Follow 3 simple steps to get started with the Essential Architecture Manager.

Step 1: Check the Software Pre-Requisites

To install and begin using the Essential Architecture Manager, the following 3rd party software components will be needed.

Name Version Description Install Notes
Java Runtime Environment 1.7 or above Required to run Protege and Apache Tomcat Sun Java JRE install notes
Protege Ontology Editor 3.4.x, 3.5.x only The platform for capturing the architecture model. Note Protege 4.x is a different product and is not supported Protege install notes
Apache Tomcat* 7.0 or above A Java web application server for running the Essential Viewer Apache Tomcat install notes
Graphviz 2.38 or above Layout engine to support UML style views Apache Tomcat install notes

In addition, for multi-user configurations, a JDBC-compliant RDBMS is also recommended (e.g. MySQL).

To access Essential Viewer and the Essential Import Utility you will need a modern web browser. If you are using Internet Explorer then the minimum version is IE9

*Essential Viewer can be used with any Java Web Application Server but the installer assumes Tomcat. Please contact the Essential Project Team, via the forums, for further details of installing Essential Viewer with other Java Web Application Servers.

Step 2: Download the Essential Software

Please ensure that the necessary software pre-requisites are installed before installing the Essential Architecture Manager.

Registered? Please register to access the support forums for the Essential Project.

Note: Once you have downloaded the 'essentialinstall6.x.install' file, please rename this to 'essentialinstall6.x.jar' before double-clicking on this '.jar' file to run the installer.

Clean Install Upgrade Install
Download Essential Download Essential
Current Release: essentialinstall62b.jar version 6.2b

(file size: 160.8MB)

Current Release: essentialinstallupgrade62b.jar version 6.2b

(file size: 161.2MB)


Essential Architecture Manager is the reference implementation of the Essential Meta Model. The downloaded file contains and installs the following software components;

  • Essential Architecture Manager Plug-ins - a set of custom-built plug-ins for the Protege Ontology Editor
  • Essential Meta-Model - a Protege Knowledge Base that has been pre-populated with the meta-classes of the Essential Meta-Model
  • Essential Viewer - a Java Web Application for publishing, analysing and reporting against enterprise architecture models captured using the Essential Meta-Model
  • Essential Import Utility - a Java Web Application for importing existing content from spreadsheets into the Essential repository
Details of what has changed in each version of Essential Architecture Manager can be found in the release notes.
Note: Updates for previous versions of Essential Architecture Manager are available here.

Step 3: Follow the Install Guide

Essential Architecture Manager can be installed in either Stand Alone or Multi-User mode and there is an installation guide for each mode. These Installation Guides provide instructions on how to install and configure the software components of the Essential Architecture Manager.

Essential Architecture Manager Installation Instructions

Essential Launchpad

Get a number of key views working quickly with our free Launchpad pack of view loaders, find out more about Launchpad here

Business Capability Models

Use one our free business capability models as a starting point.  Download one here

Essential View Loaders

Get up and running quickly with Essential View Loaders. Click here to find out more.

Other Useful Links

The following is a list of other documents that will help get you up and runniing quickly with the Essential Architecture Manager.

  • The Getting Started tutorial explains how to open the Essential Meta-Model in Protege and begin using Essential Architecture Manager
  • The Essential Meta-Model Reference provides definitions for the meta-classes and relationships that comprise the Essential Meta-Model
  • The videos page has how to guides for getting views to work and also how to populate summary pages

This is a community project and, as such, is not supported with any formal SLA.
Any questions or problems can be raised through our Essential Forums where we will do our best to provide assistance.