According with what you say, you'd need the following:
- A server. A Mac Mini Server will do fine. If you have lots of bandwidth you can use a virtual server. Check VPS, for example.
- FileMaker Server, the "regular" version. Not Advanced.
- FileMaker Pro for each desktop/laptop user, FileMaker Go for each iPad/iPhone user.
- FileMaker Pro Advanced for you. This is VERY important.
- You should get some FileMaker training. There are a number of options, check what suits best for you.
Sorry if I was too obvious with the server, some don't realize they need a server to run FileMaker Server .
I think you're covered with this. Let us know if you need something else.
Thanks for the response. I had no idea I needed ALL of that, wow. So why can I not get away with just using the regular FileMaker Pro?
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What are the chances of all your field workers using the database at exactly the same time? If the answer is 'all 11' then yes... you need Server.
If in reality there will be less than 9 simultaneous users, then FM Pro will suffice. I would start with FMP Advanced as both developer tool and host and and FM Go on all the iPhones and see how it goes...
Sent from my iPad
11th Hour Group Pty Ltd
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Another option is to use a hosting service.
Some more information may help...What will the employees be doing with the database? Will they be using the iPads offsite? Will offiste have wifi or 3G access? Do the users need to have the data entry they're doing synch with everyone else's? And why, if you're so new to FileMaker have you offered to build a database for your company?
Chances are you'll want everyone working together. If that's the case, you do need access to FM Server. If money is a concern, you don't have to buy it yourself. You can rent it monthly for $10-$50 dollars depending on your needs. You'll need at least Filemaker Pro for yourself, though you'll probably be happy if you spend the extra on Advanced. FMGo for iPads is free.
I work for my brother and sister in laws Senior Service Referral Agency. There is no software that exists for a database in the industry. The employees will be tracking their clients, touring RCFE Facilities and getting contracts signed, and keeping track of Marketing Targets. At times there will not be access to wifi since they are in and out of Hospitals all day but this can be solved by adding a sync button to the FileMaker Go app that can send all the data back to the main server which will either be in the main office or an online company. Since this will take some time for me to figure out they may have access to 4G wifi by the time it is all done since there service upgrades are due soon on their phones and the iPhone 4 will be free.
I have offered to do this for them because they are a start up company and my family. I have done in house graphic design and web design that I knew very little about when I started here only 1 year ago and I just figured this would be my next project/adventure. The project is not time sensative and since they can't afford all of it right now it allows me to have the time to learn and create the best database for them. It is all a process that can be done in steps. I like to learn and I like to teach myself things on my own. There are ways to do it I just need to figure it out and since I am in a position to do so that is why I offered.
Thanks for the input,
Needing to sync offline files is a big requirement. There is no built in "sync" button.
There are products (MirrorSync, GoZync) that will do this, but you should check their pricing to see if it fits in your budget. Additionally, you can write your own synching process, but it's really something only advanced users could successfully tackle.
I'd recommend starting with a database to use only when there's an Internet connection. Synching can be added on top depending on your needs afterwards.
Good luck, you're going to learn a lot!