Peer-to-peer (P2P) Networks and CS Professional Suite

Show expandable text

A peer-to-peer (P2P) network is decentralized setup of computers that facilitates the sharing of files, applications, and resources among peers. This differs from server-based networks which are centralized, where one or more computers are dedicated to serving other workstations.

Concerns of P2P networks

P2P networks are NOT recommended as a permanent setup for CS Professional Suite applications due to performance considerations. P2P networks are suitable for short-term use. For example, a P2P network can help facilitate audit tasks in Accounting CS (with the Workpapers service enabled) or Workpapers CS (standalone), which includes the exchange of workpapers and other client information between laptops or other workstations at the client’s office. 

However, P2P networks are not ideal for permanent in-office environments. Since a P2P environment requires sharing of resources among all computers, it often lacks the reliability and performance needed by today’s business users, resulting in a less than ideal user experience.

Often observed in P2P networks, the "server" also functions as a workstation for a particular user in the office, while other users also attempt access files and data from the "server" as well. In this scenario, the user at the "server" has the highest priority for processor power, which severely depletes the resources that can be allocated to other workstations, negatively impacting speed and performance. Further complications of P2P networks can include inconsistent drive mappings, which can negatively affect the access to data and applications.

Best practices

A server-based network is the recommended method of deploying CS Professional Suite applications in an in-office business environment. Server-based networks do not necessarily require a top-notch server that costs thousands of dollars, especially for small firms with less than ten employees.

The key aspect of server-based networks is that there is a dedicated server, which means its sole purpose is to serve other computers and that the server is not utilized for everyday work purposes like a workstation.

For small businesses, a dedicated server can come in the form a tower server rather than rack servers, which is what is commonly thought of as a typical server seen in large server warehouses. Consult your qualified IT professional for recommendations concerning hardware and operating system specifications that fit your business needs.

Thomson Reuters is not responsible for the implementation, configuration, or maintenance of your hardware, operating system, or network environment. Consult your qualified IT professional for assistance.

Was this article helpful?

Thank you for the feedback!