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View Poll Results: Are you satisfied with Firehouse Software

Voters
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  • Yes, it is outstanding

    3 18.75%
  • It is OK, but we have had some problems

    4 25.00%
  • It is just average, would not recommend it

    1 6.25%
  • It is an extremely poor software, DO NOT BUY!

    2 12.50%
  • We do not use it/ We have never heard of it.

    6 37.50%
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Results 1 to 7 of 7
  1. #1
    Forum Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
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    Walton County Georgia
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    120

    Question Firehouse Software

    For those of you that use the Firehouse Software, do you like it, does it do what you need it to do, etc. etc. I just ordered the 90 day evaluation CD-Rom, but I wanted to hear from some of you if you liked the software or not....
    -Kris


  2. #2
    MembersZone Subscriber ullrichk's Avatar
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    Jan 2002
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    We've been using Firehouse for about four years now. Generally it works well for us - I have only a few minor complaints. I am told by my network admin. that the tech support people are very responsive.

    My gripes:

    Null entries vary from 9 to N to other things. If you wan't a N/A option, make 'em all 9's or all N's. Makes medical reporting more tedious.

    Our stations are not networked, even though our HQ station is. Some tasks cannot be completed at the substations (medical QC, Occupancy update, etc.) I realize that there are data integrity issues at stake here, and that we could (in theory) network the other stations, but it's not technically feasable yet.

    The mapping file is can't be edited locally (or at least no one has bothered to do it) so some street names are wrong, some streets are missing altogether, and block numbers aren't always up to snuff.

    We have some local issues, too. Overall I feel that we are not using enough of the program's potential. We have problems with consistency in coding - both from lack of training and lack of professionalism. We could be collecting some fantastic and valuable data for our own use. Most folks just don't understand how valuable good data can be.
    ullrichk
    a.k.a.
    perfesser

    a ship in a harbor is safe. . . but that's not what ships are for

  3. #3
    MembersZone Subscriber
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Posts
    47

    Default

    We're pretty much in the same boat as ullrichk - we have our main station networked with the FireHouse files stored on a file server (FreeBSD Unix running SAMBA to make it look like a Windows machine). We run Firehouse in the "local program/remote data" mode. We tried linking in our other two stations to this database using a dial-in telephone modem, but due to the amount of data being exchanged between the server and the remotely-running program, it was so slow that Windows thought the program had quit responding! Firehouse tech support confirmed that was likely the case. Anyway, it didn't work.

    This year all three stations are now on our local cable-TV service broadband service. The new broadband routers that are on the market now will allow VPN (Virtual Private Network) connections. In a month or so, when the new fiscal year budget kicks in, we are going to buy three of the new broadband routers and try this out. On paper it looks promising.

    I keep y'all posted.

  4. #4
    Senior Member raven911's Avatar
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    Jul 2001
    Location
    Southern New Mexico
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    320

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    It is a great program, especially for Inspection activities, but everyone must be on board in the department to make it work. The pocket PC version is especially handy.
    IACOJ Military Division
    NM Office
    ------------------------------------
    "There are three kinds of men: The ones who learn by reading, the few who learn by observation, and the rest of them who have to pee on the electric fence for themselves."

  5. #5
    MembersZone Subscriber jaybird210's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Location
    911 N. Sycamore St. Yep, that's really our address.
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    Default

    We have been running Firehouse for about three years now. I think it's a very powerful package, but as ullrichk said, it does have some issues.

    You can track absolutely everything related to the fire service: equipment, hydrants, incidents, training, on and on and on. It takes a little while to get the hang of it, but that's true of everything.

    The query and report writing is my only complaint. It's not very intuitive and the online help ain't much help. If you can use the pre-written reports, you'll be set.

    We only have one station,so we don't have the issues that the others have mentioned, thankfully.
    Omnis Cedo Domus

    www.hinckleyfd.org

  6. #6
    MembersZone Subscriber ullrichk's Avatar
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    On the subject or queries and report writing, I find it's much easier (for some things) to just export raw data to MS Excel or Access. This is especially true if you want a slick looking report or chart or if you want to do some serious number crunching.
    ullrichk
    a.k.a.
    perfesser

    a ship in a harbor is safe. . . but that's not what ships are for

  7. #7
    Senior Member raven911's Avatar
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    Jul 2001
    Location
    Southern New Mexico
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    If you have someone who is particularly computer savvy, you can have that person design custom reports and forms with FireHouse. It worked out for us quite well.
    IACOJ Military Division
    NM Office
    ------------------------------------
    "There are three kinds of men: The ones who learn by reading, the few who learn by observation, and the rest of them who have to pee on the electric fence for themselves."

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