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ctive Manager is a database application. Information about your club operations is stored in your own private database on an Λctiv8 server, accessible only to you. This data is held in a number of tables, one table for each kind of data in the system. To support your business operations, Manager reads and writes data in these tables as needed. For example, a club sales transaction with a customer combines data from the Customer, Inventory, Package, Transaction, and Rule tables, among others. To use the system effectively, youʼll always need to understand what kind of data youʼre working with and where to look for it.
Database tables are organized in the familiar form of rows and columns:
Each row holds the information for a single record, such as a customer, a single transaction, or as here, an inventory item. Across each row, the columns (called fields) contain the individual pieces of data that make up a record — for example, a customerʼs name and contact information, or the number of bottles purchased in a transaction, the amount paid, and where they were shipped.
Manager displays these tables in the form of data lists. You view the list for any table by clicking its icon on the data access bar at the left side of the Manager window (or by choosing from the application menus). (Note: a few lists can only be opened from the menu.)
The data list is the key to working with Manager: it lets you sort and view the data in many different ways. You display the exact records youʼre looking for by using the search functions. Once youʼve narrowed the list to the records you need, you can view, edit, or delete existing records or add new ones. In addition, from the data list you can perform most routine club-management operations by using commands on the menus.
You can have multiple list windows open at any time, and you can minimize or restore them individually. To make the open windows easier to work with, you can arrange them neatly by choosing Cascade or Tile from the Window menu. To minimize all windows, choose Minimize All, and to restore them to the screen, choose Restore All.
For example, itʼs often helpful to leave the Job Queue list open, so that you can monitor the progress of actions you take.
Displaying and sorting the list
The status bar at the top of each list shows which view is active and the total number of records in the list. You can set it to include also the name of the current saved search and the ID number of a single selected record: right-click on the status bar and select an option.
You can rearrange the columns in the list by dragging them with the mouse. To sort a list by the values in any column, click the header at the top of that column; click again to reverse the sort direction. For more advanced sorting options, choose Customize Sort from the View menu (or right-click the status bar). To adjust the width of any column, place the cursor over the right edge of the column header, then click and drag the border to the left or right. (Or double-click to fit the longest field in the column.) Manager remembers all these settings the next time you open the same view of this list.
To update the list, click the Refresh Search button on the tool bar.
Using the Quick Search list
When the Show Search Name option is on, you can choose any of the built-in saved searches from the drop-down list in the Search Name field. This way, you can perform many common search operations in Manager without opening the Search dialog.
Note: If the Search Name list doesnʼt display all the saved searches, open the Search dialog for the list and make sure the Shared box is checked.
For more on searching, see Finding data records.
The main tool bar
When you have a data list open, a number of icons appear on Managerʼs main tool bar:
- New Record, Open Record, Delete Record, Select All Records: perform operations on items in the list (see Adding and deleting records)
- Print Selected, Print Preview Selected, Email Selected, Export Selected to Excel: functions for viewing and formatting list reports
- Open Search, Open Change Log, Refresh Search, Stop Search: options for searching the list
The remaining controls are for tiling open windows in the workspace, opening the online Userʼs Guide, and visiting your company web site.
Tip: You can also get help on a data list by pressing F1.
List views and reports
Most database records contain many columns of information, more than can fit within the list window. To filter the display to show only the columns you need to see, choose one of the predefined views for each list from the View menu (or the View Name drop-down list). For example, for the Customer list, there are views to show the columns related to credit card or shipping details, membership duration, or transaction history, among many others. A Manager administrator can define additional views for each list to meet your needs, or remove views you donʼt use.
If you find that a list isnít showing all the data you expect, check the View menu to be sure you havenít selected one of these specialized views.
Data list views are especially useful for creating reports which you can print, e-mail, or export to a spreadsheet file. Many views create preformatted reports for specific purposes, for example printing sheets of address labels.
Together with the Quick Search feature, list views make displaying a customized report a simple operation:
Select a saved search.
Choose a view.
The Actions menu
In most data lists, the Actions menu provides a number of commands that you can execute to perform tasks related to the associated list. For example, in the Customer list, you can use Actions commands to retrieve sales tax codes, validate mailing and shipping addresses, send template-based or custom e-mail, create selections and sales transactions, and other actions. The menu is different in each list; see the corresponding help topic for each list for details.
If no specific commands are available for a list, the Actions menu doesnʼt appear.
Behind the scenes: the Job Queue
The database tables that are displayed in the data lists contain many thousands of records; keeping them up to date and properly linked is a full-time job. This work is performed by a large number of processes, or server jobs. You can view these tasks and monitor their progress in a special list called the Job Queue.