If everything works as designed, the Firebird server process will be running on your server when the installation finishes. You can run some tests to verify the installation and work out any adjustments you might need in your configuration.

Network Protocol

At this point, it is assumed that you will use the recommended TCP/ IP protocol for your Firebird client/ server network, to take advantage of the benefits of platform-independent networking.

Pinging the Server

Usually, the first thing you will want to do once installation is complete is ping the server. This just gives you a reality check, to ensure that your client machine is able to see the host machine in your network. For example, if your server’s IP address in the domain that is visible to your client is 192.13.14.1, go to a command shell and type the following command:

ping 192.13.14.1

If you are connecting to the server from a local client—that is, a client running on the same machine as the server —you can ping the virtual TCP/IP loopback server:

ping localhost [or] ping 127.0.0.1

Checking That the Firebird Server Is Running

POSIX Classic Server

Use the ps command in a command shell to inspect the running processes. If any clients are connected to a Firebird Classic process, you should see one process named fb _inet _server (or gds_inet_server for Firebird 1.0.x) for each connected client. The ps command has several switches, but the following will provide a satisfactory list. The grep command will filter the output so you only see the Firebird processes:

[xxx]$ps -aux | grep fb In Figure, three client processes are running. Listing Classic processes with ps POSIX Superserver Because Superserver forks off a thread for each connection, it is interesting to throw the –f[ork] switch into the mix for examining its processes and threads. You get a formatted display of the forking processes, similar to Figure: [xxx]$ ps -auxf | grep fb

Listing Superserver process and threads with ps

The same ps command should show one process named fbguard (or ibguard) if the server was started with the –f[orever] switch, and one main process named fbserver (or ibserver). There will be at least one child process thread named fbserver (or ibserver) forking off one more such process thread. This first group is “the running server,” sans any client connections except those that the server uses for listening on ports and for garbage collection. Beyond that will be a group of threads for each connection.

Windows NT 4, 2000, and XP

For the Windows server platforms, start the Firebird Server Control applet from the Control Panel.

Server Control Applet

Figure shows the Firebird Server Control applet display on Windows 2000 Server. If you used the installer, this applet will have been installed to your Control Panel. Its appearance may vary from one Windows server edition to another.

Server Control applet

You can use the applet to start and stop the service and to modify the start and run options. It is not recommended to change to “Run as an application” for multi-user use, for security reasons—you have to leave the server logged in to keep the server running.

Services Applet

If you have no Control Panel applet, you can inspect the Services applet in the Administration Tools display. On NT 4, you can access this applet directly from the Control Panel.

Services applet on Windows server platforms

Figure shows the service names for Firebird 1.5 for the Guardian and the server. They may have different service names because of version changes; the Guardian may not appear at all. A user with Administrator privileges can right-click the service name to stop or restart the service. If you are using the Guardian, stop that service to stop both Guardian and server.

On Windows 2000 and Windows Server 2003, the Guardian is a convenience rather than a necessity, since these two operating systems have the facility to watch and restart services. It is recommended that you keep the Guardian active for other platforms if a SYSDBA is not available to restart the server manually in the event that it is stopped for some reason.

Other Control Panel Applets

If you want a Firebird Manager applet and you do not find one installed in the Control Panel of your Windows server, or if you need an applet in a language other than English, download one from the Firebird website or from Simply close the Control Panel window and copy the .cpl file directly to your Windows system directory.

Windows 9x, ME, and XP Home

Windows 9x, ME, and XP Home do not support services. Firebird server should be running as an application, monitored by the Guardian. If you used an installation kit that installed but did not automatically start the Guardian and the Firebird server, you can set it up manually, as follows:

1. Locate the executable file for the Guardian program (ibguard.exe) and create a shortcut for it in the Startup area of your machine’s Start menu.
2. Open the Properties dialog box of the shortcut and go to the field where the command line is.
3. Edit the command line so it reads as follows:

fbguard.exe –a

4. Save and close the Properties dialog box.
5. Double-click the shortcut to start the Guardian. The Guardian will proceed to start fbserver.exe.

The Guardian should start up automatically the next time you boot your machine.

Server Control Applet

Some versions of the Server Control applet can be installed on a non -services -capable Windows platform. If the installer installs one for you, then it can be used in a similar manner as previously described for the services -capable versions. It will not be possible to choose a “Run as a service” option, if it is displayed. On the Home versions of Windows, to avoid confusion, the better applets hide or gray-out the option.