Database Preferences

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In addition to general database settings, these preferences enable you to apply a registered license to a database profile and perform additional database profile maintenance.

Setting Database Preferences

1Choose Tools > Preferences, or click the Preferences toolbar button.
2Expand the Database section by double-clicking it, or by clicking the [+] symbol.
3The following preferences are available:

 Auto-Login - enables you to specify the user name, password, and/or database entries for the Login window.  If you specify all three, the system will not stop at the Login window on startup. Instead, the fields on the Login window will be completed for you using these entries, and the login process will start automatically as if you had clicked the Login button yourself.  Note that if you use more than one user name, you probably shouldn't set all three options, or you won't be able to login as anything different without changing the preference setting.  These settings are stored in the mtie.ini file, so they are specific to each user.

 Note that this preference is considered to be user-specific, but it really is "computer" specific.  Since the login preference obviously can't be stored in the database (because you'd have to log in before you could get to the data to see how you'd prefer to log in), it is stored in the application's .ini file on the computer. Thus, it is read and used prior to the database connection being established.

 Backup Prompt (Days) - specifies the number of days after which you wish to be prompted to backup the database. When prompted, you can choose to initiate the backup, or cancel the process. Set the value to zero (0) to prevent prompting. (This preference is not availble if you are connected to a remote database.)

 Note that regardless of the setting, you can always start a manual backup by choosing Tools > Database Tools > Backup Database.

 Backup/Restore Timeout - specifies the number of seconds the system will wait for the backup or restore process to finish before assuming that an error has occurred.  The default is 120 seconds.  If you have a very large database (or slow computer) and experience a timeout when running a backup or restore process, increase this value.

 File & Photo Storage - controls whether member photos, and related files (i.e., files linked to members and activities via the Related tab) are stored in the database, or stored as links to the physical files.  When setting this preference, you must specify the maximum file size that can be stored. The default is 50 KB each, and this is really a pretty large number.  Most digital cameras take very large photos by default that would dramatically exceed the 50 KB limit; but, if you reduce the photo to a standard 1.5" x 2" wallet sized photo such as would appear on an ID card, the file size will be reduced as well.

 Here are the Pros and Cons to keeping the file on the computer:        



The database remains smaller in size, because only the path to the file is stored.

Physical files can be lost.

Photos, or reports that include photos, will open faster, because the file already exists and is ready to display.

If you have multiple users, each user must store copies of the files on their computer, or the files must be stored on a network drive that is mapped the same on all user computers.

When the database is moved, all files must be moved as well, and must be returned to the same named location on the new computer, making the database less easily portable.

A computer crash or virus could destroy files on the computer.

 Here are the Pros and Cons to storing the files in the database:



Files always travel with the database because they are stored in a table in binary form.

Large files will slow down the database in some cases while the data is being retrieved.

If you have multiple users, each user will automatically be able to see files as soon as they are stored in the database.

A major database problem could corrupt files stored in the database.

If the same file/photo is used on more than one record, it must be stored once per usage.

Larger files must be reduced before they can be stored unless you increase the allowed file size.

 Note: The system automatically stores email messages and report logo files in the database regardless of this preference setting.

 Maintenance Prompt (Days) - specifies the number of days after which you wish to be prompted to run table maintenance (sometimes referred to as "housekeeping") on the database. When prompted, you can choose to initiate the maintenance, or cancel the process. Set the value to zero (0) to prevent prompting. (This preference is not available if you are not running as the mtadmin user, since the Maintain Tables option is under the Database Admin Tools menu, which is only accessible by the administrator.) The default value for this preference is 30 days.

 Note that regardless of the setting, you can always run maintenance manually by choosing Tools > Database Admin Tools > Maintain Tables, or via the Server Utility.

 Profiles - enables you to manage database profiles and licenses. See Maintaining Database Profiles for details.

4When you're finished changing preferences, click OK.