OK, none of my tech buddies can give me a straight answer to this question. And, the scenario comes up with each new version of the program. I am not even sure if this program is the definition of a server-client application.
We have a local area network all running Windows XP Professional with a SBS 2003 R2 server. The most important daily application is our electronic medical record. I generally install it by installing the program on each computer and then installing it on the server. When the program is run for the first time, it asks what database you wish to use, i.e. the local one or to browse to the database on the server. Obviously, we choose to use the database on the server. So, in this setup, each user is using the software program on his or her desktop and accessing the database on the server. FYI: the database is Microsoft Access and while the full program does not have to be on the server in order for this configuration to run, the Access database does have to be in the EMR folder on our database D: drive to work as the database.
The other way to set it up, which we have not done, would be to run it like our office management software is designed to run. Install the full program on the server and share out the executable file, copying it to each desktop. This does have the advantage of making up grades much easier. I have at least tried it on one machine that way and cannot tell any speed differences.
Is either way better than another? All server applications intended to be run in the latter configuration?