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A method of sharing FM database for one user

Question asked by tunesmith on Sep 22, 2015
Latest reply on Sep 23, 2015 by KenNewell

Hi, I've trying to research and learn about various sync solutions, and here's what I'm thinking of doing, using Filemaker Pro 13.  Can anyone look this over and tell me if it looks like a good way to do it, if there are any gotchas, and if there are easier ways to do it?

 

1. I have a 5-gig filemaker database full of sound recordings.  (The use case is I am a songwriter and these are rehearsal recordings and partial song ideas.)  I want to be able to process these the way I used to with Bento, where I could listen either and make notes from the computer or from my mobile device.

 

2. Filemaker Server seems exorbitant and complex to me, given that I am the only user of my database.  (I don't have need to share with others.)

 

3. Copying back and forth between system and iOS seems unreasonable due to the many repetitive steps and the size of the database.  It would be error-prone.

 

4. I have mobile devices, a laptop, and a headless server (Mac Pro) that is always on in my office.

 

The plan:

 

1) Thus far, I've only run Filemaker on my laptop from a local folder.  I would move the database to Dropbox so my headless server has access to it as well.  When I'm working on the laptop, I'd just continue to use it normally, with the database located in my Dropbox folder.  When I'm done, I'd save/quit and wait for Dropbox to finish uploading changes.  This doesn't seem dangerous since I am not sharing the dropbox folder, and I wouldn't open the database from anywhere else before it finishes uploading.  (I am used to working this way since it is also how I use Logic Pro when collaborating with other musicians via dropbox).

 

2) When I want to use it remotely, I'd start up Filemaker on the headless Mac Pro (since we get two exclusive non-simultaneous activations), and I'd turn on Filemaker Network Sharing.

 

3) I'll buy Yosemite Server ($20) and set up a VPN.  There's plenty of documentation out there on how to do this.

 

4) While out and about, I'd be on the VPN, and whether I'm on Wifi or cellular, it seems I should be able to access the database through FM Go, and listen to my songs and dictate audio notes.

 

5) When done, I'd just quit filemaker on the headless server so I could open it up on my laptop again.

 

I wish FM Go's audio player were better, so you could pause and interact with the record and un-pause.  As it is you have to click "Done".  But it seems like it could otherwise work.

 

How does this sound?  Is there an easier way?  Using a VPN seems more secure than actually punching a hole in my firewall for filemaker-specific ports.  I haven't looked into permanently hosting my database somewhere on a hosting service because it seems like it would be expensive and slow given the size of my database, but I'm willing to hear if I'm wrong.

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