The Architecture of Installable Cloud Apps


Why Choose PowerServer

  • Config & Deploy – Once you configured a PowerServer profile, the toolkit will automatically generate an Installable Cloud App for you, including its REST APIs and client installer.
  • Supported Features – Powered by the PBVM, the Windows native client can directly support almost all PowerBuilder features, including PFC. Only a handful of features are not supported.
  • Same UI/UX – The converted app looks & works the same as the original PowerBuilder app. No need to retrain the end users or dumb down your app.
  • Seamless Install – Installs seamlessly to Windows devices without admin rights by simply clicking a hyperlink or entering the URL. It can also be pre-installed as an .MSI.
  • Self-Updated – The client app will automatically update itself each time it is started. No additional steps or user intervention are required.
  • Shortcut Creation – Desktop and Start menu shortcuts can be automatically created for more convenient access to starting the app.
  • Authorize Your Access – Secure your apps with built-in or third-party auth services such as OAuth, JWT, AWS Cognito, Azure Active Directory. Only minimal code changes are required to adapt your existing authorization process. Learn More >
  • Protected Data Access – All DataWindows and SQLs are executed on the server behind the firewall. The client no longer has direct access to the database, and communication to the Web server is over HTTPS.
  • Built-in Security – With a few configuration steps you can deter unauthorized modification of your app through app encryption, app signing, and app integrity checking. Learn More >
  • Flexible App Deployment – You can deploy a PowerServer project to the server by either directly deploying from PowerBuilder, installing a portable package, or using CI/CD tools.
  • DevOps – PowerServer supports leading source control systems, automated building, and CI/CD tools, to make your development more agile and comply with DevOps requirements.
  • Container Technology – PowerServer's cloud-native architecture means you can take full advantage of the Cloud, including leveraging container technology to simplify your app deployment and automatically scale up/down server resources as necessary.
  • PowerBuilder Skills – You maintain your apps within the PowerBuilder IDE leveraging existing development skills.
  • 4GL Programming – PowerServer projects are developed in similar fashion as traditional client/server apps, and the developer is shielded from the complexities of n-tier and REST API programming.
  • Single Code Base – A single code base can be targeted to both client/server and PowerServer apps, eliminating the additional effort and complexities of maintaining two separate projects.

5 Steps to Convert a Client/Server App

Step 1 – Config the PowerServer Profile in the PowerBuilder IDE.

Create the PowerServer Profile and follow the instructions to make the whole application ready to deploy.


Step 2 – Remediate unsupported features & discrepancies, if any.

Only a handful of unsupported features and discrepancies. Use the built-in tools to identify these issues and remediate by removing or working around them.


Step 3 – Build & test the app in the development environment.

Properly test your app with various tools and deploy it to your development environment. 


Step 4 – Secure the generated REST APIs with built-in or external Auth service.

Use the built-in OAuth, JWT, or Amazon Cognito service to secure your REST APIs. External auth services, such as Azure Active Directory, are also supported.


Step 5 – Deploy the tested and secured app to the production environment.

Choose from a variety of deployment options that can accommodate virtually any process, no matter you self-host or use managed services.



Development Licenses

Bundled with PowerBuilder CloudPro


Developer ∙ Year

Production Licenses

From 150 to Unlimited User Sessions


User Session ∙ Year 


PowerServer is compatible with Windows 10 devices, such as desktops, laptops, and Surface tablets.

PowerServer is compatible with PowerBuilder 2021 (CloudPro) and newer. If your app is currently in an older version of PowerBuilder, it is usually little to no work to upgrade to the latest version of PowerBuilder. Generally speaking, upgrading from PowerBuilder 10.x or newer should require no code changes.

PowerServer supports most leading databases, including MS SQL Server, Oracle, SAP SQL Anywhere, SAP ASE, etc. Learn More

PowerServer utilizes a cloud-native architecture rather than running multiple instances of a client/server application. Its cloud-native architecture is built on ASP.NET Core, has a pre-dominantly stateless design, is REST API-enabled, deploys natively to cloud platforms, and so on. As such, PowerServer offers much higher scalability, much stronger security, much greater interoperability, and eliminates the typical limitations and headaches of remote desktop/VDI.

While PowerServer executes data access logic on the middle tier using C# and ADO.NET, it is not a code conversion solution. If you want to migrate your code to C#, we recommend you try the PowerScript Migrator.

The development and maintenance is performed in the PowerBuilder IDE, leveraging existing PowerBuilder skills.
Please refer to the documentation for detailed software environment requirements of the client, middleware, and database.

Yes. Both subscription and perpetual licenses need to host PowerServer apps in an environment with an Internet connection. Contact us at if your server does not have Internet connectivity.

Please refer to PowerServer Licensing FAQs for detailed licensing information.

Please refer to PowerServer Support FAQs for detailed information regarding PowerServer standard and premium support.

PowerServer 2021

The absolute fastest way to take your client/server application to the Cloud with a cloud-native architecture.