Any idea on future plans for RMS?


L

Larry Andersen

Has Microsoft made any publicly available announcements regarding the future
of RMS?

What I am interested in is what is the timeline for a new version of this
software (if any?) and what are the planned enhancements?

Specifically what I am looking for is any indication of if MS plans to fix
the broken (and VERY buggy) implementation of custom hooks. Right now
custom hooks are mostly useless for all but the most basic scenarios.

Does anyone have any insight? Right now, we simply cannot get our custom
software to work with RMS so we are forced to use solutions from other
parties. This really sucks because we were hoping to advertise our solution
as a complete end-to-end microsoft solution, but we simply cannot do that
right now.

As it stands, it seems to reason that fixing RMS is a low priority for MS
given the lack of communication from MS.

Am I wrong?

Anyone care to chime in?
 
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J

Jason Hunt

Has Microsoft made any publicly available announcements regarding the
future of RMS?

What I am interested in is what is the timeline for a new version of this
software (if any?) and what are the planned enhancements?
They're pretty tight lipped about it. It's been over 2 years since RMS v1.2
was released, and POS v1.0 came out recently, so I'm hoping that they will
move the new interface over to RMS and then release RMS v2.0.

Specifically what I am looking for is any indication of if MS plans to fix
the broken (and VERY buggy) implementation of custom hooks. Right now
custom hooks are mostly useless for all but the most basic scenarios.

Does anyone have any insight? Right now, we simply cannot get our custom
software to work with RMS so we are forced to use solutions from other
parties. This really sucks because we were hoping to advertise our
solution as a complete end-to-end microsoft solution, but we simply cannot
do that right now.
Any examples? I haven't run across any bugs with the hooks themselves, just
bugs with QSRules.

As it stands, it seems to reason that fixing RMS is a low priority for MS
given the lack of communication from MS.
Agreed.


Am I wrong?
I hope not.
 
L

Larry Andersen

The most glaring bugs regarding hooks are specifically:

1. AddItem hook bugs. (screen does not refresh correctly if line items are
added/changed inside the hook) THIS IS A HUGE BUG FOR US and makes RMS
mostly useless.

2. Lack of a hook when a transaction entry changes. AddItem hook works fine
for adding an item, but we need an intelligent way to detect when an entry
changes (specifically to the quantity)

3. Lack of a hook to determine when a transaction entry is removed.

4. The refresh hook gets called several times (not consitently I might add)
when items are added/changed. There should be some sort of "Calculate" hook
that is called once each time the order is recalculated regardless of screen
refresh status

With the above bugs, it is almost impossible to create discount or loyalty
programs that work consistently or with 100% accuracy.
 
J

Jeff

Larry,

I was just looking a PowerPoint slide somewhere on the M$ site last week
about RMS & POS timelines.

1.3 has been announced for this quarter. M$ claims for more HQ fixes &
updates. Not much else announced.

1.4 has been announced for 4Q of 2006 without any fixes mentioned

If you look at the directory structure of M$ POS, is says RMS 2.0

--
*

Has Microsoft made any publicly available announcements regarding the future
of RMS?

What I am interested in is what is the timeline for a new version of this
software (if any?) and what are the planned enhancements?

Specifically what I am looking for is any indication of if MS plans to fix
the broken (and VERY buggy) implementation of custom hooks. Right now
custom hooks are mostly useless for all but the most basic scenarios.

Does anyone have any insight? Right now, we simply cannot get our custom
software to work with RMS so we are forced to use solutions from other
parties. This really sucks because we were hoping to advertise our solution
as a complete end-to-end microsoft solution, but we simply cannot do that
right now.

As it stands, it seems to reason that fixing RMS is a low priority for MS
given the lack of communication from MS.

Am I wrong?

Anyone care to chime in?
 
