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Database Environment Argumentative

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In today’s organizations, it is hard to circumvent the need of database systems. As information continues to become more valuable, organizations are seeing the value added by organizing and storing data using a database system. This request will look at the database needs for Smith Consulting by analyzing the design of the database, determining the problems, and constraints, as well as listing the objectives and scope. Databases are uniquely created applications that are able to store an exuberant amount of information retrievable by anyone accessing the database application. Deepening on the needs of the user, databases can be small, containing only a few records, to very large, containing limitless amounts of organized information.

Smith Consulting has recognized the benefit databases bring to the organization as well as the need to remove the reliance on excel spreadsheets for data collection and organization. Smith Consulting currently uses excel to keep track of their consulting staff, the skill set each employee has, as well as what project they are currently working on. Smith consulting has had an increases in the hiring of consulting staff and the current owner of the excel spreadsheet can no longer keep up with the demands of updating spreadsheets. Smith consulting has asked this firm to create a simple database containing these current elements. The database should be simple to update and accessible by at least one person. The success of a database depends on the longevity of the database as well as the ability to grow with the company.

Keeping up with demands Smith Consulting has forecasted, designing the right database will be key in the effectiveness. There are three typical types of database architectures. One-tier, Two-Tier, and N-tier architectures. This database will be designed on the one-tier architecture. According to “Techopedia” (2010-2014), “One-tier architecture involves putting all of the required components for a software application or technology on a single server or platform”. There are several options for a database application. MySQL, PostrgreSQL, Oracle, SQLite, and MS SQLServer are some of the more sought after and harder to manage systems. Smith consulting has specifically asked this firm to remove additional costs on software and equipment. It has been determined that Smith Consulting has running VMWare virtual machines so this firm will create a virtual server running Microsoft Access.

Because Smith Consulting is not running SharePoint or SQL Server this database will not be run as an app, but rather created and stored locally on the virtual machine (“Office”, 2014). Microsoft Access will allow multiple users to access the database and maintain the records. This software will also allow information to be stored locally with the capability to be stored via the cloud in future revisions depending on the size of the system. Using Microsoft Access will not cost Smith Consulting any additional monies as they are currently under Microsoft’s Enterprise suite of products. Using a Microsoft based database will also allow the transition from the current excel file to be a smooth process. At the current rate of growth, it is projected that the Microsoft Access Database system will last in the existing environment for 12.2 years.

At the end of the lifecycle, Smith Consulting can make the decision to move to a more robust database system. The database system will run a virtual Windows 7 operating system running a 2×2 processor with 8GB of ram and a 25GB hard drive. The system will be removed from the external network interface and only accessible via a VLAN. Each authorized individual will need to be added to the permissions on the VLAN. Monthly maintenance will be completed with the normal system maintenance that takes place conducted by the in house IT department. This firm will work with the IT department to make sure the permissions and maintenance needed are fully understood. After the database has been constructed, this firm will work with the appointed individual on updating and maintaining the database information.

This will allow internal training to take place as needed. Creating and maintaining an internal database will mitigate the need for large and laborious Excel spreadsheets. The value added to Smith Consulting by adding a database system will be seen within two weeks of use. By uniting the appropriate database system with a suitable architecture, the foundation for an effective and successful database is set. Planning the database around the needs of Smith Consulting will create the most efficient system while increasing productivity while reducing the need for administration. The virtual database design will add increased value and worth to the organization.

References

Office. (2014). Retrieved from http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/access-help/should-i-create-an-access-2013-
app-or-an-access-desktop-database-HA104136335.aspx?CTT=1 Techopedia. (2010-2014). Retrieved from http://www.techopedia.com/definition/17374/one-tier-architecture The Geek Stuff. (2008-2014). Retrieved from http://www.thegeekstuff.com/2010/03/top-5-best-databases/

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