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Hi, I own a business and through the business, I have amassed a large collection of training information and other things in the form of cds. For ease of access, I have ripped all my cds to mp3 format and stored them on my computer. This is not illegal and I have permission to do so. Here is my problem, my mp3s can be categorized in several different ways and a lot of them appear in different spots, for instance 1 particular mp3 can be found in a particular series, but also in a special promo pack meaning that I have the same file in 2 different places making my filesystem a total mess. In some cases, I have the same file in 6 different places. This is very inefficient and takes up a lot of space on several hard drives when you count in backups. I am looking for a way to add each new file only once and have some kind of front end that I can tell it all the categories said file fits into and then be able to use said front end to search files via drop downs. A filtering system of sorts. This would allow me to have only one instance of each file, but it would show up in multiple filters. Once that is working, I want to privately (only available to those with credentials) publish this to the web with the same front end look. I am told that a database is the way to go, but I have never worked with databases before. Is there a "gui" database program I could use for this purpose? I hope this makes sense and I am hoping you can point me in the correct direction to do what I am looking to do. Thanks in advance for your support, Dave.

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Last Post by deceptikon
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i'd agree that you can address your concern by managing the data in a database. I'm not aware of any simple, easy type of database that you can just connect to a front end application, especially since you want to publish this to the web. if you just needed a local working DB, you could use Microsoft Access because aside from the DB, it also allows you to develop a front end for forms, quering, etc..

It does sound like what you are trying to do is manage inventory. So, i'd recommend that you do some research online for a hosted inventory management solution. I suspect that there are some out there geared for a small business and that may suit your needs.

Either way, since you are considering publishing this to the web, the files would have to be uploaded, so hard drive space on your computer isnt going to be an issue. you will have to be concerned with the space that your online provider is going to give you.

unless you are considering to host a web site from your computer and allow people to come into your network?

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Well, a database is the way to go, but that's really a pointless statement. What you really want is a CMS. They'll use a database on the back end, but support record metadata for indexing and filtering such that you store only a single instance of the item yet can access it through a multitude of different paths.

I'm genuinely not familiar with anything but enterprise level content management systems, but I could easily see myself recommending FileNet, Sharepoint, OnBase, Laserfiche, or ApplicationXtender if you contacted my company asking the same question. OnBase in particular, since that's our forte, but it's very pricey.

My suggestion is to research content management systems in your price range and see if they offer the features you want:

  • Support for media content files.
  • Canonical storage of files (only one instance) and multiple metadata records that point to the instance.
  • Foldering of metadata records.
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