Today we uploaded version 6.0.3 of Time Clock MTS. Changes made to this version are detailed below.
The Employee Enter Note screen has been updated to the modern UI standards used elsewhere in the software.
New settings added to allow customization of labels on the front screen of the software. Labels added Enter, Refresh, Clear, Tips, and Go. These labels can be adjusted on the Display Settings screen.
Changes made to about 20 screens to allow entry of non-English (such as cyrillic, Greek, Japanese and so on) characters allowing customization of the front screen of the software for non-English speaking countries.
Spent some time re-ordering the draw sequences on the front screen to stop flickering.
The column widths have been adjusted on the Daily Job Time Report so that the report prints on fewer pages.
The vertical scroll bar now displays correctly on the Edit Times screen if you have a long employee list.
The employee comments report now actually generates when you want it to.
Some of the tooltip popups on the Report Configuration and Data Export screens were wrong. This has now been fixed.
Cleaned up the initial values on the Sick Time and Vacation Accrual screens that were causing issues with some regional versions of Windows.
Fixed an issue with the data type of the dblApplyAutomaticBreakAfter column in the settings table. For some reason it was set to a text value rather than numeric. This was causing a type conversion error in some regional versions of Windows (in particular Norwegian).
Fixed the backend database data type of the dblApplyAutomaticBreakAfter column in the settings table.
The release of Version 6 of Time Clock MTS has gone reasonably smoothly but our users have thrown up a few problems that we’ve had to resolve with the release of Version 6.0.2 today. This minor release addresses these issues:
The first run routine of the Time Clock MTS Client software threw an error for our users. This has been fixed and it now asks you to connect to a data file as expected the first time it is run (see image below).
On the Edit Time screen an error was thrown if no Time Note was selected and the Edit Time Note button was clicked.
Fixed up some bad SQL that was being passed to SQL Server or MySQL. Only affected users of the Network PLUS Edition of the software.
Added some debugging to the Load Settings code to try to debug a regional issue for users of the software in Norway.
Today sees the release of Version 6 of Time Clock MTS, the culmination of what has been 6 months of work. You’ll only have to take a quick look at the new release of the software to understand how much has changed, the biggest areas being the user interface and the reporting engine.
The New Employee List
Every form and screen in Time Clock MTS has been upgraded to reflect the latest look and feel that you’re used to seeing in Windows 10 and Windows 8. I won’t bore you with the details but we’re talking about nearly 100 screens and nearly 10,000 screen components that have been improved. Additionally we’ve made just about every button, list, check box, drop down box and label bigger and easier to read, as well as using a clearer font. This makes the software much more pleasant to use on large, high resolution monitors. It’s also much easier for employees to use on touch screens, whether they have big 24” touch screens or are using a 10” screen on a Surface Pro tablet.
You’ll probably also notice that a lot more elements on Time Clock MTS screens provide more instant feedback to your actions. That’s because we’ve upgraded many components with more modern versions that provide you with more responsive interface.
The New Report Display
We bit the bullet here and tossed out the old report display and printing engine in Time Clock MTS and re-built it from scratch. The reports you’re used to are still there, but they are now all displayed in an attractive print preview screen which allows you to customize the look and feel of your reports. There are proper tables, grid-lines, headers, footers, and pretty much anything you’d expect to see. Reports can be emailed easily directly from within the software as PDF files or via various Excel formats. Reports can also be easily exported to PDF, HTML, RTF, Excel, CSV, Plain Text and to various image formats such as JPG and GIF..
The software registration key system has been overhauled. The need to enter the number of clients and employees has been removed and some smarts have been put in place to automatically fill in the registration screen if you’ve copied your registration keys from one of our emails. It certainly works more smoothly and will prevent a lot of frustration for users new and old who are trying to register their software. It should also stop the registration details being dropped from time to time as Windows rolls out major updates.
As is usual with any major version upgrade of Time Clock MTS any user with a current support contract or who has purchased it within the last 12 months is eligible for a free upgrade. You’ll receive an email explaining how to upgrade, or you can view this page for instructions. If you don’t have a current support contract you’re still eligible for a 40% upgrade discount, just contact us and we’ll give you an upgrade coupon.
There’s been a bunch of other things changed in the software that I won’t bother detailing in full here. You can read the full release notes here for more details. However, here’s a few key things that may be of interest:
The system used to get the time from our internet time server has been re-written a removed to an external component.
The Add Punch and Insert Missing Punch have been enhanced to allow for easier data entry.
Jobs can now be entered on the Bulk Add Time screen.
The size of text on the Employee List has been increased and an extra large text size option added.
The employee bulletin screen and all the logic behind it have been rebuilt. The way the screen worked before was, uh, interesting, now it’s a lot more logical.
After more than 6 months of work we’re ready to release version 6 of Time Clock MTS this Wednesday, 18 May. During the day we’ll be uploading the new version and updating our website to reflect the look and feel of the new software. On Thursday we’ll be emailing all existing users of Time Clock MTS explaining how they can upgrade and obtain a registration key for the new version. As usual, those users with a current support contract will be eligible for a free upgrade, while those who do not have a current support contract will get a discounted upgrade price.
We’ve got a blog post ready to go explaining all of the changes in the new version, the biggest of which is a complete overhaul of the reporting system. Here’s a video showing some of the changes you’re going to see in the time clock reporting areas of the software:
If you’re an existing user of Time Clock MTS using a version prior to Version 6 and you’re currently using Version 1, 2, 3 or 4 then there’s a warning you should keep in mind. If you’re currently using Time Clock MTS Version 5 you do not need to worry.
The first time you run Time Clock MTS after upgrading changes are made to YOUR time clock data. After the changes are made your time clock data cannot be used with earlier versions of the software.
Precaution Prior to Upgrading
Backup YOUR time clock database BEFORE upgrading. You can do this via the Time Clock MTS Tools menu or by speaking to your time clock administrator.
At least then if you decide that the latest version of our timeclock system is not for you then you can just downgrade to the earlier version and restore your time clock data backup if needed.
After Installing the Time Clock MTS Version 6 Upgrade
After you’ve installed the Time Clock MTS Version 6 Upgrade you’ll get one more chance to back out. The first time you run the software after upgrading you’ll see this screen:
Time Clock MTS Version 6 Upgrade Warning
I’ve Upgraded and Used Version 6 But I Want to Go Back To an Earlier Version
If you want to go back to an earlier version of Time Clock MTS (perhaps you saved your original installation files) then you’re going to have to restore the data backup you made BEFORE upgrading to Time Clock MTS Version 6. You did make a backup didn’t you? If you didn’t then your data file will simply not work in the earlier version.
But any data you’ve recorded in Time Clock MTS Version 6 while evaluating it will be lost.
Remember that WE DO NOT KEEP A COPY OF YOUR TIME CLOCK DATA so if you fail to backup your data prior to upgrading then you’re not going to be able to roll back to an earlier version.