Using previous installers

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Note: Starting with InterBase 2017 Update 3 there is a single unified installer for both English and Japanese. this section only applies to 2017 Update 2 and below.


Before Installation for all Platforms

Installation Process

Registration Process

Post Install

Platform Specifics

All Platforms

Install information for all platforms.

General Information

For a list of recent bug fixes and updated contact information, please refer to the InterBase 2020 Readme.

For a list of add-ons and licenses you can obtain for InterBase products, see Chapter 2, Licensing, in the InterBase Operations Guide. You receive all six InterBase user guides in PDF format at the time of purchase.

Check InterBase Community for a variety of information and resources of interest to those who develop and maintain InterBase databases and applications. Embarcadero maintains several active newsgroups for InterBase users. To access them, go to Forums.

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System Requirements/Prerequisites

The following table lists the system requirements for installing and running InterBase.

InterBase Developer, Desktop and Server Edition

Note: Desktop Edition is only available on Windows.

  • Supported operating systems:
    • Windows (64-bit, 32-bit):
      • Windows 11
      • Windows 10
      • Windows 8, 8.1
      • Windows 7
      • Windows Vista
      • Windows Server 2022
      • Windows Server 2019
      • Windows Server 2016
      • Windows Server 2012, 2012 R2
      • Windows Server 2008, 2008 R2
    • Linux (64-bit, 32-bit):
      • RHEL 8
      • SuSE 11.3
      • Ubuntu 20
      • Ubuntu 18
  • Supported processor architecture:
    • Windows, and Linux
      • Intel x86 or Intel x86-64
  • Hard disk space:
    • Installation files: ~250MB (~350MB for Japanese version).
    • Space needed for install:
      ~46 MB for Client Only installation.
      ~117 MB for Server and Client installation.

InterBase ToGo Edition

  • Supported operating systems:
    • Windows (64-bit, 32-bit):
      • Windows 11
      • Windows 10
      • Windows 8, 8.1
      • Windows 7
      • Windows Vista
      • Windows Server 2016
      • Windows Server 2012, 2012 R2
      • Windows Server 2008, 2008 R2
    • Linux (64-bit, 32-bit):
      • RHEL 8
      • SuSE 11.3
      • Ubuntu 20
      • Ubuntu 18
    • macOS (64-bit, 32-bit):
      • Monterey (12)
      • Big Sur (11)
      • Catalina (10.15)
    • Android:
      • 13
      • 12
      • 11
      • 10
      • Pie (9.x)
      • Oreo (8.x)
    • iOS
      • iOS 17
      • iOS 16
      • iOS 15
      • iOS 14
  • Required libraries:
    • JRE
JRE is required to run the License Manager on Windows, Linux, and macOS systems. Linux systems require openjdk-8, for example on Ubuntu you can run sudo apt install openjdk-8jdk

When installing InterBase on RHLE 9, installation may fail due to fapolicyd blocking the execution of the JDK version included on the installer. To overcome this, stop fapolicyd running: systemctl stop fapolicyd and then run the InterBase installer, after installation finishes start fapolicyd. Refer to fapolicy documentation to learn more about fapolicy.

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Server/Client Compatibility

InterBase 2020 server is certified to work with a compatible InterBase 2020 client. Since there are no breaking API changes, earlier versions of InterBase clients may work with the current version of the server also.

IMPORTANT! Mixing InterBase client and server versions is not supported. It is strongly recommended that compatible client and server versions are used for local connections on Windows.

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Installation and Registration

You can install InterBase after downloading it from the web, or by using the InterBase installer (installing from MediaKit).

The InterBase installer installs InterBase on Windows, Linux, and macOS. As part of this installation, you have the opportunity to register the product. InterBase must be registered before you can start the server. If the server is started without entering any licensing information an error message with the registration key is logged in interbase.log. This registration code along with your serial number may then be used to register your software on any computer by going to

Installing and registering the product provides a base level of functionality; the exact level of functionality depends on whether you are installing the Desktop Edition, ToGo Edition, or the Server Edition. It is important to note that the Desktop edition is only available for the Windows operating systems.

To add more users, more processors, or strong encryption, you need to purchase additional appropriate licenses from the Embarcadero shop site or from your sales representative. The license key and registration are explained in the "Licensing" chapter of the Operations Guide. You will find this and the other InterBase books in the <interbase_home>/doc directory. See Licensing users, processors, and strong encryption below for more details.

Note: For older InterBase version users - InterBase 2020 licenses are not compatible with earlier InterBase version licenses. InterBase 2020 requires a new license purchase.

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Downloading and Installing

The following instructions guide you through the process of downloading, installing, and registering InterBase.

  1. Download InterBase to your local computer or server.
  2. Extract the .zip file to a new directory.
  3. On Windows, run install_windows.exe. On Linux, run either or On macOS, run
  4. Follow the instructions below for Registration.
  5. Start InterBase and your product is activated.
Note: For information on how to install the ToGo or IBLite Editions, click ToGo Quick Start to open the InterBase ToGo and IBLite Quick Start.

