7 Replies Latest reply on Apr 19, 2012 9:32 AM by Stephen Huston

    How to test Peer-to-Peer?


      Opinions sought:


      Before committing to multiple licenses, I want to be able to test Filemaker 12 Peer-to-peer over WAN. I have the FM-12 Pro trial on my local workstation. I was considering getting a 1-month Mac-mini VPS account with a static IP (running Lion) and was wondering if I would be able to load a second FM-12 tiral on that server so as to be able to test Peer-to-peer. If that works and meets requirements, the plan would be to co-locate a mac-mini. I basically want to use FM 12 as project management among half a dozen geographically-scattered participants. (Each, of course, would have their own FM-12 licenses).


      Does this sound reasonable? I guess the question is, will I be able to do peer-to-peer with 2 separate trial installs?

        • 1. Re: How to test Peer-to-Peer?

          DO NOT use peer to peer over WAN.  I don't know if this would work, because I would not even consider it.  You are asking for serious problems.  WAN connections are NOT robust enough for peer-to-peer - you need the stability (and speed) of FileMaker Server.


          If you cannot make that investment - there are many hosting providers you can use for less than the cost of a mini.  You can test with a provider using multiple demo licenses..



          • 2. Re: How to test Peer-to-Peer?

            It's not a question of cost for filemaker server. Just don't want to maintain it. 


            Also, what do you mean that WAN connection isn't robust enough?  The connection speeds would be the same whether I was running Filemaker Server or Filemaker  Client on the same machine in the same datacenter. No?


            Or are there other issues I am unaware of?



            • 3. Re: How to test Peer-to-Peer?

              If I understand you - a WAN connection means that you are NOT in the same datacenter.  A LAN connection (local) means you are.  Peer to peer can be used locally (but I still don't recommend it), but WAN means that you are in different locations.  So no, it definitely is not the same connection type or speed.


              Sorry I am on my way out the door for the day and cannot provide more info right now.  I am sure you will hear from others today.  I will check back tomorrow and see if your questions get answered.



              Karen Weaver



              Desert Dog Technology, Inc.

              FileMaker 9 Certified Developer

              FileMaker Business Alliance

              P. O. Box 1464

              Sandia Park NM 87047-1464


              ofc. 505.286.5178

              cell. 505.269.7855

              • 4. Re: How to test Peer-to-Peer?
                Stephen Huston

                Among the other issues:

                • WAN makes your connection dependant on ALL of the intermediary connections, and you don't know what they are when using WAN access.
                • WAN operations speed tests indicate that many normal activities, such as creating a new record, may take as much as 100X as long across WAN! We've tested this and had to build in loops with 0.1-second pauses which time out after 90 seconds with an error message to the user to warn them when their WAN connection has failed to generate a new record to cache back to the user.

                VPN can help with some speed issues, but the potential for disconnects with peer-to-peer is huge compared to FMServer.


                Peer-to-peer is a known issue in many cases of missing data and corrupted files. Don't use peer-to-peer on WAN. Even when you have a LAN, be aware that this means you should not use local in-house wireless access to the LAN. Wireless is a type of WAN, even when in the same room with the host computer.

                • 5. Re: How to test Peer-to-Peer?

                  VPN adds latency to any WAN connection. It makes flaky WAN database experiences even worse.



                  Beatrice Beaubien, PhD

                  i2eye, Toronto, Canada


                  FileMaker Business Alliance

                  FileMaker 11 Certified Developer

                  Knowledge Translation Certified Professional


                  On Apr 4, 2012, at 12:58, Stephen Huston wrote



                  VPN can help with some speed issues, but the potential for disconnects with peer-to-peer is huge compared to FMServer.


                  • 6. Re: How to test Peer-to-Peer?

                    Well I got a FM12 Pro client for my workstation and one for an OS X  VPS I was running at a datacenter. The database I used as a test was 350,000 records in a single table, 5 fields. So far, all the testing has been great. Sure, there's latency, but overall the speed has been much better than I had anticipated, and even better than I had hoped for. I have so far encountered no corruption problems. There was no apparent difference in accessing and working Filemaker peer-to-peer than there was using Apple Remote desktop to connect to the server and work through that.  So I have the best of both worlds.  Peer-to-peer allows me to run scipts on the remote Filemaker and have output on my local workstation. ARD allows me to connect to the server and run scripts with output on the server.


                    Now, if one could reasonably guess whether Apple intends to abandon server software as it X-Serve hardware, that would help determine whether to pursue my ideas and implement as a production rather than a test environment.

                    • 7. Re: How to test Peer-to-Peer?
                      Stephen Huston

                      Please don't ignore the risks of WAN with peer-to-peer. It may test great, but FM Server 12 will test even better and won't have the risks to your data system down the line.


                      As for WAN improvements in 12, FM Server 12 now has the Server process thumbnails and send only the thumbnail to the client instead of sending the original image across the WAN for the client to process. The same is true of finds and the results of unstored calcs. Server 12 will speed up WAN performance.