Remote access

General support questions.
Posts: 23
Joined: Mon Dec 04, 2006 12:57 pm
PostPosted: Thu Jan 25, 2007 4:06 pm
Well, I've finally rolled out the first phase of Beta testing on the solution I've been working on for almost 3 years. Wheeeew!

Thanks a million to John, and all others who have responded to my posts. You've helped me through some challenges on more than one occasion!

My question:

While listening to one of Matt & Dan's podcasts, they talked about the idea of setting up a FMP file on a server to allow developers to go in and work on it/improve it one their own time for fun (a collaboration of sorts). They were talking about how you just use "Open Remote...", and enter the URL and you're in. Dan also made a comment that, "it's really easy to access Filemaker over the internet now."

Ok, so our company has a VPN connection. After the first day placing the file on FM Server, I tried to access at home via "Open Recent" and chosing the file I was working on while in the office. It opened. And to my surprise, it was working quite well. The functionality and speed was very doable. I was thinking "Sweet! I can work on continuing development on the live file from home!"

Well, as it turns out that must have been a good day or something. Now, it's hard to maintain a connection for more than 5-10 minutes before they stop communicating and I get the message "...has lost communication with the host and will now close all affected windows..."

So, I've been forced to come in to the office.

The bottom line is, if I could establish a connection that would allow me to work like this remotely so that I could be working on the live file, that would be fantastic for the next few weeks of fixing bugs while people are up and running. I'd much prefer this over a remote destop situation (not to mention the boxes at the office are Windows and I'm Mac, and there's no way I'm willing to do any development in a Windows environment...so, I'd have to buy another Mac with this setup)

How can I set up a connection like this that will be secure, reliable, and speedy?

Hoping I can leverage the experience of other FM guys, rather than starting from scratch on my research...

Nate
SeedCode Staff
SeedCode Staff
Posts: 2759
Joined: Thu Nov 20, 2003 11:01 am
PostPosted: Thu Jan 25, 2007 4:38 pm
Well a couple things about this...

While this is the subject of some debate, most people (including myself) will tell you NOT to make a schema change (not to "develop") to a file that you have opened remotely. If you were to have one of your "lost communication" issues while you were committing schema changes back to the database you could very well destroy or corrupt the file.

There are shades of this, of course. Some people will make layout changes remotely and do their field definitions on a Remote Desktop connection. (I do this on a number of projects. On others its all Remote Desktop or Citrix.)

However, even the people who do a lot of remote development don't do it on a connection that is at all suspect, flaky, or losses connection to the host.

Unfortunately, getting the connection more reliable is WAY outside my area of expertise and has to do with the routers, switches, and VPN at your office.
John Sindelar
SeedCode
SeedCode Staff
SeedCode Staff
Posts: 2759
Joined: Thu Nov 20, 2003 11:01 am
PostPosted: Thu Jan 25, 2007 4:39 pm
Oh, and C O N G R A T U L A T I O N S on your roll out!!
John Sindelar
SeedCode
Posts: 23
Joined: Mon Dec 04, 2006 12:57 pm
PostPosted: Thu Jan 25, 2007 4:54 pm
What does your Citrix setup consist of?

When do you use this over a remote desktop connection and why?
SeedCode Staff
SeedCode Staff
Posts: 2759
Joined: Thu Nov 20, 2003 11:01 am
PostPosted: Thu Jan 25, 2007 5:44 pm
You can find more details about Citrix here:

http://www.citrix.com

Very expensive to do right. If a client has it, we use. If a client doesn't have it already we sometimes talk about it if they have a LOT of remote users. IMO this is way too expensive to set up just so a developer can get on. The big idea here is that Citrix can publish all the back office apps to the remote users, including FileMaker.
John Sindelar
SeedCode

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