The issue is not whether or not you use server, but whether the file is open at the time it is backed up. If it is open, the backed up file can be damaged and at the very least will trigger a consistency check if the backup copy is ever opened. Large FileMaker files can take a while to open if this is the case.
Tech support has long indicated that the open file itself can be damaged by this process. I am unclear as to the details as to how this can happen, but you are better off setting up FileMaker on a dedicated machine and using server to generate backups of the open files safely. A utility script can then copy a closed backup copy of the file from the server to a differnt location.
Thank you for your post.
The information from PhilModJunk is correct (Thank you!).
FileMaker Server does have Schedules that give you the ability to backup data files at a specified interval. Using your example, you can set FileMaker Server to back up all data files on an hourly basis.
When FileMaker Pro opens a file locally, a flag is set to let FileMaekr Pro know the file is open. When the file closes, any changes left in the cache are written to the file and the flag is set back to a "closed" state. If FileMaker Pro suddenly quits with the file open, the flag is still set to "open". The next time you open that file, FileMaker Pro sees the flag already set to "open", so FileMaker Pro will then go through the file, perform a consistency check to make sure the file is usable, especially if the crash occurred as data was being written, or partial changes to a layout, or worse, partial changes to field and/or table definitions.
Let me know if you need additional clarification.