PGdebt technical bulletin 2

Setting up PGdebt 6 on a Client/Server network

Note that there are separate bulletins for peer to peer networks and upgrades from PG5.
Please read the whole leaflet before starting. There are extra paragraphs for special circumstances.

Who is going to do this configuration ?
Please remember that all networks should have a network supervisor, who is responsible for setup, backups and all network troubleshooting and administration. The supervisor sets the 'supervisor password' and no-one else should be allowed to change the configuration, ever ! If you do not have a network supervisor. Please appoint somebody to be responsible for these matters. Remember that your normal staff may be able to run a network, they not be capable of setting up a network installation of PGdebt 6. To set up PG6 on the network you should have the appropriate network permissions and understand how to share and map directories on the server and all other computers. Please note that PG Computing cannot set up your network for you, or do much troubleshooting on the telephone. You really do have to have someone who can do it !

General principles
PGdebt 6 must be installed and set to run locally on every workstation. Only the client data files and some other important files are shared between the computers. These shared files should be set up in specific folders on the server and all work stations should be configured to look to these folders on the server and use their contents. Full details are in the manual but this note gives a practical example which may be helpful. Your system does not have to use the same folders or names as the example, it is the principle which is illustrated here of having 3 shared folders on the server which all computers on the network use. Always use folder (directory) and file names with a maximum of 8 letters for simplicity (This is a requirement for Windows 3.1 which unfortunately, is forced on users of later editions of Windows). When finished your system should be set something like this:

  Server  No1 Computer  No2 Computer    No3 Computer
Drive mapping letter used for the Server directory C:\PG Not required C:\PG on server is mapped as (say) J  C:\PG on server is mapped as (say) K  C:\PG on server is mapped as (say) H
Data folder  C:\PG\DATA  J:\DATA  K:\DATA  H:\DATA
Standard letters folder  C:\PG\STANLETS  J:\STANLETS  K:\STANLETS  H:\STANLETS
Common files folder  C:\PG\COMMON  J:\COMMON  K:\COMMON  H:\COMMON

Which directory will it go into... C:\PGdebt5 or C:\PGdebt6 ?
If this is a fresh installation of PG6, then it will go into the C:\PGDEBT6 folder, if you are upgrading from PGdebt 5 it will go into the C:\PGDEBT5 folder along with the older files. This means the PGdebt directory may not be the same on each machine, it will depend on whether PG5 has ever been installed. This does not not change the directory names.

Take care
If this set up is not correct, especially the path to the COMMON files, the statistics will not run correctly, but it will NOT be obvious.

How to do it ...example installation !
1. Before anything else, set up a directory (C:\PG) and three sub-directories on the server to hold the client data, standard letters and common files. You do not need to install PGdebt6 on the server, just make these folders and ensure that they are shared. C:\PG\DATA (for the client data files) C:\PG\STANLETS (for the standard letters) C:\PG\COMMON (for the creditor database and other vital files).

2. Go to workstation computer No.1 and MAP the directory C:\PG on the server so that Computer No.1 can see and recognise it by a logical drive letter (say J for this example). It should be possible for the No 1 computer to see the server's PG directory listed in Windows Explorer as Drive J.

3. Install PGdebt6 on Workstation No.1

4. Copy the contents of C:\PGDEBT6\STANLETS (locally) to J:\STANLETS (server) which was empty

5. Copy the contents of C:\PGDEBT6\COMMON (locally) to J:\COMMON (server) which was empty

6. Copy the contents of C:\PGDEBT6\DATA (locally) to J:\DATA (server)


8. Use the top browse button to set the Data directory to J:\DATA (server)

9. Use the second browse button to set the Standard letters directory to J:\STANLETS (server)

10. Use the third browse button to set the Directory for common files to J:\COMMON (server)

11. Stop users changing the data directory by checking the 'Prevent users changing this directory' box.

12. Stop unauthorised access to the Files-paths screen by setting a 'supervisor' password !

13. No.1 workstation is now set up !

14. Install PGdebt 6 on workstation No. 2 and repeat steps 2-3 and 7-12 on workstation No.2 and so on with all other computers...NB. There is no need to repeat steps 4-6

Prior to ver. 6.030, the Manager Name is stored locally, so it will have to be changed on each computer, 6.030 and subsequent versions store it centrally so once changed the other computers will pick it up at program start-up.
Weekly and monthly templates are stored locally, so that individual advisers can set their own templates, if you modify these on one machine, or have them on an existing machine, the changed templates can be copied to other machines if required. The files are WTEMPLAT.PGT and MTEMPLAT.PGT in the main PGdebt6 directory.

If you already have PG6 running on a single computer
You will need to copy your existing files to the server, so that they can be accessed by all machines. If the machine is on the new network then go to that machine and complete steps 4-5 above. Work out which is the data directory and copy the contents of this (your client files) to J:\DATA on the server. If the machine is not on the network, copy these files from the three directories to the server using floppy discs.

Synchronising computers on the network is not required, as they all use the same COMMON directory, but you still need to synchronise any laptops or separate machines etc. You can make the synch disc in any computer to take to the laptop. Do not attempt to re-synch the network. This is not possible. Make the synch disc on the network and then use it to synch the laptop and stop at that. Note that the warning that a vital file has changed is not required on networks and has been removed, so synchronising must be done to a regular (frequent) routine ! Changes to the OPTIONS\SUPERVISOR\STATISTICS screen should ONLY be made on the network. Then synchronise any non-network machines.

These can be run from any workstation on the network, but are likely to be much slower across the network. Choose your best machine. Once compiled, the stats are held locally on the workstation.

Backing up everything necessary in PG6 is very easy on a network. Just back up the three shared folders on the server, and you will have backed up all client data, standard letters, creditor database and the VITAL statistics file PGCOMMON.INI     Note that the PGdebt internal backup is not available on the network is not required, and will not work on your server. Your network supervisor will have a proper backup routine set up and all you need to do is add the three PG sub-folders to that.