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The software runs optimally on fast Intel® Core i5 or higher workstations; we recommend

  • a 3 GhZ or faster CPU with a minimum of 4 GB RAM
  • a Windows® 7 / Windows® 8 / Windows® 10 operating system
  • a 17" or larger monitor (with 19" high-resolution flat-panel monitors available for under $150, don't make your clerical and clinical staff squint at a screen that's too small)

The workstation requires a hard drive (C: drive) for storage of two configuration files which are under 5 MB in size.

See the note below concerning additional required hardware

File Server:

MediTrax supports both physical and virtual servers. Our experience with VMWare® and Citrix® has revealed no incompatibilities. Hard drive storage space is remarkably inexpensive, with fast 1 - 2 TB drives available in the $100-$200 price range. Memory is likewise cheap, with 1 GB readily available for under $100. We do not recommend using the file server as an additional workstation. We recommend maximizing available RAM and creating a file share that is 10 GB or greater in size.

A relational database such as MediTrax requires robust file-server performance to successfully implement a multi-user configuration. Designating a shared folder on a single Windows® 7 workstation as a network "server" will NOT provide optimum performance in supporting multiple simultaneous users. Enabling peer-to-peer networking via a Remote Desktop Connection (RDP, formerly referred to as "Terminal Services") to such a shared folder may provide acceptable program speed for one remote workstation which is connected in that manner, but other "networked" workstations will experience substantial degradation of program speed. Moreover, Windows® 7 workstations are limited to a maximum of one RDP connection.

If a single shared folder on a workstation is to be used as a "server", the speed of data input/output (referred to as the "data transfer rate") becomes critically important.

Here's where we get a little more technical: The rotational speed of a hard drive (generally 4800 RPM in older workstations, ranging up to 15,000 RPM in newer servers) is easily determined, but it isn't really helpful in the real world. The data transfer rate of a hard drive is, essentially, determined by three factors:

  • The rotational speed of the disks themselves
  • The chips used by the drive to manage information processing
  • The protocol used to connect the drive to the computer (FireWire, USB, Thunderbolt)

NOTE: Recently, drive manufacturers have started accelerating drives by integrating solid state drive (SSD) mechanisms into the drive hardware. This can accelerate operations where the same file is accessed more than once, but has limited effect when accessing multiple different files as is often the case with MediTrax.

STORAGE SPACE: A new MediTrax installation requires approximately 200 MB of storage space; about 1/3 of that is for the "empty" data tables, and another 1/2 is required for document templates. Once you begin entering data and scanning documents, the size of the data tables will expand; our huge test database with

  • 100,000 employees
  • 2,000 employers
  • 500,000 patient encounters
  • 200,000 occupational injuries
  • 500,000 immunizations
  • 1000 scanned B&W full-page documents
requires a little under 5 GB of space (about 2/3 of that is for the scanned documents). As an additional "real world" example, the data tables of a user in Louisiana who has been documenting visits for ten years, at the rate of about 40,000 visits per year, require just over 4 GB of storage space.

NOTE: As with any other software program, the speed with which MediTrax operates can be adversely affected when a file server is "overloaded" because too many workstations are simultaneously connected to the server, or because the connections between the workstations and the server utilize outdated and slower technology, or because antivirus or firewall software restricts the speed of data searches, or because the applications running on those workstations place excessive demands on the server. This is true for "virtual servers" as well as for physical drives.

There is no "magic number" of workstations or applications which will cause program performance to begin to suffer, but when the nearly-instantaneous progression from one MediTrax menu screen to the next slows to several seconds (or several minutes!), or when the rapid preparation of comprehensive summary reports takes longer than a minute or two, it's frequently an "overloaded" or "overly restricted" file server that's the culprit. If program performance slows over time, it may be advantageous to (a) "hide" the MediTrax data tables from antivirus scanning, (b) update the physical connections between individual workstations and the server, and/or (c) install a network drive which is used only by the staff of the occupational health department.

See also our recommendations on system software impacts on program performance speed.

Remote Hosting ("Web-enabled") Option:

MediTrax may be hosted on a remote dedicated server hosted by Server@Work. This server offers a level of security which meets all HIPAA requirements for confidentiality at a reasonable per-user monthly rate.

Additional Required Hardware:

Gigabit-speed Switches and Wiring: The hardware used to connect individual workstations to your file server can significantly affect the speed of software performance. In a network environment, 1000 Mbps (1 GB) network adapters and switches are required (we recommend Linksys® switches, which utilize Cisco® systems technology; an 8-port Gigabit switch, as an example, costs about $65). Communication between each workstation and the server should be greater than 700-800 Mbps (a free and reliable LAN Speed Test is available from TotuSoft®).

Uninterruptible Power Supply: If you don't yet have a UPS and Surge Protector for your file server, please drop whatever you're doing now and get one! For under $200, you can protect your data (in MediTrax and other programs) from sudden power surges, outages, brownouts and blackouts! This is probably the most cost-effective investment any computer user can make!

Backup Media: Yes, you do need a backup system! To quote Ben Gottesman in PC Magazine:

It can and will happen to you. Whether it's a hard drive error that corrupts files, a virus that deletes files, or simple user error, one day you will lose data. Some things, like program and system files, can be reinstalled, though the process can be time-consuming. Other data, such as text documents and e-mail messages, can be impossible to recreate. Imagine if you lost your financial files or the library of images shot on your digital camera.

In a recent PC Magazine survey, less than half of the respondents said they back up as often as weekly. More than a third said they either never back up or do it only when they think about it. Many said they don't remember, and several complained that backing up interferes with normal use of their PC. But the fact is, backing up doesn't have to interfere with your time on the computer, nor does it require you to remember to back up. In fact, once set up, some solutions don't require you to do anything at all.

MediTrax does not require a complex or costly data-backup system, and does not require the assistance of a computer consultant or IT professional to implement regular data backup. Users with appropriate administrative permissions are prompted to back up all data tables whenever more than one full business day has elapsed since the last backup. Automated "one-step" backup of all data tables to a flash drive, CD, or remote hard drive generally takes less than one minute.

Backing up MediTrax data tables to a flash drive, CD, or other removable media may be accomplished from any workstation. We strongly recommend that the removable media be stored in a secure remote (i.e., OFFSITE) location.

Copyright © 2002-2017 Occupational Health Systems, Inc. All Rights Reserved

    Spring Conference
    Long Beach CA
    February 11
    New Orleans LA
    April 24-27
  • AOHP
    Denver CO
    September 6-9
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  • Florida
    Orlando FL
    September 14-15
    Annual Conference
    Sacramento CA
    November 9-11
    Annual Conference
    Newton MA
    November 30-
    December 1
  • MediTrax 5
    User Group
    Various Locations

  • ‡ Photo Credit:
    Peter Anderson