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  Data sharing in a local network

 

Summary: There are several computers in a local area network, each one of them with its own copy of Active Desktop Calendar installed and running. The question is: can they see each other's data, use the network to share them somehow? Of course they can, just read on to learn how to make that work in a couple of clicks.

Introduction – data layers

To understand this topic better you should be aware of the fact that Active Desktop Calendar allows you to work with more than one data layer. By default, when you install and start the program it has only one data layer. It is called Primary and can not be removed.

However, you can easily add more data layers and each one of them is fully capable of keeping notes, alarms and tasks. That is useful when you want to group your data, e.g. put all holidays in one layer, all birthdays in another, all appointments in another, etc.

One more situation to use more than one data layer is when you want to share your data with other program users on your local network, but you do not want to share all data. Fine, then you will simply create data layers for sharing and keep the rest private.

Adding new data layer is simple. Right click on the program's icon in the system tray, choose Layers, click "Add new layer", type in some name for it and click Ok. Data from all enabled layers are automatically merged and displayed on your desktop so you do not have to worry about that.

Now, when you are familiar with data layers let's share them around your network.

Workgroup sharing step-by-step

The concept of data sharing is very simple. Everybody can share data with everybody else. The following procedure shows how it is done for a single data layer. Then just repeat the same for all layers you want to share and on all computers you want to have involved in sharing.

By "server" we will call a computer where a data layer you want to share is created, and by "client" all other computers that should connect to that data layer. That does not mean there is any difference between installed copies, all are the same and can act both as a server and a client at the same time.

1. On a server computer:

Right click on the program's icon in the system tray, choose Layers, select a layer you want to share from the list, click "Replicate (to share)", select some shared folder, one that can be seen by all other users and click Ok.


Note: make sure folder and file access privileges are correctly set so each client can read a data layer file in the shared folder -- for example, if folder permissions are ok but data layer file permissions are not, then a client will be able to connect to that layer file but will not be able to read it. (see more on this below under "Troubleshooting file access permissions")

2. On client computers:

Right click on the program's icon in the system tray, choose Layers, click "Connect new layer", go to the shared folder on the server computer, select the file and click Open.

Note: all connected data layers are read-only for client computers and will be marked with suffix LAN in the list; the program refreshes shared data layers automatically every 60 seconds.

Troubleshooting file access permissions

You did everything as described above, but a shared layer appeared red in client's list. Providing that both a server and a client computers are on, and that a local network is working properly, that situation suggests a problem with file access privileges. In other words the client can see the layer file, but can not open it to read its contents. You should go to the shared folder, right click on the layer file, choose Properties and select Security tab. If you do not understand what is displayed there and how to set permissions properly consult with your network administrator.

If you have Windows XP Pro and do not see Security tab in File/Properties dialog, then do the following. Open the shared folder in Windows Explorer, go to Tools - Folder Options - View, then look at the bottom of the Advanced settings list, disable "Use simple file sharing" option and click Apply.

If you have relocated the layer file to a shared folder on another computer you have on the local network, then have in mind that the layer file inherits access permissions from that folder automatically so make sure they are set correctly.

Inbound connections limit in Windows

When setting up data sharing on your local network please pay attention to the inbound connections limit existing on all non-server versions of Windows. The maximum number of other computers that are permitted to simultaneously connect over the network is ten for Windows XP Professional and Windows 2000 professional, and five for Windows XP Home. This limit includes all transports and resource sharing protocols combined. Details are available on the following pages in Microsoft's online knowledge base:
http://support.microsoft.com/?scid=kb;en-us;314882 (Windows XP)
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/122920/EN-US/ (Windows 2000)

So, if you want to have data layers that are accessed by more than ten users (five on XP Home) your only solution is to have a real server in your network. Then you have two options. One is to install Active Desktop Calendar directly on a server (it has to be Windows server with enough client access licenses - CAL) and operate those data layers from there. The other one is to just relocate data layer files to some shared folder on a server that all users can access.

Licensing

You will need to purchase a license for each of the computers in your network where you want to install and use the program. Our quantity discount scheme starts with two licenses and you can check the whole table at the bottom of the program's How to Order page.

This rule is not directly related to data sharing. It comes from a fact that our end-user license agreement requires a licensed copy for each user that will use the program on her/his computer. There are only two exceptions:

  • if there is only one person who will use the program, then that person can purchase only one license and install the program on more than one computer (e.g. home – laptop/notebook – office).
  • if there is only one computer where the program is installed, then purchasing one license for it is enough even if that computer is used by more than one person.

 

 
Data Sharing
Data sharing in a local network
Calendar data import and export in CSV format

Connection with OutlookŪ
Integration with Outlook
Import calendar from Outlook via CSV file

Data Backup & Restore
Built-in automatic backup function
Restoring data from a backup file
Calendar database file location

Web Calendars
Integration with Google Calendars
Integration with weather forecast

Lotus Notes
Synchronizing with Lotus Notes

Preset Calendar Files
How to make .ADC files to share
Holidays & Moon phases
NFL schedules
NBA schedules
NHL schedules
Big dates in history (world, USA, sports, music, ...)
Miscellaneous, entertainment and other sports

General
Frequently asked questions
Evaluation period limits
Online copy of program's help files
Version history

Look & Feel
Customizing desktop appearance
Set icons calendar to your language
ADC Club: download free icon sets

Install & Uninstall
Installation process
Removal procedure
Upgrade procedure
Got new computer? Here is how to move calendar data and settings

 
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