Note: When installing InterBase ToGo, the MSVC 2013 Runtime is required. This is not available by default on Windows 7 and earlier versions of Windows, and will need to be installed prior to using InterBase ToGo. The required files are available at:, or, by searching the web for "Visual C++ Redistributable Packages for Visual Studio 2013"

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Using the Installer

The following instructions guide you through the process of installing and registering InterBase using the cross-platform installer. You are encouraged to use this installer when possible. A console (command-line) installer is available for Unix users who have environments that are not compatible with a GUI installer. However, to use the command-line installer on a Unix OS, you must also have a copy of X-Windows installed. See Command-line installation for instructions on how to run the installation from a console window.

Preparing to install:

  1. If you are installing InterBase on a machine for the first time, you need to register the product as part of the installation. This applies to upgrades from previous versions, as well as completely new installations. To prepare for the registration phase of the install, be sure you have the following available:
    • The Serial Number that is provided to you in an email sent after downloading the trial version of the product or when you have purchased the product.
    • Your Embarcadero Developer Network user name and password. If you have registered an Embarcadero product before, you are a member of the Embarcadero Developer Network and have a user name and password. You may be a member of the Network if you joined it online even if you have never previously registered an Embarcadero product. If you are not a member of EDN, you will have an opportunity to join during the registration phase of your installation.
  2. If you are upgrading from a previous version, you should also perform the following actions:
    Before un-installing a previous InterBase version, back up any existing databases using your existing version of InterBase.
    • InterBase 2020 uses a new major on-disk structure version, ODS 18.0. This is required to accommodate new system tables, and changes to existing system tables. Databases created with earlier versions of InterBase are not automatically upgraded to ODS 18.0 when an InterBase 2020 server attaches to these databases.
    • To migrate these databases to the new ODS, backup these databases with the older version of InterBase and restore them using InterBase 2020 IBConsole or gbak. This database restore operation automatically creates a database with the latest ODS version (as supported by the engine).
    • It is highly recommended that you upgrade to the latest ODS. Support for ODS Versions 12 and lower is disabled. Versions 13 to 17 are supported.
    • The InterBase XE7 release introduced scaled integer (64-bit) support for Performance Monitoring counters that could benefit from them. This depends on the ODS version of your database as follows.
    • ODS 15 remains the same as before and only supports 32-bit Integer counters.
    • ODS < = 15 will continue to have 32-bit INTEGER counters as before (for both dialect 1 and dialect 3 databases).
    • ODS > = 16 will have the counters defined as "double precision" data type for dialect 1 databases.
    • ODS > = 16 will have the counters defined as "NUMERIC(18,0)" data type for dialect 3 databases. By default, a new database is created as ODS 16, dialect 3. It will benefit from the scaled counter support.
    • Make a backup copy of your security database (admin.ib by default).
    • Make a backup copy of your ibconfig file.
    • Stop the InterBase server and un-install InterBase.
    • As with any installation, Embarcadero strongly recommends that you stop all running applications, including your virus checker.
    • Linux users must log in as root to install. Windows and macOS users must be logged in as a user with Administrative privileges.
  3. Run the install program:
    • On Windows platforms, run install_windows.exe.
    • On Linux platforms, run either or script for Linux as per the underlying system architecture;
    • On macOS, run
  4. When you first run the install program, the opening panel displays the following options:
Button What is Does
Install InterBase 2020 Installs the main InterBase 2020 product.

InterBase 2020 on the Web Connects you to

InterBase Setup Information Displays this setup document. InterBase strongly recommends that you review this information before proceeding with the installation.

Exit Exits Installation.

Take the following steps to complete the process:

  1. Select InterBase 2020, click Install, and follow the prompts to accept the license agreement.
  2. In the next panel, choose Architecture 32 or 64. Also select if you want to uniquely identify the instance. The default setting is "No".
    Note: The architecture option only applies to the English installer on Windows.
  3. In the Select Components panel, choose "Server and Client," "Client Only," or "Register."
    The next panel, Destination Location, shows the default location. You can change the location if desired.
  4. In the Start Installation panel, click Next and the installation starts.
  5. Once the installer completes the product installation, the Product Registration dialog displays.
    • If you have your Serial Number and Embarcadero Developer Network (EDN) membership information available, you should perform the registration at this time.
    • If you do not have an EDN membership, you will have the opportunity to create one during the registration. If you cannot register at this time, choose Cancel. When you are ready to register, run the InterBase installer again and choose Register from the Install Set panel, or invoke the License Manager tool upon start-up.
    • On Linux or macOS , if you wish to register from a shell command line, please execute the command:
       <interbase_home>/bin/LicenseManagerLauncher -i Console
  6. In the Registration panel, enter the Serial Number and Key from the email you received from Embarcadero.


  1. Enter your Embarcadero Developer Network account credentials in the Login or Email and Password fields. If you have not previously created an EDN account, or have forgotten your password, click I need to create... or I have lost my password.
  2. Click Register and your activation file should be downloaded and installed automatically. If this does not happen, click the Trouble Connecting? link in the Product Registration dialog.
  3. Click Registration FAQ to view frequently asked questions about registering your InterBase product.

