RE: Server vs. server?

Subject: RE: Server vs. server?
From: "Michele Marques" <marquesm -at- autros -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 16 Nov 2000 12:38:43 -0500

Josee Morel writes:

> --Geoff Hart said: <snip> simply refer to the software by its own name
> thereafter. (That ought to keep the marketing geeks happy.) <snip>
> That could work but... what about a client and server product
> with the same
> name!!!!??? It happens. I vote for 'server program or application on a
> server machine'
> plink-plink.

I think that the only time you have to explicitly refer to server software
as "software" and a hardware server as "hardware" is when confusion might

For example, if you had a "Collaboration" client/server application that
runs on an NT server, you might say: "Install the Collaboration server onto
your NT server." Hopefully, someone who is going to install software onto an
NT server knows which is hardware and which is software! In the end-user
manual, you might say "Click 'Connect' to connect to the Collaboration
server." It doesn't really matter at this point if they think they are
connecting to hardware or software, although you might have to include an
extra statement, such as "If you are not already connected to the NT server
that runs Collaboration, you may be prompted to login to the NT server,
before you see the Collaboration sign-on screen."

I would keep the hardware/software explanation to overviews, perhaps just
being made explicit through a diagram. By using the name of your product and
the type of hardware server (e.g., "Collaboration server" and "NT server")
this should be obvious and hopefully please your higher ups.

Just don't say things without any modifiers that *could* actually apply to
both types of server (e.g., "re-boot the server" or "shut down the server").
And if you think people might think that an action applies to both, you can
always include a note, as in:

Shut down the Collaboration server.
Note: You do not need to shut down your NT or Unix server at this time, if
it is being used for other services.

Michele Marques
Technical Writer,
Autros Healthcare Solutions
marquesm -at- autros -dot- com

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