WHAT IS YOUR DATA WORTH?

bahrainiancrimsonSoftware and s/w Development

Nov 13, 2013 (3 years and 7 months ago)

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June 30, 2011 Volume 2011, Number 2
WHAT IS YOUR DATA WORTH?

How much time would it take you to re-do
your setup and data entry work?
In each quarterly newsletter, we put a little
blurb about backing up. This time, we are going
try to remind you why: Several clients have had
to retrieve their data from backups lately!
One lost a server to a power surge from the bad
weather in the Midwest this last month. Another
got a virus that deleted their data files. Luckily,
both had some good copies of their data!
We occasionally have clients call for tech sup-
port after they crash during a monthly closing.
Some have taken the five minutes to do the
“BK Backup” and some just told the computer
they did one. The lucky ones that took the time
to do the back up are up and running in just a
few minutes. The unlucky ones had to go to an
external backup system. Those took longer and
their information may have been several days or
even weeks old-which means they had to redo a
week’s worth of work to get back to where they
were 10 minutes before.
So, the moral of the story is you should be
doing a BK back up every time you close for the
month. You also should be doing some kind of
off-site back up for your Keystone Data Files (and
other important files). You have many options
for doing these off-site backups. At Keystone,
we use multiple, overlapping methods to make
sure we have good copies, both on site and off
site. Bruno burns a CD of his programming en-
vironment every night. He also has a complete
computer off site that is fully configured to do
any programming work. Chris uses a flash (or
USB thumb) drive to take home our complete
data files and sales documents, and an on-line
service to maintain copies of sales documents
and web and marketing development work. Plus,
we have external hard drive systems hooked to
each computer that is backing up our computers
24-7, complete with multi-layer file histories. We
also create a static image daily of all our critical
files, also with file histories.
As you can tell, we would rather have too many
copies than too few, and we would rather not trust
just one technology!
Please feel free to contact us if you need more
information on what you can do to protect your
company’s important data and documents.
WHERE CAN I FIND COPIES OF PRIOR
SETTLEMENTS?
Keystone Systems’ software continues to evolve over time,
based on feedback and needs of our users. The ability to view
settlements after the fact is a good example of how a feature
may change, based on client requests.
Settlements are an unusual transaction in that they pull infor-
mation from many files (invoices, trips, advances, trip expenses,
driver reserves, and so on), show up on a fairly straight-forward
report, and then may end up in Accounts Payable (owner opera-
tors and broker carriers) or Payroll (employee drivers). To recon-
struct this information after the fact can be nearly impossible.
For many years, Keystone Truck Software just left it to the
operator to keep copies. Our training suggested one print a
preview copy to give to the driver, then print a final copy for the
company records. Unfortunately, over time, with staff turnover,
time constraints on settlement day, and accidents often left the
company without a copy of this important document.
When a driver would ask six months later, possibly when
preparing his taxes on April 14, he or she might have a question
as to how the settlement was calculated, or what was included.
That is a problem if the company never kept a copy, lost it, or it
is buried somewhere in a stack of storage boxes.
So, we allowed the software, by default, to save an image of
the settlement report for later retrieval. To save hard disk space,
the program would automatically delete the image after six
months. Problems: There was a box that could be un-checked,
resulting in the image not being saved. You had to know from
which computer the final settlement was run, as it was saved
on that computer. One could, for whatever reason, decide to
erase those files from the hard disk drive. The driver might not
get around to asking for the copy soon enough. Anyone with
access to the computer could view those files, once they figured
out how to do it!
Based on feedback, we went back to the drawing board!
With the new method implemented late last year, settlements
are stored in an encrypted file with your other data and can be
accessed from any work station, as long as you have security
rights to them. You can search by a number of criteria:
(Continued next column)
HOLIDAYS
Keystone will be closed:
Monday, July 4 Independence Day
Monday, September 5 Labor Day
Check out our new web site at
www.KeystoneTruckSoftware.com
MAJOR NEW KEYSTONE
VERSION BEING SENT
A new major version is being sent out to
users. Unlike most versions which contain
new user features, this version changes
everything “under the hood.” So you will
not see many changes, but everything
has been changed! The three main
building blocks of our software, NexusDB
(database engine), Delphi (programming
language) and software components (in-
ternal products you do not see, like Ace,
SecureBridge, Indy, and Intraweb) have all
been upgraded to their latest versions.
Upgrading these hidden elements has
several advantages. First and foremost,
you will continue to have software that
is compatible with current operating sys-
tems (like Windows 7) and will be easily
upgradable to future operating systems.
(For example, we still have customers
from 1982 that started out with us on DOS
computers, who have upgraded over the
years to the current version!) As we move
forward, however, some things must be
left behind. With this version we will lose
support for Windows 98/ME and older ver-
sions of Windows.
NexusDB is going from version 2.07, to
3.08, a major release. We are calling each
client to see if you would like assistance in
completing this upgrade. We have provided
step-by-step instructions, but we want you
to be comfortable and to complete each
of the listed steps. You must make sure
to stop the existing NexusDB (KSIServer)
when you install the software, and follow
our instructions on getting the new data-
base engine started. We want to make sure
it gets installed correctly. Certain setting are
used to ensure your server remains secure
from outside attacks, or “hacks.” It is nice to
have a database that continues to evolve to
take advantage of new hardware features,
such as more memory, and multiple cores,
and to continue to upgrade the SQL engine
features.
Delphi is going from version D2007 (year
2007) to XE (year 2011), which was just
released. The major focus of the changes
was UNICODE support, and direct Win-
dows 7 support. This also brings a better
environment for programming with more
coding tools to make programming faster
and more efficient. Of course, this also
means more to learn! It comes with 500
built in software components and current
has 1.7 million developers. You can watch
a video on the feature by going to: http://
www.embarcadero.com/products/delphi/
product-demos.
All the software components we use
were upgraded to the latest version also.
ACE (the reporting engine) went from ver-
sion 1.7 to 2.02, a major upgrade. Other
components had similar upgrades.
On June 8 we started sending this ver-
sion out to customers. It will take a little
longer than normal since we will be helping
each client to update to this version.
TRY IT FREE, THEN SAVE
10 PERCENT!
Our most popular “Try then save 10 per-
cent” offer ever has been the Document
Scanning & Retrieval. That makes sense,
since it has been one of our more popular
options since the day it was introduced!
From July 1 through September 30, 2011,
you can not only try it for free, but if you
decide to keep it, you will get a ten percent
discount on the price!
Document Scanning & Retrieval
Reduce office storage. Streamline
document retrieval. E-mail invoices with
all documents automatically attached.
Keystone Systems Scan Option allows you
to control your scanner from the invoice
screen. Scan documents to a user-defined
list of document types (BOL, POD, etc.) to
be associated with this invoice. Exclude
specified images from printing / emailing
with the invoice. If a customer calls with a
question, call up the invoice and view the
document within 2-3 more mouse clicks.
One more click will print the document.
In addition to Invoice / Freight Bill docu-
ments, you can scan from, and associate
documents with: Trips, People / Drivers,
Equipment, Shop Invoices, Companies,
and AP Invoices!
Customer Appreciation Sale price:
$1,080.00