Please excuse my general lack of knowledge in regards to I.T related issues. I am doing work for a Property Company setting up a rather complex (roughly 50 relational tables) internal database created which holds information about the properties that we currently own and prints out reports e.t.c.

I currently have a short list of companies that are going to create the database for us and I am open to what technology they use to do so but I wanted to make sure there are no suprises down the track and the that the technology is suitable for the project (as my knowledge in this area is somewhat lacking). I'm hoping that the database (backend and frontend) will sit on the company servers (which are operating Windows Server 2003) rather than the clients desktop and I'm hoping that installation will be simple and am looking for something that has no ongoing cost.

Currently the 5 companies on my short list have told me that they are planning on using:
* CakePHP & MySql
* Smart Client Desktop application, developed in C# and .Net Framework 3.5 using MS SQL Express database
* ASP & MSQL Server 2005
* Microsoft Visual Basic 6 & SQL Express Edition 2005

Can anyone see any problems that may arise with these technologies or point any technologies which would be much more suitable for my situation?

Any help will be tremendously appreciated.

First if you do not want high cost, To install a server for MSQL SERVER 2005, I will cut that off right away.
CakePhp I cannot say too much about that i have not tried.

anyway for me, the best two options you have is Number 2 and 4, both technology work great each one with its partner database server, eventhougt the second one has low cost base on my experience.

also if you need to hire someone for supporting, is going to be easy to find somebody to fit the position because there is a lot of programmer out there than work very well with such technologies.


If the software is used only in-house, I don't see the need of using a webserver (asp/asp.net/php). I'd choose the C# option.

I would actually go with MS Access for these reasons:
1) Easy to set up (the entire database is in one mdb file and you just need the Microsoft Access Runtime to use the database). There is no need to install a database server (such as MS SQL or MySQL).
2) Fast to program, which should lead to reduced costs.

I concede that MS Access would not be the way to go if you are looking for a solution that involves the internet and not just your local network or if you are looking for a solution that allows more than around 10 people simultaneous access to the database.

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