e-Newsletter, June 30, 2005

Roundtable Software Newsletter #35, June 30, 2005

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In this issue...

Patch 20: Updates for Accounts Receivable, System Administrator and Job Cost
Version 4 Patch #20 addresses several items:
  • In Accounts Receivable program 18 (Post Payments), at the Apply To prompt if you chose I for invoice rather than a line number, the calculation of the default early payment discount was incorrect if the chosen invoice had an invoice discount on it. We also added an enhancement that will do automatic calculation of the default discount amount if the payment is less than the balance of the invoice but greater than the default discounted amount (before you had to manually take the discount in this situation). The new version of program 18 is 4.01.

  • In Job Cost program 18 (Autopost Overhead/Tax) you would get an error if taxes needed to be calculated on a work order with functions using detail tax rates (sometimes known as Tennessee Taxes). The new version of program 18 is 4.01.

  • In System Administrator program 7 (Update Files) if you selected to update both data files and print layout files (B at File Options) for a specific module and company and the data files did not need to be converted, the process would end before continuing on to updating the print layout file. The new version of the program is 4.03.

  • In System Administrator program 9 (Relink Files) there were certain VERY rare situations where the Relink would lock up based on a particular configuration of valid data in the file being relinked. The data had to be very large and in a very specific order and configuration for the problem to happen. To give you an idea of the rarity of the problem, we have found only 3 sets of data that exhibit the problem in the last 20 years. The problem was in the sorting utility that is used in programs throughout RTS-Advantage but the problem only ever occurred when relinking. The new version of the Sort Utility is 4.01. To check the version of the Sort you must look (quickly) at the Sort window that is displayed on the screen when sorting data.

If you prefer not to download patches, you can also order update CDs from your dealer.

Click Here To Download This Patch

Q&A: Hourly Sales Analysis From Point Of Sale Data
Q: I would like to do sales analysis of my Point of Sale. Specifically I want to get reports of how much business my various cashiers are doing during the day. Ideally, I want an hour by hour report so I can analyze not only cashier performance but also store traffic. I know that the time is listed on my Point of Sale invoices, but there is no Point of Sale report that takes advantage of that information to give me the reports I want. Am I out of luck?

A: You were until recently. Prior to version 4, the time was printed on the invoice but it was not actually stored in the Point of Sale files, so there was no way to exploit that information. However, in version 4 we added the information about the last print date and time into the file so that you can do Report Generator reports that use this information to do statistical analysis.

There are many different ways you could choose to analyze and report on this information. We have created a sample RG format that shows just one way you might use this information to analyze your business. You can download PSBYHOUR.FMT by clicking on the link below.

Save the file to your RG formats directory (check in Report Generator program 50 to see which directory this is for you--if it is blank then the formats will be in your PROGS directory). Run the format by going to Report Generator program 3, choose the format PSBYHOUR from the list and follow the prompts. Be sure to enter a date for which you have invoices in Point of Sale or nothing will print.

If you want to modify this report and are not comfortable working in Report Generator program 2, contact your dealer for assistance.

Click Here To Download The PSBYHOUR Report Generator Format
Q&A: New Machine Has Flaky Problems
Q: I just added a brand new Windows XP machine to my network and had the dealer come out to set it up so that it could access RTS-Advantage. The machine works great for everything else, but flaky stuff happens when I try to run RTS-Advantage. Got any suggestions?

A: One common problem we see with new machines is that they come pre-loaded with some real odd stuff in the AUTOEXEC and CONFIG files. Dell, for instance, to this day continues to send out machines with commands in the CONFIG that were appropriate only for Windows 3.1 (yes, circa 1992!). These commands can cause odd things to happen to DOS applications under newer versions of Windows.

When upgrading or adding a new machine, always check out the AUTOEXEC.BAT, AUTOEXEC.NT, CONFIG.SYS and CONFIG.NT files. On today's computers they should typically have nothing in them when the machine is new. The days of having drivers listed in these files are 99.9% over (I'd say 100% but I imagine there's some oddball Windows software out there that puts stuff in there). About all that you should expect to see in there are the RTS-Advantage settings, a PATH statement and possibly an ANSI.SYS driver, plus anything you may have in there related to other DOS applications you use.

In any case, most anything you find in these files can probably be commented out without creating problems, with the exceptions of the aforementioned items. Don't worry about messing anything up. When you edit the files, just type REM at the beginning of any suspicious line--this will disable that command from being executed. Then reboot the machine and verify that your Command Prompt, RTS-Advantage and any other DOS applications still run okay. In the unlikely case that you encounter a problem, just un-REM lines until you find the one that was needed (usually it will be obvious--you'll get a message saying that the application or device is missing such-and-such a setting).

Old DOS device drivers like HIMEM, MSCDEX and the like will often cause odd problems in DOS applications under newer versions of Windows, and we have never seen a machine that needed them, so get rid of them and it will quite likely fix the problem.

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