If you have multiple businesses that you want to track using REV23 Desktop, that’s great! We fully support multiple studios in a number of ways, allowing you to decide what’s best for you. You will need to make a decision about how you want to use REV23 Desktop with your multiple studios, either isolated or connected. We can provide guidelines, but ultimately the decision is yours to make.
What is an Isolated Studio?
An isolated studio is a REV23 Desktop server setup at each physical location. You may have only one studio (in which case you don’t really need to read any further in this topic), or you may have eight of them, but when isolated, no studio has any knowledge of the other. They are completely separate. Each studio has its own database, SQL Server, REV23 Desktop Control Panel, and Services.
Even though isolated, REV23 Desktop can optionally be configured to allow you to connect to multiple databases. In this scenario you will be prompted for which database to connect to before seeing the log on screen. You will then see the normal logon screen for that studio. This feature is optional. For example, the studios themselves would never have to be prompted for the connection they would just default to their own database, and this prompt would likely be exclusive to the owner’s PC.
With multiple isolated studios, you can have REV23 Desktop prompt you for which database you’d like to connect to. In this scenario, both studios in California and New York are isolated and you can choose which one you’d like to connect to before you see the log on screen.
What is a Connected Studio?
Connected studios are when a REV23 Desktop server is setup at one studio, and your other studios connect to it with Add-on PCs via Remote Connections.
The big benefits to connected studios is the ability to share customers, employees, vendors, inventory items, templates, notes etc… as well as optionally making deposits and gift cards redeemable at any of your businesses. Even when connected, you can treat the studios as isolated if you’d prefer, meaning you don’t have to mingle things, but the options are there for you should you chose to do so.
There are some possible negative side effects when using connected studios, however. Because the database is physically in a different location, the connected studios that exist outside of the walls of the database are often a bit slower to perform tasks. There is a lot of data going back and forth, so the internet has to be fast and it has to be stable. When connected, there is only one database serving all locations from one physical location, one REV23 Desktop Control Panel and the Virtual Receptionist, Integration Service and Backup Service all handle each studio.
In this scenario, two studios are connected.
When working with connected studios you will choose the location in the same database you want to log on to on the log on screen.
Deciding between Isolated or Connected studios
Now, you have to decide how you want to setup each one. Once you chose a path it’s not particularly easy to shift should you decide to change it later.
Use these guidelines to help you determine what might be a better fit for you. These are only guidelines, you’re free to choose whichever implementation you’d like.
- Are your studios geographically close together where a customer may go to one or the other?
- Do you have artists that travel between your studios?
- Would you like to check inventory at another one of your studios without calling them?
- Do all studios have high speed internet that is reliable and always on?
If some of all of these are true, Connected Studios might be for you.
- Are your studios geographically far apart?
- Would it be unlikely that an artist would travel between your studios?
- Is your internet at one or more studios slow or unreliable?
- Are your studios completely separate businesses?
- Are you the managing owner of one studio, while a partner mostly owns another studio?
If some or all of these are true, Isolated Studios are probably the way to go.
Mix and Match
You may have studios that meet a little bit of each criteria. For example, you might have a few studio’s geographically close where the artists do travel between them, and then have one on the other side of the country. Consider that you could use connected studios on one set, then isolate the others. The choice is completely up to you.