Alpha Five Desktop Database



 {jcomments on}I was so busy trying to get up to speed with php that I lost all vision. I actually lost my senses. I had to get version 9 because version ten only comes out, possibly late October, early November and I wasn’t prepared to wait. So I spent my last few sheckles, suffered the wrath of the wife and have been testing version nine which is going to become obsolete in a month.  Was I happy? Was I surprised? Was I making the right choice – in fact, had I made the right choice when there are so many viable products all vying for our attention?  Well yes, one way or the other Alpha Five markets one so intelligently that even if you don’t need it you will still buy it. It’s a matter of greed of course, but what the hell. Cool (Gerald you need to shake a leg there – you have a fine product but you can’t ask people to Beta test Version 6 of dbqwiksite which has an expiry date). 

Now onto matters less trivial. I love Alpha Five because of two reasons: A BIG reason is because they are applying common sense to an application they believe in and if A5 had to nose dive I’d eat this web-site. Actually I’d eat two: This website and Alpha Five’s website. The question coming from you now is obviously why are we advocating desktop databases when this is a parts swap site.  Ummm, I aren’t really – what I can say is get Alpha Five trial version and test it out. Businesses – trust me, in my real job I see thousands of them – don’t know their arse from their elbow when it comes to tracking stock/inventory, sales orders, purchases, staff, what may have you. A top product in South Africa right now costs you about U$1200 for the package. Yes, you are now forced to but licences to use it. You must pay for the user base you have.  At the end of the day you end up paying U$200 per user PER YEAR and if you are part of a big company that’s going to cost you a mint. With Alpha Five you’ll need someone with a little bit of database pedigree (for a big company) and she or he will have you up and tiunning in no time. Don’t fool yourself that this is small fry – A5 is only as big as the ceiling you put above it.  

And the second reason:  It’s an addiction. Designed by people that know what YOU want – not what by what they want.Money mouth.  Four weeks ago I tried to use Microsoft Access and although I still will never knock this product – I believe the most popular desktop database on the market – it just seems so, (loss for a word) …. clumsy.  I don’t know – I purchased the first Windows version of A5 (A5 version 5) and it had something attractive about it although the GUI had to be plenty modified to make it look good. My boss laughed when I brought a run time version to work – it looked so… yesterday. But it worked. It worked very well.  We used it to track certain data from our assembly plant. One day it decided to fall over and everyone laughed. They laughed hysterically that this database that I stood so robustly by had fallen over. Until I found the swap file on the server had been reduced to 19MB. I of course had the last laugh – I promptly removed the app – the very one that could email and SMS clients automtically when a job had been done. Try that on Access – with alpha it’s only a day’s work. But I digress, Microsoft make products that are incredibly integrated and possibly this is a pitfall – but they do rock. Just try Excel from 2007!

Alpha Five remains my firm favourite to win the race. In the next two years I’ll be interested to see how their application is going to be ported to Linux – because it would  surely be a fatal thing if they aren’t looking down this road.

Ye Olde dBProphet

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