Database Setup

RepairShopPro uses Microsoft SQL Server as its database engine. SQL Server is a secure and highly scalable database used by some of the world's largest enterprises. Using SQL Server, RepairShopPro is able to scale from one to many concurrent users accessing extremely large data sets. Actual performance will be limited by license agreement, network bandwidth, memory, processor speed and hard disk space.

RepairShopPro is configured for data access in two ways.

Selecting Correct SQL Server Version

RepairShopPro uses the freely distributable version of SQL Server 2014 named "SQL Server Express". It can be downloaded at no cost from here. Management tools are optional. Typically, there will be no reason to do a manual install. The RepairShopPro installer will programmatically install and configure SQL Server.

The Desktop and Express versions use the in-memory version named SQL Express LocalDb. Since these versions only accept one connection, it saves the additional overhead of running the database as a Windows Service. The Enterprise version requires the full install.

If for whatever reason you're installing SQL Server manually, make sure you create a named instance titled "SqlRepairShopPro" for the Enterprise version and "(LocalDB)\MSSQLLocalDB" for the Desktop and Express versions.

Setting-up Connection String (RepairShopPro Enterprise)

Configuring the RepairShopPro Net Client to connect to a network database is very easy. When the program starts, you will be prompted for your connection string. If you're using the supplied server installer (ProdSetupServer.exe), you will only have to update the server element like shown below:

Data Source=YourServerIPorComputerName\SqlRepairShopPro;Initial Catalog=RepairShopPro;User ID=SA;Password=1Administrator$

If you're doing a custom install, then the format will be the same, but the values will change. If you're using a commercial host, then they will supply you with the connection string.

Using a Commercial Web Hosting Company (Cloud)

Commercial web hosting companies will provide database connectivity over the internet for a monthly fee. This is a very convenient option for shops needing multi-user access, but don't want to set-up their own network or would rather use the internet as their network. Internet hosting, sometimes called "Cloud" hosting, has the following advantages over a private network.

There are any number of commercial hosting companies supporting SQL Server Hosting. If you don't already have one in mind, then we can offer these services to you using our Virtual Desktop hosting.

Database Maintenance

Aside from regular back-ups, RepairShopPro requires no other routine maintenance. However, there may be times when you will want to short circuit the system and work directly with your data using SQL Server Management Studio or another SQL query tool. We don't recommend doing so unless you're an experienced DBA. However, if you must, then please remember to take a back-up before any database operation so you can restore the system to it's previous state in case something goes wrong.

Database Back-up and Restore functionality can be found on the "Administration" menu pad under the "Utilities" menu on the Desktop, Express and Enterprise Server editions. The Enterprise Net Clients do not have access to this functionality. Before doing a Restore from a previous back-up, please note that current database file will be completely overwritten.

* Note: If you choose a back-up file destination other than the default, you may receive an "Access Denied" or other error when doing a Back-up or Restore. This is most likely because the local SQL Server account has not been added to the list of accounts used to control access to the directory your writing to or reading from. To correct problem, locate target directory then right click. Select "Security" tab then add SQL Server account with full permissions. See these step-by-step instructions.

Installing RepairShopPro Enterprise on a Private Network

RepairShopPro uses a standard MS SQL Server connection string. With only 4 pieces of information (server address, database name, username, password) RepairShopPro can connect to any MS SQL Server in the world provided the target server is configured to accept outside connections.

Below is a basic example using Windows 7 and off-the-shelf computers that can be put together for very little expense. With modern hardware, it should scale fine in most shops. In extremely rare cases where there is very high network traffic and very large storage requirements, you may have to purchase the full-blown versions of Windows Server and MS SQL Server.

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* Note: To accept connections from outside your network using the internet, you will have to obtain a static IP address. Then open port 1433 on router. Or you can use a Commercial Host which may be cheaper than purchasing a static IP address.