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Peer-to-Peer Networking


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I have a situation that I could really use some help with…

I am fairly new to developing FM solutions and virtually have no experience with FM Server. In fact just the word “server” kind of makes me break out in a cold sweat. I also am fighting an uphill battle with getting FileMaker to be accepted by the company that I work for. I have developed a couple of solutions that have worked out very well.

I am using FileMaker Pro Advanced ver 13 to host the file on the network using the peer-to-peer capability of FM. Now I also have a couple of FM Server Licenses and am considering whether or not to host the files using server, instead of going peer-to-peer. For now I am stuck using a dedicated laptop to host the files.

The machine that I am using to host the database is a Lenovo T-430 laptop with 8 GB of RAM and, a SATA hard drive. The operating system is Windows 7 Enterprise with SP 1, 64-bit and a 2.6 GHz processor (i5-3320M CPU). I have a script in the hosted file that makes a time-stamped backup copy of the database at the end of the day. The backups are put on a network server, so it is secure and safe.

We are using the hosted solutions for two small groups. So, we only have 3 - 4 simultaneous users. The database file is fairly small as it has about 4,000 records now (file size is 1.07 GB) and will grow to be about 8,000 - 10,000 records. So, it is not very complicated or taxing for the laptop processor. This method seems to be adequate. Just wondering what the pros and cons are and what issues there may be with this method that I am not aware of.

So, the question is should I try to change to hosting with FM Server or just stay with the peer-to-peer method? In the future, if I can get more acceptance for FileMaker, I might be able to convince our IT Department to provide support and manage the FM Server with proper hardware, etc. But, I will have to make due for right now. Thanks for your help!


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Anything is better than hosting peer-to-peer, even for this small deployment, even it it means installing FMS on a laptop.


There are no cons to using FMS.  Just make sure the laptop is configured to not go to sleep, no hard drive spin-down, and NEVER close the lid when FMS is hosting files (same applies when FMP is hosting files)

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