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Delay in DacEasy Order Entry Responses after replacing server

Posted on 2007-09-28
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Last Modified: 2008-01-09
Client has DacEasy Order Entry, version 12.  

OLD server, SBS 2000, named "SERVER" for arguments sake.
Old server no longer exists, hard drives were replaced (kept for backup access to old data), and server was reinstalled with SBS 2003, named "SRVR1".

Old path to DacOE files was \\SERVER\COMPANY\PATH\TO\FILES
Upon install of new server, I had to hack the files with a byte level editor to change the path (stupid program - I hate Sage).  Now the path to the files is \\SRVR1\COMPANY$\PATH\TO\FILES (added the $ share to ensure the "hacked" files contained the same number of characters in the path.

Things SEEM to be working for the most part, except that it responds fairly slowly now.  Running RegMon I tracked this down to the ~PVSW~.LOC file - it seems the file (located on the server path) is repeatedly accessed with the result being a sharing violation and each attempt takes just over a second, resulting in a 5-10 second delay (with the repeated attempts).  

MULTIPLE USERS ARE ACCESSING THE DATA.

When I referenced the user guide, I found they make reference to two network install types - Gateway and Workstation.  It's not clear what type they are/were using:

MY QUESTIONS:
1.  Can I identify the install type - Gateway or Workstation - and if so how?
2.  To setup a Gateway install type, do I have to install DacEasy Order Entry 12 on the server?
3.  Can you suggest alternative products (client hates it, but can't find anything they feel is better (or even just as good) and DOES NOT want to upgrade and DOES NOT want to buy another Sage product).
4.  Any idea why the ~PVSW~.LOC is having issues?  Am I on the right track?  Wrong track?  no where near the tracks?

Thanks
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Question by:Lee W, MVP
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Bill Bach earned 2000 total points
ID: 19981553
The DACEasy application uses Pervasive.SQL.  Unfortunately, you don't specify WHICH version of Pervasive you have, so we have to make some guesses.  Luckily, they are similar enough that it shouldn't be an issue, but let me know if you know which version it is.  (If you need help, there's a white paper about finding your database Engine version at http://www.goldstarsoftware.com/press.asp.)

The way the engine works is simple -- every machine runs a complete copy of the Pervasive "Workgroup Engine", or WGE.  Each WGE is completely capable of handling the entire database access for that user.  When there are multiple users, this allows a simple "peer-to-peer" configuration where one WGE acts as a "server".  Only ONE computer can be the database "server" at any one time, and the engine uses the ~PVSW~.LOC file to control this.  (You can TYPE the file at the command prompt to see which workstation is the gateway at any given time.)  You MUST take care to ensure that the machine acting as the gateway does not get turned off while other users are in the system, or they may lose data.

To avoid problems like this, we always recommend "locking down" the gateway.  This is done by installing the Pervasive.SQL engine onto the Windows-based server, and then using the Pervasive "Gateway Locator" tool to lock down the gateway to the server itself.  You may be able to install the DacEasy software to the server itself to get the PSQL license.  However, since the WGE is licensed by installed seat, this may or may not be legal -- check with DacEasy to be sure.  If needed, the WGE license can also be purchased separately, but I doubt this is needed, so read through the DacEasy docs first to see what they recommend.  Anyway, to "lock down" the gateway, please follow the instructions in the white paper on this topic at www.goldstarsoftware.com/press.asp.  

For larger sites (more than 5 concurrent users), you may need to see what license count is installed.  Use the Pervasive License Administrator, User Count Administrator, or Monitor tool (depending on which version you have) to check the "concurrent user count" that is installed for you.  You can also upgrade the WGE to a true PSQL Client/Server engine, which can provide better performance, better scalability (more than 5 users), better security (the WGE does not implement OS security), the ability to install natively as a service (doing this to the WGE requires additional work), and more.  


If you just want to remove the delay, then you can ALSO do this.  We found that the same issue impacts other applications, such as QuickBooks, that do NOT use the Pervasive Engine, so this is not specific to the database used.  Instead, you must manipulate Microsoft OS parameters to remove or change the Sharing Violation Delay from the OS.  First, go to:
     HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\lanmanserver\parameters
Then, change the settings "SharingViolationDelay" and "SharingViolationRetries" as needed.  With QuickBooks, I dropped mine to 10 (Delay) and 1 (Retry) and I have much improved startup times.  Please note that these settings are from Win2003.  If you have WinNT, I think it is "LockViolationDelay" instead -- check with your OS vendor to really be sure.
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by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 19981910
Great, thanks - I'll be back onsite at the client early to mid next week, I'll post back when I have results.

If anyone disagrees, agrees, or otherwise has other comments, please feel free to comment.
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by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 20001349
On site right now - the SQL version appears to be 7.90 (SP3) Build 230, Mar 2001 (Also called Pervasive.SQL 2000i) based on the Build number found on W3DBSMGR.EXE and referencing this link:
http://www.goldstarsoftware.com/btrvver.asp#Win32

I'm going to keep reading and referencing this for a few minutes, but if you're around and can spare some time right away while I'm on site, please let me know - may not need it, but just in case.

THANKS!
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LVL 29

Expert Comment

by:Bill Bach
ID: 20002010
The PSQL2000i engine also exhibits the same usage of the gateway file.  However, if you really have SP3, then you may also want to patch to SP4 and then to the SP4 HotFixes.  These are the LAST patches that will be created for this version, which has been unsupported since 2004.
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Author Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 20003066
Thanks - Not sure what happened.  I installed DAC on the server (they indicated they had sufficient licenses) and then set that as the Gateway server.  Initially, I saw no improvements (BUT, we couldn't reboot the server right then), so I did the registry edits and those DIDN'T WORK either - AT FIRST.  Then SOMETHING kicked in and the app became ultra responsive on the one system we were testing.  Not sure if it was the Gateway setting or not... but I'll check things again tomorrow and see where we are.

Thanks for your help so far!
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LVL 97

Author Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 20022771
Not sure why, but it seemed to spontaneously decide to work on everyone.  Probably the gateway setting then, so thanks much!
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