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Steps for Putting Client Service Tracker on a Network



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As noted in the Frequently Asked Questions, you can put Client Service Tracker on a network and have multiple access it, but this will increase the risk of data corruption. A technique you can use to reduce the risk of data corruption is to "split the database." Using this approach, the database is split into two database files, a "front end" that holds all the user interface and processing, and a "back end" that holds the data. This approach does not completely eliminate the risk of data corruption, so it is still good to have frequent backups of the data.

This page describes the steps for "splitting" Client Service Tracker and putting the back end on a shared folder on a network. Ideally you will want to get a Microsoft Access Database expert to do this. The information on this page is provided for guidance, and is not intended to teach the specifics of using Microsoft Access as a developer.

The file locations and menu structures described here are applicable to Microsoft Access versions 2003, 2007, or 2010. If you are using other versions of Microsoft Office, you may need to adjust these directions as appropriate.

  1. Create a shared folder on the network server.
  2. Buy and download the full version of Client Service Tracker.
  3. Uninstall the Client Service Tracker Demo on any computer where it happens to be installed.
  4. On one computer, run the downloaded program to run setup for Client Service Tracker. Install it to the default location, which is on the “C:” drive.
  5. Run Client Service Tracker. To test that it is working, go to the Administration window, go to the bottom, and click the button to maintain your Licensee Name. Enter a Licensee Name, then close all the way out of Client Service Tracker.
  6. Open Client Service Tracker again. It should come up to the main window, with the licensee name displaying. Once you confirm this happens, close Client Service Tracker.
  7. In Windows Explorer, navigate to the folder where Client Service Tracker was installed. This is probably in your "My Documents", in a folder called "Client Service Tracker” or a folder with a similar name.
  8. At this point it would be a good idea to copy the Client Service Tracker database file and paste a copy of it somewhere for backup purposes. Do this frequently while working on the remaining steps. The Client Service Tracker database file has a file name that starts with "Client Service Tracker" (with spaces between the words).
  9. In the folder where Client Service Tracker was installed, hold down the “Shift” key on your keyboard and double-click on the Client Service Tracker database file, and keep holding down the Shift key while the database opens. This will keep the database startup processing from occurring.
  10. Split the database. This means separating the database into two files, a “front end” has the user interface and processing, and a “back end” that holds the data.
    - In Access 2003, you do this by going to the Access menu bar, clicking Tools, then pointing to Database Utilities, then pointing to and clicking on Database Splitter.
    - In Access 2007 or 2010, you do this by going to the Access menu bar and clicking on Database Tools. This will display the Database Tools ribbon. On the ribbon, find the section that is labeled at the bottom of the ribbon as "Move Data." Within this section of the ribbon will be an icon labeled "Access Database." Click this icon.
    - To continue with the process: A wizard will come up which may or may not give you an introduction. At some point, the wizard will suggest naming the back end file with “_be” at the end of the file name, and will ask you where you want it. Navigate to the shared folder on the network and have the wizard put the back end there. Let the wizard complete its work. Then close Access.
  11. From the Start menu, open Client Service Tracker as you normally would and test that it still works. Then close it.
  12. In your My Documents folder, copy the entire Client Service Tracker folder and either put it on a CD or put it in some other shared folder on the network. (The subfolder under this now holds the "front end" database file. You will be pasting a copy of the folder on other computers in the next step.)
  13. Go to each of the other computers that are on the network and that will be using Client Service Tracker. Open a Windows Explorer window. In My Documents, paste the copy of the Client Service Tracker folder you made in the last step. Now, set up Windows shortcuts to the files in this folder. You can put these Windows shortcuts on the Windows Desktop, or in a “Client Service Tracker” folder that you make under the “Start” menu. After pasting the folder and making the shortcuts, test Client Service Tracker.
  14. Establish a process that will back up the shared folder on the network on a daily basis, or more often if desired. If the data does become corrupt, you will need to restore from your backup.



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