Help Resource Center :: Remote Data Entry



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Remote Data Entry

Remote data entry is based on using alphanumeric numbers, whether they contain alpha characters or not. All installations must be set to Use Alpha Record Code in Tools > Options. This can also be set on the SKU tab.  

The remote computer creates new records for export based on a Prefix, Suffix and the number of digits in between. So if you want 60001 to be the starting Rec# for the remote machine then you would do a Prefix of 6 with 4 digits, and nothing in the Suffix.  

If you want alpha codes before and/or after then you set the Prefix/Suffix to contain what you want. These are fixed letters, they will show up for each new record. The only increment is the last numerical digit in between. A60001M, A60002B, etc.  

Install the full version of BookTrakker on each remote computer. Open BookTrakker after installation, then do Tools > Options > Records and click Delete Sample Database at the bottom. (You can hold off doing this if you want to show the remote data entry operator what records look like, but make sure you delete the Sample database before getting started)  

GrabIt does not work with the Transfer database, so you cannot use it for Remote data entry. ISBN/ASIN Lookup in BookTrakker does work. 

CAVEAT: Before doing large scale data entry test with a couple of records to make sure your setup is working.

BEST PRACTICE: Make copies of the Transfer files before importing into the Master Database.

Initial Setup Master Computer  

 1. Do Tools > Options > SKU

 2. Check the box for Data Merge Mode/Alpha Record Code.

 3. Make sure Default Database is set for Inventory

 4. Do  Record_Code (SKU) Setup for the master computer (See (SKU) Setup below)

 

Initial Setup Remote Computer  

 1. Do Tools > Options > SKU

 2. Check the box for Data Merge Mode/Alpha Record Code.

 3. Set Default Database to Transfer

 4. Set Record_Code (SKU) Setup for the Remote computer. (See (SKU) Setup below)

 5. Click OK. Click Yes. Open BookTrakker.

 

(SKU) Setup  

Setting up the SKU is done so the records you import from remote data entry do not overwrite those in the master database. If you are starting from scratch then first you need to determine how many records might be entered on the master computer, then set the SKU Setup on the remote to account for that.  

The numeric part of the Prefix is just a starting number. It increases as the number of records exceeds the original starting number. If the Prefix is 2 and digits are 4 then the first number would be 20001 and so on. This sets the Next book ID on the remote to 20001.  

Example for Numeric numbers: You decide that 20000 records will be entered on the master computer over the next five years, so you want the remote to start with 20001. So do Tools > Options > SKU on the remote computer and set the Prefix to 2 and the Digits to 4. When you do a New Record 20001 will be the first record in the Transfer database, followed by 20002, 20003, etc.  

Example for Alphanumeric numbers: You decide that 20000 records will be entered on the master computer over the next five years, so you want the remote to start with 20001. So do Tools > Options > SKU on the remote computer and set the Prefix to A2 and the Digits to 4. When you do a New Record A20001 will be the first record in the Transfer database, followed by A20002, A20003, etc. If you want a Suffix then add that as well. 1 will be added to the numeric portion for each New Record.  

If you are starting from a preexisting master database then you modify the above instructions. Suppose your last record is 45000 in your master database and you think you need a 20000 record buffer for your own data entry. On the remote database you need to set the SKU to a Prefix of 65 and Digits to 3. The first New Record on the remote would be 65001.  

If you have more than one remote database entry user then repeat but allow for another 20000 records higher for the next station, and so on. (You can use any quantity of New Records you want, we picked 20000 for purposes of illustration)  

Important: If you are starting the master computer with no records in the database then you need to do at least one New Record in the master database to establish the Next Book ID for that installation of BookTrakker. This will prevent the import of remote records from setting the Next Book ID for this computer.  

Setup for Import, master database.  

1. Do Tools > Options

2. At the bottom set Transfer Path In to the folder where you are going to copy the export file from the remote. You can use one of the     folders inside the BTPro folder or create your own. Click the yellow folder button to select the folder. If you want UserExport to be the source folder for the imported records then you would click the yellow button across from Transfer Path In and scroll down to the UserExport folder. Double click the folder, then click OK. Transfer Path In will now read C:\BTPro\UserExport\.  

You can also set the Transfer Path In to the USB/Memory stick drive plugged into the USB port in your computer. This is the preferred method if the computers are not connected. If you have a computer network but have not purchased the Network version of BookTrakker then you can set Transfer Path In/Out to be the same folder for both computers. (Folder X on the Remote C drive, Folder X on the Master Z:\\C drive. C:\X and Z:\C\X)

Setup for Export, remote database.  

1. Do Tools > Options

2. At the bottom set Transfer Path Out to the folder where you are going to copy the export file from the remote. You can use one of the     folders inside the BTPro folder or create your own. Click the yellow folder button to select the folder. If you want UserExport to be the destination folder for the exported records then you would click the yellow button across from Transfer Path Out and scroll down to the UserExport folder. Double click the folder, then click OK. Transfer Path Out will now read C:\BTPro\UserExport\.

You can also set the Transfer Path Out to the USB/Memory stick drive plugged into the USB port in your computer. This is the preferred method if the computers are not connected. If you have a computer network but have not purchased the Network version of BookTrakker then you can set Transfer Path In/Out to be the same folder for both computers. (Folder X on the Remote C drive, Folder X on the Master Z:\\C drive. C:\X and Z:\C\X)

Operation: Remote  

Operation is driven from the remote computer, doing data entry in the Transfer database just like the main database, except that GrabIt does not work in the Transfer mode. Once data entry is done the user clicks on the Database menu item at the top, then Import/Export.  

Then click Send Transfer File Out button at the top. The file goes to wherever the remote computer has the Transfer File Out set to, as per instructions above. File name will be something like 2_Transfer_032811_0611. Close the Import/Export form on the remote to continue data entry.    

The last record will still be displayed in the Transfer Detail View screen as a reference to the last record created. Closing and reopening BookTrakker will clear the display.  

Operation: Master  

On the master computer the user opens BookTrakker, then clicks Database at the top, then Import/Export. Assuming the user populated the Transfer File In folder with the latest transfer file, or they are using a USB/Memory stick for the process, they should click the Load Transfer File In button. A window will open, titled Open. Select the file to import, click the Open button. You should get a message: File Load Successful!  

Next, click Unpack Transfer Database. You should get another success message. The new records will be imported into the Transfer database on the master computer. If you need to do further editing before importing into the main Inventory then click Database at the top, then Transfer.  

Edit the data as needed. Click done. If the Import/Export form is still visible then click Merge Transfer File to Main Database. This will add the records to the master Inventory file. You should get Database Merge Complete! Close the Import/Export form.  

Warning: There is a Delete button on the Transfer database Detail View form to delete the record you are on. This will not only delete the record but also the Rec#, and it will not be reused. Use this feature carefully.

 

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Last Modified:  March 02, 2016