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Document and File Storage Support

Document Storage System (DSS) and earlier versions of Docs2Manage always had the ability to store documents embedded into the database.  Docs2Manage 2.0 has added the ability to store the documents added into the system into a file directory, Windows file share, or on a FTP server.  

How the files are stored is transparent to the end user.  However, the benefits of storing the document separate from the database are numerous.  These benefits include:

Better use of database space
When documents are stored in the database, more than 90% of the space used in that database are the actual documents.  This can be limiting depending on what database you use.  For example, Microsoft SQL Express 2005 is limited to 4Gb of storage per database.  This means when scanned documents are stored embedded in the database that a single database may have the ability to store approximately 50,000 to 150,000 scanned pages depending on the average size of a scanned page.  However, with documents stored outside the database in a file structure, the database can store approximately 1,000,000 scanned pages if the documents are OCRed and approximately 5,000,000 to 10,000,000 scanned pages in a system not using the OCR feature.  This means that a free products like MS SQL Express or Oracle Express become a very feasible solution even if the database will store a high volume of documents.

Ability to store large files and performance
SQL based databases were never designed to store very large files (10Mb+).  In the prior version, documents of this size could be stored in the database, but adding large files, viewing, or any other operation dealing with large files in the system usually came with long delays as the database fetched the data to rebuild the contents of a document.  In contrast to this, file directories, file shares, and FTP servers were designed to store and retrieve documents and files quickly.

Greater database compatibility
Docs2Manage always offered support to many different databases like MS SQL Server, Sybase, Oracle, and MySQL to name a few.  Support of these databases usually hinged on whether Docs2Manage could make error free calls using the ADO or ODBC driver the manufacturer provides.  MS SQL Server and Oracle always had the fastest and most dependable ADO drivers available.  MySQL and Sybase tended to have problem both in performance and compatibility when it came to large data (BLOB) support needed to store files in a database; sometimes this would work in one version and then have issues in the next version.  Storing the documents in a file structure instead of the database yields better database compatibility and performance.

More file compression options
Docs2Manage 2.0 has also added the ability to change the level of compression when files are stored in the system.  This does not effect scanned images which are stored in there native compressed format.  The speed of the compression (and decompression) has also improved.  This version also allows the ability to completely turn off compression or to turn off compression when files are greater than a specified size.  For example, if you wanted to use Docs2Manage to manage your MP3 library, you could set Docs2Manage to not compress files greater than 1Mb.  Since MP3s, other audio, and video formats are already highly compress there is no gain in compressing them any further.

All this functionality is set at the security group level.  Please refer to the Groups, Document Storage, and Users section for details how to configure your system. 

WARNING: Although it is possible to use a different storage type and location for each security group, it is highly recommended to keep the storage type and location the same for all groups.  If you elect to have different storage types or locations in a single database, you will not be able to view other repositories that have a different storage type or location even though you may have right to those repositories in other groups.  Also, avoid switching an existing repositories from one group to another if they have different storage types or locations.  These conditions and warnings do not apply if you use the same storage type and location for all groups.