I have just started a project to design and institute an Electronic File Catalogue for an insurance agency’s back office.
This system would be responsible for housing all documents which will already be scanned in as Multi-Page Group 4 Tiffs.
From their CRM Application the users will be able to load and view documents into this new system.
My question is regarding the data storage side of this app. There are two possibilities as I see it for this system.
#1 As the files are uploaded into the system they are placed into a server network share and a database is designed which keeps a record for each file. This record would keep track of where the file is physically stored and all other information on the file.
#2 As the files are uploaded into the system they are “sucked” into the database and stored as blobs. This database stores the physical file as a blob as well as all other pertinent information on that file. When the file is requested to be viewed by a user the file is saved to a temporary file on the client or server and then deleted upon conclusion.
Some points about this system:
1) Security is not a huge concern as this is on an internal network but we need to maintain appearance of a very secure system to conform to insurance standards.
2) Multiple users will need to be able to access these files simultaneously.
3) These files will NOT be editable. They will stay as they are from the first time input into the system.
In conclusion I am planning on using the first method purely based on simplicity unless I hear some good arguments against it.
Point will be awarded based on knowledgeable opinions which contain pros and cons of either or both systems.
Also if someone thinks this question is better suited for another topic area please advise.