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Install Drivers

Return to the opening panel if it is still displayed and choose the connectivity drivers that you want to install. Otherwise, run the InterBase installer again and choose the "Install InterBase Connectivity Drivers" button. Choose a driver to install and follow the prompts.

Note: The JDBC driver is automatically installed, so it is not displayed as a driver choice.

The InterBase installer provides the following drivers:

ADO.NET driver for InterBase
InterBase ODBC Driver

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Using the Wise Installer to Embed InterBase

InterBase includes a Windows/English-only installer to help make embedding InterBase easy. The installer is located in the: Disk1\InstData\Windows\VM directory of the Media Kit and is named ib_install.exe.

Command line options for ib_install.exe:

/S (run installer in silent mode) 
/M=<filename> (this file contains custom settings for your installation) 

You can define custom parameter values (for example in a .txt file):

MAINDIR - The location of the InterBase Root Directory 
TCP_PORT - default is 3050 
INSTANCE - default is gds_db 
COMPONENTS - This is a comma separated list of the Components that will be installed.
ARCH - Choose InterBase architecture (32 or 64)

The options for COMPONENTS are:

A = Server and Client
B = Client only
C = Documentation
D = Registration (does not work in Silent Install mode)

For example, you can configure the custom parameters and save them in a file named values.txt, if you then execute the command: ib_install.exe /s /m=values.txt, you will launch the silent installer with the settings from this file. If the values file is not found, the Silent Install will assume the default values as detailed above.

You can also provide custom values via such files to the GUI installer by executing ib_install.exe without the /s flag.

Note: To include a license activation file (*.slip) with your installation, save the activation file into the directory where the ib_install.exe file is located.

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Installing on Japanese Versions

Using the Java Installer for Japanese Windows installations.

Command-Line Installation

If your Linux or macOS environment does not support the GUI installer, you can use the following steps to perform a console installation.

Use the InstallAnywhere-based installer. The InstallAnywhere-based installer requires X Window System libraries to be available. If they are not available, you will get the error "Installer User Interface Mode not Supported".

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Installing InterBase

  1. If an InterBase server is running, shut it down and uninstall any previous versions of InterBase.
  2. From your InterBase Media Kit, run the platform specific installer with the -i flag
  3. On Linux, run ib_install_x86.bin or ib_install_x86_64.bin -i Console
    • Follow the prompts.
  4. When installation is complete, you must register InterBase in order to start the server.
    • On Linux, if you wish to register from a shell command line, please execute the command:
  <interbase_home>/bin/LicenseManagerLauncher -i Console 
  • For some platform-specific issues related to installation, please see the Linux section below:

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Licensing Users, Processors, and Strong Encryption

For more information about InterBase options, please visit the Embarcadero InterBase Portal. The Licensing chapter in the Operations Guide PDF manual covers this topic in more detail. You can purchase licenses to enable additional simultaneous users and additional processors through the Embarcadero web site or through your sales representative.

You will have the following basic functionality after you register:

  • Desktop, ToGo and IBLite Edition(s): Permits local connections only (same machine), enables eight cores/processors and eight simultaneous connections.
  • Strong encryption is now enabled by default on Server, Desktop, and ToGo Edition production SKUs. Note that strong encryption is not enabled on the IBLite edition.
  • Server Edition: Enables eight CPU cores/processors and one user (4 connections).

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Platform Specifics


InterBase Multi-Instance Install Setup

In a Multi-Instance install the /usr/interbase symbolic link is not automatically created. Set the INTERBASE and LD_LIBRARY_PATH environment variables to use that particular instance of InterBase. This does not apply to "single" instance installations.

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Saving Customization Files

If you are planning to install the InterBase 2020 software over an older version installed on the server machine, and you want to preserve the customization files, copy them to a safe place, for example:

gbak -b /usr/interbase/admin.ib /tmp/admin.ibk
cp /usr/interbase/ib_license.dat /tmp   
cp /usr/interbase/ibconfig /tmp 

You can skip this step if you have not customized these files in a previous installation.

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Running InterBase as a Service

To run InterBase as a service:

  /usr/interbase/examples/ -s[tart] 

When you choose to run InterBase as a service, the InterBase server starts automatically whenever the machine is running in a multi-user mode.

To remove InterBase as a service, run:

  /usr/interbase/examples/ -r[emove] 

You must then start the InterBase server manually whenever you need it.

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InterBase on macOS Multi-Instance Install Setup

In a multi-instance install the /Applications/InterBase symbolic link is not automatically created to your install location. Set the INTERBASE and DYLD_LIBRARY_PATH environment variables to use that particular instance of InterBase. This does not apply to "single" instance installations.

Running InterBase as a Service

When you install the product, InterBase is setup automatically to run as a service. You will notice that the /Library/StartupItems/ folder on your machine has an entry to run the InterBase server whenever the system boots up.

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