J

Jason Hunt

I agree that a Calculate hook would make customization development a lot
easier. You may have to re-think your approach on your project to make it
fit around the limitations. It sounds like you're trying to develop a
discount system which is based on combonations of items. Probably the only
way to do it is either a) create a customized item selection screen which
runs on InitializeTransaction and then does QSRules.Transaction.AddItem
after the list of items is done being selected within your application, or
b) possibly create a carefully crafted RefreshDisplay hook that checks for
applicable matches and modifies the items as necessary. Option A can be a
lot of work, but it's feasible; I've done it with two different
customizations, and it's a lot of work. Option B can be a bad idea on
slower systems or if you're trying to make a customization that can scale a
large and complex arrays of discount schemes.

You can easily create a loyalty points add-in using the PrintReceipt hook.
The latest version of the customization guide shows you how to create a
loyalty system this way. There are also other resellers who have developed
and are selling loyalty points systems; we have our own customers using it
and they haven't had any issues with it.
 
G

Glenn Adams [MVP - Retail Mgmt]

Callin all of those "Bugs" seems a bit extreme to me. Just because you don't
agree with design decisions doesn't make them bugs; however, I agree that it
would be really nice to have hooks to more events. I suspect things will get
worse before they get better, but we'll have to wait & see what turns up in
the next major release.

Consider using a Begin Tender hook to examine all of the Transaction Entires
after they have been added or modified.

--


Larry Andersen said:
The most glaring bugs regarding hooks are specifically:

1. AddItem hook bugs. (screen does not refresh correctly if line items are
added/changed inside the hook) THIS IS A HUGE BUG FOR US and makes RMS
mostly useless.

2. Lack of a hook when a transaction entry changes. AddItem hook works
fine for adding an item, but we need an intelligent way to detect when an
entry changes (specifically to the quantity)

3. Lack of a hook to determine when a transaction entry is removed.

4. The refresh hook gets called several times (not consitently I might
add) when items are added/changed. There should be some sort of
"Calculate" hook that is called once each time the order is recalculated
regardless of screen refresh status

With the above bugs, it is almost impossible to create discount or loyalty
programs that work consistently or with 100% accuracy.
 
L

Larry Andersen

Yes, you are right, not all of the items I have listed are bugs, but half of
them are (#1 and #4). And they are pretty big bugs at that. And in my
opinion, #1 is pretty close to a showstopper for a good chunk of the partner
network for all but the most basic customization scenarios.

I'm not trying to bash MS. I was an employee for 4 1/2 years in the MBS
division after all (the divison responsible for RMS btw). My only complaint
concerns their lack of truly supporting their customers with fixes such as
these. Believe me, 90% of the time, the standard response from MS is "well
fix it in the next version" without truly understanding the pain that the
current version is causing to customers.



Glenn Adams said:
Callin all of those "Bugs" seems a bit extreme to me. Just because you
don't agree with design decisions doesn't make them bugs; however, I agree
that it would be really nice to have hooks to more events. I suspect
things will get worse before they get better, but we'll have to wait & see
what turns up in the next major release.

Consider using a Begin Tender hook to examine all of the Transaction
Entires after they have been added or modified.

--
 
K

kay

I completely agree with Larry about "the PAIN", as I've been a suffering
customer.

I wasn't aware that this software is not made "ready-to-use" by and end
users. I bought a Zebra printer for about 300 a year ago, and they are
spending more time than MS helping me with technical problem trying to print
tags. MS had already charged some 230 for annual support and 65 for incident
support.

No problem has been resolved by MS!....

Can I resell the software since I can't return it?.....
 
J

Jason Hunt

I completely agree with Larry about "the PAIN", as I've been a suffering
customer.

I wasn't aware that this software is not made "ready-to-use" by and end
users.
Unfortunately there will never be any POS, Accounting or other
business-related software that is "ready to use" out of the box; it all
requires configuration. This isn't like installing Windows or Office. The
person who is implementing RMS has to understand how the software works and
be able to make it adapt to your workflow, or determine the best to adapt
your workflow to fit with it. I can't think of one customer who hasn't had
to change some part of their procedures in order to use RMS; that's the way
it is when you computerize your business.

There are some business models that RMS does not fit with. It is the job of
the reseller to determine if RMS is suitable or not, and to inform you of
any possible complications.

