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in Project Server - EPM by 11 11 18

I am using Project Server 2013, I need to provision multiple PWA instances on the same farm. My business requirement is, I have more than 150 departments and I suppose to create an individual PWA instance per each department, but I need to know

  • What is the best practice for this?
  • What about the performance, maintenance effect, and side effects of provisioning more than 150 PWA instances on the same farm?
  • Can I manage all the projects of more than 150 departments in one PWA instance? 

1 Answer

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Can I Create multiple PWA instances on the same farm in Project Server?

As a short Answer, Yes it's possible to provision multiple PWA instances on the same farm but it's strongly NOT recommended.

Why you should avoid provisioning multiple PWA instances on the Same farm?

In Project Server 2013, each PWA has its own Project data database, and as a best practice, it's also recommended to create an independent PWA content database for each PWA instance.

So we are talking about 150 PWA content database + 150 Project database = 300 databases on the same SQL instance that for sure must affect the SharePoint farm performance as well as it would duplicate the effort of operational tasks like backup and restore, migration, upgrade ..etc.

Besides the above major reason, you should also think about the following:

  • Consider, you have requested to implement a new functionality like Risk management workflow that is the same steps for all instances, so you can imagine the volume of effort and time that you will need to apply the same functionality on multiple PWA instances versus a single PWA instance.
  • Generally, managing and maintaining security in the project server is a complex and boring task in a single PWA instance, so you can imagine the complex work needed to manage multiple PWA instances.
  • Although the PWA instance is a site collection but it has certain timer jobs that will run for each instance and this is will affect the farm performance.
  • In the new versions of Project server like Project server 2016, there is a single database (SharePoint Content Database) holds the project data and the content to facilitate the database operations, such as backup and restore, migration, etc. so it's a bad idea to have multiple PWA instances with Multiple databases.

    Read more at What’s new and deprecated in Project Server 2016?

  • The upgrade to a newer version will take more time and effort.
  • A bit change would not be an easy task to be applied to multiple PWA instances versus a single PWA instance.
  • Reporting and presenting the project data in a single dashboard for the high management level would be a big challenge.

What're the workarounds to avoid creating multiple PWA instances on the same farm?

It mainly depends on your current organization structure and identifying the main requirements and the common functionality between each department clearly.

See Also

If you don’t ask, the answer is always NO!