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  1. #1
    Super Moderator WebGenii's Avatar
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    Database on the web - when does it make sense? (Access All Versions)

    This post could go elsewhere I know, but I thought I'd poll here. I'm volunteering with an organization that wants to put their membership db on the web. However, they want to keep the db on a machine in their office (within their office network) and have the requests redirected from their web host <img src=/S/headthrob.gif border=0 alt=headthrob width=15 height=15> (someone told them this was all easy). And of course, they want to do it as cheaply as possible. This is for a membership list that updates once a day at most!

    My concerns are security and maintenance. I don't think they realize what they are getting into here. So my question is, at what volume of db transactions does a live web db start to make sense?
    [b]Catharine Richardson (WebGenii)
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    Re: Database on the web - when does it make sense? (Access All Versions)

    Hi Catherine,

    I have a few questions...

    Is the web portion of the database read-only, or will it be written to from the web?
    What kind of internet connection does the office have?

    My initial thoughts are that this is not the best idea. Using a local computer as a live internet host can be dangerous unless certain security precautions are taken. Also, the speed and reliability can be a concern depending on the connection, hardware, software, and usage situation (server or workstation) of the local computer.

    If the database is read-only from the web, I would recommend uploading a copy to the web host manually after each update. If it's being written to from the web I would recommend leaving the "master" copy on the web host and downloading a backup copy at regular intervals.

    A slightly more expensive alternative would be to pay a bit extra for SQL Server service from the web host. This way, the database can be stored on the web host and administered locally using Enterprise Manager.

    I'm curious to learn more about the situation so I can refine my suggestions to better fit their needs. <img src=/S/smile.gif border=0 alt=smile width=15 height=15>

  3. #3
    Super Moderator WebGenii's Avatar
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    Re: Database on the web - when does it make sense? (Access All Versions)

    It is read only from the web. The whole purpose of this is so that members can find how to contact other members and their relevant information. Right now, the membership list is totally exposed to the world, and people are getting spammed.
    My suggestion (based on the KISS principle) a password protected PDF uploaded regularly by the office staff.

    Thanks for your thoughts, ...
    [b]Catharine Richardson (WebGenii)
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  4. #4
    Silver Lounger
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    Re: Database on the web - when does it make sense? (Access All Versions)

    A password protected PDF sounds like a good idea...

    Also, it would be fairly simple to regularly copy an Access database to the web server. The front-end piece could be password protected while still allowing searching, sorting, and paging.

    I don't know what kind of ASP or ASP.NET capabilities are available to the organization, but this is fairly simple to accomplish (i.e. less than 8 hours of work).

    Also, I remember seeing an ActiveX control or some other code sample that will allow the automation of FTP uploading/downloading from within Access. This can greatly simplify the requirements on the Access users. Perhaps another lounger can point you to this if it seems like something you need.

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