Captools/net Documentation

System Requirements

System Requirements

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System Requirements

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Single-User Systems - The single-user versions of Captools/net run both the server and desktop applications on the same computer, therefore a Microsoft®  Windows 7, 8 or 10 or Server 2012/later operating system is required on which the Windows IIS (see below) can be installed.   An operating system upgraded from a prior version (e.g. XP Home) is not recommended.  Installs are no longer supported on computers with operating systems prior to Windows 7 or equivalent Server version, and any users still on such systems should make plans to upgrade their systems soon.


Multi-User Systems - Captools/net Server applications are designed to run on computers running the Microsoft® Windows Windows 7, 8 or 10 or Windows Server 2012/later operating systems.  Computer speed and RAM memory requirements will be dictated upon the amount of data to be handled.  The Captools/net Desktop client application will generally be able to run on MS-Windows 7, 8 or 10 operating systems, however Desktop performance will be dependent upon desktop PC speed and RAM memory.   We do not recommend installing Captools/net on a machine which is also used as a domain controller or file server due primarily due to competing priority for resources.


Virtual Private Server - Currently for many professional users we recommend considering a MS-Windows based "Virtual Private Server" (VPS) as offered on a monthly payment basis by Microsoft, Amazon and others.   Such VPS's typically will run an up-to-date version of the Microsoft Server operating system which is optimized for server tasks.  Most VPS vendors will give you control over the number of CPU's, RAM memory and drive storage so you can expand (or contract) resources according to your needs without concern for maintaining complex hardware or updating software.  These typically run in a secure data center provided with 24/7 power and high speed internet access through which you will be able to operate your applications including Captools/net.  The cost to lease a virtual private server machine will vary by vendor and by the amount of resources you will require which is usually related to the amount of data and volume of data processing.  Most vendors offer pricing tables on line from which one might estimate your costs.


Windows IIS - Captools/net employs MS-Windows Internet Information Service on the server for desktop/server communications. This service is available as a custom install component for the business and higher levels of MS-Windows operating systems, and generally should operate properly in the default configuration since it uses Port 80, the normal port for http communications.  However, IIS configuration changes made by users or by other applications, may disable Captools/net functionality.  If MS-Windows IIS has not been previously setup on your computer, you will need to perform a system configuration, described in MS-Windows Required Configurations, which may require you to have your MS-Windows installation CD available.


Firewalls - Captools/net licensees should implement software and/or hardware firewalls to ensure the security of data maintained by this software on computers residing on a local area network.  However, improper setting of firewall permissions could adversely affect some or all of the Captools/net functionality.  If you encounter a Captools/net problem involving connectivity between the Captools/net Desktop and Server or between a Captools/net server application and the internet, please check your firewalls permissions.  Temporarily turning off the firewall can also help you determine whether it is causing a problem, however if you do this, we advise you to first disconnect your network from the internet to maintain system security.


Secure Remote Access -  If you want to configure your system to give secure access to remote users from outside your local area network, this can be done in two different ways.  The first way is to acquire and install a site certificate from Verisign or other provider of site certificates, and set up IIS to host remote Captools/net access using the secure HTTPS protocol.  A second way to provide secure access is through use of  a virtual private network (VPN), however this may require additional hardware or software for remote users.  We recommend Captools/net licensees consult qualified security technologists before opening their system to remote access.


Display Resolution - Captools/net has been designed to take advantage of the higher resolution screens available for newer computers.  We therefore strongly recommend that users have at least 1280 x 1024 screen display resolution on their systems while running Captools/net, and advise that any new monitor or laptop device purchased for Captools/net use be of the "wide screen" variety (1680 x 1050 resolution or better).


Hard Drive Space - Hard disk space requirements depend upon the amount of data, however we recommend allowing at least 15GB of free space on the intended installation drive plus 5GB of free space on the C drive even if it is not the intended installation drive (we have seen user's computer performance compromised by insufficient space on the drive containing the operating system which eventually gets consumed by Windows updates and temp files, resulting in hard drive read/write churning).  If the C drive is also the intended installation drive, a minimum of 20GB free space is recommended.


Windows File Compression - Do NOT allow MS-Windows to compress the Captools/net SQL database files as this will prevent connection to the database.  If your hard drive is running out of space, Windows will prompt you whether to compress "seldom used files".  This might cause the database files to be compressed.  Windows file compression of other collateral Captools/net files such as import scripts, etc. may also disrupt Captools/net operation.  See the troubleshooting topic CaptoolsDB Database Connection Error on how to fix this if you inadvertently allowed this to occur.  If you are running low on hard disk space, a better alternative to Windows file compression is to move backup files off your Captools/net installation drive to external drives, delete unused non-Captools files, empty your recycle folder, or best of all, get an additional hard drive where you can move large files.


Report Viewing - Captools/net generates reports in several output formats, with the default and often preferred format being "PDF" (portable document format).  Output in PDF format require that you have a PDF viewing program such as the free Adobe Acrobat Reader program installed on the viewing computer in order to view the reports.


MS-Windows Service Packs - New installations of Captools/net should be performed only after you have updated your MS-Windows for the latest service pack and updates.  Users with existing Captools/net installations should generally keep their Windows current with regards to service packs and updates.