2b. Install and configure the prerequisites

Applies to the following products: 
Questionmark Perception
Applies to the following Perception versions: 
Perception 5.4

Once you have installed your server operating system, the following applications are required to be installed on the same server on which you intend to install Perception. These programs must be installed and configured before you install Perception. Click on the individual program to see instructions and notes on its installation and configuration. Alternatively, you can use the Web Platform Installer to download and automatically install most of the prerequisites at once, instead of downloading and installing each application individually.

Required applications

  • Internet Information Services (IIS) 7 or 7.5

    Windows Server 2008 and R2 use IIS 7 and 7.5 respectively. The process of installing them is very similar. You will need to ensure that you have administrative user rights on the server on which you plan to install IIS.

    To install IIS:

    1. Click Start | All Programs | Administrative Tools | Server Manager
    2. In the Server Manager window, scroll down to Roles Summary, and then click Add Roles. The Add Roles Wizard will start with a Before You Begin page. The wizard asks for verification of the following:
      • The administrator account has a strong password
      • The network settings, such as IP addresses, are configured
      • The latest security updates from Windows Update are installed
    3. Select Web Server (IIS) on the Select Server Roles page. An introductory page will open with links for further information.
    4. Select the IIS services to be installed on the Select Role Services page. Add the following modules, and click Next:
      • Static Content
      • Default Document
      • ASP
      • ASP.NET
      • .NET Extensibility
      • CGI
      • ISAPI Extensions
      • ISAPI Filters
      • Windows Authentication
      • IP and Domain Restrictions
      • IIS Management Console
      • IIS Management Scripts and Tools
      • IIS 6 Management Components (or the whole IIS 6 Management Compatibility subtree)

      If you are using the 32-bit version of Windows Server 2008, you should also include the following:

      • HTTP Redirection
      • Request Filtering
    5. Click Add Required Role Services
    6. Wait for IIS to complete installing, and click Finish
    7. Locate the Features Summary, and click Add Features
    8. Enable the following Features:
      • .NET Framework 3.0 (inside the .NET Framework 3.0 Features category)
      • HTTP Activation (inside the WCF Activation category)
    9. Click Next, followed by Install
    10. Once the features have been installed, click Close and exit Server Manager

    Once IIS is enabled, make sure the ASP.NET State Service is running. To do this:

    1. Click Start | Administration Tools | Services
    2. Locate and right click on the ASP State Service entry
    3. Click Properties
    4. Make sure the Startup type is set to Automatic
    5. Click Start to start the service now
    6. Click OK and exit out of the Services window

    Running 32-bit applications in 64-bit IIS

    If you are planning to run 32-bit applications (i.e., Perception) in a 64-bit version of IIS (on a 64-bit version of Windows Server 2008), you will need to ensure that the correct settings are enabled. The settings are enabled by running specific commands and parameters from the command line. You will need to launch the command line prompt as an administrative user (you can do this by logging in as an administrative user or by right-clicking on the command prompt icon and clicking Run as administrator).

    To enable 32-bit applications to run in 64-bit IIS, enter the following command at the prompt:

    cscript %SYSTEMDRIVE%\inetpub\adminscripts\adsutil.vbs SET W3SVC/AppPools/Enable32bitAppOnWin64 1

    To enable the 32-bit version of the .NET 2.0 Framework for use with Perception, you will need to run the following command:

    %SYSTEMROOT%\Microsoft.NET\Framework\v2.0.50727\aspnet_regiis.exe -i

    ...or, if that is unavailable, try:

    %SYSTEMROOT%\Microsoft.NET\Framework64\v2.0.50727\aspnet_regiis.exe -i

  • .NET 2.0 SP2

    In Windows Server 2008, the .NET 2.0 Framework is installed by default. No further action is required.

  • .NET 3.5 + SP1

    The .NET Framework 3.5 is not available by default on Windows Server 2008 (32- or 64-bit). However, it is already installed on Windows Server 2008 R2, but it needs to be enabled.

