e-Newsletter, October 12, 2005

Roundtable Software Newsletter #37, October 12, 2005

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In this issue...

Patch 22: Payroll Changes And Many Other Modules Affected
Version 4 Patch #22 addresses the following items:
  • We previously added the employee's Social Security number onto paycheck stubs because California made it a requirement under state law. Before the ink was dry on that law they made another law that makes it illegal to print an employee's complete Social Security number on their check stub. Sigh. Now there are two fields available that you can put on your check stubs--a complete Social Security number, and another that shows only the last 4 non-blank characters. Check with your state to see which if either of these you should use. New version of Payroll program 18 is 4.02, new version of the Payroll PL print layout file is 4.03.

  • We did a major overhaul to all the reports printed by Payroll program 25 (Tax Returns). Some outdated functionalities were dropped, and new ones added, but mainly we referred to the government forms that employers must fill out using these reports and tried to generally make them more useful by providing amounts that relate more directly to those reports, adding and changing text so that it more closely matches the forms, and doing a general cleanup to make the reports much easier to use.

Specifically, we added a field to the Federal reports (1 and 4) to show the Gross Wages paid to an employee and renamed the existing wages field to be either Adjusted Gross (report 1) or Wage Base (report 4). Report 5, SUI/SDI, was already printing the Gross Wages, so we added a field for Wage Base to give the wages reduced by applicable pretax deductions and exempt pay types.

New version of Payroll program 25 is 4.02, new version of the Payroll SCFM file is 4.01 and new version of the PL print layout file is 4.03. Since the changes we made are so extensive, we recommend that users who have company specific PL files not only update their PLs but also copy the current version of the report format for program 25 from the 00 company PL to their company-specific PL and remove the old version.

Updated the default Social Security limits to 2005 amounts. New version of Payroll program 25 (Tax Returns) and 26 (Tax Forms) is 4.02.

  • In Order Entry program 54 (Estimate To Order) the program would not allow you to proceed with the copy or transfer if the customer was over their credit limit or had overdue invoices, even though your system defaults required only a warning or a supervisor permission. New version of Order Entry program 54 is 4.02.

  • When a supervisor login is required by the software to proceed with some function, and an invalid login or password was given the system properly disallowed the login but did not provide an explanatory error message. The new system root version is 4b00.

  • In Billing program 8 (Update AR/IN) when you ran the archive setup function the answer to the System Defaults question "Payments Affect AR" was not being copied to the archive company. New version of Billing program 8 is 4.01.

  • A record number field has been added for all files to the Report Generator dictionaries. This will allow you to create reports that include the actual physical record number of any detail being printed on the report. This new feature can be useful in troubleshooting situations where Report Generator is being used to find problems that are to be fixed through the File Maintenance module. All dictionaries are now at version 4.01 except AR which is at 4.02 and QO which remains at 4.00.

  • In Purchase Orders program 10 (Post Items Received), if you were adding a new line to the PO the Department Number field would accept any number, not just valid ones. The field will also now be more consistent about the default department it provides. While fixing this we discovered and fixed a number of mostly minor display problems in the program as well. New version of the program is 4.01, new version of the PO SCFM file is 4.01, new system root version is 4b00.

  • The ADFMDATA file has been updated with revised descriptions of various fields.

  • In File Fixer when it prints a report for the Analyze or Repair options and it finds problem data on a record, it tries to print some representative data from that record on the report to help the user to identify the record in question. In a few specific cases this data was too long to be printed on the report properly and it would cause the program to die. New version of File Fixer is 4.01.

  • File Fixer has never reported file locked errors to the user--it just ignores the locked file and continues on to the next. This was dangerous since if the user is checking their files for corruption, and a corrupted file is locked by another user, then File Fixer would skip the file and the user would not be made aware of problems. Now File Fixer will display an error message if a file is locked by another user. New version of File Fixer is 4.01.

  • In certain cases, when programs open particular data files they do so with the understanding that the files being opened are optional and not required to proceed. In cases where such files were not successfully opened because the files were missing, the user was sometimes not properly notified of the problem. The solution to this problem required a root change to 4b00 and minor changes to several programs. They are:
AP50 4.01
BL4 4.04
BL8 4.01
BL50 4.01
BL51 4.01
PS11 4.01
OE1 4.04
OE50 4.01
OE51 4.01
JC50 4.01
ST3 4.01
IM2 4.01
FX 4.01
FM 4.01

If you prefer to not download patches, registered users can order a replacemnt CD from their dealer that contains all current patches.

Click Here To Download This Patch

Q&A: Loading Version 4 Onto Diskless Workstations
Q: According to your installation instructions I am supposed to load the Launchpad and Windows Printer Interface onto the workstations of my network. However, I use some diskless workstations on my network. Can I not use those features on those workstations since there is no local hard drive to load them on?

A: The reason we recommend installing the Launchpad and Windows Printer Interface on the local workstation is that each workstation must have exclusive use of the directories where they are installed. The simple way of guaranteeing this is to load them on the workstation's hard drive. However, if this is not possible you can load the applications on your server. If you do, it is very important that you install the applications in a separate set of directories reserved for each workstation. For instance, if you had three diskless workstations, load the applications onto the server in three sets of directories, for instance:




As long as no two workstations have the Launchpad and Windows Printer Interface in common directories you should be fine.

W-2s, 1099s and Magnetic Media Reporting
Good news! The federal government has made no formatting changes to the W-2 and 1099-MISC forms this year. This means that if you are on the most current version of our software you should not need to get an update before printing your forms at year end.

Magnetic media reporting, on the other hand, has changed. Several fields have been moved or expanded. If you will be using the MMRS package you will need the new version that will be released later this year (probably in December).

Some payroll tax tables, as always, will be changing for the new year. Be on the lookout for our email newsletters later this year in which we will be announcing tax table updates as we receive news of them from Commerce Clearing House.

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