Building Desktop Application

Hi, I’m just wondering if ya’ll would let me know if you think Meteor is the right tool for me.

I have written an application in Filemaker for dog sports trial secretaries. People sign their dogs up for trials, the secretary enters into the software what classes the dog is entered in, sends out email confirmations, puts together a running order, keeps track of payments etc. Filemaker is okay but there are a lot of things about it I don’t like and so I’m looking for an alternative.

Most of these trial secretary software apps are written in Access because it’s free to develop in. But I develop and run on a Mac, so I want something I can write and sell that runs both on a Mac and Windows. My market is super small, maybe 200 clubs will buy my product total. I can’t sell it for more than $250 a pop so I need something really inexpensive (or free) to develop it in. I was a programmer before I retired so I have a lot of the skills I need to make a nice product.

Looks like Meteor uses MongoDB so I can have a database associated with it. I want it to be cross-platform and I’d love if it didn’t take me a year to put this together. Since I really won’t be making enough money to pay for my time. But I am a dog sports secretary so I want a nice software that’s easy to use and intuitive.

One of the things I dislike about Filemaker is that to update it, users have to export the data in the database, update the software, then import the data back. It worries me every time a user has to do that because I just know someone will screw up and lose all their data. I would love it if there was a much easier update process.

Thanks in advance! I’m working through a tutorial now and it looks pretty nice so far.

This is all over the place. You’re using Filemaker to create your application but it’s a hassle so you’re looking for an alternative and considering Meteor for the job. Did I get it right?

If you’re goal is to create something that works on Mac and Windows then go for Electron. But if you’d want your application to work on web and mobile too you can go for Meteor as it comes with a built-in Cordova support. And you might as well use meteor-desktop for desktop support.

There were recent discussions here on the forum about maintainability and abandonment but it’s still a solid option if you’re willing to put in the work

I’ve struggled with Electron and I haven’t been able to get it to work properly on my Mac. So far Meteor is working nicely. I don’t want it to work on the web, just desktop. Most trials are in places where wifi is not available so it can’t be a web-based appliction.

Mmm okay even though Meteor says it’s for desktop apps, apparently it’s not? Was just Googling about it. A bit misleading of a discription.

You can definitely have your Meteor application work on desktop through the use of PWA or meteor-electron like I said before. But it all comes down to your needs and situation and in your case you only need desktop application so go for Electron directly instead of Meteor then converting it back to work as a desktop application.

As noted previously, your use case could be perfectly covered with Meteor as a web app, if laid out as a PWA, Progressive Web Application. This covers the intended desktop use, but would still also be available on all mobile platforms, and it allows for offline work. Then you neither need Electron, nor Cordova, yet it can be “installed” with a single click on either platform, including desktop.

I think you should take a look at Xojo:

I’ve used it a couple years ago and it’s super easy to write a proper desktop app with it that will run on the main OS (Windows, macOS and Linux).

Meteor is an overkill for what you want to achieve IMO.

Thanks for the info, I am still looking into options. I’ll look into Meteor with PWA.

I have played with Xojo, and on the Mac the ability to design the interface is extremely lacking. For example, it’s difficult to change the color of a button. I want something that lets me customize the user UI so it looks really nice.

I’m also looking at Electron with Angular. I’m new to these technologies.

I think Filemaker and Meteor are in very different categories. Meteor is a good platform if you are doing bespoke custom development, but it’s going to take a lot more work than you are used to. You might want to look at some kind of low-code platform. Google low code and see what comes up. Something like airtable or smartsheets may work for you, or something like clickup. It won’t hurt to look at this early stage and make your decision more informed


I think those are all online services? It has to be desktop, can’t be web-based. Thanks for the input, though.

Yes they are. Going desktop only seems like a limitation

If you need a similar code base to work on Mac, Windows and Linux - Electron is a good choice. I would suggest Electron calling Python using RPC instead of Electron-Meteor. Python comes with sqlite that can be used as a database.
The challenge I have found is testing the final build, one has to ensure all the dependencies are included in the build and test done on a non development machine. The other challenge is bundle size of the final exe.

We’re running an ElectronJS client app and once again it will be an overkill for what you’re planning to do if you combine it with Meteor.

Try out Xojo and leave Meteor out of the equation (for your specific use case).

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Just to reply… for my desktop application I’ve decided to use Quasar, with Dexie as the database. It’s working really well. :slight_smile: This application has to be desktop only because it will be used by many people in an offline environment. I cannot be online.

My next application I want to be online with Quasar, and it needs a backend database that is now tied to the browser (like Dexie). Trying to figure that out, and once again looking at Meteor.