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OZ/OOPS! Newsletter


SCOOPS! Newsletter Holiday, 2005


Oz Tip:
Some of our Oz users use a numbering system for Equipment that requires that they use "the next available" number for IDs, (for example: You may have a fleet of trucks and you ID them by Dodge_01, Dodge_02, etc.; GM_01, GM_02, etc; Ford_01, Ford_02, etc., etc.) When you add a new GM truck, how do you know what the last GM_number in the system is? Since the ID is a "key" field, entering GM alone would only find a piece of equipment with the ID "GM" and not GM_01, GM_02, etc.

To find the last number used, simply use the % character.Example: GM_% in the Equipment ID field; this will find all GM numbers so you can easily see the last number used.


Oz User Tip: Have you ever made a bunch of records and then decided a field which you have sometimes left blank, should never be left blank and you would only need (want) to find those records where that field has been left blank? That is exactly what happened to one of our Oz users and he discovered a real time saver.

To search a field for blanks, put <1 in that field and search. Thank you Dave Werdann from Metals USA for this excellent tip! PS. You can use this same <1 for reports.


DOS OOPS! running under Windows We have found that some Epsons won't work in DOS. The older Epson impact printer does works. Some hp inkjets printers work and most of the hp laser jets work if they use PCL5 or earlier. We found this explanation of why inkjets don't work:

Most inkjet printers are not actually "printers" in the traditional sense, they are only print "mechanisms". All of the "brains" are in the software drivers in Windows or other operating systems. (kind of like the turntable as opposed to a record player - boy, am I dating myself!) A traditional printer has all of the basic instructions and basic character sets built into the printer itself, so if you send a plain text file, it will be able to print it. This is not true with inkjet printers.

To print from your DOS application, you need either to have a laser printer or a traditional dot matrix printer. In the U.S., the least expensive laser printer from Hewlett-Packard is available for under $200 and one that runs 20 pages per minute and includes PostScript can be purchased for approximately $325. Some other brands of laser printers are cheaper, but you have to be sure that they don't have "DOS" issues, and that the supply cost is reasonable compared to HP. Lasers are usually cheaper to operate than inkjet if you don't need color.


Microsoft's Solutions to a Problem They Created:

PROBLEM:
Unable to Use the PRINT SCREEN Key in an
MS-DOS-Based Program or from a Command Prompt
SYMPTOMS:
Use of the PRINT SCREEN key from an MS-DOS
command prompt or an MS-DOS-based program will not
work. When the the PRINT SCREEN key is pressed,
the contents of the desktop are copied to the Clipboard.
CAUSE:
When the PrtSc, and Alt+PrtSc reserved-key check boxes
are not selected, they do not return the PRINT SCREEN
reserved key operation to the command window. From
either a command prompt, or in an MS-DOS-based
program, these check boxes are located on the Misc tab,
in the properties of a command window.
RESOLUTION:
To work around this issue, use one of the following methods.
Method 1

	1.    Create a shortcut to the MS-DOS-based program.
	2.    Right-click the shortcut, and then click Properties.
	3.    On the Misc tab, click to clear the PrtSc, and Alt+PrtSc 			
                check boxes.
	4.    Click Apply, and then click OK.
	5.    Double-click the new shortcut icon.
	6.    To use the PRINT SCREEN operation to direct 			
                output to the default printer, press and release the 
		ALT key, and then press the PRINT SCREEN key.

NOTE:
Do not press and hold ALT, and then press PRINT SCREEN. Holding ALT, and pressing the PRINT SCREEN key directs the output to the Clipboard instead of to the printer.

In some cases the command window content may not be sufficient to force the PRINT SCREEN operation. There is no form-feed function for PRINT SCREEN, and you may have to use the PRINT SCREEN key combination multiple times in order to print.

IMPORTANT:
If the MS-DOS-based program responds to the ALT key, such as MS-DOS Editor, the PRINT SCREEN operation does not send the output to the default printer. The ALT+PRINT SCREEN key combination only works for programs that do not respond to the ALT key as a command. If the program responds to the ALT key as a command, you will need to use either Method 2 or Method 3.

Method 2
Create a .pif file on a computer that is running either Microsoft Windows 95, or Microsoft Windows 98, and then copy this .pif file to a computer that is running Microsoft Windows 2000.

	1. Create the .pif on a computer that is running either 			
           Windows 95, or Windows 98.
	2. Configure the options on the .pif file.
	3. Click to select the Close Window on Exit box when you 		
           configure the .pif file while changing the path. This box 		
           is not selected by default in Windows 98.
	4. Copy the .pif file to the Windows 2000 computer.
	5. Open the properties for the .pif file, and then edit the path 		
           and the working directory so that it points to the 			
           appropriate file on the Windows 2000 computer.
      
           The key bindings in the MS-DOS-based program should now work.

Method 3

	1. Use the 16-bit PIF Editor tool from Microsoft Windows 		
           3.1, and copy the executable and the help files 			
           (Pifedit.exe, and Pifedit.hlp) to the Windows 2000 			
           computer.
	2. Open PIF Editor, and then fill in the necessary 			
           information for the location, and working directory of 		
           the executable.
	3. Under Reserve Shortcut Keys in PIF Editor, click to select 		
           the PrtSc, and Alt+PrtSc check boxes.
	4. Save the .pif file, and then exit PIF Editor.
	5. Right-click the .pif file, click Properties, and then click 		
           the Misc tab.
	6. Click to clear the reserved-key check boxes (PrtSc and 		
           Alt+PrtSc) to redirect the PRINT SCREEN operation to 		
           the default printer of the active command window.
NOTE:
You can only create the .pif file with the 16-bit PIF Editor once, and you cannot modify it again by using the editor. After you create the .pif file, and then modify it by using the Windows Properties dialog box, the .pif file is too large to open with the 16-bit PIF Editor tool. If you try to do so, you receive the following error message: PIF is too large to load. Check to ensure the file is a PIF.

STATUS:
Microsoft has confirmed that this is a problem in the following Microsoft products:

	#    Microsoft Windows 2000 Server
	#    Microsoft Windows 2000 Advanced Server
	#    Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional Edition
Aint't Microsoft grand (bah, humbug!)

PROTECT YOUR CMMS INVESTMENT
One of the best ways to protect your investment is to make sure that all users are adequately trained in the system. We offer training, both onsite at your location and here in Pittsburgh, PA. If you would like more information, please call 412 488-9730.

Of course, another way to protect you investment is to keep your support current.

Scenario:
You have just created a work order and are ready to complete it. You go into Labor, search for the person who performed the labor and find that they are not on file.

Are you aware that if you click on the "Review" button on the LookUp window, it opens the Labor module and you can add the Laborer on-the-fly? After you have added the Laborer, you can return to the Lookup Window, Click on the "Refresh" button and select that Laborer to add his time to the work order. What could be easier.

WHAT'S HERE?

  • Web Inquiry for Parts/Inventory.
    Allows you to go onto a workstation in a sister plant (across the street or in another city) to find the availability of parts through the internet, via network, via dial-up, or your company intranet.
  • Web Work Requests.
    Enables you to receive e-mail work requests from tenants or other requesters which can automatically be turned into work orders. This system can also automatically send an acknowledgement to the requester advising that the request has been received.

WHAT'S IN THE PIPELINE FOR 2006?

  • Virtual Oz
  • A demo CD of Oz to run on your Window's machine
  • Linux - Based Oz
  • Wireless

The times, they are achangin!

As the year 2005 draws to a close,
we want to take this opportunity to wish you and yours
a very Happy Holiday Season
and
the very best in the year 2006!