Duplicate Your Data
SureSync 3.0i is a file-based replication
utility, which offers a clear user interface atop a powerful
and flexible replication engine. SureSync can perform several
basic operations, including:
Copy files from one folder to another,
when they change or on a regular schedule.
Exchange copies between two folders
without deleting anything.
Mirror folders, including additions,
changes, and deletions.
Move files from one folder to another.
You can perform any of these operations
on a set of folders, making this a useful tool for pushing,
say, a customer database out to 50 different sales representative
computers each night. File operations can be performed immediately,
on a timed-basis, or (using the optional SureSync Real-Time
addition) whenever folder contents change. The program can
run either as a standalone application or as part of a client/server
system, with individual instances of the synchronization engine
linked to a master database via DCOM.
Note: SureSync doesn’t have any internal
knowledge of particular file types, such as databases or mailboxes.
This makes, on the one hand, for a completely flexible solution
that you can use for any data whatsoever. On the other hand,
it’s probably not the right utility, for example, for
performing fine-grained replication of order data contained
within a larger database.
Figure 3 shows the SureSync interface.
Using a series of wizards, you define the SureSync objects.
These include Relations (sets of folders containing files
to be synchronized), Rules (which specify which operations
to perform), Schedules, and Monitors (which control real-time
|Figure 3. Software Pursuits
SureSync can prioritize synchronization operations, so
that process-intensive but less time-sensitive updates
can be made during the network's off-peak times.
One nice touch about SureSync is its use
of Microsoft Access security to protect its own internal database.
This database is stored in an Access file, but rather than
forcing you to use a login name provided by Software Pursuits,
you’re free to integrate this file with your own site’s
security (or to use no security at all, for that matter).
Also, the preview mode is uncommonly helpful, letting you
check the sometimes-complex logic of Relations and Rules by
viewing operations that would be performed—without actually
SureSync Real-Time works by installing
an agent that continuously monitors the files you’re
interested in. As soon as any changes are made to these files,
the agent copies them off to their target locations. You can
specify to delay before copying and the priority of the replication
task to avoid having a large impact on a busy network. You
can also have the software adjust this priority over the course
of the day. So, for example, you can have the copying tasks
run at a higher priority when there are fewer users on your
Mike Gunderloy, MCSE, MCSD, MCDBA, is a former MCP columnist and the author of numerous development books.