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Thread: Specifications

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Posts
    1

    Unanswered: Specifications

    Hello.
    I'm trying to set up a database for a company with about 50 employees and I want to make sure that Filemaker Server is the right software to do that, since it'll be a quite expensive investment.

    First of all, we need to purchase one Server edition, plus a Pro edition of Filemaker for every client inside the company that will have access to the database?
    Or is it possible to share the database with the clients via web publishing or using something like a local website, in order to avoid buying a filemaker license for every client?

    Second, it is of vital importance that several clients should have access to and be able to edit, create and commit records from the same table, at the same time.
    Is this possible at all? (hope so) and if yes, then what kind of setup do we need to have between the server and the clients?

    Also, if anyone could responsibly suggest a totally different solution (like for example MySQL + php ?) but with the same graphical interface development capabilities as filemaker, please share.

    p.s.: If this is not the right place to ask these questions please let me know where to put this thread since I need some answers fast.
    Thanks in advance for any help.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Dallas, Texas
    Posts
    22
    FileMaker supports Instant Web Publishing which converts layouts (aka reports) on the fly to HTML. It is a great solution for light duty use, but because of the conversion, is not very efficient on the cpu. PHP is a much more efficient way to do it, but MUCH more complicated. If you want to go the web route, use PHP and MySQL and be prepared to spend a lot in development costs. What you are paying for in FileMaker are the development tools for the User Interface and that is the power of FileMaker over most of its competition.

    FileMaker's sweet spot is in rapid development keeping development costs down by making development tools easy to use. It is best suited for small to medium sized companies like the one you are talking about with 50 users. And the server works most efficiently when combined with clients. One of the big benefits of this arrangement is that it is a one button feature to turn on security and presto... you have 168bit DES encryption between the client and server. If you've ever had to set up security on other databases, you'll appreciate the ease with setting up secure client-server connections. Additionally, FileMaker offers security privileges all the way down to the field level.

    FileMaker is normal production database that lets everyone use the same tables and records at the same time and it properly handles record locking so that users do not edit the same record at the same time.

    You can save a good deal of money by buying volume licensing.

    There are many other database solutions on the back end from MySQL to PostgraSQL (both open source), to MS SQL Server, Oracle and DB2 on the big commercial side. All of these need front ends that can be done in Access, web w/ PHP, Pearl, Java, C++, etc. Most of these are pretty complicated. The advantage of FileMaker is that people who are not computer professionals have the possibility to learn how to make reports and input screens whereas these more complicated solutions are beyond most non-computer professionals. If you're a big enough company that have these professionals, then you can use an enterprise level system. Companies that are too small to afford full time computer professionals do better with rapid application development tools like FileMaker.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Quebec
    Posts
    11
    +1 for the first reply.

    I used to be a SQL/.Net developper and I hated Filemaker at the beginning. But with time I learn to love it. When you are starting to be efficient with this DBMS, you will take advantage of its RAD feature. You can setup quick solution under a few hours.

    Filemaker allows a lot of saving on development.

    I would get volume licensing for that many seats.

    Unfortunately, the problem with FM is that if you only do FM you will forget most of your SQL knowledge in no time.

    HTH

    Quote Originally Posted by taylorsharpe View Post
    FileMaker supports Instant Web Publishing which converts layouts (aka reports) on the fly to HTML. It is a great solution for light duty use, but because of the conversion, is not very efficient on the cpu. PHP is a much more efficient way to do it, but MUCH more complicated. If you want to go the web route, use PHP and MySQL and be prepared to spend a lot in development costs. What you are paying for in FileMaker are the development tools for the User Interface and that is the power of FileMaker over most of its competition.

    FileMaker's sweet spot is in rapid development keeping development costs down by making development tools easy to use. It is best suited for small to medium sized companies like the one you are talking about with 50 users. And the server works most efficiently when combined with clients. One of the big benefits of this arrangement is that it is a one button feature to turn on security and presto... you have 168bit DES encryption between the client and server. If you've ever had to set up security on other databases, you'll appreciate the ease with setting up secure client-server connections. Additionally, FileMaker offers security privileges all the way down to the field level.

    FileMaker is normal production database that lets everyone use the same tables and records at the same time and it properly handles record locking so that users do not edit the same record at the same time.

    You can save a good deal of money by buying volume licensing.

    There are many other database solutions on the back end from MySQL to PostgraSQL (both open source), to MS SQL Server, Oracle and DB2 on the big commercial side. All of these need front ends that can be done in Access, web w/ PHP, Pearl, Java, C++, etc. Most of these are pretty complicated. The advantage of FileMaker is that people who are not computer professionals have the possibility to learn how to make reports and input screens whereas these more complicated solutions are beyond most non-computer professionals. If you're a big enough company that have these professionals, then you can use an enterprise level system. Companies that are too small to afford full time computer professionals do better with rapid application development tools like FileMaker.

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