How to connect an OfficeTalk client on a different network segment when using an ASA9 database.

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Symptoms

  • The error message “Connect to Adaptive Server Anywhere” is reported when starting an OfficeTalk client that is not on the same network segment as the server.
  • The OfficeTalk client is unable to connect to the database across a VPN.

Cause

ASA works over a broadcast so that any machine on the local network can see the database server by that name. This, however, does not work through routers or LANs on different subnets.

Resolution

Open the ODBC administrator, select the system DSN tab and configure the OTDB data source. Click on the test connection button. If you get the message “Connection failed: Database server not found” on the client but not on the server, and you are sure that the database server name is correct, then, click on the network tab and ensure that the TCP/IP checkbox is checked. In the text box type: HOST=servername;PORT=2638. For ‘Servername’ use the DNS Hostname, IP Address or NetBIOS domain (you will need a WINS server for NetBIOS to work over routers) of the ASA server. The actual port in use can be found by double-clicking the SQL taskbar notification icon (on the server) when the service has just been started. Note, ASA will use port 2638 unless it is already in use by, for instance, another database server. Click on the ODBC tab and click on Test Connection again. This should now return a success messagebox.

More Info

If the network connection between the client and the database is slow, it may be preferable to work in offline mode and to synchronize changes directly when the local database needs to be updated.

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