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FileMaker Hosting Services Kept Simple

January 25th, 2013

FileMaker® databases are incredibly intuitive to use but the costs and time involved in setting up and maintaining them on your own in-house server isn’t in everyone’s budget or wheelhouse of expertise. Serving your vital business and personal FileMaker databases on your own can be a daunting task. Do you have a server that you can dedicate to this task? Can you afford the licensing costs? What happens if the server goes down? Who will you call and how long will it take to get back up and running? Who will setup and monitor your database backups? Did you know that you can’t back-up “live” database files with 3rd party back-up programs? If you don’t have a skilled person on staff to help you answer these questions and carry out these tasks, perhaps you should consider hosting your FileMaker databases in the cloud.

 

FileMaker Hosting Differences You Can Count On:

While there are many choices out there for hosting a FileMaker Pro Database, keeping things focused and simple to efficiently accomplish your hosting needs is our philosophy. Here are some things that make Productive Computing, Inc.’s FileMaker Pro Database Hosting service different:

1.  We are a large FileMaker Platinum development firm with an expansive and expert knowledge of all things FileMaker (not just a hosting company who may or may not know how FileMaker works under the hood).

2.  We have dedicated servers with SSD drives (nothing virtual, nothing slow) and as a result have read/written times faster than just about any traditional hard drives. Would you believe our servers can do a full reboot in 35 seconds!

3.  We don’t “pig pile” our servers with too many files or customers and we always use the latest version of FileMaker server and OS security patches.

4. FileMaker WebDirect™ hosting is available to bring a desktop-like experience to users via a web browser without the requirements of traditional web programming.

5.  We perform local backups, backups to a physical attached drive, and to the cloud. That gives us 3 points of redundancy for disaster recovery and up to 30 days of data.

6.  We provide a daily DropBox backup for those customers who want the peace of mind to know their data is at their fingertips. No cumbersome FTP programs are required to get at your data should you need it.

7.  We provide direct FileMaker Server Admin console access for users on FileMaker 12 – 13 where they can close and open files, download files, etc. We can provide direct access to FileMaker 11 Server Admin as well for developers who request it.

8.  For developers who are thinking of referring their customers to us, we treat their customers as if they were our customers. Often developers want to know that your customers will be treated as well as you would treat them in the event your customers would call us directly.

9.  We provide a unique IWP scenario for FileMaker 11 – 12 users that will auto redirect to a web page of your choosing upon IWP time out or IWP Log out. We developed this technology here in-house and it’s truly one of a kind.

10.  Distance from the server to the client is a big factor which is why we are continuing to invest in our infrastructure by putting servers in all corners of the country.

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Keeping Web Hosting and FileMaker Hosting Separate: Why?

We recommend to our customers to have and/or keep their websites hosted using a traditional web provider (like GoDaddy, Bluehost etc.). The reason for this is that for a very low price you get a standard web server has all the bells and whistles needed for your web development team (i.e. the correct PHP version, standard web security, robust web control panel, population and performance stats, scalability, accessibility, redundancy, secure certificate, standard PHP reusable code snippets / built-in plugs for hit counters, forms, validation, shopping cart, Word Press, etc.). If you host your website on a double-duty FileMaker/Web server, the service provider has to provide all these extras which gets complicated fast and providing service and maintenance on all these other technologies is time taken away from being an expert maintaining your databases. And you wonder why they don’t return your call or answer the phone when you have a problem. They are up to their eyeballs in all that stuff.

Even still, we offer IWP and the ability for anyone to use an external website with PHP while at the same time talking via PHP directly to our hosted FileMaker servers. The only requirement for a client is to have their PHP files and the web files on a web server outside our infrastructure. Typically when a client comes to us for hosting, they already have their own website hosted elsewhere and prefer that as the location for their PHP files.

Keeping it simple and focused allows us to be your on call experts for FileMaker Services and FileMaker Database hosting. Our brand has a strong reputation because we do not try to be everything to everyone. Focused expertise is our key to servicing our customers in the way that they expect to be serviced.

