Mantis MAN Software Install Tips

Blog Date 21 June 2021


Mantis is a piece of software provided by MAN Truck And Bus. Bearing in mind I don't actually *use* this software from what I understand it is provided by MAN to their dealerships. The program allows parts departments to look up parts for MAN trucks etc. Think exploded diagrams, long lists of part names and codes and the like.

First off to access the installation files you'll need a user with a login to MAN's web portal. Apparently this user WILL know where "STOP PRESS" is in said portal but in reality they probably won't. If you're lucky enough to find STOP PRESS then you're still not done. Rummage around looking for anything "diagnostic". If you're really lucky you may find a selection of software - now all you need to do is work out which cryptically named download is the one you desire.

If you run the download it should create a folder within which you'll find the installation files. Essentially it's a DVD but in a folder. Now, it's decision time.

Mantis can be either be - 
Installed locally for local use.
Installed as a "server".

But! Mantis' licence is managed by a "Hardlock". This is a USB dongle that will contain a key that unlocks the software. Without this dongle (and without access to the hardlock from client PCs) you're peeing in the wind. If the system is a one PC standalone logically the hardlock is easy to access. But if this is a server-client setup then the client PCs will need to access said hardlock. 

So here I'm going to discuss the server-client setup. 

On the PC that will become the server - run the installation DVD. Go through the motions as per usual. Hopefully at one point you'll be asked to install the hardlock. There's an option to select "Hardlock is located on this computer" - STOP!! By all means select located here BUT also check the "Hardlock Server Installation (other workstations are connected)" option.

What this does is create a service on the, well, server PC. This uses port 3047 which means any firewalls on the server will need to be configured to allow this port. With the service installed and the firewall sorted then when Mantis is installed on other PCs the software can say "Hey, server, can I have the hardlock?" 

Mantis can be used on the server PC. But how do I install it on the other clients? Share out the Mantis folder which will most likely be on the root C drive of the server. On the client PC connect to the share (I'd suggest mapping a drive and remembering the credentials). Once there in the Mantis folder run "ManClient".

Unlike the server ManClient's install appears to be quite light. Some software (Lattice 3D Player) is installed in the client presumably to allow some graphical stuff, otherwise an exe and a few other bits run locally, the rest is collected from the server PC. 

If the port is open on the server, and the share is established correctly - away you go. You will need to get the users to login once the program starts which is up to them to have their login details. I believe that one user is an admin user, if that user gets in they can configure the rest of the users.

Extra info.

  • Within the Mantis folder on the server is a folder - INFO. Look in here for actually quite good guides as to how to install and troubleshoot Mantis.
  • Mantis' data is stored on the server under the Mantis folder - DATEN. I think this can be updated by the admin to get the latest trucks etc.
  • If the hardlock fails or needs to be configured on the server OR the client then in the root of the Mantis folder is instdgl.exe. This runs the hardlock config.
  • You COULD install Mantis from the DVD install folder on each client then just run instdgl.exe and point to the server. Not necessary but an option for a struggling PC. Could lead to update problems though.
  • HARDLOCK 7 errors usually point to the hardlock obviously. Check your ports are open and Hardlock is configured for server mode on the server. Don't ask me how I know...

There's a LOT of software I don't know about. I learn, that's what I do. Contact ren@techsolus.co.uk

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