Service Manager

The Service Manager is a tool included in the Open Dental application folder to manage installation of Open Dental Services.

In the Main Menu, click Tools, Misc Tools, Service Manager.

Alternatively, in the Open Dental installation folder, double-click ServiceManager.exe.

Note: The Service Manager can not be accessed by Open Dental Cloud users.

The following services can be installed using the Service Manager:

All installed Open Dental Services will list. Each service must have a unique service name and the name must begin with OpenDent.

Add or Edit a Service

  1. First run the Service Manager as an administrator.
    • If opening the Service Manager from within Open Dental, first run Open Dental as an administrator.
    • If opening the Service Manager from the installation folder, right-click to run as an administrator.
  2. Click Add to install a new service, or double-click to modify an existing service.

  3. Enter or choose the Service Name. It must begin with OpenDent (e.g. OpenDentalService). The service name cannot have spaces.
  4. Click Browse and select a supported service executable. Typically the files are located in the folders below:
    • \Program Files (x86)\Open Dental\OpenDentalEConnector\OpenDentalEConnector.exe
    • \Program Files (x86)\Open Dental\OpenDentalService\OpenDentalService.exe
    • \Program Files (x86)\Open Dental\OpenDentHL7.exe
    • \Program Files (x86)\Open Dental\OpenDentalCustListener\OpenDentalCustListener.exe
  5. Click Install. If the installation is successful the status will change from Not installed to Installed, Stopped.
  6. Click Start to start the service. The status will change to Installed, Running.

Multiple Databases Hosted on a Single Server

Multiple OpenDental, HL7, and/or eConnector services can run on the same server to allow one server to host multiple databases. In order for each service to process messages for the correct database, a copy of the Open Dental application folder has to be made and uniquely named. For example:


Each folder has the exact contents of the Open Dental application folder with a unique FreeDentalConfig.xml file. FreeDentalConfig.xml file is how each service determines which database it is processing messages for. See Generic HL7 for information about how a connection to the database is established using this configuration file.

Note: After an update the application folder will need to be be recopied to the duplicate service folders to insure the versions match.


If the service does not start as expected, see the Troubleshooting section on Generic HL7, eClinicalWorks HL7, or eServices Troubleshooting.

Problem: Receive Windows security errors when trying to install Open Dental services.

Solution: Contact Open Dental support and we can install them for you.

OpenDentalWebConfig.xml Errors:

Event Log:If the service does not start as expected:
  1. Check to make sure the database folder is correct in the OpenDentalWebConfig.xml file.
  2. The service will not start if the version is not exactly the same as the version of the main Open Dental program.
  3. If it still won't start, look in the Computer Management tool.
    • Right click on My Computer and select Manage
    • Expand System Tools, Event Viewer, Windows Logs, then click on Application.
    • You can filter this event log for Event Source OpenDentWeb. The error and information entries will help determine the reason why the service will not start.

Changing Log Level: It may be necessary to increase the Log Level which is committed to the Event Log referenced above.

  1. Right-click on the OpenDentalWebConfig.xml file, then select Open With, Notepad.
  2. Add a node (or modify if it is already there) under the <ConnectionSettings> node which is called <LogLevelOfApplication>. Set the node value to one of the supported value listed below.
    • Error - The default, lowest logging level. This will only show errors in the event log.
    • Information - This shows Error entries plus inbound and outbound traffic information. This level will clutter your log file but lets you know how frequent your traffic is.
    • Verbose - This shows Error entries plus Information entries plus program troubleshooting information. This mode should be used very sparingly as it will clutter your event log very rapidly. ** NOTE: This mode will generally only be used by engineering in the event that there is an issue that cannot be solved by support. It is not recommended to set the log level for long periods of time.