3 Replies Latest reply on Aug 21, 2013 4:58 AM by Mike_Mitchell

    How to setup a server on the network of midsize company

    tmilas

      I work for midsize manufacturer. Created bunch of solutions that are loved by users and management as well. But at this point Peer to Peer kills me completely because can't have sharing or multi user access to the data base (subnets). Backups now are done manually. (suks). IT gives me a zero suport suggesting using standard company tools like SAP, SQL, etc. Problem is I don't know enough of those tools and IT offers zero help. Can I connect a regular desktop set up by our IBM folks (setup a domain) and that way use such desktop as a server. I can't map any computer (and subnets barriers are not an issue) but that way I could only see tfis desktop as a drive on the network?

       

      Plese tell me since all the guides cover very little of hardware setup. I don't need any websharing, just access a db by worker that is on the master machine (server FM installed).

       

      I would greatly appreciate any suggestions.

       

      Best,

       

      Tom M

        • 1. Re: How to setup a server on the network of midsize company
          taylorsharpe

          For any business solution that needs reliability and backups and client-server encryption, your answer is easy:  Purchase FileMaker Server.  Peer-to-Peer network sharing will always eventually get corrupted due to their nature.  If you have no money and you're willing to take the stability and corruption risks and security is not an issue, peer-to-peer may be a solution.  But I have never recommended it to anyone.  With FileMaker Server, you don't have to worry about setting up network connections since the data will be hosted locally on an internal drive. 

           

          You can use any regular desktop machine to be a FileMaker Server host as long as it has a supported OS:  Mac OS X 10.7+, Windows 7 PE SP1, Windows Server 2008 SE SP2, Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1, Windows Server 2008 SE SP2, or WIndows Server 2003 R2 SP2.  No, it will not run on your Windows 7 home edition or WIndows XP or other non-server supported services OS.  If you have one of the correct OS's, then your'e good to go to install FileMaker Server. 

           

          As long as you have a supported OS, you can use most any hardware that is connected to ethernet and supports TCP/IP.  Granted consumer grade computer might not be ideal, you can still run FileMker Server on it.  Remember that a database really wants a fast hard drive.  So avoid slow consumer level drives.  Go for a fast RAID or SSD solution.  Next most important is RAM.  I used to always make sure the servers had 8 Gigs or more, but lately the prices of 16 Gig are pretty cheap and I make sure 16 is on all of them.  More is better if you can afford it.  Make sure you have a good ethernet connection (gigabit).  Actually, if you're serving both the WAN (Internet) and LAN (internal), a preferred configuration is to have two ethernets, one for each configuration.  Yes, you can just have one, but it will go at the slower speed, which usually means slowing down your LAN database connections.  Other than for maybe initial configuration, you don't need a monitor or keyboard.  A UPS is always recommended for a server too.  If you want cheap and easy, a Mac Mini with Mac OS X Server and SSD drive is fairly cheap and good entry level.  Obviously you can spend a lot more on a beefy Windows server with lots of memory, redundancy and expensive disk system (RAID or SAN) and if you need it, it is available.  It just costs more and takes more maintenance and that is why I frequently have people start with a Mac Mini Server for basic needs. 

           

          If you want really simple... you could host the database in the Cloud fairly cheaply too. 

          • 2. Re: How to setup a server on the network of midsize company
            wimdecorte

            taylorsharpe wrote:

             

            For any business solution that needs reliability and backups and client-server encryption, your answer is easy:  Purchase FileMaker Server. 

             

             

            +1

            If management and the business users really likes the solution and it delivers value for them, then they need to step in and tell IT to handle the deployment and pony up for the server cost.  The best practices for FileMaker Server are well established so IT will have a lot of guidelines to go by.

            IT is a support department.  The business departments can make them do what they need done.

             

             

            taylorsharpe wrote:

             

            If you want really simple... you could host the database in the Cloud fairly cheaply too. 

             

            A big caveat here is WAN access may be significantly slower than LAN access if the solution has not been designed with WAN in mind.  So going the Cloud route may require some serious re-design in the solution.

            And the obvious caveat: is the business ok with their data being in the hands of some other company for hosting?

            • 3. Re: How to setup a server on the network of midsize company
              Mike_Mitchell

              "A big caveat here is WAN access may be significantly slower than LAN access if the solution has not been designed with WAN in mind.  So going the Cloud route may require some serious re-design in the solution.

              And the obvious caveat: is the business ok with their data being in the hands of some other company for hosting?"

               

              And one other consideration: The IT department will have to open the required ports through the firewall. They may not be too happy about that. Here's a great diagram of the ports used (says for FM 9, but still valid):

               

              http://sixfriedrice.com/wp/filemaker-firewall/

               

              Mike