With v15 we have greatly simplified the installation whilst at the same time increasing security by allowing you to have 3CX manage your FQDN and security certificates. However, it is important to understand the following:
A license key is bound to the FQDN (subdomain) you choose!
- Evaluating / Demo V15
- Restore of Backups
- Converting Evaluation to Full Version
- Upgrading / Existing Installations to V15
- How to Upgrade
Evaluating / Demo V15
- To evaluate, use a free 3CX PBX Edition key -> do not use your existing NFR or purchased key!
- Select a test domain -> one that you will not want to use later for your production key!
Go to https://www.3cx.com/voip-ip-pbx/, fill in your details correctly and you will be provided with a free 3CX PBX Edition key. If you are not yet familiar with the 3CX PBX Edition version, here is the edition comparison table: https://www.3cx.com/phone-system/edition-comparison/.
When you choose a hostname, choose one that you will not need in the future. So if your company name is abclimited, and you are evaluating 3CX, do not “waste” abclimited on your test installation key knowing that you already have a commercial key for this installation. An exception would be if you are planing to UPGRADE the PBX Edition evaluation key into a full version and you do NOT yet own a key, then also reserve abclimited on this key!
Restore of Backups
If you install 3CX V15 and you use license key XYZ, do NOT RESTORE backups with another key from the management console to this installation! An exception would be if you are planing to UPGRADE the PBX Edition evaluation key into a full version and you do NOT yet own a key, then also reserve abclimited on this key!
If you restore a backup, you will activate 3CX with the license that is inside the backup and your installation will have FQDN problems and conferencing will not work. Replacing the license key or importing a backup with a different license key requires a reinstall of the PBX!
Converting Evaluation to Full Version
If you evaluated 3CX successfully and you are ready to upgrade your free 3CX PBX Edition key to a full featured commercial version, a Version Upgrade must be purchased on your existing license key.
- As an End User, you must present your key to the 3CX Partner for the Upgrade order to maintain your installation and FQDN
- As a 3CX Partner, only order new license keys in case no evaluation has been made using a 3CX PBX Edition key as the FQDN is already bound to a key resulting in a reinstall of the product.
Upgrading Existing Installations to V15
If you bought a 3CX License, then use this key at the installation stage and with this reserve your FQDN.
You will have the option to either choose a 3CX FQDN or to import your existing SSL Certificate for your own FQDN. Decide the options you want to take. If you choose to use a 3CX FQDN, enter your company name as your hostname (abclimited only). This will lock your license key to “abclimited”. The Domain will be reserved for you and only you – providing you keep your maintenance current.
How to Upgrade
If you have a previous version of 3CX, and you want to upgrade to V15, you will firstly need to make sure you have valid maintenance and then to perform the following steps:
- Ensure that all Windows updates are installed on the machine you wish to install 3CX. (This can be a time consuming process if you have not done this in a long time. So do this before you uninstall 3CX to reduce downtime)
- Access your current 3CX Phone System and perform a backup
- Uninstall 3CX
- Download and run the V15 install
- The 3CX PBX Configuration tool will launch and will prompt you to restore your previous backup. Enter the path including file name where your backup is saved. The license key inside the backup will be used and linked to this installation.
- You will be prompted to choose a 3CX FQDN or import an existing SSL Certificate for a domain that you already own covering the chosen FQDN. If you choose a 3CX FQDN, choose your hostname wisely because the license key will be bound to the chosen FQDN.