Frequently Asked Questions

Quick links:

I am having difficulties downloading the PDF files on the website
The icons on my screen do not look like the ones in the manual
What will AIMS Cost?
What are the system requirements for the software?
Can we use AIMS on our wireless network?
Can I see a demonstration of AIMS?
How do I install AIMS on Vista or Windows 7?
Why is AIMS displaying in US date order?
How do we move AIMS Access from a Stand Alone environment to a Network  

I am having difficulty viewing the PDF files on the website

The PDF files on the website are require Adobe Reader available free from the Adobe website

The Icons on my screen do not look like the ones in the manual

There seems to be one main reason for this happening, in most cases you will find that the graphics card you are using has less than 4MB of memory. You will need to upgrade the graphics card, nearly all cards sold on the market presently will have at least 8MB of memory and costs start from £25. Though the icons may not show properly, you should still have the functionality of the icons if you use the shortcut keys, i.e. Ctrl-S for Client Search, Ctrl-H for Client history etc. 

What will AIMS cost?

The AIMS Core Access Free User version won’t cost you anything. You should however consider taking out a support contract. For pricing of AIMS Core and AIMS Extra (Access or SQL versions) see costs and ordering.

What are the system requirements for the software?

We recommend the following minimum specifications:

Stand Alone

  • Pentium III or higher processor
  • 512MB of Ram
  • Win XP/Vista/7 platforms
  • 200MB of disk space
  • MS Office 2003 upward
  • Up to date copy of Acrobat Reader


If the network configuration that you are intending to run AIMS over is other than that of client/server on a local area network please contact AIMS directly before ordering the software. Similarly, please contact us if you are intending to run AIMS with more than 15 users.

Each client machine on the network will need to satisfy the minimum specifications as described under Stand Alone above.

The minimum specification recommended below is for a server on a local area network serving less than 15 clients. The details given are for the elements of the specification that affect the operation of AIMS.

  • Processor/Cache 1.4Ghz with 512K cache
  • Memory 1Gb PC133
  • Disk space 400Mb of disk space is required on the server
  • Operating System Microsoft Windows 2000 SP4 or above/ Novell Netware 5.1 SP2 (AIMS also works with Windows NT4)

For SQL Server 2005 Standard Edition, Microsoft recommends the following:

  • 600-megahertz (MHz) Pentium III-compatible or faster processor with 1GB RAM
  • Windows 2000 Professional Edition with SP 4 or later, or  Windows XP with SP3
  • Windows Server 2003 Enterprise Edition or Windows Small Business Server 2003 or later

There should be at least 350 MB of available hard-disk space for the installation.

Can we use AIMS on our wireless network?

The use of AIMS over wireless networks is not recommended or supported.

AIMS requires a permanent connection to the database. If the connection is intermittent, as is often the case with wireless networks, crashes and data loss may occur because AIMS tries to read some data and cannot connect to the database.

These intermittent connections can cause Access databases to become corrupt if the connection is broken while data is being written to the database, because all the writing is done by the client machines (the user's computer).

The SQL Server version of AIMS should not suffer from corruption because the server will not write to the database unless it receives a complete instruction from the client machine (the user's computer). However, what may happen is that AIMS is half-way through making a series of changes to a record when the connection drops and only half the changes are made. This could lead to orphaned records and other problems.

The only safe network for AIMS is one that never drops a connection. You may be able to increase the chances of AIMS working on a wireless network by having the machines closer together, removing any sources of radio interference, etc. However we are unable to support the use of AIMS over wireless networks.

If you have a wireless network it is recommended that computers requiring access to AIMS are connected to the network via Ethernet network cards and cable.

For more information on wireless networks see:

Can I see a demonstration of AIMS?

Yes, go to on the link to download the AIMS Demo Download

The AIMS demo is a full working version of the database limited to 50 client records. 

How do I install AIMS in Windows Vista or Windows 7?

To load AIMS successfully you need full administrator permissions, and once loaded all AIMS users need to inherit read, write edit, delete and modify permissions to the Data folder.

Windows 7/Vista UAC (User Account Control) is the part of Windows that grants/asks you for permission. When UAC mode is enabled, every program that you run will be given only "standard user" access to the system, even when you are logged in as an administrator.

There are only 2 ways that a program can be "elevated" to get full admin access to the system:

  • If it automatically asks you for permission when it starts up, and you click Continue
  • If you start the program with permission by right-clicking it, then clicking Run As Administrator

Vista users will need to ensure that when they install AIMS for the first time they are running the installation with the correct permission levels (Run as Administrator), otherwise they may get an “Unable to start AIMS” message when logging in.

See how to implement the above changes for a description of how to make these changes. 

Windows Vista users may also find that the AIMS exe shortcut has not automatically appeared on their desktop. You will need to navigate to the installation directory and right click on the AIMS.exe file and send a short cut to the desktop.

Why is AIMS displaying in US date order?

This problem is caused by AIMS picking up an incorrect Date or Language setting, but as AIMS has no date or language settings of its own, you will need to identify the source of the erroneous setting in your system.

All AIMS date fields (with the exception of the Last Updated field found in the Subject Header) take their date format from either the regional settings found on the client machine / the network profile for roaming settings / or the SQL server user profiles for MS SQL users.

Any user seeing US date order (i.e. MM/DD/YYYY) should check the various settings identified below. More than one setting on your system may be wrong so you may need to check them all.

See how to implement the changes to fix this problem.

Please also note, if you have checked those settings already and they appear correct there is additional advice in the guide.

How do we move AIMS Access from a Stand Alone environment to a Network?

The easiest way to move the Access version of AIMS from an existing Stand Alone installation onto a server is to copy the whole AIMS SA directory from the standalone machine onto the server. Everyone who needs access to AIMS on the server will need to be given full *Windows* permissions to the AIMS directory.

Shortcuts to AIMS on the server will need to be created on the desktops of everyone who needs access to AIMS. The shortcut on the standalone machine will need to be deleted and a new shortcut created to point to AIMS on the server.

Once you are sure that the data has been successfully moved, (and to avoid data accidentally being entered into the wrong version of the database) AIMS should be uninstalled from the standalone machine.

If you are using any template letters remember to go into AIMS configuration and under the mailmerge option update AIMS with the new path for where the templates are stored (they are usually stored in the templates folder in the main AIMS directory) in the new server environment.

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