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Using 4 devices to capture data offline

Question asked by NickLear on Mar 7, 2013
Latest reply on Mar 8, 2013 by Jade


Using 4 devices to capture data offline & sync later - best method


     We have:

     - MacBook Pro running FMP Advanced v12
     - 2 iPads with Filemaker Go (wi-fi only)
     - 2 iPhones with Filemaker Go

     We will have just one table with 20 fields, mostly text, some drop-downs, one container for a photo - it is to capture profiles for a child sponsorship program. There are about 3000 children to interview and the idea is to have 4 staff members each with a device.

     We have been using Bento with 2 devices which works well for us, except it is limited to 2 devices and it has taken a long time to get the photos from Bento into the online database. And also the team we are working with are using FMP so it makes sense to be moving to FMP.

     So I am basically trying to recreate our Bento workflow. There is no wifi connectivity at the school & we don't want to risk the laptop going to the school, otherwise we could update the database live via a an ad-hoc network from the mac. So we need an offline solution.

     I have seen the ability to copy the database onto the device (here) but I am assuming that if you are working with more than one device, this method would be difficult to resync all the data, once you have 4 versions of the modified database. I have also seen Mirrorsync (requires FM Server & is expensive) and GoZync (says it can work without Server and has a free version LowZync which can do 1 table, up to 50 fields and up tp 10 devices so this seems a possibility).

     So where I am so far with ideas is:

     1) Break down the school list into 4 and make 4 databases e.g database 1 is Years 1&2 etc. and then each device has it's own database which is copied onto the device and given back when the data entry is complete and does not compete with the other devices. I should note that all the data entry here is only to be passed onto our US team who need to get it into their propietry online database - i.e. it is not important for us to have one functioning database of the school children in FMP.

     2) Keep with one database and use LowZync - I don't know how easy this is to get to work or whether it definitely will work so I'm looking for feedback here. I am new to FMP and don't know scripting etc.

     Any help much appreciated.