MicroStrategy Server Control Utility
Joaquin Attanasio

Joaquin Attanasio

Business Intelligence Consultant | Microstrategy Expert | Data Specialist

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MicroStrategy Server Control Utility (MSTRCTL)

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Good week everyone and welcome to a new chapter of this beautiful and entertaining section called #BestInMicro!

This week we will focus on reviewing a basic functionality for any administrator, especially those working with Linux. Today we will review the MicroStrategy Server Control Utility or MSTRCTL.

Let’s get to it, and as always, first things first….

What is the MicroStrategy Server Control Utility?

The MSTRCTL is a tool that allows us to control and obtain information from the Intelligence server. It is used with command line, and is found inside the italic, <MicroStrategyPathitalic, >/bin in the case of Linux, or inside Program Files/Common Files/MicroStrategy in the case of Windows.

What is it used for?

Generally, the most common use of the MicroStrategy Server Control Utility is for is the control, start, and stop of the Intelligence server service. Anyone who has restarted the Intelligence server via the command line has executed the query

“/mstrctl -s IntelligenceServer start”

(or stop) to control the Intelligence server.

But since we are curious and love to go beyond what we see, we are going to review what options are available:

Server Control Utility

Here, on the last functionalities, we see the start, stop, resume and pause mentioned above. But we also find other functionalities that, if necessary, can give us important and relevant information about the server and the instance.

I want to emphasize the importance that this tool allows us to make the connection remotely, so if we have different servers (and they do not necessarily have to be in a cluster) we can control, extract and modify the server, the service, and the configurations.

Other Functionalities

One of the functions of the MicroStrategy Server Control Utilitythat caught my attention is to extract the list of DSNs on the server, using the load function.. Although it is not something complex to extract, sometimes if you do not have the necessary permissions it can be useful, besides being faster, and, of course, it allows us to make an extraction simply (something that with the ODBC.ini is not possible in a direct way).

But I want to make a special mention for others that have caught my attention: the server and server instance. List, modify, duplicate and even import configurations from files.

If you look at the following commands, you can extract the configuration details to an output file:

– gsc: shows a server configuration

– gsvc: show a service configuration

– gsic: shows a server instance configuration

For example, we can run the following command to export the server instance configuration in an XML file and a ServerInstance.xml file will be saved in the current directory where we are standing:

mstrctl -s IntelligenceServer gsic> ServerInstance.xml

As a complement, the following commands can import a file generated in the previous point:

– ssc: modifies the configuration of a server

– ssvc: modifies the configuration of a service

– ssic: modifies the configuration of a server instance

For example, the following command can be executed to modify the configuration of the server instance by reading the input from an XML file:

mstrctl -s IntelligenceServer ssic <ServerInstance.xml

The XML definition in ServerInstance.xml is used to define the configuration of the server instance.

If we stop to think about it for a second, it is easier to export a configuration, modify it in a text editor and import it again, than to modify it from the command line. Aquellos que no dispongan de una interfaz gráfica para este tipo de tareas puede resultarles un diferencial.


As I always try to emphasize, the real power of these applications is in how you end up combining it with the rest to increase efficiency, automation and thus reduce the margin of error to a minimum. As it is a command line, it can be launched from different places, such as SSIS, a System Manager workflow, or even the Windows Task scheduler, as we have discussed in previous examples.

This is another of those tools that surely many administrators use, but sometimes because they do not know what other options it offers, they do not take advantage of its potential, and in the case of the last example, it can save a lot of time and some unintentional inconsistency when configuring the server.

Anyway, that was another note. Now it’s your turn to tell me if you have ever heard of or used the Server Control Utility, do you find it useful, have you ever used any other functionality, would you like me to go into detail on how to use it, with a video or another article, leave your comments and questions, and see you next time!


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