I bought a Zebra printer for about 300 a year ago, and they are
spending more time than MS helping me with technical problem trying to
print
tags. MS had already charged some 230 for annual support and 65 for
incident
support.
Annual support is recommended. As for the incident, if installation of the
Zebra printer was included with your price of the system, then you'll have
to ask the reseller why they're not covering this.

Can I resell the software since I can't return it?.....
No, not unless you sell the business that the software is registered to.
 
K

kay

Are you sure this practice is legal? It's like buying a house and the
builder tells you that he's selling you a lisence to live there. You either
move and abandon or stay because you cannot sell untill you died!....

Kay
 
J

Jeff

Kay and others,

Kay, two questions. First, did you look to see if the printer was on the
approved hardware list before you purchased the printer? Second, did you go
back the RMS reseller and tell him to fix the printer issue or take it back?
Or did you try to save a buck and just buy something off the Internet?

A lot of people think that RMS should be just like M$ Word or Excel or a
toaster. Its NOT and never will be!! That's why you should buy the
products from a Certified RMS reseller. Make sure to get referrals and call
or go see them. We spend a lot of time and money to become trained
resellers. Don't forget that we have to pay for M$ support too! If the
resellers are worth their salt, they should already know what works and what
doesn't.

But on the other side, RMS is not the end all for POS software and doesn't
work in some situations. RMS is a good base package, but may require some
customization or add-ons for your store. Again a good RMS reseller, will
come out and evaluate your situation and see if it works for you. But you
must be able to tell the person exactly what is required for your business.

Understand though that we have to make a profit too, like yourselves. Just
because they were in your store for an hour, which you may or may not pay
for, they may spend 2-5 hours determining the soft and hardware requirements
for your store. Again, be prepared to pay for their time.

Another issue is training, sure you can fumble around and try to learn it
yourself. Why not spend a little more for training so that you aren't
frustrated with the program. Just look at the number of basic questions
here that are repeated every couple of weeks here on this newsgroup. Most
are already answered in the Help files. When you purchased RMS, you should
have purchased the Standard A plan for maintenance and support. Have many of
you sat through the on-line training that you paid for? You get 2 licenses
for online RMS training on the CustomerSource website.

Unfortunately there are the bad apples out their that pass their tests,
create a website, sell the product for $10 over cost and then "Make it up in
volume". Of course, they last about a year.

Here's a test. Get your most recent yellow pages, turn to the computer
dealers pages and at random, call 10 of them. At least 5 will be out of
business.

--
*
I completely agree with Larry about "the PAIN", as I've been a suffering
customer.

I wasn't aware that this software is not made "ready-to-use" by and end
users. I bought a Zebra printer for about 300 a year ago, and they are
spending more time than MS helping me with technical problem trying to print
tags. MS had already charged some 230 for annual support and 65 for
incident
support.

No problem has been resolved by MS!....

Can I resell the software since I can't return it?.....
 
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J

Jeff

Kay,

You agreed to the EULA when you installed the program. That was part of the
agreement. You have to understand that 99.999% of software is licensed, you
don't own it. You pay for the license to use it.

--
*

Are you sure this practice is legal? It's like buying a house and the
builder tells you that he's selling you a lisence to live there. You either
move and abandon or stay because you cannot sell untill you died!....

Kay
 
K

kay

Jeff,

I bought the Zebra printer and used it with ICE software for a few years.
But ICE was a little slow once the database started to build up. I was
anxious to switch, trusting MS a little too much and didn't test a trial
version, only watched a demonstration.

I won't go into the lengthy process of this "partnership" dealing with this
"piece of art" system. As a buyer and business person, it's natural I tried
to cut cost. Learning bout the system with $5K is better than learning about
it with $30K. In the end, MSRMS is what it is, new, dynamic, fast and
utterly flawed.

As for the Zebra, there is one template already designed for the 2X4 label.
I already made it work and got it to print. The problem is that I don't know
how to rewrite the code using EPL to print another size. Avery labels are
too expensive for my business and requires double work because I still have
to put them on the hang tags.

