Remote Access and Hosting Options, Windows Servers/Clients
April 2020: Working from home is top of mind for most of us these days! There are several ways to accomplish this depending on your particular needs. PLEASE call in to Support so we can help you decide which approach may be best for you!
Working from home, satellite office or on the road? Would you rather have your AcctVantage Server hosted on the cloud? This article describes a number of options for you to consider.
Some of the products and services referenced below are 3rd party offerings. AcctVantage Support will work in collaboration with the 3rd party system providers to get set up. In other words, it is a team effort!
Remote access can be setup to work in a mixed macOS and Windows environment in most cases.
It must be noted that the options below are what we have tested and found to work. There are many alternatives to address this issue that your IT staff or consultants may be more familiar or more comfortable with. We are happy to help in any way we can!
Remote Access to AcctVantage Client
This section describes options for accessing AcctVantage Client remotely. For this section the AcctVantage ERP Server application is running on your 'office' or primary LAN.
1:1 Screen Sharing Options. The simplest option is to use any number of screen sharing utilities to access a computer on the office LAN. The computer 'at the office' would run AcctVantage Client while the remote user connects via a screen sharing utility such as:
- Splashtop Business (this is what we use to connect to your machine during a Support call)
- many many more....
Considerations for screen sharing applications include how to best manage printing and file sharing between the 'home' and 'office' computers. Each application will approach these issues in a different way.
The limitation here is that you need a 'host' computer on the office network for each remote connection. This may be fine for some and not desirable for others.
Remote Desktop Services, General
Both Apple and Windows support a process that is known as Remote Desktop Services (aka Terminal Services). This essentially means that you can host <more than 1> user account on a single computer at the 'office' site. Each user that logs into the 'terminal server' will see a unique desktop environment and will be able to use 'their' account on that server computer to access applications, including AcctVantage Client.
The number of concurrent users supported by Remote Desktop Services is primarily a function of the hardware. There is a direct relationship between the processor speed, number of processor cores and available RAM and the number of concurrent users that can be supported. Several RDS servers can be used simultaneously to support an unlimited number of remote users.
The AcctVantage Server application can also run on the RDS server in its own user account. This means that you could have a single computer on your 'office' network that runs BOTH the AcctVantage Server AND a number of AcctVantage Client sessions simultaneously! The limiting factor is the computer hardware itself. Or, your AcctVantage Server can continue to run on its own dedicated server computer while the RDS computer(s) host the AcctVantage Client sessions.
Windows 10 Pro and Servers generally have Remote Desktop Services built in as part of the operating system. We strongly suggest consulting a qualified systems engineer to best deploy your RDS infrastructure.
Windows Remote Desktop
To access your 'office' computer, the Windows operating system includes a simple to manage Remote Desktop feature. These articles provide setup instructions to access your 'office' computer from anywhere with internet access.
Remote Desktop Services
Setting up a Remote Desktop Services server would allow you to host several end user AcctVantage Clients, and your AV Server, on a single server computers.
Remote Desktop Services are best setup and configured by a qualified systems engineer. There are many options to consider that will differ from site to site.
The Windows world has countless options for hosting dedicated servers that can support multiple AcctVantage users. They key criteria is that you have a dedicated server at the host site rather than a shared server.
Some options include:
LiquidWeb (reviewed, not tested)
IONOS (reviewed, not tested)
We also have AcctVantage clients that host their AcctVantage ERP systems entirely in the cloud using MS Azure (in place at AV Client site) as the host platform. This approach would certainly warrant a highly qualified network engineer or consultant to design and deploy.