Setting up ColdFusion Builder 3 with a remote server

I wish everyone a very happy and prosperous new year. Here comes the first blog post for the year 2015, on ColdFusion Buider 3. A user came across our Mobile Application Development Contest blog and was trying to develop his application using ColdFusion Builder 3, but he wasn’t able to setup a connection between ColdFusion 11 and ColdFusion Builder 3.  He was trying to create a “Remote Server” connection between ColdFusion Builder 3 and ColdFusion 11, installed on separate servers (distributed setup). 

Here are the steps that will help you setup a remote host with ColdFusion Builder:-

1.     Launch ColdFusion Builder 3 and choose your workspace.

2.     Right-click on the “CF Servers” view and select Add Server

3.    Select “New server configuration” and click “OK”. You can choose “Import configurations from RDS server”, in case you have RDS server setup already and want to use existing server information.

CF Server

4.     If you can’t locate the CF Servers, then, follow the screenshot below, to enable it.

CF Server alternate

Refer to Add a remote server and fill in the details for your server.

5.     General Settings

a)     Server Name: ColdFusion server name.

b)     Description: (optional) Description of the server.

c)     Application Server: Select the drop-down list and select CF+ Tomcat Bundle (for CF10/CF11)

d)     Host Name: Name of the remote server host.

e)     Select: Is Remote.

Note: When you enter a Host Name other than localhost or, Is Remote is automatically selected.

f)     Webserver Port: Specify the port number of the remote ColdFusion server instance you are configuring. You can refer server.xml for the same at ColdFusion11cfusionruntimeconf.

g)     RDS User Name: (optional) if you are using RDS, specify the RDS user name.

h)      RDS Password: (optional) Specify the RDS password.

General Settings

Click Next to move to the next screen.

6.     Remote Server Settings

a)     User Name: Specify the CF Admin username.

b)     Password: Specify the CF Admin password.

Remote Server Settings

Click Next to move to the next screen.

7.     Install Extensions

Select Install Extensions to install the extensions that are packaged with ColdFusion Builder.

a)     Browse and select the ColdFusion web root location.

b)     Browse and select the ColdFusion web root location on the remote ColdFusion server.

c)     Browse to a location within the web root to install the extensions. The extensions are installed in the Extensions directory within the selected location.

Install Extensions

8.    Click Finish to add the remote ColdFusion server instance. You can right-click on the remote server and access the ColdFusion Administrator of the remote server.

Launch CF Admin

This blog post talks about, the minimal settings required to setup a remote server for CF Builder. You can skip the Install Extensions section as well.

Note: – While configuring the remote server in CF Builder, ensure that, you are able to access/ping the remote ColdFusion server outside builder. You can probably, access the remote CF Admin in the browser, for e.g. http://ip:port/CFIDE/Administrator/index.cfm and ensure connectivity.



31 Responses

  1. Happy 2015 to you too Anit!

    Just to let you know, from August 23rd to the 25th, 2014 I spoke with Rohit Negi to log this bug:

    When you restart CFB3, you lose your saved Remote Servers. Not the local ones, just the remote ones. He verified the bug.

    Unfortunately, this bug has not been fixed and so all users will have to repeat your instructions above every time they want to use the remote server.

    Most of us use remote servers and so I think you can see that this bug needs immediate attention. Please feel free to contact me (or Rohit) to show you in person.

  2. Is it worth mentioning that – generally – RDS isn’t recommended for production servers? You mentioned remote, not production, so it is entirely possible a user wants to hit a remote dev server, but I’d probably remind folks anyway. 😉

    Also – step 7 – can CFB *really* do the extension install to a remote machine?

  3. @Ray, RDS is not recommended on Production server, that is why, I mentioned Remote (and not Production, as you said).

    Regarding Step 7, yes, you can install “extensions” on remote machine. The location would change from C:ColdFusion11cfusionwwwroot to server-namec$ColdFusion11cfusionwwwroot. You can use the IP instead, as well.

  4. Can I recommend updating the screen shot in 7 to show that? Also, are the files placed via RDS, or must you have a network share for that to work? They look like network shares to me and while a user may have RDS and FTP access, they may not have that.

  5. I will replace the screenshot to show that. That’s a good point indeed. The files are definitely placed via RDS. You don’t need a N/w share. The only requirement, as mentioned as last NOTE is that, you should able to access/ping the remote ColdFusion server outside builder.

  6. Interesting, so the same syntax used for network shares works for RDS in this context? Is that documented anywhere? Would a user know they could even do this? That’s why I started asking about it because I had assumed it would be an issue. Does this work elsewhere in CFB or just here?

  7. Your article explains everything very well. Lately I’m having trouble find the right post that explains the very important parts of ColdFusion. Thank you for sharing it here. By the way, how can I put properly the hostname to the port and get it working with RDS? Appreciate it!

  8. Can you talk about the best way to configure the local and remote path mappings? (Used for preview and debugging). I don’t necessarily want to manually map a drive to the IIS web root.

  9. I am trying to get PhoneGap going and cannot figure out how to set up defaultLocal on my laptop – can you do a similar writeup for defaultLocal? I have plenty of remote servers running but defaultLocal eludes me!

  10. I was trying to get a remote cf11 instance installed but ran into issues with the RDS service reporting 404 errors. Turns out I had disabled RDS during the initial CF install. Simply enabling RDS in the Cfadmin does not fix the problem. I had to reference this very old article instructing to uncomment the RDS servlet code in web.xml. After doing so and restarting CF I was able to see all RDS databases and files. Others may need to know this. The blog should probably be updated with this tip as well. FYI, I am running in a win2008/IIS/Cf11 environment. Also, editing live files via mapped drive was incredibly slow. Editing files via RDS much faster.

  11. I had the same issue as David where I had to uncomment out the RDS servlet code in the web.xml file after enabling RDS. Mine is still not working, however. I am using a remote server and if I go directly to the rds ide.cdm url, I get a 405. Help?

  12. Cynth,
    This may not be your issue but if you’re running on Linux with Apache, you’ll need to create a folder called “main” within your CFIDE directory as well as create a dummy file (can be empty) in that directory called “ide.cfm”. Without it, Apache trumps CF and immediately returns a not found error.

    On most default installations, that will be found in


  13. Thank you, David. I tried your idea but no dice. If I try to navigate to ip/cfide/main/ide.cfm, I get a 405 error (page cannot be displayed). I’ve updated my CFBuilder software to the latest build. I am on CF11 and using cfbuilder 3. Any other ideas?

  14. Case sensitivity comes to mind (especially with CFIDE in caps then /main/ide.cfm in lowercase.

    Another idea, If you’re using a local virtual machine (like Oracle’s Virtual Box), make sure all CF ports are properly mapped like (for example): 5005, 5500, 8500, 8575, 8789, 8983, 8985

  15. If you’re testing with the browser, CFIDE should be in uppercase, not lowercase.

    As for the ports, I use vagrant to create my development server and I’ve set up my “vagrantfile” to map my local ports to my VM. Here’s the link

    Also, and I probably should have asked this first, did you log into the CFAdmin > Security > RDS and ensure that “Enable RDS Service” was checked and that you’re Using the correct username and password as specified in that section? If it’s a “Single password only”, your username is “admin”

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