This is another advantage to FileMaker Server, you can use the Admin console to send them a message and then also force them out of the file after a specified number of minutes has elapsed.
With FileMaker Pro, the only way to force users out of your file would be to force quit the application on the host computer. And this does result in two negative consequences:
1) The file could be damaged by the force quit if it interrupts a "write" to disk.
2) A "safe close" flag is set on a FileMaker file when it is correctly closed. When the file is closed due to other events such as a crash or a forced close, this flag is not set and FileMaker runs an automatic consistency check on the file. For very large files (where the size is measured in gigabytes), the file will not be accessible to users for a considerable time while the consistency check is run on the file.
Thank you. I take it that if the file is only open but no activity on it it will just cause a consistency check to run when opened again. And my files are not that big. What I can do is to run a script to 'copy file as' for backup and then force quit. Do you think that will be OK?
Saving a copy first is a very good idea that hadn't occurred to me. While the odds of the file being damaged will be low if no users are actually editing data at the time you force close the file, I wouldn't risk it as I can't be 100% sure that the file won't be damaged. After forcing the file closed, I'd replace that copy with the copy produced by Save a Copy As just to be safe.
Ok thank you.