Installing Firebird from a zip kit

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Installing Firebird from a zip kit

The installation of Firebird 2.1 is similiar in principle to previous versions but you need to pay attention to the preceding notes about the MS Visual C/C++ v.8 runtimes. Ensure that these libraries are appropriately installed before you begin.


That taken care of, the steps are as follows:

  • Unzip the archive into a new directory.
  • Change the current directory to $FIREBIRD\bin (here and below, $FIREBIRD refers to the directory where the v.2.1 files are located).
  • Run instreg.exe:
instreg.exe install
It causes the installation path of the directory above to be written into the registry (HKLM\Software\Firebird Project\Firebird Server\Instances\DefaultInstance).
  • If you want to register a service, also run instsvc.exe:
instsvc.exe install
  • Optionally, you may need to run instclient.exe to copy fbclient.dll or a specially-generated clone as gds32.dll to the OS system directory.

Installing Classic server from a zip kit

To install the Classic server engine, the only difference is the additional switch for instsvc.exe:

 instsvc.exe install -classic

Important: Notice that this means that you may have only one architecture of the engine - either fbserver.exe (Superserver) or fb_inet_server.exe (the parent process for Classic) - installed as a service.

The Control Panel applet is not installed with Classic - deliberately. Don't try to install and use it. The concept of "terminating" a service does not apply to the Classic model.

Simplified setup

If you don't need a registered service, then you may avoid running both instreg.exe and instsvc.exe. In this case you should just unzip the archive into a separate directory and run the server as an application:

 fbserver.exe -a

It should treat its parent directory, i.e., the one above \bin\, as the root directory in this case.


Warning: You should not delete the client libraries from <SYS> by hand as it has the potential to render the shared library count inaccurate. The instclient.exe utility was conceived primarily so that the client library could be installed and removed from <SYS> while correctly maintaining the shared library count.

To remove Firebird 2.1 without a Windows Uninstaller, proceed as follows:

  • stop the server,
  • run instreg.exe remove,
  • run instsvc.exe remove,
  • run instclient.exe remove fbclient.dll,
  • run instclient.exe remove gds32.dll,
  • delete installation directory.

See also:
Firebird ZIP installation

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