FileMaker Database Hosting

PCI Announces Software as a Service for its Flagship Applications!

May 24th, 2012

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

San Diego, CA – May 24, 2012 – Productive Computing, Inc., a Platinum member of the FileMaker Business Alliance, is proud to announce the availability of Software as a Service (SaaS) for its most popular solutions running on the latest FileMaker Pro 12 database engine.

Our web-based SaaS will provide you remote access to our select FileMaker Pro Solutions for a low monthly fee and includes a free 30-day trial.

If You Already Own FileMaker Pro 12:
Core2 CRM: $10/month/user (includes subscription to Outlook for Win, Address Book and iCal plug-ins)
Core2 CRM with Invoices: $20/month/user (includes subscription to Outlook for Win, FM Books Connector, Address Book and iCal plug-ins)
Core3 CRM: $35/month/user (includes subscription to Outlook for Win or Mac, FM Books Connector, Address Book and iCal plug-ins)
FM Work Orders: $25/month/user (includes subscription to FM Books Connector plug-in)

If You Need FileMaker Pro 12:
Purchase FileMaker Pro through PCI or…
Subscribe to FileMaker Pro for $15/month/user (requires at least 1 year SaaS commitment)

“We are tremendously excited about offering our products to the public for a one-time purchase or for a low monthly fee under this new subscription model. The ability for a customer to begin using our software on the award winning FileMaker Pro platform without an upfront cost will allow us to bring a new level of efficiency to organizations who would have otherwise not been able to afford it. Helping businesses become more organized and profitable through the use of well designed and easy to use software systems is the goal, and this additional pricing option is a win-win for both our customers and PCI.” — Marc Larochelle, CEO, Productive Computing, Inc.

For more information on Software as a Service please visit http://www.productivecomputing.com/FileMakerHosting.php

About Productive Computing, Inc.
Since 1996, Productive Computing, Inc. has been helping its customers become more efficient and profitable by implementing custom software solutions using FileMaker Pro. Utilizing FileMaker Pro as a rapid application development tool, their certified FileMaker developers can create custom applications that a business can run on their Windows or Macintosh desktop computers, in a web browser, on an iPad or iPhone or shared simultaneously on all of these platforms.

Productive Computing, Inc. also produces several off-the-shelf productivity solutions such as Core3 CRM, Core2 CRM, Core2 Invoices, FM Work Orders, OrgPlanner and IT Asset Manager; as well as a suite of FileMaker Pro plug-ins that allow FileMaker Pro to integrate with third party applications including Outlook, QuickBooks, the Apple Address Book and iCal, PDF forms, credit card processing, digital signatures and biometric fingerprint scanners.

In addition to building custom and off-the-shelf FileMaker Pro solutions and plug-ins, Productive Computing, Inc. is a full service FileMaker Pro hosting company. FileMaker hosting services allow customers to host their own FileMaker Pro solutions on Productive Computing servers in the cloud instead of purchasing and supporting the necessary server infrastructure themselves. These same servers also provide the infrastructure for customers who would prefer to subscribe to Productive Computing’s Core3 CRM, Core2 CRM and FM Work Orders products under a SaaS (Software as a Service) pricing model.

Productive Computing, Inc. is one of only a few companies in the United States to have earned the highly respected Platinum level membership within the FileMaker Business Alliance and recently won the exclusive FileMaker Business Alliance Partner of the Year award.

Productive Computing, Inc.
950 Boardwalk, Suite 205
San Marcos, CA 92078
http://www.productivecomputing.com
info@productivecomputing.com
(760) 510-1200

Press Contacts:
Productive Computing, Inc.
Keith Larochelle
(760) 510-1200

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Productive Computing, Inc. Announces Database Hosting Services for FileMaker Pro 7-12

April 12th, 2012

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

San Diego, CA – April 12, 2012 – Productive Computing, Inc., a Platinum member of the FileMaker Business Alliance, is proud to announce the availability of FileMaker® Pro database hosting for FileMaker Pro versions 7 – 12. Features include a free annual system analysis and report, backups accessible via Dropbox, superior performance by utilizing SSD server hard drives with unlimited bandwidth and up to 100 Mb/s upload speed. Sign up for a FREE 30 day trial today!

