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ACT and vpn

Platinum Elite Contributor
Posts: 14,584
Country: Australia

Re: ACT and VPN



DaveHenzel wrote:
I don't think there's anything here that needs to be redacted. So here's the entire contents of our PAD file. And to answer your question, yes, once I connect to the VPN, then I navigate to the correct drive letter and then double-click the PAD file.

?xml version="1.0" standalone="no"?>
!DOCTYPE ACT2005DatabasePADFile>
!--This file represents a Pointer to an Act Database or [PAD]-->
ACT2005Database name="SEEDSDB2005" host="SEEDS" location="C:\UserData\ACT\SEEDSDB2005.ADF" type="Sql" />

As you can see, we have our database shared under the directory UserData. I had to remove some less than characters for it to format correctly.

ACT! doesn't use any mapped drives you have created.
 
Your PAD file tells it to use the machine name (SEEDS) and then the location on that machine. Other networked machines don't access the database directly... they make a call to the server, and the server does the data work and returns the results to the client
Platinum Elite Contributor
Posts: 14,584
Country: Australia

Re: ACT and VPN



hubblecat wrote:
When opening ACT via vpn, are you opening by using the PAD file? If so, how is the PAD file configured? Sage says to edit the PAD file with Notepad and replace the server name with the IP address (for us, it's 192.168.x.x). I would be very interested in seeing the configuration, with sensitive data redacted of course. Of further note, I finally reached the boiling point last Thursday and contacted the Sage corporate officer in charge of the business unit responsible for ACT. Other than a brief telephone conversation and confirmatory email indicating the issue would be brought to the attention of their top technical guru as well as the development team, I have yet to hear from someone at Sage who can resolve the issue.

BTW: what did you get when you tried the Telnet from the VPN system?
Can you see if it works from a machine on the LAN?
Copper Super Contributor
Posts: 72
Country: USA

Re: ACT and VPN


@GLComputing wrote:


@davehenzel wrote:
I don't think there's anything here that needs to be redacted. So here's the entire contents of our PAD file. And to answer your question, yes, once I connect to the VPN, then I navigate to the correct drive letter and then double-click the PAD file.

?xml version="1.0" standalone="no"?>
!DOCTYPE ACT2005DatabasePADFile>
!--This file represents a Pointer to an Act Database or [PAD]-->
ACT2005Database name="SEEDSDB2005" host="SEEDS" location="C:\UserData\ACT\SEEDSDB2005.ADF" type="Sql" />

As you can see, we have our database shared under the directory UserData. I had to remove some less than characters for it to format correctly.

ACT! doesn't use any mapped drives you have created.
Your PAD file tells it to use the machine name (SEEDS) and then the location on that machine. Other networked machines don't access the database directly... they make a call to the server, and the server does the data work and returns the results to the client





Mike,

When my remote users connect to the database, they first start the VPN connection. After opening Act, they connect to the database by navigating to one of the mapped drives, in this case, Z:\UserData\Act which points to the directory where the PAD file is located. It's the same way a user would connect onsite, just with the VPN going.
Highlighted
New Member
Posts: 14
Country: USA

Re: ACT and VPN

[ Edited ]
Telnet and FTP are blocked via group policy and firewall settings per company policies. These policies were implemented due to security issues. Group policy therefore prevents the use of FTP and Telnet on the LAN as well.

Message Edited by hubblecat on 03-31-2008 01:20 PM
Platinum Elite Contributor
Posts: 14,584
Country: Australia

Re: ACT and VPN



DaveHenzel wrote:
When my remote users connect to the database, they first start the VPN connection. After opening Act, they connect to the database by navigating to one of the mapped drives, in this case, Z:\UserData\Act which points to the directory where the PAD file is located. It's the same way a user would connect onsite, just with the VPN going.


I would put the PAD file on the local system and see how that works.
Platinum Elite Contributor
Posts: 14,584
Country: Australia

Re: ACT and VPN



hubblecat wrote:
Telnet and FTP are blocked via group policy and firewall settings per company policies. These policies were implemented due to security issues. Group policy therefore prevents the use of FTP and Telnet on the LAN as well.

Message Edited by hubblecat on 03-31-2008 01:20 PM


Blocking Telnet usually means blocking the Telnet port. Here you are connecting to the SQL port which should still be allowed if they want ACT! to work
Copper Super Contributor
Posts: 72
Country: USA

Re: ACT and VPN


@GLComputing wrote:


When my remote users connect to the database, they first start the VPN connection. After opening Act, they connect to the database by navigating to one of the mapped drives, in this case, Z:\UserData\Act which points to the directory where the PAD file is located. It's the same way a user would connect onsite, just with the VPN going.


I would put the PAD file on the local system and see how that works.





We managed to get this VPN solution to work almost two years ago to the day. We tried to do some of the Internet Sync options with remote databases and that didn't work. Finally, I tought myself enough about VPN to get it work. Now that it's been stable for the last two years, I don't think I want to touch it.

When we upgrade, we'll do a dual environment where this user to can access the web version (so no more VPN headaches).
Platinum Elite Contributor
Posts: 14,584
Country: Australia

Re: ACT and VPN



DaveHenzel wrote:

We managed to get this VPN solution to work almost two years ago to the day. We tried to do some of the Internet Sync options with remote databases and that didn't work. Finally, I tought myself enough about VPN to get it work. Now that it's been stable for the last two years, I don't think I want to touch it.

When we upgrade, we'll do a dual environment where this user to can access the web version (so no more VPN headaches).


The problem I find with VPN is when you use the server name rather than the IP in the PAD and database identity. For some reason, some VPNs can forget to broadcase the WINS information.
 
You might try changing to the IP address using this ACT! Knowledge Base article - http://tinyurl.com/22ovr9
Copper Super Contributor
Posts: 72
Country: USA

Re: ACT and VPN


@GLComputing wrote:
I would put the PAD file on the local system and see how that works.




Mike,

I explained how I connect and up until this week, it has worked flawlessly. Then, for some unknown reason, one of my remote users on a laptop wasn't able to connect to the database. Nothing had changed on either the laptop or the server, so it "should" have been working. Remembering our back-and-forth here, I copied the PAD file on the local machine and changed the server name to the IP address. It worked perfectly. In fact, I think Act actually loaded quicker (only by a few seconds).

I wanted to say that if it hadn't been for the discussion here, I would have racked my brain for way too long trying to get it to work (and maybe without success). So thank you.
Platinum Elite Contributor
Posts: 14,584
Country: Australia

Re: ACT and VPN



DaveHenzel wrote:

I explained how I connect and up until this week, it has worked flawlessly. Then, for some unknown reason, one of my remote users on a laptop wasn't able to connect to the database. Nothing had changed on either the laptop or the server, so it "should" have been working. Remembering our back-and-forth here, I copied the PAD file on the local machine and changed the server name to the IP address. It worked perfectly. In fact, I think Act actually loaded quicker (only by a few seconds).

I wanted to say that if it hadn't been for the discussion here, I would have racked my brain for way too long trying to get it to work (and maybe without success). So thank you.

VPNs sometimes don't properly broadcast the WINS information and using the IP will make it work