If you put Client Service Tracker on a network and have multiple people access it, 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.
Note: It is also possible to “split the database” and migrate the backend data to reside on a Microsoft SQL Server database. In this case, the frontend Access database, which contains the user interface, resides on each user’s computer and links to the Microsoft SQL Server that is on the file server. This approach removes Access from handling the backend data, and therefore removes this risk of data corruption. To split the database and migrate the back end to a Microsoft SQL Server database, engage the assistance of a Microsoft SQL Server expert.
This page describes the steps for “splitting” Client Service Tracker and putting the backend Access database 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.
(1) Create a shared folder on the network server. Set folder properties to allow full control for everyone who will be using Client Service Tracker.
(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 in the “Documents” or “My Documents” folder, in the default folder called “Client Service Tracker” (for version 8) or “Client Service Tracker 9” (for version 9).
(5) Run Client Service Tracker. To test that it is working, go to the Administration window, click the button for Gender, and view the choices for the Gender drop-down selection list.
(6) Using Windows Explorer or File Explorer (the name varies depending upon your version of Windows), navigate to the folder where Client Service Tracker was installed.
(7) At this point it would be a good idea to copy the Client Service Tracker database file(s) and paste a copy of it/them somewhere for backup purposes. Do this frequently while working on the remaining steps. For Version 8, the Client Service Tracker database file has a file name that starts with “Client Service Tracker” (with spaces between the words). For Version 9, the Client Service Tracker database file has a name of “CST Application,” or is a set of files with the name “CST Executable 32-bit” and “CST Executable 64-bit”.
(8) In the folder where Client Service Tracker was installed, hold down the “Shift” key on your keyboard and double-click on the appropriate Client Service Tracker database file, and keep holding down the Shift key while the database opens. This will open the database but keep the database startup processing from occurring. If you get any warning messages, keep holding down the Shift key while you respond (either by clicking the “Open” button or by clicking the “Enable Content” button).
(9) 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, 2010, 2013, or 2016, 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 backend 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.
(10) From the Start menu, open Client Service Tracker as you normally would and test that it still works. Then close it.
(11) 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.)
(12) Go to each of the other computers that are on the network and that will be using Client Service Tracker. Open a Windows Explorer or File Explorer window. In Documents or 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.
(13) Establish a process that will repeatedly and often back up the shared folder on the network. If the data does become corrupt, you will need to restore from your backup. See Using Online Backup.