e-Newsletter, January 4, 2000

Roundtable Software E-Mail Newsletter Issue #3, January 4, 2000

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Happy New Year Roundtable Software Advantage Accounting System Users and Retailers!

Y2K Compliance? You Better Believe It!

Despite the many, many hours of testing for Y2K compliance in version 3.0 of the Roundtable Software Advantage Accounting System, we have always been aware that there's the very slim possibility that we've overlooked something. However, such fears have indeed proved to be unfounded so far. We have had exactly one bug reported relating to Y2K compliance and it is so minor as to be almost a relief that at least somebody found something!

In File Maintenance, when you do a search and your Y2K separator is set to 2, the program will not let you pass through a 00.00.00 date field without typing 0. Not exactly earthshaking but of course we will take care of that for the release coming later this month.

Other than this one extremely minor problem, all our Y2K calls so far have been mostly to do with the expected Y2K jitters - mostly people who haven't gotten used to the date separators and get confused between centuries.

W-2s, 1099s and Magnetic Media Reporting

Please be aware that the current software (version 3) is not fully set up to properly process 1999/2000 W-2s. Although there have been no major change to the W-2s in the past few years, we discovered that Armor hadn't been updating their W-2 and MMRS functionality for something like the last 4 years.

The Problems

W-2 : these print substantially correctly in version 3 except that a few fields need to be moved around because the format of the W-2 has changed in the last few years. Laser form formats were programmed very badly by Armor and we could not get them to line up with our test forms.

1099s : Same as W-2s - they print okay but fields need to be moved to line up with current forms. Again, the laser forms could not be made to line up.

Magnetic Media Reporting - the federal government has made substantial revisions to magnetic media reporting, some of which are brand new for 1999 reporting. The current software does not conform to these new standards (obviously it was released before they came out) and we very vigorously recommend that you do not try to do a MM submission with the current software.

The Solutions

W-2/1099 - the upcoming release in mid-January will include improved report formats for both of these forms, including laser forms that work properly. Our recommendation is to wait for the new release if possible (remember you don't have to issue these forms until the end of January), otherwise use dot matrix forms and move the fields around with System Administrator program 11 to conform to current formats.

Magnetic Media Reporting - due to the huge changes in magnetic media reporting, we will not be releasing a new version of MMRS in mid-January with the rest of the release. We will release the new version of MMRS at the end of January - for those of you buying the January upgrade, this will be sent free of charge when it is ready. DO NOT use current or previous versions of MMRS - they will be rejected by the federal government.

Peer-to-Peer Networking and the Roundtable Software Advantage Accounting System

If you are running the Roundtable Software Advantage Accounting System on a peer-to-peer network, it can be a bit confusing to set it up to run on both the workstations and the server. The problem is that what the workstations see as one drive letter is a different drive letter on the server.

It's surprisingly easy to set up for this situation, though. Some folks set up drive substitutions, but that's more work than is really necessary. The set up requires three steps:

1. If you are running through Windows, make sure that the working directory listed in the Properties box for the Roundtable Software Advantage Accounting System icon shows the PROGS directory with the appropriate drive letter. Set the drive letter to the local drive on the server, the network drive on the workstations. If you run under straight DOS, create a batch file that runs the package being sure to switch to the proper drive and directory before running ADV.

2. Set the APROGS, AFILES and AUSER variables to have an unqualified path - what I mean by that is that you just list the directories without a drive letter on the front.

3. Set all paths in SA program 6 to also have unqualified paths.

Let's do an example to make this a little clearer. Let's say my server has the Roundtable Software Advantage Accounting System on drive C: in the ADV directory. My workstations have that drive mapped as their F: drive.

STEP 1: On each workstation, set the working directory for the program's icon to F:\ADV\PROGS. On the server, set the working directory to C:\ADV\PROGS. By the way, the icon file (ADV.ICO) should be on the local drive so that the workstations don't interfere with each other.

STEP 2: Whether you set the APROGS, AUSER and AFILES environment variables in the AUTOEXEC.BAT or in a batch file that starts the program, set each variable to have a just the path, not a drive letter. In our example we'd set them to:


STEP 3: In program 6 of the System Administrator module, set the data paths to \ADV\DATA\ for all modules and all companies. If you have some data files in separate directories set these appropriately.

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