How can I get 3 Macs (OSX 10.4, iPhoto 6) to concurrently use one iPhoto library on snap server?

Greetings experts,
I have an iPhoto issue that maybe someone could help me with.
Just to give a little back history, at work we have 3 MACs purchased in 2005 running on OSX 10.3 & iPhoto version 5. We configured iPhoto on those 3 MACs to used a shared iPhoto library located on a remote snap server. We are able to get those 3 MACs to access the shared iPhoto library at the same time without any issues.
During the summer of 2007, we purchased 3 iMacs each with OS X 10.4 & iPhoto version 6. We configured the 3 new iMacs to point to an iPhoto shared library on the remote snap server just as was done with the older MACs. The problem now is that only one of the Macs can use the iPhoto application at a time. Any attempts to use iPhoto while one of the Macs is connected to the shared library results in a message stating that the application is locked. The only was for any other Mac to use iPhoto is for the current Mac using iPhoto to quit the application.

I spoke to Apple support, & they stated that there were changes in both iPhoto & OS X 10.4 which prevented iPhoto from having multiple concurrent connections.

My questions are - 1)Does anyone know of any workarounds, third party utilities that allow OS X 10.4 & iPhoto 6 to have multiple concurrent connections?
2) Are there any other photo management software that offer the same functionality as iPhoto but also supports multiuser access?
raisharadAsked:
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raisharadAuthor Commented:
Hello strung,
We have actually tried the very solutions that you suggested already. Those solutions did not work. Thanks you for your response.
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strungCommented:
I suspect the reason may be that older version of iPhoto stored each photo as an individual file in the iPhoto library folder, whereas in the current version of iPhoto, the  library is one big file. That being the case you could see why it could cause problems if more than one user had write access at a time.

As I understand it, the iPhoto app does not save changes until you quit the application. If that is correct, and two users were allowed to open it simultaneously, when the second user quit the application, it would overwrite any changes made by the first user.

In short, I don't think you are going to be able to do what you want to do with iPhoto.

Have you looked at whether Aperture allows current users?
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strungCommented:
Apparently you will have the same problem with Aperture. There is a discussion here with some alternative software suggested:

http://discussions.apple.com/thread.jspa?messageID=6455166
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strungCommented:
You might look at Abobe Bridge or Adobe Lightroom to see if they will do what you want.
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ahoffmannCommented:
If you start iPhoto while pressing the Option/Alt key it will ask for the Library to use, there you can select another iPhoto Library for that instance of iPhoto.
My experiance with 10.4/10.5 is, that you can access such a directory with more than one user concurrenty **as long as you do not change anything** just read/view photos.
The prerequest is that you use the command line to set the file permissions proper to the directory and all its files where your shared library resides.

Is this what you want?
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raisharadAuthor Commented:
ahoffmann,
I think you are referring to the same solution what Strung had suggested in the very beginning. We tried that also, and it didn't work. As a matter of fact, we were successfully running old iPhoto (prior to v 6) in a shared environment, but it stopped after the upgrade.

I am basically looking for any alternative solution to iPhoto that allows concurrent users accessing the common iPhoto library.
Thanks,
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strungCommented:
Extensis Portfolio or Canto Cumulus are multi-user network photo databases that are designed to do exactly what you want, but they are VERY expensive.  

As I said, Adobe Lightroom or Bridge might work too, although they are not specifically designed to be multi-user.
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ahoffmannCommented:
> .. referring to the same solution what Strung had suggested  ..
may be ..
it works for me with iPhoto6 as long as only one writes, otherwise the last one wins as already said
iPhoto in a multi-user enviornment is totally crap, IMHO :-(
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strungCommented:
In fairness, iPhoto was never intended to be multi-user. It is good for the audience it is aimed at. If you search for multi-user networkable media databases on the net, you will see these cost thousands of dollars. That is not the market iPhoto is competing in.
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ahoffmannCommented:
<ot>
In fairness OS X is a mult-user, multi-process, multi-whatever system, so it would be fair to expect basic functionality for that too in apple's own products. In particular marketing stresses the Unix history of OS X, but technically it fails to do some of the most basic things (iPhoto is just one example). And the audience for OS X is for example family usage.
I'm not bashing apple, but each (fairness) medal has two sides.
</ot>
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raisharadAuthor Commented:
We appreciate everyone's effort & input into finding a solution to this issue. Many thanks to strung whose insight into this matter has led us to accept his solution. We have researched strung's suggestion & found that it addresses & resolves all the short comings of iPhoto 6.
Congratulations to strung & keep up the good work.
Thanks.
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strungCommented:
Raisharad, out of curiousity, which of the suggested solutions did you decide to go with?
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raisharadAuthor Commented:
Hello strung,
We are still evaluating. We have gotten a reply from the people over at Extensis. They have given us guidance on which type of solution to use & have also given us pricing. I have also contacted Canto & am awaiting a response from them.
So far I would have to say that I like Extensis but will wait & see what Canto has to offer before finally making a decision.

Again, Many thanks.
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