Curiously, it already cost me the annual fee and the $65 incident fee, and
there is still no solution. What do you think should cost for a partner to
get this to work?

I actually don't know anything about the 2 licenses for online training that
came with it. I got no information except for 2 links, one to this site and
the other to customer source, but the information was so overwhelming and
clustered, mostly about how to pay for more services. I still don't know
what the support is with that annual fee except for the articles on the site,
which seemed to show up only recently.

I noticed that Customer Source just posted the way to generate gift
receipt, very recently. I will try that. This is a basic feature that took
two years to come out?....I don't understand how other retailers, who bought
when the software first came out, could stand this!....You don't need a third
vendor to customize this very basic function. Every retailer needs
it!...With all due respect, I prefer to send any extra money I can save to
Africa or New Orleans!....

Mr. Bill Gates has been pouring his money into Africa anyway. Perhaps I
should just suffer a little hypocrisy to help him out in this highly moral
endeavor!

As for license fee, a matter of principle, if you can transfer a car, a
lease, a property ownership, why not a license when you no longer use it?...
 
J

Jeff

Kay,

Actually RMS is about 4-5 years old. M$ purchased the company (SMS) that had
placed 1st in the M$ sponsored RAD awards two years running. SMS' older
product, QuickSell 2000, the base for this product, is even older.

RMS has lots of minor flaws, strangeness and sometimes baffling logic, but
this issue isn't even close to any of them. I'm really curious that you
call RMS flawed. Why, because you can't print a label from an unsupported,
label printer that you didn't test before purchasing? Why don't you call
Zebra and tell them their printer is flawed because they didn't create a
label to your specs that works with every POS program? While you're at it,
ask them why did they create a printer that only works with the printer's
special, built-in EPL language. Have you asked _them_ to create the label
for you? Have you tried finding a newsgroup that talks about using and
programming the Zebra printer? http://tinyurl.com/d8rru

Having someone create a label for you, depending on your needs and if the
programmer is familiar with EPL and RMS, 1/2 to 1 hour of time, max. Here
are the 2 KB articles they would need; http://tinyurl.com/7jntg (this
describes how to create & edit the Zebra label) and http://tinyurl.com/9vlzq
(this gives the list of variables available to print on the label) They
would also need to have a Zebra printer to test on.

I don't know what the $65 fee was about, but if you contact M$ support they
will charge you. By paying the annual fee, it gives you discounts for their
support, described in the link below.

The annual fee gives you access the CustomerSource website, that includes
this ng, 2 user training sessions, access to M$ customized reports and
receipt templates, discounts on M$ technical support, and most importantly,
it gives you all updates to the program for the year. You can read about it
here. http://tinyurl.com/appol and also read the .PDF file that linked on
the right side in the download section.

The gift receipt was posted in March of 2004, (almost 2 years ago) a month
after that page was created. It was available before, it was just hard to
find until they organized that section better. 4th from bottom;
http://tinyurl.com/4gdbu

You OWN a car or property, you can transfer it to anyone you want. A
license to use is NOT ownership!
--
*
Jeff,

I bought the Zebra printer and used it with ICE software for a few years.
But ICE was a little slow once the database started to build up. I was
anxious to switch, trusting MS a little too much and didn't test a trial
version, only watched a demonstration.

I won't go into the lengthy process of this "partnership" dealing with this
"piece of art" system. As a buyer and business person, it's natural I tried
to cut cost. Learning bout the system with $5K is better than learning
about
it with $30K. In the end, MSRMS is what it is, new, dynamic, fast and
utterly flawed.

As for the Zebra, there is one template already designed for the 2X4 label.
I already made it work and got it to print. The problem is that I don't
know
how to rewrite the code using EPL to print another size. Avery labels are
too expensive for my business and requires double work because I still have
to put them on the hang tags.

Curiously, it already cost me the annual fee and the $65 incident fee, and
there is still no solution. What do you think should cost for a partner to
get this to work?

I actually don't know anything about the 2 licenses for online training that
came with it. I got no information except for 2 links, one to this site and
the other to customer source, but the information was so overwhelming and
clustered, mostly about how to pay for more services. I still don't know
what the support is with that annual fee except for the articles on the
site,
which seemed to show up only recently.

