A major new family of features is introduced with this release of Paladin POS. Users may now define a single button short cut to their favorite reports as well as specify a recurring time the report will automatically run itself. Remember the preset buttons on your car radio as a kid? Tune to the station you wish to listen to, pull the preset button out, and then push it back in to “remember” the tuning that would deliver your favorite radio station. Paladin POS Report Presets work in a similar manner.
Let’s begin with the Alt 5 Reports screen. In this example we already have two report presets defined, F1 Transaction and F2 AR Value. Notice the two new buttons on the lower right corner of the screen. F10 Recall Reports and F11 Edit Preset.
To create a preset button for your favorite report, say the Inventory Valuation Summary report, highlight Inventory Valuation Summary in the Report List. Press F11 Create Preset.
A new command panel titled “Create Report Preset” is displayed for you. Click on an unused (no name displayed) Report Preset number in column 1. If you wish to reuse a previously defined preset, the old preset must first be deleted through the F11 Edit Preset function discussed later in this document. Notice the Preset name field in column 2 has been automatically established using the Paladin POS Report Name. You are allowed to create a name for the button that will automatically launch the report. Button names are limited to a maximum length of 14 characters.
Schedule report field: Both Create Preset and Edit Preset functions allow you to order a preset report to be automatically generated. This feature is especially helpful with reports that are a “snap shot in time” and can’t be reproduced later. Examples of this type of report are the Inventory Valuation Summary and the Accounting Summary Report. Both of these reports detail information as of that second rather than a user defined date range. Since both of these reports are quite important to reconciling values in your financial statements, it is important that they be generated exactly when needed.
Current scheduling options are displayed in the graphic below.
Press F12 Next to define your report’s selection criteria.
How do I set the time that scheduled reports are to run?
The time of day scheduled reports are to run is easily defined in File – Setup – Company – Report Options group box. This box displays a configuration field named “Scheduled Reports Start Time”. Enter the start time in 24 hour format such as 22:15. Reports will be processed one at a time by the Paladin Scheduling Service. If the Paladin Scheduling Service has other tasks to perform, or reports to generate, your report(s) may be generated at a time later than what is defined in this field.
A second File – Setup – Company – Report Options group box field of “Scheduled Reports Network Share” details the network pathway to the scheduled reports storage location. Paladin POS has set a default value for this field based on the presumption your Database Server (identified on the Network tab in Setup) is also the machine that continuously runs the Paladin Scheduling Service.
This Service is responsible for upload of all store data to a participating supplier as well as managing periodic maintenance and data validation. The Paladin Scheduling Service is now responsible for generation of all scheduled reports and as such, places the finished reports in a subfolder named Reports on the machine running the Service.
In order for any machine to “see” the newly generated and saved reports, users must have a “Share” privilege to access the Paladin Scheduling Service machine’s hard drive. The third and final Setup option is for you to click the “Create” button to the right of the Network Share pathway. Providing you have sufficient Windows rights and privileges’, the share will be created instantly for you. If you were not allowed to create the share, read the result message carefully as we provide several options for you to try. Click Save when satisfied with your entry.
Naturally Paladin Customer service will provide assistance with this task should the default values and /or privileges not be correct for your particular network structure, or you are uncomfortable trying this task unassisted.
Each report preset created will display the normal report selection criteria that you are familiar with. Notice the F12 Run Report button has a new label during the Create Preset function of F12 Save Preset. Naturally you may define any report selection criteria you wish used every time your new Preset button is selected.
Limitations regarding date ranges: The few reports that allow date range control over the results returned to you still function normally, EXCEPT the date ranges are limited to the default ranges suggested by the report. For example, Yesterday’s Comparative Revenue Report will always return yesterday’s data, regardless of the day the Preset button is pushed.
Press F12 Save Preset to save your work or tap ESC (or click Cancel) to quit this process and return to the Report Selection screen.
Your new F3 Inv Valuation Preset button is displayed as an active button on the bottom of the Reports screen.
Notice the clock icon present in the top right corner of Presets F1 and F2, but missing on Preset F3. This means that Presets F1 and F2 have a scheduled event defined. Preset F3 doesn’t.
Any report Preset may be manually triggered at anytime simply by selecting the appropriate Preset number. Even though a Preset has a scheduled event defined you may generate the report on demand by pressing the Preset button.
Should you need to edit, review or delete a previously created Preset, move to the Reports screen WITHOUT selecting a report. Notice the F11 button displays a different label when no report is highlighted. In this case the button allows you to select F11 Edit Preset.
Click one of the previously defined report Preset numbers in column 1. The additional settings fields in column 2 will then display information relevant to the report Preset chosen. The previously discussed F12 Next button is still available to advance to the report selection criteria screen. Should this current screen receive any changes, you MUST press the F12 Next button and from the report selection criteria screen press F12 Save Preset to save your changes.
F11 Exit button allows a simple method to exit back to the report selection screen (same as pressing ESC or clicking Cancel). The F10 Delete button will permanently delete the highlighted Report Preset and any scheduled event previously established.
When a Report Preset button is selected by either pressing the appropriate Function key or by clicking the button a message box is momentarily displayed indicating Paladin POS is generating your report. If your Report Preset is for an Excel based report, Excel will automatically launch and display your report. Should Excel not be present on your workstation, a message will be displayed stating Excel is required to run this report.
How do you find and review the reports that have been auto generated via scheduling? Press the F10 Recall Reports button to open the stored reports viewer. Provided the UNC Network Share (discussed a few sections above) is properly configured and created, the following display will be presented. Highlight the report that interests you and press F12 Recall (or click the Delete button if you wish to remove a stored report from storage). This system accommodates both PDF and Excel based reports. Excel is still required to be installed on your work station to view Excel reports.
IMPORTANT: Stored reports are not part of the Paladin POS SQL database and as such are not backed with any scheduled backup event. Should you wish to create an archive copy of these reports, inform your network administrator of the report’s storage location (as defined in the UNC Network Share field previously discussed) and your desire to have these files archived.
Auto Deletion of old reports: The Paladin POS Preset Report Viewer will automatically delete reports that are older than:
Monthly Reports 13 months in age
Weekly Reports 2 months in age
Daily Reports 1 month + 5 days in age
If you desire copies of your reports maintained for longer periods of time, certainly request your network administrator to archive these reports for you.
We hope you find the new Paladin POS report Preset features useful in your business.