ISDD Database software

  • tim

    Are people going to use Access/Filemaker for the databases part of NAT4/5 or is anyone going to use something different like MySQL?

    Sean Stratton

    We will be using Access but I did give some serious thought to a PHP/MySQL WAMP/LAMP based course. It would tick most of the boxes for the course. However, implementation (as well as staff training) concerned me, I would rather the kids could tinker at home. So I found a USB based server package
    but now it looks like pupils may lose USB flash drive rights. So knocks that one on the head… still its worth a look.
    It’s at times like these I miss the old higher projects.

    Andy McSwan

    Planning to use Filemaker in S3 and Access from S4 up.

    Mark J Tennant

    I’m sticking with Access for the N4/5 courses out of simplicity. There’s a lot in the courses and my thoughts were that it is probably best to focus attention on the design of linked tables, data types and the user interface stuff than have to jump straight into the complexities of the LAMP stack!

    That said, I am prepared to revisit this once we’ve been through the course: the higher course is definitely hinting along the lines of SQL, PHP, etc: the course support notes mention ‘web-based’ database structures along with ‘dynamic web pages’ and ‘database-driven website’ – some prior knowledge of this may be desirable for students if the Higher course ends up as busy as the N5 one!

    On a related note I can thoroughly recommend XAMPP on a pen drive – I’ve had to use this for AH info systems before, and it takes out the complexity of configuring apache et al on a standalone computer. IT services are often a bit scared of such powerful software though 🙂 Another option might be to get hold of some cheap old computers (eg Mac Mini of eBay) and turn them into linux standalones?

    Just my thoughts!


    Chris Wilson

    Hi Mark and Sean,

    Totally agree with your comments about PHP/MySQL.

    I’m currently trying out EasyPHP (similar to XAMPP) with my really good S3 class – they’re making their own twitter service. I’m loving it! They’re good at indulging me.

    Spent just a single period on Filemaker and then threw PHPMyAdmin at them. They’re really taking to it so far. Seems to make a big difference when they know they’re working with real industry tools.

    For anyone interested in trying this we initially had a problem with Sophos client firewall blocking Apache/MySQL from launching hidden. Our Renfrewshire IT Services were very accommodating and have made all the necessary adjustments.

    Loving my job at the moment!


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