I noticed that Customer Source just posted the way to generate gift
receipt, very recently. I will try that. This is a basic feature that took
two years to come out?....I don't understand how other retailers, who bought
when the software first came out, could stand this!....You don't need a
third
vendor to customize this very basic function. Every retailer needs
it!...With all due respect, I prefer to send any extra money I can save to
Africa or New Orleans!....

Mr. Bill Gates has been pouring his money into Africa anyway. Perhaps I
should just suffer a little hypocrisy to help him out in this highly moral
endeavor!

As for license fee, a matter of principle, if you can transfer a car, a
lease, a property ownership, why not a license when you no longer use it?...
 
M

Mark

Why did you spend anything at all if you weren't sure what you wanted or what
the software could do? The RMS demo CD works for 45 days I think. You could
have tried everything you are complaining about now without spending a dime.

We bought the ecourse and paid for training and installation. That got us up
and running pretty quick. RMS doesn't do everything we want it to yet, but it
runs circles around our old POS sofware.

We don't have a Zebra printer so I can't help you much there. What about
installing the Windows driver for the printer and designing the label in
Label Designer? If you can't get that to work and aren't willing to pay
someone who can, buy another printer and move on.

Pardon me for being blunt, but I think you go what you paid for. As a buyer
and business person you need to fess up and admit you are not a POS expert.
If you really wanted to save money doing everything yourself, the demo CD
would have answered your questions without the investment.

We never had much need for gift receipts but maybe that's because our old
software didn't print them either. If anyone asks for one now we tell them to
cut off the bottom portion of the receipt where the barcode prints. That's
all you need to process a return. That is also where we put our return policy
and store name. Maybe that won't work for you but it doesn't require any
customization either.
 
K

kay

Mark,

Your business seems to need so little, why bother to pay for this program at
all? Even without support, it's not cheap. I know a free one that works
better for what you are happy with!....
 
K

kay

Jeff,

thanks for the links. I'll try to find time to read more of them.

I didn't know the RMS has been that old.

I was told the zebra printer would work. As mentioned, the Zebra label was
part of the template list preset in the RMS, but it's only set for a 4X2
label. I am in contact with Zebra, will see how much they can help......

When I first posted my questions here, at least two people, who were
seemingly consultants/resellers assured me that the Zebra worked for others.
I'm the only one who couldn't get it right.

I don't understand why you said the Zebra is unsupported.

I also don't understand why several of you keep accusing me of not wanting
to pay.

My question is, how much will it cost to get this to work?...

Technical support advised that they are only familiar with ZPL and not EPL.
Zebra had to refer me to someone who knows both ZPL and EPL to work on a
translation.....

SO, WILL IT WORK OR NOT IF I AM WILLING TO PAY YOU WHATEVER PRICE YOU ASK ON
TOP OF THE LICENSE FEE AND THE MS TECH SUPPORT?.....

I told you that it is not about buying a new printer. It is about the cost
of labels and the double work I have to do to make hang tags. I need to
print hundreds of tags each week. There aren't that many hang tag options
available out there!.....

Hang tags that come on a page are very expensive, and I have to order them
from Canada. There isn't an American vendor I could find.

I am not here to vent. I want to find solutions. Isn't that better for
everyone, especially those who are evaluating this software?

I have family members, friends and neighbors in retail. They're waiting for
me to tell them how this system work. Imagine my recomendation at the
moment!....

It is really to your benefit to be more professional about this. Most
unhappy customers dont spend this much time.

As a person who was trained in Computer programming in college, though I am
not working in this field, I personally like to try to make it work before
moving on.

How do you assume that my time is cheaper than yours and that I am not
paying?... :=)
 
J

Jeff

Kay,

You said earlier that you used ICE. Did the same hang tag that you want to
use now, print properly in ICE? If you still have access ICE, the hang tag
label file should still be there. Post it here on the ng and we (the ng
collectively) can see if we can change it for RMS.

