What are the benefits of the SQL over the original version of the NICEIC Certification Software?
The original version of the NICEIC software has been created in an Access database, which can easily run from a PC. This can handle a few users and their cert data, but starts to struggle and slowdown when there are multiple users accessing the software at the same time. With the new SQL version, you can see the below improvements:
Firstly, an SQL server is optimised to work much more quickly than a client machine, particularly when dealing with several users and large amounts of data. Secondly, the amount of data sent across the network link is vastly reduced. For most databases, the main performance bottleneck is data transmission over the network, so reducing this can give a dramatic improvement in performance.
Predicting performance improvements is very difficult but an average overall speed improvement of 3 to 5 times, and possibly much more, would not be unexpected.
With Access, each user reads and writes directly into to the raw data of the software. If one of their machines crashes while writing something this will usually cause the back-end database to also crash and become corrupt. The same thing will occur if the network fails, has a glitch or temporarily becomes overloaded. This problem becomes more apparent as the amount of data or the number of users increases.
With an SQL server, users do not interact directly with the back-end data but with an intelligent data manager on the server. This then reads and writes data from and to the back-end software. If a users machine crashes, or the network hiccups, this will not affect the underlying database; instead the data manager realises that the transaction has not been completed and does not commit the partially transmitted data to the database. The database, therefore, continues to run without a problem.
Multiple concurrent users
A file server system, such as access, is designed for small groups and is best suited to run with up to about 10 concurrent users. Above this level performance starts to degrade rapidly as more users are added. With the SQL server, hundreds of concurrent users can be supported without a noticeable negative impact on its performance.
What do we need to get set up with the SQL version of NICEIC Certification Software?
If you currently have the NICEIC Certification Software setup on a server with users accessing it, then chances are you will be able to get the SQL version put onto the same server. If you currently share the NICEIC Software from a user’s machine, then we would recommend setting up a server before implementing the SQL version.
However, there are some server requirements….
- i5/i7 Dual or Quad Core CPU or equivalent
- 4GB RAM minimum, 8GB (or higher recommended)
- Windows Server 2008 R2 & 2012, 2012 R2 – (for best performance we recommend the SQL database is not to be installed on a server with Microsoft Exchange)
Clik will need to install a version of SQL onto your server. If you already have SQL installed, we can just install a new instance.
How much does it cost?
We charge a one-off setup fee of £180 to install and setup the SQL database. This includes updating/installing the current software if required, installing the SQL instance and finally converting the Access database across to the SQL database. We can help with all your user’s machines as well to ensure they have the correct access.
With the NICEIC Certification Software – SQL Version, your update subscription will also increase to £140 per user, but include all upgrades and amendments.
What happens after we process the order?
Once you buy the SQL version of the software we'll get in touch with your IT department, and arrange access to the server you would like the NICEIC SQL database to be installed on. We will then begin getting everything set up in the background for you.
When SQL has been set up we will need all your users to come out of the software to complete the conversion. The time this takes can vary depending on your database size but we estimate it to take between 15-45 minutes. After this we can liaise with your IT department to ensure all your users are running the SQL database and not the old database.
We’ve tried to write this in as un-techy way as possible. But if you need anything else explained about the benefits of SQL, please get in touch with our NICEIC team on 0117 902 2012.