How To Update Open Dental

How To: Update Open Dental

Open Dental is a popular and well regarded Practice Management software.  Like all programs, it needs to be updated from time to time.   Open Dental adds features and implements bug fixes to continue to provide a solid and stable software.

Your IT Firm is often involved when you update Open Dental however, this process can be accomplished independently should you desire (please read below).

There are several steps to update Open Dental:

  1. First and most critical: Inform Darkhorse or your IT firm that you will be performing this update to your systems.
  2. Ensure you have recent backups of your server and that you have access to the Server that is running your Open Dental Program. If you do not know if you have access, please reach out to your IT firm.

You will also need:

Admin Username and Password to the Server

Admin level Username and Password to Open dental

Before You Update Open Dental Back Up Your Data!

  1. Log out of Open Dental on ALL workstations. If possible, restart the system completely to ensure that there are no inactive sessions of Open Dental hiding in the background.
  2. Remote/Log into the server
  3. Perform a Manual Backup: Navigate to the location of your data folder: You should see a mysql/data folder on either your C drive or another lettered drive.  This would represent your database storage
  4. Navigate to your Mysql/data, and in that directory you will see another mysql folder.  Right click and go to copy
  5. Once you click on Copy Click on an empty part of that window, right click and select Paste
  6. After a second you should see a progress bar, once completed you will see a new folder on the screen named MYSQL(COPY) - right click on that folder and rename it to one you will remember, we recommend: PracticeName_Date_Backup

Now it's Time to Update Open Dental

  1. Once you have manually backed up your database, locate your Open Dental Program; it is usually opened by a shortcut on the server desktop
  2. Login with your Admin Open Dental Credentials and ensure that you see your schedule
  3. Move your mouse to the upper toolbar to the right-hand side; select Help and then Update
  4. Open Update and click on Check for Updates.  This will connect to the update server at Open Dental to establish a link and view what updates you qualify for.  The update screen should show you a screen similar to the one below which indicates if you have a New build or Stable Version availableBuild Version: A minor build update for the currently installed version; includes all of the latest bug fixes for the version.Stable Version: This version has gone through the beta testing phase and is considered stable.  It will contain new and enhanced features.  If you already have installed the latest stable version, this option will not be availableBeta Version: This version will contain the newest features but will likely have some bugs.  It is available to all practices but should only be installed if you are willing to take a risk.  We recommend updating to the newest build regularly if you choose this option.  If you have already installed the latest beta version this option will not be available.  Be sure to discuss this option with Darkhorse Tech or your IT Firm before installing
  5. Click Install next to the version you choose.  Please note: you will want to stay on the most stable version.  If you choose beta you will be updating to a version with       unknown issues that cannot be addressed with an immediate fix.
  6. You may see a dialogue box requesting you shutdown workstations - Open Dental must be closed on all workstations when an update is performed.  If you see any system besides your server on the list, please go to those systems and ensure an Open Dental shutdown, click Continue to move forward with Installation
  7. If no workstations are listed or you have performed the shutdown and clicked continue, the download will begin
  8. Once the download is complete, click OKOpen Dental will close, wait until the Setup Wizard Appears
  9. Follow the prompts of the setup Wizard
  10. On the final step of the Setup Wizard click, Finish.  The wizard will close
  11. Right click the Open Dental icon and run as administrator to open
  12. You will be prompted to update the database, once complete login to Open Dental as usualNOTE:- Once you install and run the update, all other computers will automatically update when the program is next opened so you can easily keep all your computers updated- An update can be triggered from any workstation that is using a higher version of Open Dental, even if an update was not intentionally run.  This can happen when a     multi-location office connects to multiple databases from the same workstation- Some updates will automatically backup the database as a preventative measure.  Large enterprise organizations that update often and have a comprehensive backup   strategy can contact Open Dental technical support to disable this process- Automatic backups during the update process are generated in the MyISAM format.  If you ever need to restore from an automatic backup after a failed update, offices that use InnoDB will need to repeat the DB conversion process
  13. Depending on certain factors (you have updated to Open Dental Version 21.3 or greater, you are an Admin user with the Admin Setup permission, you have not agreed to the terms yet) you may be prompted to agree to the License Agreement

You've Completed the Server Update, Now What?

After you have completed the server update it is time to update your workstations.  All workstations should have exited out of Open Dental, go to a station your choice and launch Open Dental.  When you launch Open Dental it should detect the newer version on the server and prompt you to update on your computer.  Proceed through the update prompts (which should only take a minute or two) and then launch Open Dental.  Ensure you have your data and you now have the knowledge to update Open Dental.

About Darkhorse Tech

Whether you're just starting out or a well-established organization, Darkhorse Tech has the experience and technology to help get you moving, cut costs, and streamline your operations via unlimited IT support. We are here to help you do what you do best: focus on providing top-notch care and service for patients - not dealing with IT problems, lag time spent talking with technical support, or complicated technological mishaps. Unlimited IT support services help the whole team work efficiently without worrying about significant system issues or constant interruptions.

Our additional security services include:

  • Unlimited Remote and/or On-Site IT Support of All Your Hardware and Software
  • Improved Network Performance and Security
  • HIPAA Compliant Off-Site and Local Backup Service (Darkhorse Secure Backup)
  • Managed Antivirus, Anti-Malware, and Anti-Ransomware (Darkhorse Security Products)
  • Compliance & Security Laws Standards
  • Microsoft Security Patch Management
  • Vendor Management: We will be on the phone, not your employees
  • Secure, Remote Access to Your Office
  • Firewall Management
  • Network Management
  • Long Term Planning and Budgeting

Contact us anytime if you want to learn more about our dental-specific solutions and unlimited support packages. Our friendly customer service team will get back to you in no time.

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Darkhorse Dental IT Is Here For You

We understand that caring for your patients is your top priority. Dealing with a computer issue, slow IT response time or HIPAA compliance requirements just aren’t high on your list of to-do’s. That’s where Darkhorse Dental Tech comes in. Our team of Dental IT specialists are experts when it comes to running a great, secure and successful practice —and so much more. Whether you’re looking for IT services for startups, or existing support and security services for your practice, Darkhorse can do it all for you, so you can get back to your patients.

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