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The following are the minimum system requirements for Automation Engine 16. Exceeding these requirements will in most cases lead to a performance increase. Running Automation Engine 16 on a system that does not meet these requirements is not supported.

The Automation Engine Server and any Assistant(s) server must be dedicated servers on which no other software (including other Esko applications such as FlexRip or FlexProof) is running.

Minimum Requirements - Server

Minimum System Requirements for Automation Engine 16 (Server)
Your installation typePersonal10 clients20 clients50 clients
Processor type and speed

2 processor cores

(x86-64 compatible)

4 processor cores

(x86-64 compatible)

6 processor cores

(x86-64 compatible)

10 processor cores

(x86-64 compatible)

RAM8 GB12 GB16 GB24 GB

As a rule of thumb (not for type Personal): 2 cores and 8 GB is considered to be a base performance layer. 2 GB is expected to be available per extra core for regular processing,

For more information about memory limitations in Windows operating systems, please consult this table.

Additional requirements for Viewing and QA Module

For every two simultaneous viewing sessions, add one processor core and 2 GB RAM. Do not configure more than 24 simultaneous viewing sessions per Automation Engine master server.

Viewing sessions that view unprepared files or go into deep zoom mode require the additional hardware resources listed above. On average between 10% and 25% of the clients connected to a server fall into this category, and these are the ones that should be taken into account.


To give your Automation Engine with 50 clients system viewing capabilities on unprepared files, you should add additional hardware resources for viewing. If you expect 8 simultaneous viewing sessions (8 single file sessions or 4 compare sessions), add an additional 4 processor cores and 8 GB RAM to the standard requirements.

For a 50 client system on a single physical machine, this would require a 14 processor core machine with 32 GB of RAM. Note that it is also possible to add an Automation Engine configured as Assistant to spread the load of processing and viewing over multiple servers (physical or virtual).

It is also possible to add an Automation Engine configured as Assistant to spread the load of servicing viewing sessions over multiple servers (physical or virtual).
Additional requirements for inspection tasks powered by Global Vision

Add 4GB of RAM if inspection tasks are expected to run.

Running Global Vision powered inspection tasks (Inspect Artwork, Inspect Barcodes, Inspect Braille, Inspect Spelling, Inspect Text) requires sufficient memory.

As it is not recommended to run these tasks concurrently, the system is configured to run only one of them at a time.

Additional requirements for Gang Run Printing Module

Add one processor core and 1 GB RAM per Gang Run Printing session configured and in use.


To add Gang Run Printing capabilities to a 50 client system, you should add additional hardware resources for concurrent Gang Run Printing. To enable 2 Gang Run Printing sessions for instance to perform automated nesting calculations in this case, 2 additional processor cores and 2 GB extra RAM are needed.

For a 50 client system on a single physical machine, this would require a 12 processor core machine with 26 GB of RAM.

It is also possible to add an Automation Engine configured as Assistant to spread the load of processing and nesting calculations over multiple servers (physical or virtual).

Knowing the exact customer situation and Gang Run Printing requirements (e.g.: number of substrates) helps in more accurately determining the additional hardware resources needed for nesting.

Hard disk

  • The installation takes up 40 GB of disk space. 
  • An NTFS volume is required.
  • Take into account the need for storage of temporary and production data.
  • A back-up solution is strongly advised.
Network10/100/1000 Base-T Ethernet, TCP/IP v4 protocol. TCP/IP v6 is not supported.
Graphics and videoMinimum 1280 x 1024 screen resolution, true color depth.

Automation Engine supports virtualization on:

  • VMware ESX version 4, 4.1, 5, 5.1 and 5.5
  • Microsoft Hyper-V

Hardware connections, including dongles, proofers, spectrophotometers and others may work, but are not supported. Customers should verify hardware support through their virtualization support channels.

  • SQL Server 2008 and SQL server 2008 R2 (Express Edition, Workgroup Edition, Standard Edition, Enterprise Edition) (not recommended)
  • SQL Server 2012 (Express Edition, Standard Edition, Business Intelligence Edition, Enterprise Edition)
  • SQL Server 2014 (Express Edition, Standard Edition, Business Intelligence Edition, Enterprise Edition)

Please make sure that the database is compatible with the operating system you intend to use.

File servers

All Esko applications running on Windows OS can use data that is available on network shares. For Automation Engine to perform according to expectations, these shares need to be on Windows file servers. We recommend to use  Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows Server 2012 or Windows Server 2012 R2 as file server.
From 16.0.2 onwards, Windows Server 2016 is supported as well, but ReFS data volumes are not supported yet.

As only Windows file servers are supported, Mac OS X or Unix/Linux (CIFS/SMB or NFS) data servers for instance are not supported (including many Network Attached Storage units).

Upgrading from  prior versions of Automation Engine

Upgrades of existing Automation Engine 12 or 14 environments should run on existing hardware with comparable performance for the same functionality. However, the hardware requirements as for new installations should be encouraged for optimum performance.

Compatibility with HP SmartStream Print Servers

Automation Engine 16 is compatible with HP SmartStream IN050/IN100/IN150 Labels and Packaging Print Server 4.0.1 and higher.

Supported Operating Systems

Recommended operating systems are highlighted in the tables below.

If an operating system is not listed in the tables below, it is not supported. Do not try to install Automation Engine Server on a computer running an unsupported operating system.

Windows Server 2016

Windows Server 2016 Standard(tick) (*)
Windows Server 2016 Datacenter(tick) (*)
Windows Server 2016 Essentials(error)
Windows Storage Server 2016(error)

(*) From v16.0.2 (April 2017) onwards

Windows Server 2012 R2

Windows Server 2012 R2 Standard(tick)
Windows Server 2012 R2 Datacenter(tick)
Windows Server 2012 R2 Essentials(error)
Windows Server 2012 R2 Foundation(error)
Windows Storage Server 2012 R2 Workgroup(error)
Windows Storage Server 2012 R2 Standard (error)

Windows Server 2012

Windows Server 2012 Standard(tick)
Windows Server 2012 Datacenter(tick)
Windows Server 2012 Essentials(error)
Windows Server 2012 Foundation(error)
Windows Storage Server 2012 Workgroup(error)
Windows Storage Server 2012 Standard (error)

Windows Server 2008 R2

Windows Server 2008 R2 Standard(error)(tick)
Windows Server 2008 R2 Enterprise(error)(tick)
Windows Server 2008 R2 Datacenter(error)(tick)
Windows Small Business Server 2008 R2(error)(error)
Windows Server 2008 R2 Foundation(error)(error)
Windows Web Server 2008 R2(error)(error)
Windows Server 2008 R2 HPC Edition(error)(error)

Unsupported Operating Systems

  • Windows Server 2008 R2 ( without Service Pack 1 ) --> Note : Windows 2008 R2 with SP1 is a supported OS.
  • Windows Server 2008 (all editions)
  • Windows Server 2003 (all editions)
  • Windows 2000 (all editions)
  • Windows 10 (all editions)
  • Windows 8.1 (all editions)
  • Windows 8 (all editions)
  • Windows 7 (all editions)
  • Windows Vista (all editions)
  • Windows XP (all editions)

Pre-Install IT Requirements Guide

For more information and advice, please see the chapter "Pre-Install IT Requirements Guide" in the “Automation Engine 16 Complete Manual”, which is also available as PDF through

System Requirements
Applies to

Automation Engine Server

Last revised8-Mar-2017