    If you are using Windows Server 2008 (32- or 64-bit) you can download it from:

    Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5 Service Pack 1

    To enable the .NET Framework 3.5 on Windows Server 2008 R2:

    1. Click Start | Administrative Tools | Server Manager
    2. Select Features
    3. Click Add Feature
    4. Place a check in the .NET Framework 3.5.1 Features check-box
    5. Click Add Required Feature
    6. Click Next followed by Install
    7. Once it has finished installing, click Close

    If you are using Windows Server 2008 (32-bit), you will also need to enable HTTP Activation. To do this:

    1. Navigate to Start | Programs | Administrative Tools | Server Manager
    2. Select Features, and click Add Features
    3. In the Add Features dialog, under .NET Framework 3.0 Features under WCF Activation, select HTTP Activation
    4. Click the Next to install

    Once setup, you will need to enable the WCF portion of the .NET Framework 3.5. To do this:

    1. Launch the command line
    2. Navigate to: 

      C:\WINDOWS\Microsoft.NET\Framework\v3.0\Windows Communication Foundation\

      Or, the following, if you are using a 64-bit operating system:

      C:\WINDOWS\Microsoft.NET\Framework64\v3.0\Windows Communication Foundation\

    3. Enter the following and press Enter

      ServiceModelReg.exe -iru

  • .NET 4

    You can download .NET 4 from:

    Microsoft .NET Framework 4

    Once downloaded, double-click on the installer and follow the instructions to install .NET 4.


    You can download ASP.NET MVC 2 from:


    To download and install:

    1. Navigate to the above site
    2. Download AspNetMVC2_VS2008.exe
    3. Once downloaded, double-click on the file to launch the installer
    4. Accept the end user license agreement and allow it to install
    5. Click Finish to close the installer once the program has completed installing
  • Microsoft Chart Controls for Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5

    You can download Microsoft Chart Controls for Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5 from:

    Microsoft Chart Controls for Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5

    To download and install:

    1. Navigate to the above site
    2. Download MSChart.exe
    3. Once downloaded, double-click on the file to launch the installer
    4. Accept the end user license agreement and allow the program to install
    5. Click Finish to close the installer
  • PHP 5.3 and PHP Manager for IIS

    You can download PHP 5.3 from:

    PHP 5.3.16

    You can download PHP Manager for IIS from:

    PHP Manager for IIS

    If you download the prerequisites with the Web Platform Installer, PHP Manager will be installed automatically and no further configuration for is necessary. Once you have installed PHP and PHP Manager, you will need to make sure that PHP is configured appropriately for Perception. This will be discussed later in this guide in step 2c (Configure PHP).

  • Windows Server AppFabric

    You can download Windows Server AppFabric from:

    Windows Server AppFabric

    The version of AppFabric required is dependent on the version of Windows Server 2008 you are using.

    Windows Version

    AppFabric Version

    Windows Server 2008 (32-bit)

    6.0 (x86)

    Windows Server 2008 (64-bit)

    6.0 (x64)

    Windows Server 2008 R2

    6.1 (x64)

    For complete instructions about how to install AppFabric, please refer to the following:

    Windows Server AppFabric installation and configuration guide

    If you are using Windows Server 2008 (32- or 64-bit), you will be required to install the Windows Management Framework successfully before installing Windows Server AppFabric. If you have installed all the latest Windows updates, this should already be installed. However, for further details, please refer to:

    Windows Management Framework (Windows PowerShell 2.0, WinRM 2.0, and BITS 4.0)

    To install AppFabric:

      1. Double-click the file you downloaded
      2. Click Yes to accept the terms and conditions, followed by Next
      3. Select you preferences for the Customer Experience, Help Improve, Critical Updates, and click Next
      4. Select the following features and click Next (uncheck the other options so that only the following features are selected)
    • Runtime Features (automatically checked when the option below is checked)
      • Caching Services
    • Administration Tools (automatically checked when the option below is checked)
      • Cache Administration

    1. Click Install to start the installation process

    Once AppFabric is installed, you will be asked if you want to configure it. For the time being, uncheck the checkbox and exit the installer. Once you have finished installing all the requisites, you will need to come back and configure AppFabric. Configuring AppFabric for Perception will be discussed later in this guide in step 2e (Configure AppFabric).

Optional applications

  • SMTP

    Perception can be configured to send emails to participants at the end of assessments or with Email Broadcast. If you do not want to configure Perception to send emails, however, this is not required.

    It is possible to configure Perception to send emails using a local SMTP service in IIS or connect to an external SMTP service (for example, one that is provided by your internet service provider).

    To find out more about installing and configuring SMTP, please refer to:

    A3. Configure the SMTP service

Use the Web Platform Installer to download and install the required prerequisites

Microsoft's Web Platform Installer makes it easy to download most of the necessary prerequisites for Perception in one place and install them automatically. The Web Platform Installer will download and all of the software required by Perception that does not have to be installed manually.

Microsoft Web Platform Installer 4.0 can be downloaded from:

Microsoft Web Platform Installer 4.0

The following programs must be installed manually, using the installation instructions in the above section (i.e., they are not included in the Web Platform Installer):

  • Microsoft Chart Control for Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5
  • Internet Information Services (IIS) 7 or 7.5
  • Windows Server AppFabric

Click one of the following links to launch the Web Platform Installer and download and install the prerequisites: