VISUAL Did You Know?

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Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Brian Bjork Joins BizTech as an Infor ERP VISUAL Consultant

Toledo, OH –December 22, 2009: BizTech, an Infor ERP VISUAL Channel Partner and provider of information technology solutions, is pleased to announce the addition of Brian Bjork to its team. Brian has joined BizTech as an Infor ERP VISUAL consultant, and has over 18 years of accounting experience as a CFO, Controller and Consultant in the manufacturing sector. Brian’s VISUAL software experience, specifically with the financial modules, will help BizTech better serve its clients.

“Brian is a great addition to BizTech, as he gives us an expanded presence in the Chicago area,” said Joe Zalewski, Managing Partner and COO at BizTech, “His manufacturing, accounting and financial background, plus his hands-on Infor ERP VISUAL experience adds great depth to our VISUAL Support Team.”

Brian is located in Rockford, Illinois. Prior to working for BizTech, Brian was a Controller for Tote Cart Company and BFI Waste Corporation in Rockford, and was a Project Manager for Kerry Ingredients in Beloit, WI. In those positions, he was responsible for ERP VISUAL software implementations, Crystal Report development, and CFO functions such as budgeting and inventory control. Brian has an MBA in Corporate Finance from Rockford College, and achieved his Certified Management Accountant Designation (CMA) as well.

About BizTech
Founded in 1999, Business Technical Consulting, LLC (BizTech) is headquartered in Toledo, Ohio. BizTech provides information technology solutions for small and mid-sized manufacturing companies. As an Infor ERP VISUAL Channel Partner, our team is focused, and your company will benefit from our hands-on experience. Our goal is simple; BizTech will partner with your company in a joint effort to improve your business processes and increase your profitability. BizTech is an Infor Channel Partner, a Microsoft Certified Partner, Comptia A+ Certified and a Citrix Authorized Solution Advisor. BizTech offers products from industry leading manufacturers such as Infor, Microsoft, Dell, HP, Citrix, Cisco, Symantec, Sonicwall, ThinPrint, Wyse, Epson, Lexmark, Okidata and Xerox. BizTech serves over 500 clients throughout the United States and Canada.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Infor ERP VISUAL Well Represented at 2009 FabTech Show

Posted by Joe Zalewski

Toledo, OH – November 23, 2009 – Last week, I spent 4 days in Chicago at the 2009 FABTECH International, AWS Welding and METALFORM show which was held at McCormick Place. I was truly amazed at how well Infor ERP VISUAL was represented, as a number of VISUAL end-user companies from throughout the United States and Canada were at the show as exhibitors and attendees.

Many of our VISUAL clients were exhibiting their products, among them were Magnetic Products, Manitowoc Tool & Die, Smedberg Machine, Moeller Manufacturing, PTM Corporation and Braner USA. I was quite impressed with some of the new product development. Congratulations to Keith Rhodes and Magnetic Products, who won a New Product Innovation Award.

Bill Price, Greg Jones and myself were among over 1100 exhibiting companies that converged in Chicago for the start of the show last Sunday. The FabTech show lasted through Wednesday- the attendance was good, and traffic at the BizTech booth was consistent throughout the show. To all the folks that stopped by booth #17105, I’m sure that BizTech will be forever remembered as “The Back Scratcher Guys”.

Having spent so much time talking to many Manufacturers and Distributors, it seems to me that everyone is cautiously optimistic about the US economy moving in the right direction. Like BizTech, many people that I talked with have noticed an increase in business over the last 90 days or so.

I was thrilled to meet so many people who were looking for a manufacturing ERP software solution, another sign that there is some confidence in the economy. We had the opportunity to provide a demo of VISUAL for several companies, and I’m sure that this year’s show was just the beginning of some new business relationships. A common requirement amongst those evaluating business software was the need for a shop floor scheduling solution. The VISUAL Scheduler seemed to impress those who viewed the 5-minute Infor ERP video.

It was great to talk to so many of our clients who are satisfied and seeing the benefit of using VISUAL to manage their business information. Many stated that they are excited about the direction that Infor Global Solutions is taking with VISUAL. Amongst those that I talked to, an interest in Infor MyDay was a hot topic. Many stated that for this reason alone, they are looking to upgrade to VISUAL version 6.5.4.

In conclusion, the 2009 FABTECH International, AWS Welding and METALFORM show was undoubtedly a success. Many new relationships were forged, and some will certainly develop into new business opportunities. Next year’s show will be held in Atlanta, and by that time the US economy should be back in full swing, something that we are all looking forward to. Thanks to all and don’t forget…At BizTech, We Have Your Back!


About the author: Joe Zalewski is Managing Partner and COO at BizTech, an Infor ERP VISUAL Channel Partner, located in Toledo, Ohio.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Remove an extended query

Did you know that you can remove an extended query?

There are many reasons why you might want to remove an extended query. You may have inherited modified QRP reports where something is just not right, you want to diagnose a problem that surfaced, or you might want to enhance an existing report and need to temporarily remove the existing extended query. Whatever the case, there is way to do this.

Standard reports within VISUAL are performed within executables in which inputs to the report are hard coded into the executables. Extended queries allow desired information that isn’t an input to be added to the report as a variable linking data to the report.

To remove the query, you must:
  1. Open the desired QRP using the Gupta Report Builder.
  2. Go to the formulas in the object tree on the left and find the one named SQLQUERY.
  3. Right click on SQLQUERY and select properties.
  4. Make sure the SQLQUERY in the middle widow box and click Select Formula.
  5. Click the delete button then the OK button and confirm that you want to delete the selected formula.
  6. Go to the Input Variables in the object tree on the left.
  7. Right click and delete each input variable.

This edition of VISUAL Did You Know is brought to you by BizTech VISUAL Consultant, Ivan Wilson.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Manually Enable VISUAL Help / Books Online Files

Did you know that you can manually enable Visual Help / Books Online files?

Under certain conditions in some VISUAL 6.5.x environments, security can impede the ability of VISUAL Help or Books Online from launching.

To manually enable this functionality, you need to:

1. Run Regedit
2. Expand the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\MICROSOFT\WINDOWS\HTML HELP
3. Right Click the Help folder.
4. Select New then String Value from the menu and add a new entry (Example VM.CHM).
5. Double click the new entry.
6. In the Edit String window, enter the path to where the appropriate .CHM file is located.
7. Repeat the above steps to add VF.CHM, EIS.CHM, Barcode.CHM


Presto! VISUAL Help / Books Online is now enabled.


This edition of VISUAL Did You Know is brought to you by BizTech VISUAL Consultant, Ivan Wilson.

Infor ERP VISUAL: Statement of Commitment

Infor ERP VISUAL is a key component of Infor’s comprehensive strategy to be the software provider for world class manufacturing companies. Infor’s belief, "Customer of Infor; Customer for Life," is core to not only supporting Infor ERP VISUAL customers, but also to growing Infor ERP VISUAL to meet the challenges that our customers face each day.

Infor is a leader in the ERP market, investing resources back into our products. We are not only investing in growing the core of ERP VISUAL, but we also invest in the Infor OpenSOA components that make expanding your business as efficient and nondisruptive as possible. We want Infor ERP VISUAL to be a system you can depend on to meet the ever changing needs of your company. Wherever you go, we want to go and grow with you.

To support you, Infor has a world class partner community that is one of the most experienced manufacturing ERP communities in the business. It is my firm belief that any Infor customer can feel confident in using Infor ERP VISUAL as the foundation for their future.

-Jim Schaper, Infor Chairman & CEO

Monday, October 12, 2009

Modify the Personal Menu to create daily to-do lists & reminders

Did you know that you can modify the personal menu by adding new groups to create a daily reminder and to-do list?
A good idea is to add new groups for each day of the week. You can then add the programs that you need to run each day. The personal menu then becomes a daily reminder and to-do list.

  1. From the MAIN MENU, select FILE and then PERSONAL MENU.
  2. Right click anywhere in the Personal Menu and select CUSTOMIZE
  3. Select ADD NEW GROUP, then enter a Group Caption and select an Icon of your choice. The new Group will be added to the Personal Menu.
  4. Highlight the new Group Name and select BROWSE AND ADD. A browse window will appear and you can select the program or report (and Icon) you wish to add to the group
  5. Next, a window will appear asking for the Caption or description of your new item
  6. Enter the caption
Presto! Your new Personal Menu Item will now be available in all of your personal menus in VISUAL.


This VISUAL Did You Know? Tip was brought to you by Bill Price, VISUAL Sales Representative at BizTech.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Did you know that you add a symbol to any field that accepts text?

Did you know that you can add a symbol to any field that accepts text?

(This can be applied to Part ID’s and Order ID’s, although this is not recommended)

First, use the Character Map in Windows (Program\Accessories\System Tools) to locate the symbol that you want to use, and then find correct the keystrokes.

Then, open VISUAL and enter those keystrokes into the desired text field. Some of the symbols may appear garbled, but usually print out without any issues!


This edition of VISUAL Did You Know was brought to you by Tasha Parker, one of BizTech's VISUAL Consultants.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Virtual Inforum 2009

Make sure to enter BizTech on the second screen of the registration form when you are filling it out!

www.inforum2009.com

Monday, September 14, 2009

Create Rework Orders to capture proper cost & to eliminate self-referencing violations

Did you know that you can create Work Orders (Rework Orders) to capture the proper cost, and to eliminate self-referencing violations?

The procedure for creating Work Orders assumes that the item to be reworked has been received into inventory. It will allow an item’s cost to be issued to WIP, and any additional rework cost applied to the item when received back into inventory. It is understood that a phantom item will have to be created and periodic inventory adjustments made to zero the inventory balance. This phantom item will have no cost impact on inventory.

  1. Create a Part ID “REWORK”
  2. Do NOT add any cost values
  3. Add a Warehouse & Location ID
  4. Create a New Work Order from the Manufacturing Window using the Part Id “REWORK”
  5. You might want to create a unique Job ID to identify the Rework Orders.
  6. Enter the Lot ID, Want Date and Quantity to be reworked.
  7. Click Save
  8. Double Click on the Header Card of the Work Order
  9. You can now Click on CO-Products
  10. Click on Insert
  11. Enter Part ID to be reworked and tab to the Mat’l % field
  12. Enter 100% into this field and tab. The system will fill in the Labor, Bur, Serv percents automatically. This action tells the system to apply all cost to this item. Tab to the Desired Qty field.
  13. Enter the Quantity that will be reworked.
  14. Click Save
  15. Click Close
  16. Click Save
  17. Now you can add the material to be Reworked to the Work Order. This will enable you to issue the item and all associated cost from inventory to WIP.
  18. You can now issue the item to be reworked to the Work Order.
  19. You can now receive the Work Order into inventory.
  20. You will now have to do another receipt for the CO-Product. Select the pull down arrow.
  21. Select the CO-Product and finish the receipt.
  22. This transaction will bring all cost incurred into inventory against the CO-Product. When Costing Utilities is run, the inventory value for Reworked item will be revalued.
This VISUAL Did You Know tip was brought to you by BizTech VISUAL Consultant Joe Horvath.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Virtual Inforum 2009 - Save the Date!

Virtual Inforum 2009, October 20-21.

Everything you need to drive business innovation—without leaving your desk.

Interact. Engage. Learn. All in the comfort of your office.

This year, Virtual Inforum brings best-in-class business solutions, educational sessions, and expertise to you—transporting the Solutions Expo, Networking Square, Auditorium, and Resource Center conveniently to your desktop. Join your peers, Infor experts, and business partners online at Virtual Inforum 2009 and learn how to drive innovation while accelerating business performance.

For more information, visit the Inforum website at
www.inforum2009.com

Free Webinar - Rename & Merge for VISUAL

A free webinar about VISUAL Rename & Merge will be hosted Thursday, September 24 at 2pm EST.
Rename & Merge is the only database utility that allows you to make data changes quickly in a Live environment, while maintaining the data integrity of your VISUAL ERP system.
Please join BizTech & TrueFit Solutions for a one-hour webinar to explore how Rename & Merge for VISUAL can save your organization time and money.  We will show you how to correct master records, reconfigure account structures, manage stock locations and more.
During this time, they will show a brief demo and discuss the enhancements of the new Rename & Merge. 
Some of the features are:
  • Multi Database Engine: Can make changes in multiple VM databases while only creating one task
  • Built on .Net Framework which allows scalability
  • Rename and Merge records in Global Financials
Register today! You will receive a 15% discount on a full license of Rename & Merge 4.0 if you purchase before.  Also, one lucky participant will receive one year of free Rename & Merge maintenance!
For more information about Rename & Merge for VISUAL, contact a Solution Advisor at 800.804.4715 or via email.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Infor MyDay voted one of the ‘Most Innovative Products by a Vendor’

The July/August issue of Manufacturing Business Technology was a special issue that featured the 2009 MBT Innovation Insight Awards. The MBT Innovation Insight Awards recognize products and projects that are most reflective of MBT’s mission: explaining how technology can be used to solve real business problems. Infor MyDay took third place in the “Most Innovative Product by a Vendor” category.

From the article...
ERP software suites are the “backbone” systems for today’s companies but, historically, users needed to be experts in navigating those systems to find the information they needed to do their jobs. With its Infor MyDay tool, ERP vendor Infor Global Solutions set out to fix this problem. The result was a solution that garnered third place among products created by vendors in MBT’s 2009 Innovation Insight Awards competition...


Check out the full article!

Manufacturing Business Technology is an online IT magazine geared towards manufacturing executives. Check out the magazine at http://www.mbtmag.com/.

Control auto-issue of material to work orders with VISUAL.INI file

Did you know that the VISUAL.INI file can be used to control auto-issue of material to work orders?

The following setting in the VISUAL.INI file will control the auto issue of material based on the units reported in labor ticket entry. These parameters must be physically typed into the VISUAL.INI file

[LaborEntry]
AutoIssueMaterialReq=Y or N
If N, then material quantity issued to the workorder is based on good pieces only and does
not include any deviated quantity. If Y, then material quantity issued to the workorder is based on both good and deviated quantity.

Another method is to use the setting that is controlled from within
Labor Ticket Entry/ Preferences which will add the fixed scrap or scrap % to the good pieces that you report in labor ticket entry. So, if you report only good pieces and want to auto issue additional material based on the standard scrap % in the operation card, you can control that with the Labor Ticket Preference setting shown below.



Depending on whether you check the box (Y) or leave it unchecked (N) VISUAL will write the following statement into the VISUAL.INI file

AutoIssueFixedScrap=N or Y
Auto issue transactions will include quantity to cover scrap percent and/or fixed scrap as
designated on operation card. If Y than auto issue material based on Scrap %, if N will not auto issue additional material.



This edition of VISUAL Did You Know was provided by BizTech VISUAL Consultant Joe Horvath.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Drag & Drop Many Items to Line Items

Did You Know that you can Drag and Drop Many Items To Line Items? This works in VISUAL 6.5.2, 6.5.3, and 6.5.4

If you are entering lines in a table, you can drag and drop data from the browse window into the line. For example, if you are entering lines in Customer Order Entry and you have the Part Browse window open, you can drag one or more parts from the browse window onto the line item table. VISUAL adds the relevant information to the lines. You can also select multiple lines by clicking on one line and dragging the cursor through other rows or by holding CTRL and clicking different lines.


Here’s How:

1) Click the normal “Browse” button to bring up the list of Parts.


2) Scroll through the list or apply a search filter to get to the parts you need to add.


3) Select one or more rows by clicking the dark box at the front of the line.


a. To select various lines, hold the CTRL key on your keyboard as you click.


4) When ready, LEFT-CLICK and HOLD for a second on one of the dark boxes in front of a selected line.


5) The mouse pointer will change to include a small box.


6) Keep holding the left mouse button.

7) Drag the mouse pointer to the line item table.


8) Release the mouse button anywhere in the line item table.


9) The Parts selected will all be added as new line items.

10) Update Qty, Price, etc. as usual.




Mike Brown, BizTech’s CEO & Senior VISUAL Consultant, provided this edition of VISUAL Did You Know?™

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Clarification of COM Object Support for Infor ERP VISUAL

As you know, Infor recently introduced Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) and Business Object Documents (BODs) to help transport data to and from the VISUAL database. As a result, Infor is moving away from a COM interface as the mechanism for users to create and modify VISUAL data. The future plan is to allow users to use BODs to maintain data in the VISUAL database.

As you may be aware, the library of COM objects originally included with VISUAL Version 6.0 is now outdated, and in some cases does not correctly support current versions of VISUAL (6.5.x). The primary purpose of these objects was to allow VISUAL to communicate with other VISUAL applications such as VISUAL Price Book. Users could also use them to create custom user interfaces using any generally available COM-compliant language. While the COM objects have been used in the field by the Infor Professional Services team or authorized Infor service partners for customizations, these COM objects were not intended to be a toolset that was supported under a customer’s maintenance and support agreement.

Please note that the COM objects’ business rules have not been updated as new versions of VISUAL were released, and Infor does not intend to do so. Infor will not be enhancing these objects or bringing them up to the current release of VISUAL.

In future releases of VISUAL, Infor plans to remove these objects from the VISUAL product media (download). When an object is removed, it will be documented in the release notes so you can plan accordingly if you have customizations built around that object. If you have a need for a customization of VISUAL, please contact your Channel Partner or Account Representative.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Greg Jones Joins BizTech as an Account Executive for Infor ERP VISUAL

Toledo, OH – August 10, 2009: BizTech, an Infor Channel Partner for ERP VISUAL and provider of information technology solutions, is pleased to announce the addition of Greg Jones to its team. Greg has joined BizTech as an Account Executive to support new sales of Infor ERP VISUAL software to small and midsize manufacturers in Ohio, Michigan, Kentucky, Indiana, Illinois and Wisconsin. Greg has spent more than twenty years of his professional career delivering manufacturing software solutions, including eight plus years of experience with the VISUAL product suite.

"Greg is a solid addition to our VISUAL New Account Sales Team", commented Joe Zalewski, Managing Partner and COO of BizTech, "With his corporate and channel partner background, Greg brings unparalleled ERP Systems sales experience to our organization."


Check out the full press release

Bill Price Joins BizTech as an Account Executive for Infor ERP VISUAL

Toledo, OH – August 10, 2009: BizTech, an Infor Channel Partner for ERP VISUAL and provider of information technology solutions, is pleased to announce the addition of Bill Price to its team. Bill has joined BizTech as an Account Executive to support new sales of Infor ERP VISUAL software to mid market manufacturing companies in Ohio, Michigan, Kentucky, Indiana, Illinois and Wisconsin. Bill has over 25 years of experience in manufacturing and ERP software solutions that includes more than 12 years of hands-on experience with Infor ERP VISUAL in customer, pre-sales and account management roles.

Check out the full press release

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Infor MyDay Generally Available for Infor ERP VISUAL

Infor Improves Business Performance for SMB Manufacturers

ATLANTA - Jul 15, 2009 - Infor today announced general availability of Infor MyDay for Infor ERP VISUAL, an enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution for small to midsized businesses (SMB) in the discrete manufacturing industry. Much more than a portal or dashboard, Infor MyDay is a dynamic Web 2.0 user interface for Infor applications that provides central access to the critical information users need to excel in their daily work. Companies operating on Infor ERP VISUAL version 6.5.4 or higher with active maintenance plans are able to take advantage of Infor MyDay at no additional charge.

Infor MyDay takes the vast amounts of business data captured and stored by ERP VISUAL and delivers the pertinent information to employees based on their roles within the organization. Previously, ERP solutions did not allow for users to easily access and analyze data that was often trapped in information silos or documents in the system. Infor MyDay sets relevant data free and presents it so that the appropriate decision-makers in the company can respond quickly when necessary.

Infor MyDay Helps Manufacturers by Personalizing Information Delivery

Infor has identified more than 150 roles in functional areas such as operations, sales, manufacturing/production, and finance for which Infor MyDay will personalize information. The information presented to these users based on their roles can help manufacturers improve cash flow, boost profits, reduce operating expenses, improve product quality, increase revenue, and shorten the time needed to correct problems.

Companies in the discrete manufacturing industry must identify ways to reduce costs without sacrificing product quality. Acting on the information presented by Infor MyDay, users can make decisions that reduce unnecessary costs and improve product quality, bolstering operational effectiveness.

Infor MyDay also delivers important metrics to Sales and Finance employees that help users effectively respond to mandates to reduce costs and add customized services. Additionally, Infor MyDay provides personalized information and metrics to users that help them better manage cash, reduce the consumption of working capital and minimize the time needed to address cash flow issues.

"For years, ERP solutions have been collecting and organizing huge amounts of data from all across the manufacturing enterprise, from the shop floor through the back-office," said Jeff Abbott, vice president, solutions and field marketing, Infor. "Infor MyDay brings ERP to the next level by taking that data, analyzing it and delivering key metrics to relevant users so that they can quickly make solid decisions and take action to improve business performance, rather than spending time collecting and analyzing data themselves."

Infor Open SOA

Infor MyDay utilizes Infor Open SOA, a unique, event-driven service-oriented architecture (SOA) that leverages an industry standard business language to distribute data between Infor solutions and other systems. Infor Open SOA provides a standards-based approach for integration of both Infor and non-Infor systems and data sources. Through Infor Open SOA, Infor customers can rapidly and economically add Infor, third-party and in-house software applications without the need to "rip-and-replace" software or interrupt other systems during operations, a key benefit to Infor Open SOA. Infor Open SOA allows future component-based enhancements to Infor solutions to be delivered in the same non-disruptive manner, easing the implementation process for future technology integrations.

You can improve your company’s business performance with a VISUAL 6.5.4 Upgrade and Infor MyDay, please contact us to discuss it at 800-804-4715 or via email at info@gobiztech.com

Monday, July 20, 2009

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

All about Infor ERP VISUAL

Check out this site for everything ERP VISUAL. View demos, case studies, customer testimonials and more!

http://go.infor.com/visual/

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Create a Return Material Authorization without Original Customer Order

Did you know that you can create a Return Material Authorization when the original customer order isn’t available?

The situation may arise where you are unable to generate an RMA against the original customer order. This happens frequently if you are an new implementation and the original order is not in the new system or you cannot find the original order or maybe for other reasons you do not want to use the original order in the RMA.

VISUAL allows you to process an RMA and the related return against a new customer order. Use the following steps to associate and process the RMA using a new customer order.

Create RMA

  • Go To Sales/Return Material Authorization
  • Enter customer ID and Return Reason Code
  • Press Save – VISUAL ERP will assign an RMA number and new Customer Order ID
  • Click on “Show New Order” icon and VISUAL will open the order management window and populate order entry window with the customer information.

Enter Part/s Being Returned into New Order

  • Insert a line and enter part ID and quantity for the parts being returned.
    Note: If you do not want the parts to be added back into inventory do not enter a part number into the part ID field; instead enter the part number into the “Misc. Ref/Descr” field. If part ID is not entered, be sure to enter the Revenue account number into the customer order line.
  • Enter price per unit manually or price return using Price Book by pressing the Price Book calculator icon. If you are not using the price from Price Book enter a “Y” into the override price field.
  • Enter notes to customer (optional) regarding credit into Order Specifications

Finalize RMA

  • Open RMA and refresh, VISUAL will populate the returned part information from the new customer order into the RMA screen.
  • Enter the return quantity authorized into the RMA.
  • Press Save to save the RMA data

Record Returned Parts

  • Open Shipping Entry – Sales/Shipping Entry
  • Click on Returned Shipments Icon
  • Enter RMA ID and VISUAL will populate the shipping entry screen with the RMA data indicating the authorized return quantity.
  • Enter the actual quantity returned into the shipping entry screen
  • Press save and VISUAL will generate a “negative” packlist for the returned merchandise and the packlist will appear in the eligible packlists table to print a credit using Invoice Forms.

Generate Customer Credit

  • Open Sales/Invoice Forms – Set screen to the following settings – Create A/R Invoices, Print Form and Shipped Date
  • Select File/Print One Invoice
  • From the list of eligible packlists search on Order ID to retreive the credit packlist.
  • Select the packlist print the customer credit

Presto!

BizTech VISUAL Consultant Joe Horvath provided this edition of VISUAL Did You Know?

**To view this tip with the screenshots, click here**

Friday, June 12, 2009

BizTech Becomes an Infor Channel Partner

BizTech reaches agreement with Infor Global Solutions as the newest Channel Partner to market and sell Infor ERP VISUAL.

TOLEDO, OH, June 12, 2009 –- Business Technical Consulting, LLC. (BizTech), a provider of VISUAL support and information technology solutions, is pleased to announce that they have entered into an agreement with Infor Global Solutions to be a Channel Partner to market and sell Infor ERP VISUAL. BizTech is the first company to join the VISUAL Partner Channel in the United States in more than 12 years, and their initial territory for new account sales will include Ohio, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan and Wisconsin.

“I am very excited that our company is now an Infor Channel Partner,” said Mike Brown, Managing Partner and BizTech CEO. “Everyone in our organization already knows how VISUAL can make manufacturing companies more successful. Now, we can leverage our years of experience and creative thinking to deliver this great software to companies who are looking for ways to improve their supply chain relationships through reduced lead times and improved productivity. By partnering with Infor, BizTech is emphasizing our commitment to all of our current VISUAL clients by providing the best service possible to ensure they continue to get the most value out of Infor ERP VISUAL.”

Originally conceived as VISUAL Manufacturing by Lilly Software Associates in 1992, VISUAL was the first Microsoft Windows™ based manufacturing software solution on the market. VISUAL Manufacturing was renamed in 1999 to VISUAL Enterprise when it became the first fully integrated, end-to-end business application suite to include: ERP, APS, MES, Quality Management, WMS, CRM, and eBusiness all in one system. In 2004, VISUAL was acquired by Infor Global Solutions in the purchase of Lilly Software Associates and was renamed to its current product brand, Infor ERP VISUAL.

“For the past 10 years, BizTech has provided support to the VISUAL end-user community; from day one, we have had the desire to become a VISUAL Partner”, commented Joe Zalewski, Managing Partner and COO at BizTech, “Today, that desire has become a reality. Best of all, our new relationship with Infor will allow us to better serve our clients.”

For more information about BizTech, please visit our website http://www.gobiztech.com/ or call our office at 800.804.4715.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Citrix Server Best Practices

Multi-user Server Based Computing
Server sizing in Microsoft Terminal Services and Citrix XenApp 5.0 environments differs greatly from traditional server environments. Since multiple users simultaneously access these servers, the hardware needs to be dedicated and more robust than that of your traditional member server. In addition, because the Operating System needs to be specifically configured to handle a multi-user environment, these types of servers deal with hardware differently than standard member servers. Other factors include independence from other overhead processes and services that could render the access method useless in the event of their failure, and the security risks associated with hosting user sessions on servers acting as mission critical domain controllers or database servers. The server based computing model as a business access strategy is a proprietary information systems technology requiring a dedicated effort. The goal of any multi-user server based computing deployment is to deliver easy, secure, and high performance access to the end-user. Field testing has produced the following results:

Test Configuration
The benchmarking test was conducted with the following configurations to demonstrate the need for dedicated server computing and the break-point for multi-server load balancing and failover.















Server Configuration
Dell PowerEdge 2900 III
Dual Intel Quad Core Xeon 2.33GHz
(2 x 74GB SATA) RAID 1 Array
4GB Dual-Ranked DDR RAM
Windows Server 2003 Standard R2
Citrix XenApp 5.0 Enterprise
Microsoft Office Small Business 2007

Client Configuration
DELL Optiplex 755 Tower Desktop
Intel Core 2 Duo 2.66GHz
2GB DDR2 RAM
Windows VISTA Business

Test Results
A server’s degradation point was reached when its score fell below 80. The results showed a maximum of 177 simulated users concurrently running Microsoft Office applications before this threshold was reached. In this test environment, increasing the number of concurrent users beyond this would have resulted in decreased server and end-user performance. Most production environments deploy applications with much higher system resource requirements that reduce the maximum number of users supported by a single server before performance degradation. Server scaling is environment specific based on application overhead and end-user interaction classified as task oriented or power usage. This test was based on task oriented only. Dedicated computing is required regardless of circumstance.

Conclusions
1. Resource Usage: Citrix, a database driven application, makes usage of the server's hardware and operating system resources in a proprietary way that can be incompatible with Visual Database processing and performance.

2. Security & Continuity: Enabling end-user access to a database server for the purpose of hosting virtual work environments puts the production VISUAL Database at risk for a mission critical failure due to unrelated server usage.

3. Hardware Compatibility: VISUAL Database servers operate most efficiently on a Disk Subsystem configuration of RAID 1, 5. Multi-user servers operate most efficiently on a Disk Subsystem configuration of RAID 1 for simultaneous read/write operations. In addition, memory allocation switches differ between Citrix application servers and VISUAL Database servers when configuring virtual vs. conventional memory usage.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Fix ellipses distortion caused by Object Nationalizer with a .MANIFEST file

Did you know that adding a .manifest file to the VISUAL executable folder fixes the ellipsis in modified windows where it was previously distorted?

Problem: When using Object Nationalizer to make any changes to a VISUAL 6.5.x application, the browse buttons will get distorted or show portions of text instead of the normal ellipse graphic. This has been a known issue for a while and there wasn’t a workaround until now. This works for both direct edits of the executables and for modifications using Overlay files.

By Default … any changes will cause various buttons to look like this:




Using the Solution below, the buttons will look like this after saving with Object Nationalizer:




Cause of Problem:
The ellipsis is added during the compile of the executables, and since Object Nationalizer does not do a true compile, the ellipse graphics are sometimes lost.

Solution:
Adding a properly named .manifest file to the VISUAL executable folder will add the ellipsis in modified windows.


How to create the MANIFEST file:

1. Open a new file in NOTEPAD
2. Name the file “MANIFEST.TXT
3. Copy the following into the File and Save.



<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8" standalone="yes"?>
<assembly xmlns="urn:schemas-microsoft-com:asm.v1" manifestversion="1.0">
<assemblyIdentity
name="Gupta.TeamDeveloper"
processorArchitecture="x86"
version="1.0.0.0"
type="win32"/>
<description>Test</description>
<dependency>
<dependentassembly>
<assemblyIdentity
type="win32"
name="Microsoft.Windows.Common-Controls"
version="6.0.0.0"
processorArchitecture="x86"
publicKeyToken="6595b64144ccf1df"
language="*"
/>
</dependentassembly>
</dependency>
</assembly>



4. Copy the MANIFEST.TXT file to your VISUAL executable directory for future reference.

5. For each VISUAL Executable file you need to modify, save a copy of this file with a new name.

6. Use Save As from Notepad to save the file to “EXENAME.EXE.MANIFEST” (EXENAME = Executable Name)
a. Example: Part Maintenance would be VMPRTMNT.EXE.MANIFEST


7. Presto! Use Object Nationalizer as usual and save the changes.

BizTech’s CEO and Senior VISUAL Consultant, Mike Brown, provided this edition of VISUAL Did You Know™

(If the code above does not work when copied, go here)

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Use Multiple Versions of a Custom QRP Report

Did you know you can use multiple versions of a custom QRP report?

All Infor ERP VISUAL reports and forms are based on a technology that allows the format of a report to be separated from its contents by storing each repot layout in separate report template. These template files are editable using the Gupta Report Writer tool.

The report format overrides allow customizations of forms on a system-wide and user-specific basis. Three possible override contents are available to select from- Entity, User and Always. If you select the User option, a User ID field appears where you can enter a User ID.

For example, if you need to make additional modifications to an existing custom report that is already defined in the reports overrides, you:

  1. Copy and rename the target QRP file
  2. Add an additional line for the same report using either your User ID or the User ID of the person that needs to view the QRP report that is in the works. You can now view & test the report in the VISUAL environment without disrupting other users of the original report.
  3. When the custom QRP file is ready to go live, just change the names of the QRP files appropriately and delete the line from the Report File Override dialog box.

BizTech VISUAL Consultant Ivan Wilson provided this edition of VISUAL Did You Know™

Monday, May 11, 2009

Correct an incorrect quantity on new work orders

Did you know that you can easily correct an incorrect quantity on a new work order?

You can easily correct an incorrect quantity on a new work order by double clicking on the top box at the bottom of the Manufacturing Window, entering the correct quantity in the ‘Quantity’ field, clicking ‘Save’ and then selecting ‘Release’. However, if you have already released the work order you may want to re-release it so that it can recalculate for the revised quantity.

Many thanks to Leysa Ferguson of
Arete Prime Products, Inc for providing this edition of VISUAL Did You Know?™

Thursday, April 23, 2009

An employee can put the work order number on the customer order line even with read-only access

Did you know that an employee can put the work order number on the customer order line, even with read-only access in customer order entry?

You can’t do this in the CO Entry window, but you can in the Manufacturing window.

1. Open the work order

2. Go to the edit menu Assign demand to this work order

3. Click insert

4. TYPE: CO

5. Click on the “line item” browse header, and choose the customer order line. (Or enter the CO and line manually)

6. Enter an allocated Qty.

7. Click Save

Presto! The work order is now on the CO line item.


This edition of VISUAL Did You Know™ was provided by BizTech VISUAL Consultant Paul Turnberg.

Edit VMBrowse.ini file to open lists with latest entry on top

Are you tired of having to scroll to the bottom of browse lists every time you click on a search button in VISUAL applications?

Did you know you can edit the VMBrowse.ini file and cause specific lists to always open with the latest entry on top?

First, find the section that is for the browse window you are interested in changing.

Now change this line:
order=1
to
order=-1

Presto! The browse list is now in descending order when you search.

BizTech VISUAL Consultant Paul Turnberg provided this edition of VISUAL Did You Know?

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Use CDO in VISUAL Macros to Send Emails

Did you know that you can easily use CDO in VISUAL macros to send emails?

In the code below, items in red are fields from the current order:

Const cdoSendUsingPickup = 1 'Send message using the local SMTP service pickup directory.
Const cdoSendUsingPort = 2 'Send the message using the network (SMTP over the network).

Const cdoAnonymous = 0 'Do not authenticate
Const cdoBasic = 1 'basic (clear-text) authentication
Const cdoNTLM = 2 'NTLM

'==This section builds the email.

Set objMessage = CreateObject("CDO.Message")
objMessage.Subject = "Order Number " & ORDER_ID
objMessage.From = "Your Company Name <
company@yourdomain.com>"
objMessage.To = CONTACT_FIRSTNAME & " " & CONTACT_LASTNAME & " <" & CONTACT_EMAIL & ">"
objMessage.TextBody = "This is some sample message text.." & vbCRLF & "It was sent using SMTP authentication."

'==This section provides the configuration information for the remote SMTP server.

objMessage.Configuration.Fields.Item _
("
http://schemas.microsoft.com/cdo/configuration/sendusing") = 2

'Name or IP of Remote SMTP Server
objMessage.Configuration.Fields.Item _
("
http://schemas.microsoft.com/cdo/configuration/smtpserver") = "smtp.yourdomain.com"

'Type of authentication, NONE, Basic (Base64 encoded), NTLM
objMessage.Configuration.Fields.Item _
("
http://schemas.microsoft.com/cdo/configuration/smtpauthenticate") = cdoBasic

'Your UserID on the SMTP server
objMessage.Configuration.Fields.Item _
("
http://schemas.microsoft.com/cdo/configuration/sendusername") = "yourusername"

'Your password on the SMTP server
objMessage.Configuration.Fields.Item _
("
http://schemas.microsoft.com/cdo/configuration/sendpassword") = "yourpassword"

'Server port (typically 25)
objMessage.Configuration.Fields.Item _
("
http://schemas.microsoft.com/cdo/configuration/smtpserverport") = 25

'Use SSL for the connection (False or True)
objMessage.Configuration.Fields.Item _
("
http://schemas.microsoft.com/cdo/configuration/smtpusessl") = False

'Connection Timeout in seconds (the maximum time CDO will try to establish a connection to the SMTP server)
objMessage.Configuration.Fields.Item _
("
http://schemas.microsoft.com/cdo/configuration/smtpconnectiontimeout") = 60

objMessage.Configuration.Fields.Update

'==End remote SMTP server configuration section==

objMessage.Send

You can simply put the above code into a new macro to send an email to the contact on the current sales order. The code would need to be modified to use your email server, and it would need to be developed to include a summary of the current order.

BizTech VISUAL Consultant Darren Farmer provided this edition of VISUAL Did You Know™

Friday, April 17, 2009

Restrict Items Shown in VISUAL Browse Windows

Did you know you can restrict what items are shown in your Visual browse windows?

The key lies in a simple edit to your VMBrowse.ini file.

The steps are:

1. Find the section for the type of browse you wish to limit. For example, to modify what
you see when you search on the PART number, find the [PART] section.
2. Find the line that says where=
3. Enter the restriction, using standard SQL language. This is, in effect, the “where” clause of a query.

For example, to remove all OBSOLETE parts from your part browse window, change the line to: Where=STATUS IS NULL

Presto!
Since obsolete parts contain the value ‘O’ in that field, they do not match the search criteria, and will be excluded! (Note: there is also a VFBrowse.ini file for the financial search windows)

This edition of VISUAL Did You Know™ was provided by BizTech VISUAL Consultant Paul Turnberg.

Imbed Linked Images Into Reports using Crystal 11

Did you know that Crystal 11 can imbed linked images into reports, based on a database field?

You can place an image path in a specific field in VISUAL ERP- including document maintenance, and Crystal can place that image in the report at run time.

Step 1. Add a picture to the report
Step 2. Right Click and choose format graphic
Step 3. Choose the picture tab
Step 4. Click on the familiar conditional formatting button next to the “Graphic location”






Presto! Now you can use the formula editor to specify the image path name. Use database fields, text strings, or even a combination of the two!

This edition of VISUAL Did You Know™ was provided by BizTech VISUAL Consultant Paul Turnberg.