“What makes more sense than to have certified FileMaker Pro experts providing FileMaker Pro database hosting? Our staff is dedicated to personally walk each customer through their hosting setup process so that it is easy and pleasant for even the most novice computer user. We will review and analyze your system annually and provide a detailed report on the condition of your solution with recommendations on what you could do to improve it or how you could benefit by incorporating the latest FileMaker Pro features. Not only do we care about your hosting experience, but we care about the solution you are running your business on.” – Marc Larochelle, CEO, Productive Computing, Inc.

Database hosting can be purchased for $50.00/month and includes the following features:

– Free 30 day trial / no setup fee.
– Free 1 hour consultation and database analysis on how we can optimize your solution’s performance.
– Free annual system analysis and detailed report on the condition of your solution with recommendations for improvement.
– Daily and Weekly Backups: Have access to your weekly backups via Dropbox.
– 5 Database Files: Additional database files may be added for $5/month/database.
– 5 GB Storage Space: Additional GB may be added for $5/month/1 GB.
– 10 Users: Additional users may be added for $5/month/user.
– 5 Instant Web Publishing (IWP) Users: Additional users may be added for $1/month/user.
– Non-virtualized FileMaker 11 and 12 servers running SSD drives for maximum performance.
– Unlimited bandwidth and upload speeds up to 100 Mb/s.
– Optional direct connection to FileMaker Server’s control panel (FileMaker Pro 12 solutions only).
– Supports FileMaker Pro versions 7 – 12.

For more information on FileMaker database hosting services, please visit http://www.productivecomputing.com/FileMakerHosting.php

 

About Productive Computing, Inc.
Since 1996, Productive Computing, Inc. has been helping its customers become more efficient and profitable by implementing custom software solutions using FileMaker Pro. Utilizing FileMaker Pro as a rapid application development tool, their certified FileMaker developers can create custom applications that a business can run on their Windows or Macintosh desktop computers, in a web browser, on an iPad or iPhone or shared simultaneously on all of these platforms.

Productive Computing, Inc. also produces several off the shelf productivity solutions such as Core3 CRM, Core2 CRM, Core2 Invoices, FM Work Orders, OrgPlanner and IT Asset Manager as well as a suite of FileMaker Pro plug-ins that allow FileMaker Pro to integrate with third party applications including Outlook, QuickBooks, Entourage, the Apple Address Book and iCal, PDF forms, credit card processing, digital signatures and biometric fingerprint scanners.

Productive Computing, Inc. is one of only a few companies in the United States to have earned the highly respected Platinum level membership within the FileMaker Business Alliance and recently won the exclusive FileMaker Business Alliance Partner of the Year award.

Productive Computing, Inc.
950 Boardwalk, Suite 205
San Marcos, CA 92078
http://www.productivecomputing.com
info@productivecomputing.com
(760) 510-1200

Press Contacts:
Productive Computing, Inc.
Keith Larochelle
(760) 510-1200

Integrating FileMaker Pro with Magento Shopping Cart

August 15th, 2011

 

Productive Computing, Inc. works with COFA Media to deliver a state-of-the art website for SundryDrop.com.  The website integrates SundryDrop’s existing FileMaker 11 database combined with FileMaker’s “ESS” and “Execute SQL” features to transfer data to and from a Magento based web store engine.  Magento is perhaps one of this most not the most sophisticated and full-featured open source web site / web store engines ever created.  FileMaker is one of the most flexible database engine / front end systems that was already running Sundry’s brick and mortar business.  Together the combination is a lethal “one-two punch” that delivers a highly flexible, highly customizable complete business solution for SundryDrop.  The amount of integration between these two technologies is unprecedented and to our knowledge the first of its kind on this scale.

