create a Pearson PowerSchool Database Images HTTP Redirect Virtual Service

Clicking the Add HTTP Redirector button automatically creates a port 80 redirect Virtual Service. This is optional, but the purpose of this Virtual Service is to redirect any clients who have connected using HTTP to the HTTPS Virtual Service. KEMP also recommends changing the Persistence Mode to None.

4.3.6 Create a Pearson PowerSchool Database ODBC Virtual Service

The following are the steps involved and the recommended settings to configure the Pearson PowerSchool Report Virtual Service:

1. In the main menu of the LoadMaster WUI, go to Virtual Services > Add New.

Create a Pearson PowerSchool_5.png

2. Type a valid Virtual Address.

3. Type 1521 as the Port.

4. Enter a recognizable Service Name, such as Pearson PowerSchool Database ODBC Virtual Service.

5. Click Add this Virtual Service.

6. Configure the settings as recommended in the following table:

Section

Option

Value

Standard Options

Force L7

Disabled

 

Persistence Mode

Source IP Address

 

Timeout

6 Minutes

7. Add the Real Servers:

a) Expand the Real Servers section.

b) Click Add New.

c) Enter the address of the relevant Real Server.

d) Complete the other fields as required.

e) Click Add this Real Server then click OK to the pop-up message.

f) Repeat the steps above to add more Real Servers as needed, based on your environment.

4.3.7 Create a Pearson PowerSchool Database RDB Virtual Service

The following are the steps involved and the recommended settings to configure the Pearson PowerSchool Database RDB Virtual Service:

1. In the main menu of the LoadMaster WUI, go to Virtual Services > Add New.

Create a Pearson PowerSchool_6.png

2. Type a valid Virtual Address.

3. Type 3389 as the Port.

4. Enter a recognizable Service Name, such as Pearson PowerSchool Database RDB Virtual Service.

5. Click Add this Virtual Service.

6. Configure the settings as recommended in the following table:

Section Option Value
Standard Options

Transparency

Enabled

 

Timeout

4 Hours

 

Scheduling Method

least connection

7. Add the Real Servers:

a) Expand the Real Servers section.

b) Click Add New.

c) Enter the address of the relevant Real Server.

d) Complete the other fields as required.

e) Click Add this Real Server then click OK to the pop-up message.

f) Repeat the steps above to add more Real Servers as needed, based on your environment.

References

Unless otherwise specified, the following documents can be found at http://kemptechnologies.com/documentation.

Virtual Services and Templates, Feature Description

Document History

 

Date

Change

Reason for Change

Version

Resp.

Nov 2016

Initial draft

First draft

1.0

POC

Jan 2017

Minor change

Updated Copyright Notices

2.0

LB

July 2017 Minor updates Enhancements made 3.0 CMC

 

 

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