You say you buy the hang tag from a Canadian outfit, can you the give us
part number and a website so we can get the dimensions of the label?

The printer will work, but as you have found, RMS will not print every label
size available for Zebra without customization. You or someone else must
create the label file for the specific label that you want. A sample Zebra
label file was included with RMS to use as a template for you or someone
else to modify, in addition to the KB articles I sent links to you earlier.

--
*
Jeff,

thanks for the links. I'll try to find time to read more of them.

I didn't know the RMS has been that old.

I was told the zebra printer would work. As mentioned, the Zebra label was
part of the template list preset in the RMS, but it's only set for a 4X2
label. I am in contact with Zebra, will see how much they can help......

When I first posted my questions here, at least two people, who were
seemingly consultants/resellers assured me that the Zebra worked for others.
I'm the only one who couldn't get it right.

I don't understand why you said the Zebra is unsupported.

I also don't understand why several of you keep accusing me of not wanting
to pay.

My question is, how much will it cost to get this to work?...

Technical support advised that they are only familiar with ZPL and not EPL.
Zebra had to refer me to someone who knows both ZPL and EPL to work on a
translation.....

SO, WILL IT WORK OR NOT IF I AM WILLING TO PAY YOU WHATEVER PRICE YOU ASK ON
TOP OF THE LICENSE FEE AND THE MS TECH SUPPORT?.....

I told you that it is not about buying a new printer. It is about the cost
of labels and the double work I have to do to make hang tags. I need to
print hundreds of tags each week. There aren't that many hang tag options
available out there!.....

Hang tags that come on a page are very expensive, and I have to order them
from Canada. There isn't an American vendor I could find.

I am not here to vent. I want to find solutions. Isn't that better for
everyone, especially those who are evaluating this software?

I have family members, friends and neighbors in retail. They're waiting for
me to tell them how this system work. Imagine my recomendation at the
moment!....

It is really to your benefit to be more professional about this. Most
unhappy customers dont spend this much time.

As a person who was trained in Computer programming in college, though I am
not working in this field, I personally like to try to make it work before
moving on.

How do you assume that my time is cheaper than yours and that I am not
paying?... :=)
 
M

Masta T

Boy oh boy what a cluster. Hook up with a good partner near you Kay. The
money you spend on training and what not will pay you back down the road in
the fact you will have more knowledge faster and be happier with the system.
Your learning curve will accelerate and so will your skill and ability to
use the system as intended to run your store. BTW, I had never seen EPL or
a Zebra (except in a Zoo), and I had one working and printing 3 new labels I
created in less than and hour. But I have been in POS sales/support 15 long
years...so to me it was like riding a new kind of bike, a bit different, but
still a bike all the same.

And Larry, I don't know what your even talking about. I have seen many
add-on loyalty programs, just because the system does not work like "you"
want it to, does not mean it won't work for anyone else. You really don't
point to any "bug" that prevents a normal customer from using the system to
ring up sales, only things you can't "modify" to your satisfaction. The
system was obviously not written to your specifications.

The software has a demo version as many mention. If you failed to try that
first then whom is to blame?

Shame on the people that sell this to un-assuming customers with out selling
training. Shame on those who sell this software and tell end users they can
do it all by themselves (most can not!).

Mostly, best of luck to you guys. Get a good partner, let them train you,
pay them for their time and happy reselling!

m t

kay said:
Mark,

Your business seems to need so little, why bother to pay for this program
at
all? Even without support, it's not cheap. I know a free one that works
better for what you are happy with!....

Mark said:
Why did you spend anything at all if you weren't sure what you wanted or
what
the software could do? The RMS demo CD works for 45 days I think. You
could
have tried everything you are complaining about now without spending a
dime.

We bought the ecourse and paid for training and installation. That got us
up
and running pretty quick. RMS doesn't do everything we want it to yet,
but it
runs circles around our old POS sofware.

We don't have a Zebra printer so I can't help you much there. What about
installing the Windows driver for the printer and designing the label in
Label Designer? If you can't get that to work and aren't willing to pay
someone who can, buy another printer and move on.

Pardon me for being blunt, but I think you go what you paid for. As a
buyer
and business person you need to fess up and admit you are not a POS
expert.
If you really wanted to save money doing everything yourself, the demo CD
would have answered your questions without the investment.

We never had much need for gift receipts but maybe that's because our old
software didn't print them either. If anyone asks for one now we tell
them to
cut off the bottom portion of the receipt where the barcode prints.
That's
all you need to process a return. That is also where we put our return
policy
and store name. Maybe that won't work for you but it doesn't require any
customization either.

kay said:
Jeff,

I bought the Zebra printer and used it with ICE software for a few
years.
But ICE was a little slow once the database started to build up. I was
anxious to switch, trusting MS a little too much and didn't test a
trial
version, only watched a demonstration.

I won't go into the lengthy process of this "partnership" dealing with
this
"piece of art" system. As a buyer and business person, it's natural I
tried
to cut cost. Learning bout the system with $5K is better than learning
about
it with $30K. In the end, MSRMS is what it is, new, dynamic, fast and
utterly flawed.

As for the Zebra, there is one template already designed for the 2X4
label.
I already made it work and got it to print. The problem is that I
don't know
how to rewrite the code using EPL to print another size. Avery labels
are
too expensive for my business and requires double work because I still
have
to put them on the hang tags.

Curiously, it already cost me the annual fee and the $65 incident fee,
and
there is still no solution. What do you think should cost for a
partner to
get this to work?

I actually don't know anything about the 2 licenses for online training
that
came with it. I got no information except for 2 links, one to this
site and
the other to customer source, but the information was so overwhelming
and
clustered, mostly about how to pay for more services. I still don't
know
what the support is with that annual fee except for the articles on the
site,
which seemed to show up only recently.

I noticed that Customer Source just posted the way to generate gift
receipt, very recently. I will try that. This is a basic feature that
took
two years to come out?....I don't understand how other retailers, who
bought
when the software first came out, could stand this!....You don't need a
third
vendor to customize this very basic function. Every retailer needs
it!...With all due respect, I prefer to send any extra money I can save
to
Africa or New Orleans!....

Mr. Bill Gates has been pouring his money into Africa anyway. Perhaps
I
should just suffer a little hypocrisy to help him out in this highly
moral
endeavor!

As for license fee, a matter of principle, if you can transfer a car, a
lease, a property ownership, why not a license when you no longer use
it?...


:

Kay and others,

Kay, two questions. First, did you look to see if the printer was on
the
approved hardware list before you purchased the printer? Second, did
you go
back the RMS reseller and tell him to fix the printer issue or take
it back?
Or did you try to save a buck and just buy something off the
Internet?

A lot of people think that RMS should be just like M$ Word or Excel
or a
toaster. Its NOT and never will be!! That's why you should buy the
products from a Certified RMS reseller. Make sure to get referrals
and call
or go see them. We spend a lot of time and money to become trained
resellers. Don't forget that we have to pay for M$ support too! If
the
resellers are worth their salt, they should already know what works
and what
doesn't.

But on the other side, RMS is not the end all for POS software and
doesn't
work in some situations. RMS is a good base package, but may require
some
customization or add-ons for your store. Again a good RMS reseller,
will
come out and evaluate your situation and see if it works for you.
But you
must be able to tell the person exactly what is required for your
business.

Understand though that we have to make a profit too, like yourselves.
Just
because they were in your store for an hour, which you may or may not
pay
for, they may spend 2-5 hours determining the soft and hardware
requirements
for your store. Again, be prepared to pay for their time.

Another issue is training, sure you can fumble around and try to
learn it
yourself. Why not spend a little more for training so that you
aren't
frustrated with the program. Just look at the number of basic
questions
here that are repeated every couple of weeks here on this newsgroup.
Most
are already answered in the Help files. When you purchased RMS, you
should
have purchased the Standard A plan for maintenance and support. Have
many of
you sat through the on-line training that you paid for? You get 2
licenses
for online RMS training on the CustomerSource website.

