Document management for the small office

Defying Chaos

© Lead Image © alphaspirit,

© Lead Image © alphaspirit,

Article from Issue 202/2017

Even in a small office, countless letters, email messages, and PDFs arrive daily. Document management systems help you avoid drowning in the flood of documents.

It's been more than a decade since the proclamation of the paperless office, with special document management systems (DMSs) proposed as the tool to manage arbitrary documents without miles of shelving. DMSs typically operate as client-server applications that users can access by means of a database back end.

Most of these DMS applications are at home in medium to large enterprises and are hopelessly oversized for use in small home offices. Successfully using a DMS becomes even more difficult when the requirements include Linux support. Nevertheless, I searched for DMSs for Linux workstations that relieve the strain on small offices without time-consuming training and permanent maintenance. In my search, I've taken a look at Krystal DMS, LogicalDOC, Paperwork, and Referencer (see also the "Not Tested" box).


Ideally, the DMS should reproduce the workflow of a document starting with its creation, through its entire lifecycle, to final deletion. The DMS should handle not only printed documents, but also files that exist electronically in various formats (e.g., email).


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