Which license key edition should I buy?


Actual Technologies products use license keys that are available in two editions:

  • Desktop Edition: for desktop applications such as MS Excel and FileMaker Pro
  • Server Edition: for FileMaker Server and Apache web applications

The Desktop Edition lets you use ODBC-enabled desktop applications with the driver. The Desktop Edition will not work with FileMaker Server or Apache-based web applications.

The Server Edition key is for use with FileMaker Server and Apache web applications. The Server Edition license can also be used with desktop applications that also reside on the server.

You will need one license key for each "seat" (computer) where the driver is installed. We can give you a single key for all your licensed computers if you purchase 20 or more seats. We also have site license available, to cover an unlimited number of computers. Contact us at orders@actualtech.com if you are interested in a single key or a site license.

FileMaker External SQL Sources

The External SQL Source feature of FileMaker provides great simplicity for ODBC connectivity and deployment.

When you "share" a FileMaker database using FileMaker Pro, or host a FileMaker database using FileMaker Server, the ODBC driver only needs to be installed on the computer hosting the database. The driver does not have to be installed on each client Mac or Windows PC.

When using External SQL Sources, the FileMaker application hosting the database makes all ODBC connections on behalf of the clients. Since the driver is only installed on the Mac hosting the FileMaker database, you only need a single "seat" license for the driver.

When hosting a FileMaker database, FileMaker Pro (and FileMaker Pro Advanced) allow up to 5 client connections to use ESS at any given time. A Desktop Edition key can be used in this scenario. When FileMaker Server is used with the driver, then a Server Edition is required.

PHP and other server-based solutions

If you will be using our driver with PHP or any other Apache-based solution, you will need a Server Edition license key.

If you develop your application in such a way that it keeps connections open only while accessing the database, you can serve many more than 10 users with a 10 connection license. As a general rule, we recommend that you open the connection at the start of processing a web page, and close the connection when processing for the page is complete. This means that a connection is available to be used by another user while the current user is reading the page content and deciding what to do next.

For more information

To learn more about the FileMaker database connectivty, return to our FileMaker Resource Center. For more information about licensing, please contact us at orders@actualtech.com.