Tip of the Week May 1, 2012
Volume: 2 | Issue: 17

BookManager Tip: Offsite Madness!

Many of you regularly attend and sell product at offsite events. Did you know that you can make a copy of BookManager and use it at offsite events, with the ability to quickly and easily import your offsite sales into your store’s live BookManager system after the sale?

The process of making the copy of BookManager and setting it up for an offsite event is easy and painless, so long as you follow a few simple steps. Our full “Remote POS” document can be found here. Here are a few tips to make things go smoothly:

  • Remember that you are making a non-live copy of BookManager onto whatever computer you are using at the event, so the data on this copy will only be as current as when you make the copy. For this reason, we recommend that you make a new copy of BookManager for each event.
  • The easiest way to make the copy of BookManager is to use a USB stick. Plug the stick into the store computer, and make a note of what drive letter it is using (usually a window will pop up when you plug the stick in, indicating which drive letter it’s using.) Then, in BookManager select D-Data Transfer, and B) BookManager Backup. You want to run option e) make full copy onto drive / folder, so you’ll want to arrow down to that option and type in the drive letter that the USB stick is using (e.g. E:). Then arrow back up to the top and type in “e” to run option e.

Making the copy through the Backup area means that you don’t have to get everyone out of BookManager to make the copy. It makes a complete copy of the folder, helpfully named “BMCopy”, right onto your stick.

  • Once the copy is done, you can safely remove the USB stick from the store computer, and then plug it into the computer you’re taking to the offsite event. From here you have two choices: you can run BookManager right off the stick, or you can copy the BMCopy folder from the stick onto the hard drive of the computer. If you choose to run BM right from the stick, you’ll need to remember that the stick MUST STAY PLUGGED IN AT ALL TIMES. If you unplug the stick while you are using BookManager, your BookManager will crash and data loss may occur. Many users feel more comfortable having BookManager run from their computer’s hard drive. Simply copy the BMCopy folder from the USB stick and then paste it onto the C: drive of the computer.
  • Create a shortcut. The easiest way to do this is to right click on the desktop, and choose New à Shortcut. Browse to Computer à C: (or the drive letter of the USB stick) à BMCopy à bkmngr.exe. Then, still in the target line, add a space and 99 (so the path will look like C:/BMCopy/bkmngr.exe 99). Then follow the prompts to finish the shortcut.
  • Now start up BookManager. You will be running as station 99 (which doesn’t exist at your store. This is what we want, to prevent scheduled routines from interfering with your selling and to prevent WebLink from running offsite.)
  • Now is the time for the nitty-gritty offsite setup:

Total off any store sales that were included with the copy.

Alt+S, a)General, option “h) Is this computer at a remote site for Point-of-Sale use only?” needs to be set to Y-Yes.

Alt+S, f) POS (Point-of-sale), option “e) Station's sales are totaled as group#: 00” ß change the group # to 99. This will allow you to total the offsite sales separately from the store sales after importing the offsite sales into your store’s live BookManager. While in the POS setup, you can also change the “f) Last Invoice number used:” and skip the invoice number ahead if you want the remote to use different invoice numbers than the store. This prevents the invoice numbers from being changed when they are imported (because BookManager will automatically change the invoice numbers on the remote sales if the same numbers were used at the store.)

Install printers in Windows on the remote computer, then go into Alt +S, i) Printers and set them up in BookManager. Do a test print to make sure the setup is OK. DO THIS BEFORE YOU LEAVE so that you know your printers will work offsite. Nothing worse than getting there and having printer problems!

And now you are ready to go and sell your heart out! When you’re done at the event:

  • plug the USB stick into the remote computer. Again, take note of what drive letter it is using. Then, go into 4-POS, M-Misc, and select Total sales. You will notice a red flag next to this option, indicating that BookManager is set up as a “stand alone POS.”

This is good. If you don’t see this flag, than the BookManager was NOT set up properly. Stop, and go into the Alt+S, a)General and change the option” h) Is this computer at a remote site for Point-of-Sale use only?” to Y-Yes.

  • Totaling will be almost as normal. Remember you are totaling for group 99. The final step in totaling on the offsite will ask you where to save the offsite.zip file. You will enter the drive letter of the USB stick. BookManager will then create the file.
  • Then, unplug the USB stick and put it into a store computer. Again, take note of the drive letter the USB stick is using. Then go into D-Data Transfer and choose I) Import Sales from Stand alone POS. BookManager will ask for the location of the offsite.zip file – type in the drive letter of the USB stick. BookManager will then search that drive for any file starting with “OFFSITE” and display it. Choose the OFFSITE.ZIP (with today’s date) and press enter. BookManager will then import the sales.
  • The offsite sales will be current, along with the store sales for the day. You can either leave them alone and total all the sales (offsite and store sales) together in one big total, or you can do a total now and just total the group 99 sales (which will be your offsite ones) leaving the store sales alone to be totaled separately. It’s up to you.


Windows Tip: Safety First!

If you unplug a storage device or removable USB drive from your computer while it's copying files or moving information, you might risk losing your data.   Windows provides a way to help you safely remove such devices.

Most USB devices can safely be unplugged and removed. When unplugging storage devices, such as USB flash drives or external hard drives, you should make sure that the computer has finished saving any information to the device before removing it. If the device has a small light that shows when it's use, we suggest you wait a few seconds after the light has finished flashing before unplugging it.

If you see the Safely Remove Hardware icon  Picture of the Safely Remove Hardware icon  in the notification area, at the far right of the taskbar, you can use this as an indication that your devices have finished all operations in progress and are ready to be removed.

To safely remove a certain device, click the Safely Remove Hardware icon   Picture of the Safely Remove Hardware icon , and then, in the list of devices, click the device that you want to remove.   Windows  will display a notification telling you it's safe to remove the device.

Note: You can also safely remove devices from the Computer folder. Click the Start   button  Picture of the Start button, click   Computer , right-click the removable USB device you want to remove, and then click   Eject .