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Old 11-04-2015, 05:49 AM   #1
esteeven
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client record keeping - best solution


I keep a record of work that I have done for my clients. These records are standard text files stored in Dropbox. I mainly access and edit these records from my main workstation but I sometimes have to read the records when out and about so I use my Linux laptop or an Android device.

Increasingly, I have to reference a document or JPEG in these records. Currently, I simply note the name of the document or JPEG in the client record and then store the document or JPEG in a separate directory in Dropbox.

It would be useful to link to email messages on Googlemail too. Lots of the information that I need to record in the client records is simply a copy of the body of an email message.

I realise that I could set up a database but this seems overkill for what are essentially text files with added links. Perhaps I have got that wrong?

What would your solution to this be?

Thanks
 
Old 11-04-2015, 09:09 AM   #2
TB0ne
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Quote:
Originally Posted by esteeven View Post
I keep a record of work that I have done for my clients. These records are standard text files stored in Dropbox. I mainly access and edit these records from my main workstation but I sometimes have to read the records when out and about so I use my Linux laptop or an Android device.

Increasingly, I have to reference a document or JPEG in these records. Currently, I simply note the name of the document or JPEG in the client record and then store the document or JPEG in a separate directory in Dropbox.

It would be useful to link to email messages on Googlemail too. Lots of the information that I need to record in the client records is simply a copy of the body of an email message.

I realise that I could set up a database but this seems overkill for what are essentially text files with added links. Perhaps I have got that wrong?

What would your solution to this be?
I'd probably use an off-the-shelf solution. Since you're accessing it on a workstation, laptop and Android device, something that works on ALL of them the same would be ideal.

Personally, I'd go one of two ways...either set up a free Basecamp account:
http://www.basecamp.com

...and keep your records there (easy to create and annotate projects, attach any kinds of files, etc.). Or, to REALLY go lowball, just email yourself. Attach files to the emails, and if there are changes, just forward the message to yourself again, annotating at the top as you go, and deleting the old email. Both would address the need to keep email body messages, and be accessible to anything with a web browser.

If you go the basecamp route, there are also apps for Android and IOS.
 
Old 11-05-2015, 08:20 AM   #3
esteeven
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Thanks TBOne. I like both ideas but I shy away from solutions such as Basecamp. I want to be in complete control!! My worry is that these services - particularly the free versions - might disappear and I'll be left with nothing. I'll have a look at it though.
 
Old 11-05-2015, 10:09 AM   #4
TB0ne
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Originally Posted by esteeven View Post
Thanks TBOne. I like both ideas but I shy away from solutions such as Basecamp. I want to be in complete control!! My worry is that these services - particularly the free versions - might disappear and I'll be left with nothing. I'll have a look at it though.
I've used Basecamp for numerous years, and while I agree about control, I don't worry too much about it. Services like that typically will give you MUCH warning before they shutter, giving you ample time to move your data elsewhere. It's a pretty robust platform, and even if you choose to pay, it's reasonable. Very useful when multiple folks have to get involved in a project, and it gives you a place to share data easily as well.

Good luck with whatever you choose!
 
  


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