Thread: The Big Switch
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Old 07-24-2002, 08:44 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Join Date: Jan 25 2000
Location: CT
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Hi Tammy:

Here is what Helios have listed as the mininum requirements in the V10 User Manual on the V10 CD distributed at the Vegas show.

XP would be included in the "higher" category. In the manual they make no specific reference to XP Home. Helios Tech Support have in the past stated that XP Home is not compatible with Helios, while we in fact know that it DOES work fine if properly installed as shown on the Solarsoft website and with the updated Crypto-Box drivers (likely not needed when V10 is installed - I would hope).

V10 was/is reported to include Web Based reporting to allow you to access your Helios Database for reporting from a remote location over the internet. When I visited the Helios office at the end of March 2002 it appeared that Helios may use the Personal Web Server within the Windows Operating System, this application (PWS) is NOT part of Windows XP Home - maybe that is why they have stated that XP Home will not work with Helios because it certainly does with V9.2.5 and V9.4

You can also ask Tech Support for further clarification on this, you will need to push past the standard automatic response you will likely get.

Helios V10 (as distributed at the Vegas show) has so many problems I have discontinued further testing until an additional update (after 10.0.45) is available.

I have not actually seen V8 installed on a XP machine but logically if you were to follow the instructions above on the Solarsoft site (HOWTO) it should install. HOWEVER, you will have a greater problem here - with V8 you need an Activation Code after installing V8 to get it out of Demo mode. Other users that have contacted Helios for this have been told that the company has had a change in ownership and that they no longer support V8 and that the user will have to update to V9.

Since you are still on V8, I assume you do not have the Software Maintenance Agreement in force (or you likely would have upgraded to V9 by now). If you do not, be prepared to be charged a penalty to reactivate your support to thereby get access to V9. The agreement form states that you will need to pay an enrollment fee of $299. PLUS $34.99 per month since your software maintenance was interrupted (all per location) - YES all those months that you did not have support, the agreement says you now have to pay them anyway to be reinstated. I am aware of situations in the past were all or some of this penalty was waived and I am also aware of situations were it was charged. You may be able to think of a way around that.

Tammy, you really will benefit from upgrading to V9.4 it is the most stable copy of Helios since the DOS days and MOST certainly more stable than V10.0.45 (be in NO hurry to upgrade to V10 - let others be the pioneers)

Your reference to "have to take it off the old computer before it will install on the new one" - that refers to V7 that came with authorized installs on the diskettes. V8 requires an Authorization Code that you got from Helios by phone and V9 requires a "Dongle" (copy protection device) that connects to the LPT1 port of your computer.

Whether you get V9 or V10 when you requested the demo is something that I am interested in as well - please let us know when you receive it.

If you were actually ordering the Dongle to install an operating copy of Helios at this point, to the best of my knowledge that would be V9. To date I am not aware of a V10 dongle being shipped. It was not shipped on Nov 9th as promised at the 2001 Nashville show, it was no shipped on the Monday following as promised at the Vegas show - and based on what I have seen in V10.0.45 it really should be a good while before it is still shippable.

Your T-Max Manager will need to connect to a serial port on your computer, so ensure you have at least one serial port. Your report printer using an USB port is excellent. If you also use a Receipt Printer it would connect to the LPT1 port through the Dongle.

With V9.4, Helios now uses a Timer Server, that allows any networked workstation to also control the T-Max Manager connected to the main computer in your salon.

All the Helios oriented software is included with V9.4 to allow you to network Helios.

First you need to create your Local Area Network between your computers and within Windows. It is suggest that you create this network using internal IP addresses (your Network Technician will know what that means and we will come back to this point later).

From this point on - technical info on actually setting up the LAN configuration within Helios on the Server and Workstation(s)

You then share the Helios Data Directory on your "server" and map that directory on each additional workstation as "F" drive. Then use the MultiUserSetup program in the Utilities Directory of the V9.4 CD to point the Data and Pictures (later if applicable) directory on each workstation to the "F" drive (thus the data directory on the server).

Finally on each workstation (after the above networking configuration is complete) go into the Systems Default Preferences and go to the Site Info tab.

You will need to add an additional System File for each Workstation - Edit System Files - you will see 0-Default. You could change the name Default to Server if you wish (not necessary) if you do the 0 record will appear to disappear after you save it - fear not it is still there (as long as you did not delete it (DO NOT delete it - BAD BAD BAD) if you close the maintenance box and go back into Edit System Files it will be visible again - just a little bug. OK now add record 2-Workstation 2 and save it. I normally ignore record # 1 or leave 0-Default alone and set up 1-Server. The point here is that later you will assign a Workstation Number and 0 is not valid.

The "Server" should remain set at System File 0-Default (or Server if you renamed it) or 1-Server, depending on your earlier decision. On the Server leave the Timer Server reflecting Server and set the Workstation # to 1.

On the Workstation (first one if more than one) change the System File to 2-Workstation 2. Change the Timer Server to Client and enter the internal IP Address assigned to Server (note you can use Computer Name but I have found that using the IP address approach is more reliable) - told you above we would come back to this. Now also set the Workstation Number to the appropriate valid in this case 2. Save the record.

If you have more than one additional Workstation the next one would be 3-Workstation 3.

Now on the Workstation(s) you have some additional work to do. Exit Helios and restart Helios (thus using the new Workstation System Record). You have three things you need to adjust on each Workstation that may (likely) not have copied properly from the Server/Default record.

1. The User Defined Field Names and Accumulator names may be back to those of the Demo Data - Go into Master Edit (if needed) and make them the same as on the Server Workstation.

2. The System Default Preferences may (likely) also be back to those from the Demo Data - ensure they are the same on the workstation as on the server EXCEPT for the differences on the site info tab that are appropriately different for this workstation.

You would have to have shared (on the Server) and installed (on the workstation) the appropriate printers in Windows to have them available on the Workstation. If you are using one Cash Drawer between the two computers you would also have to "Capture" the receipt printer (connected to the server) on the workstation as LPT1.

3. In the Equipment Preferences the Bed Types will need to be set as the are on the Server.

Tammy, where are you located - I do a fair amount of onsite travelling - if you are interested I would be please to discuss the possibility of being of service.

Hope this helps,
Andy is offline   Reply With Quote