PGdebt technical bulletin 3

Setting up PGdebt 7 on a Peer to Peer network for the first time

Note that there are separate bulletins for client/server networks and upgrades from PG5.
Please read the whole leaflet before starting, especially if you already have PG6 installed on one PC.

Upgrading an existing PGdebt6 network
This Bulletin deals with new installations. If you have a fully functional PGdebt6 network which is running properly then all you need to do to upgrade it to PGdebt7 is to install the new PG7 CD on every PC which is currently running PGdebt6. That is all there is to it, PG7 should pick up all previous PG6 configuration and data information.

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 7. To set up PG7 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 7 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 one particular computer, called the PGdebt 'master' computer and all work stations should be configured to look to these folders on the master 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 shared folders on the master which all computers on the network use.

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, decide which computer is to be the master and install PGdebt7 on this.

2. Install PG7 on the master. The program will go into C:\PGDEBT7 and four sub-folders will be set up for you. C\PGDEBT7\STANLETS (for the standard letters), C:\PGDEBT7\DRAFT (for draft letters), C\PGDEBT7\COMMON (for the creditor database and other vital files) C\PGDEBT7\DATA (for the client data files)

3. Ensure that the directory C:\PGDEBT7 on the master is shared.

4. Now go to any workstation and MAP the directory C:\PGDEBT7 on the master so that this Computer can see and recognise it by a logical drive letter (say J for this example). It should be possible for the computer to see the master's PGDEBT7 directory listed in Windows Explorer as Drive J.

5. Install PGdebt7 on the workstation


7. Use the top browse button to set the Data directory to J:\DATA on the server, or to the server's data directory if has a different data directory name

8. Use the second browse button to set the Standard letters directory to J:\STANLETS (on the master)

9. Use the third browse button to set the Directory for draft files to J:\DRAFT (master)

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

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

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

13. The workstation is now set up !

14. Install PGdebt 7 on the next workstation and repeat steps 4-12 and so on with all other computers.

When finished your system should be set something like this:

Master  No1 Computer  No2 Computer  No3 Computer
Drive mapping letter used for the Master directory C:\PGdebt7 Not required C:\PGdebt6 on master is mapped as (say) J C:\PGdebt6 on master is mapped as (say) K C:\PGdebt6 on master is mapped as (say) H
Data folder  C:\PGDEBT7\DATA  J:\DATA  K:\DATA  H:\DATA
Draft files folder  C:\PGDEBT7\DRAFT  J:\DRAFT  K:\DRAFT  H:\DRAFT
Common files folder  C:\PGDEBT7\COMMON  J:\COMMON  K:\COMMON  H:\COMMON

Synchronising computers on the network is not required, as they all use the same COMMON folder, but you still need to synchronise any laptops or separate machines which are NOT CONNECTED to the network. You can make the synch disc in any network computer to take to the separate PC. 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 separate PC and stop at that. Note that the warning that a vital file has changed is not required on networks and has been removed. This warning is therefore not available to prompt you to backup or synchronise. This means that 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 PG7 is very easy on a network. Just back up the three/four shared folders on the master, and you will have backed up all client data, standard letters, creditor database and the VITAL statistics file PGCOMMON.INI     
Your network supervisor will have a proper backup routine set up and all you need to do is add the C:\PG sub-folders to that.
In cases where a proper network backup is not available, one should be established without delay.

However if this is not possible, you can use the PG7 internal backup system (from the master only) to make backups.