Unfortunately there are the bad apples out their that pass their
tests,
create a website, sell the product for $10 over cost and then "Make
it up in
volume". Of course, they last about a year.

Here's a test. Get your most recent yellow pages, turn to the
computer
dealers pages and at random, call 10 of them. At least 5 will be out
of
business.

--
*
I completely agree with Larry about "the PAIN", as I've been a
suffering
customer.

I wasn't aware that this software is not made "ready-to-use" by and
end
users. I bought a Zebra printer for about 300 a year ago, and they
are
spending more time than MS helping me with technical problem trying
to print
tags. MS had already charged some 230 for annual support and 65 for
incident
support.

No problem has been resolved by MS!....

Can I resell the software since I can't return it?.....



:

Yes, you are right, not all of the items I have listed are bugs,
but half
of
them are (#1 and #4). And they are pretty big bugs at that. And
in my
opinion, #1 is pretty close to a showstopper for a good chunk of
the
partner
network for all but the most basic customization scenarios.

I'm not trying to bash MS. I was an employee for 4 1/2 years in
the MBS
division after all (the divison responsible for RMS btw). My only
complaint
concerns their lack of truly supporting their customers with fixes
such as
these. Believe me, 90% of the time, the standard response from MS
is
"well
fix it in the next version" without truly understanding the pain
that the
current version is causing to customers.



"Glenn Adams [MVP - Retail Mgmt]" <glenn@nospam.tibercreek.com>
wrote in
message Callin all of those "Bugs" seems a bit extreme to me. Just
because you
don't agree with design decisions doesn't make them bugs;
however, I
agree
that it would be really nice to have hooks to more events. I
suspect
things will get worse before they get better, but we'll have to
wait &
see
what turns up in the next major release.

Consider using a Begin Tender hook to examine all of the
Transaction
Entires after they have been added or modified.

--

----------------------------------------------
Please DO NOT respond to me directly but post all responses here
in the
newsgroup so that all can share the information

The most glaring bugs regarding hooks are specifically:

1. AddItem hook bugs. (screen does not refresh correctly if line
items
are added/changed inside the hook) THIS IS A HUGE BUG FOR US
and makes
RMS mostly useless.

2. Lack of a hook when a transaction entry changes. AddItem
hook works
fine for adding an item, but we need an intelligent way to
detect when
an
entry changes (specifically to the quantity)

3. Lack of a hook to determine when a transaction entry is
removed.

4. The refresh hook gets called several times (not consitently I
might
add) when items are added/changed. There should be some sort of
"Calculate" hook that is called once each time the order is
recalculated
regardless of screen refresh status

With the above bugs, it is almost impossible to create discount
or
loyalty programs that work consistently or with 100% accuracy.


Has Microsoft made any publicly available announcements
regarding the
future of RMS?

What I am interested in is what is the timeline for a new
version of
this software (if any?) and what are the planned enhancements?

They're pretty tight lipped about it. It's been over 2 years
since
RMS
v1.2 was released, and POS v1.0 came out recently, so I'm
hoping that
they will move the new interface over to RMS and then release
RMS
v2.0.


Specifically what I am looking for is any indication of if MS
plans
to
fix the broken (and VERY buggy) implementation of custom
hooks.
Right
now custom hooks are mostly useless for all but the most basic
scenarios.

Does anyone have any insight? Right now, we simply cannot get
our
custom software to work with RMS so we are forced to use
solutions
from
other parties. This really sucks because we were hoping to
advertise
our solution as a complete end-to-end microsoft solution, but
we
simply
cannot do that right now.

Any examples? I haven't run across any bugs with the hooks
themselves,
just bugs with QSRules.


As it stands, it seems to reason that fixing RMS is a low
priority
for
MS given the lack of communication from MS.

Agreed.


Am I wrong?

I hope not.
 
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J

Jason Hunt

Software licenses are just that: a license. A non-transferrable license.
All software is like that, unless you purchase the complete rights to the
source code and copyright.

You cannot compare software to any a house, because you do not own the
software. You only own a license to run the software.

Software is intangible, which makes it difficult to compare to concrete
things such a house.
 

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