Flat database with online forms and reports


#1

I need to create a simple form that will appear in blank when a visitor goes to a passworded WebDAV address; the data will then have to be part of a relatively simple (flat) database; and the database will have to be available for visitors to search and then to return a report on the search.

  1. My machines at home and office are Windows. Can I design this thing in Windows–or perhaps with the OpenOffice.org database–and have it work on DreamHost’s Apache servers?

  2. If not, do I need to find a VM or Apache emulator, and the appropriate db design tools? (Or, more likely, a database designer who already has this stuff…)

  3. Is there an app of choice for Apache that can do what I want without my having to learn the intricacies of something like MySQL?

Or should I just stop thinking about all this now and just find someone who already knows how to do it?


#2
  1. The short answer is that you can’t design it in Windows to work on Apache. You’d need to serve it up via MySQL or some other database server (Apache is a webserver).

  2. You can google for some DB design tools. I’m not much help here. I think it’s possible that MS Access or other desktop DB tools might be able to export to MySQL or other DB serverware.

  3. Don’t know.

I think you should hire a professional. I do this DB stuff for a living and it’s not clear, from your post, exactly what you’re trying to accomplish:

Do you want a form that appears in a browser for people to fill out?
Do you want them to interact with a DB file (like FileMakerPro) off of your WebDAV access point? There’s enough technical gaps that it may be easier just to outsource this one.