SundryDrop.com is a brick and mortal business that buys collections and sells on consignment.  Having sold for more than 17 years, they enjoy over 60% repeat business and strive for high customer satisfaction.  What makes this integration more advanced is that SundryDrop simultaneously sells collectables through Amazon and Ebay, their new Magento based website, as well as their own retail store front.  Having four avenues to sell collectables is effective and necessary but managing the inventory is very difficult for your average Mom and Pop business.  Using FileMaker and the direct integration with the webstore provides a highly efficient operation .  For example, SundryDrop might make a particular collectable available on both Ebay as well as their main website at the same time.  If a customer were to purchase the item from Ebay, that inventory item is updated and automatically removed from the website because there is a direct connection between FileMaker and Magento.

Author: Categories: Information Technology Tags:

The Basics of Cloud Computing

July 22nd, 2011

“Cloud computing is a
model for enabling convenient, on-demand network access to a shared pool of
configurable computing resources (e.g., networks, servers, storage, applications,
and services) that can be rapidly provisioned and released with minimal
management effort or service provider interaction.”

– The National Institute of Standards and Technology

 

The “cloud” is a general term used to describe the Internet.  “Cloud Computing” can be
defined many ways, but in its simplest form it is the ability to access files and use software applications hosted on and accessed via the Internet.

The cloud has evolved to provide small businesses shared hardware and software resources for low cost. Cloud computing service providers can afford to do this because the capital costs required to provide the services are spread across thousands of customers.

Some examples of cloud computing technologies include:

  • SalesForce.com – Hosted Customer Relationship Manager
  • DropBox – Hosted File Sharing
  • Google Docs – Basic Word Processing, Spreadsheet and Slide Presentation Software
  • Hosted Exchange Accounts – Shared Email/Contacts/Calendars/Tasks for use with Outlook, iPhones, iPads, and Blackberry smart phones.

The most obvious consideration and end user benefit focusing a cloud based service, also known as “Software as a Service” (SaaS), is the low upfront costs.  Cloud based services generally require a monthly subscription and an initial set up fee.  Because cloud services are based on consumption, monthly fees will vary with the amount of data stored and number of users accessing it.  The benefit is that the end user is not required to have anything more than an Internet browser and a basic computer.  No software or server hardware is purchased or installed at the end user’s office.

On the other hand, low cost cloud based services have several drawbacks.  The Internet itself has a cost to access and it isn’t always as fast or responsive as you would like.  End users waiting for their screens to refresh or data to download or upload can be time consuming and make for a less friendly and less efficient user experience.  Most cloud based software applications have fewer features than a competing product that is installed locally on the end user’s computer.  This is mainly because an Internet browser isn’t as sophisticated and has less capabilities than a traditional locally installed application. Web applications such as Google Docs are great for basic office document
functions but are incapable of doing more complicated word processing or spreadsheet
tasks.  Many cloud based services are also a “one size fits all” model.  Very few SaaS vendors allow you to customize their services to meet your specific organization’s needs.

To bridge the gap, some companies are blending the use of hosted hardware infrastructure with traditional software installations and many non cloud based applications now offer cloud capabilities.  For example Core3 CRM (www.core3crm.com) a Customer Relationship Manager built using the popular and versatile FileMaker Pro database engine, offers the option of hosting its data files in the cloud and several methods to provide access to a custom modified version of the application though the internet.  This provides the best of both worlds – a hosted application which can be accessed either locally or through the internet with the capability to customize it for your business.

Utilizing cloud computing has already become a regular tool for many companies.  The key is to identify and understand which tool is the right one for the job.

For more information about FileMaker Pro, Custom Software Development or CRM applications, visit www.productivecomputing.com

Author: Categories: Information Technology Tags: