K2 [blackpoint] - the trial begins

Last week it was proposed that my development team should have a look at K2 [blackpoint]. Management’s motivation seems to be more money related rather than feature related since K2 [blackpoint] is cheaper per user than K2 [blackpearl]. My organisation already have a number of K2 [blackpearl] workflows in use, and I really like it… so I was a little unsure about what K2 [blackpoint] could offer us.

Its billed as SharePoint workflows, more features, no code… should us developers all quit now while we can and leave all the development to our business analysts?

We’ve had a number of disastrous attempts at getting our power user and business analyst users involved in developing their own stuff without interacting with the developers… should we trust them with more power? and allow them to build their own WSS or MOSS workflow? The jury is out! :-D

Things to point out:

  • It is currently only available in beta version (version 4.8130.0.0)
  • There is an upgrade path to K2 [blackpearl] - great :-)
  • Business analysts and users of the K2 toolkits are secure in the knowledge that the tools are familiar, as they look very similar to the Office 2007 suite.

Installation footprint (Hardware):

  1. Minimum: Server with processor speed of 2.5 gigahertz (GHz)  or higher
    Recommended: Dual processor, 3 GHz or higher
  2. Minimum: 1 gigabyte (GB) RAM
    Recommended: 2 GB recommended
  3. 3 GB of available hard disk

Installation footprint (software)

One of the following operating systems (for the server)

  • Windows 2003 Server with SP2 (Standard or Enterprise)
  • Windows 2003 Server R2 with SP2 (Standard or Enterprise)

For use of email notifications (one of the following three):

  • Internet Simple Mail Transfer Protocol/Post Office Protocol 3 (SMTP/POP3)
  • Internet Message Access Protocol 4 (IMAP4)
  • MAPI-compliant messaging software

The following windows components:

  • Internet Information Services (IIS) 6.0
  • Distributed Transaction Coordinator (DTC)
  • Microsoft Message Queuing (MSMQ)

The following .Net components:


  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 6 or higher (IE 7 is recommended)

Additional applications:

Database technologies:

  • Microsoft SQL Server 2005 with SP2 (Standard or Enterprise)
  • Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Reporting Services

Take note of all the required Service Packs, as K2 will only be able to support your installation if it was installed with the correct prerequisites. Windows 2003 Server MUST have all the latest security patches. SQL Server 2005 will work in pre SP2 mode, but wont be supported. Report Viewer must be SP1. These are all things to investigate if your beta install fails to work or install before calling for help.

More detail on the installation prerequisites can be found in the K2 [blackpoint] Release notes, where much of this information is from!

I’ll be reporting back on how my organisation gets on with K2 [BlackPoint].. good luck to everyone else who’s embarking on the same journey.


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2 Responses to “K2 [blackpoint] - the trial begins”

  1. Keith Says:

    Have you had a look at Nintex Workflow? Make you and your boss haoppy?

  2. SpittingCAML Says:

    Hi Keith, many thanks for your comment. We did look at Nintex Workflow when we were assessing our business need for Workflow technologies in 2007. We found that K2 technologies better suited our organisation, and we intend to stick with K2 as they have been most helpful, and most importantly, interested in how we want to use their product. K2 Underground is a godsend, and this developer resource community is not as readiliy available with Nintex.


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