In our efforts to adapt to the changing needs and requests of our users, we moved to a new data engine starting with CMD 2012 which makes it cost-effective to enable remote access to your CMD data at the church from any Windows-based computer that is located off-site.
If you need to be able to use CMD from a home desktop or laptop and want to work with your actual, live data, or if you wish to use CMD while you are traveling, remote access is the answer.
In brief, CMD is installed on the off-site computer, and it is then “hooked into” your CMD data files over the internet.
Aside from a few settings to be made on your router’s setup, basically only three things are required to make this work:
- A constant, fast connection to the internet for both the host computer (the computer in your church office that hosts CMD’s data), as well as for the off-site computer
- The Remote Database Server software, available directly from Software for Ministry
- Either a static IP address for your church, or arrange for an alternative such as the dynamic domain name service of companies like Dyn.com (whom we use ourselves). Their basic service costs $25/year and is all you need
Using remote access like this gives you full access to all of CMD’s features and functions. Of course, there is a slight performance lag when using CMD in this manner because you are going back and forth across the internet and is dependent upon the speed of your connections. However, even with the brief time lag, CMD is fully usable. Any changes you make from off-site are immediately in play at the church and vice versa since you are connecting directly to the actual CMD data stored on your church office’s host computer.
See the Server Preparation page for more specific information on what’s required to make it work.
Better LAN Connections, Too
The Remote Database Server software also makes connections between computers in your office that need access to CMD’s data much simpler. Without it, you have to map drive letters on each client computer and create a “share” on the host computer for CMD’s data files and give proper permissions for the client computers to access the data. The “RDBS” software eliminates all of that. Hooking up a client to the host computer is done simply, cleanly, and quickly.