Sam Tyson
Sam Tyson
January 10, 2011

In addition to the recent update to the Dovetail Software website, a new version of Dovetail Self Service was also put into place. The new site has a lot of new features, and was developed internally by the team of Kevin Miller, Josh Arnold, and Joey Vano, which was led by Gary Sherman.

The best feature of Self Service is still the ability to search the Dovetail Software Knowledge Base. Customers have access to this through Self Service for their own cases, and can also search all of the Solutions in the Knowledge Base as well.

One of the best new additions to Dovetail Self Service is the ability for customers to view their products, where they can download the latest version, explore each product’s documentation,


Sam Tyson
August 3, 2010

One of the common customization in Dovetail Agent is changing the columns that are shown in the console. Columns are typically added, removed, or reordered, depending on the business requirements and workflow of a company.

In Dovetail Agent 4.3, the columns can be sorted dynamically by each user, and changes have been made to improve performance of the console by returning pages of records instead of all the records in a queue or wipbin. In Dovetail Agent 4.4 the process of getting the data has been improved, but is very similar in how the code is customized.

Since customizing the columns is a common task during implementation of Dovetail Agent, going through the process here as a reference should help future endeavors.

There are three pages that need to be changed to customize the columns


Sam Tyson
July 16, 2010

Welcome to part 3 of the series on converting an application from the Clarify Desktop environment to work in Dovetail Agent/Admin. The Employee Manager Utility (EMU) is being migrated into Dovetail Admin, and will provide the tools needed to manage workgroups and the employees that are assigned to them.

In the installment of the series, the functionality for the Add… button of the form is going to be implemented. This is going to be a different method that what is normally used in Dovetail Admin due to the fact that workgroups are actually just elements in the WORKGROUP user defined list. EMU adds a lot of information and configuration capability for a workgroup, but there needs to be a record in table_workgroup to hold the details.

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Sam Tyson
July 12, 2010

This is the first installment of a new series of posts on migrating applications/enhancements from the Clarify desktop application to Dovetail Agent features. There are usually a few components involved – schema changes, customized forms, and custom code – that all need to be converted in some form or fashion.

For this series of posts, I will be migrating the Employee Manager Utility (EMU) from a Clarify desktop integration to a new feature for Dovetail Agent and Dovetail Admin. EMU is part of the Administration Series, and was last modified when Dovetail Software was still known as First Choice Software.

The first things to do is to examine the Employee Manager Utility product. EMU is an administration tool that allows an administrator to associate employee properties (such as queues, office location, supervisor, and resource configuration) to a workgroup. New


Sam Tyson
June 21, 2010

One of our customers ran into a roadblock trying to migrate custom projects over to Dovetail SDK. The primary issues were getting the right references set up for a project, then creating and referencing the database objects using APIs in the various Dovetail SDK toolkits.

I was asked to put together a sample project as a guide for getting a project underway, so I wanted to document that process here and have this also serve as a guide for future projects.

In Visual Studio, I created a new Console Application to hold the example, and added a few references to the project.

The core of the project is the Dovetail SDK, so the first reference is to fcSDK.dll. This DLL has the core of what the project needs to create the required application and session


Sam Tyson
January 29, 2010

In Clarify, Logistics and Quality both use transitions to determine how a request moves from one condition to another. To change a condition, a transition must be defined between the two conditions for that part request type. To restrict access to critical part operations, you can administer permissions according to privilege classes.

In complex installations, the number of transitions across both business areas can easily reach the imposed limit of 256 transitions. This limitation can truly impose headaches when the transitions cannot be accurately configured to match the business process.

Dovetail Admin can also be used to configure the transitions, and now it does not enforce the same limitation. It does use the same mechanism for storage, so a little bit of work needs to be done to


Sam Tyson
November 25, 2009

One of our core products at Dovetail Software is our classic ASP application, Dovetail Agent. This application has been in production for many years, and is very stable and reliable. However, since it is a classic ASP application, there is a lot of room for improvement.

I recently upgraded the Notification feature of the application. Dovetail Agent is a web application that has a main page (the console), and notifications need to be delivered to users automatically, without the users having to find them manually.

In the previous releases of Dovetail Agent, this process used an iframe control on the console. The source page for the iframe control would query the database for new messages. If new messages were found, a hyperlink would be displayed on the console, and a window for the notifications was opened. The source page


Sam Tyson
September 17, 2009

Dovetail SDK is a software development kit for writing applications, using .NET, to access Clarify™ databases. One of the more common requirements for objects created for Clarify is performing workflow operations on those objects, such as assigning cases or dispatching change requests. Dovetail SDK provides a powerful set of tools to make workflow operations easy to implement. This guide explains how to get started. 

Using WorkflowManager for Workflow Actions 

Dovetail SDK supports the following Workflow Methods for Queueable Objects in Clarify with the WorkflowManager object:

AcceptAssignDispatchForwardMoveRejectYankChangeStatus

Queueable Object Types that are currently supported:

CASE, SUBCASE, DEMAND_DTL, TASK, OPPORTUNITY, CONTRACT, BUG, PROBDESC, DIALOGUE

All of these methods follow the same basic model for parameters. For example, the Dispatch method takes

id number of the object being dispatchedtype of object being dispatchedqueue that the object is being dispatched totime that the dispatch occurredlogin name of the user performing the


Sam Tyson
March 3, 2009

The abilities to have global users and a centralized server is an important feature of Dovetail Agent. Making localized date handling for all of the users is an important part of getting the right date format displayed to the users, and making sure the dates are stored correctly in the database.

Dovetail Agent recognizes the computer and browser settings for each user. Dovetail Agent allows each user to input dates in their localized date format, and relies on Dovetail SDK to convert the dates into a consistent format for storage in the database.

 

Regional Options

From the Control Panel for each client, the Regional Options tab of the Regional and Language Options has a big impact on Dovetail Agent functionality. Dovetail Agent uses the standard Visual Basic FormatDate routine, which uses the Regional settings to determine the client’s


Sam Tyson
January 14, 2009

jQuery just released its latest version, and celebrates its 3rd birthday as a JavaScript Library.

The big features of this release are:

Sizzle: A sizzlin’ hot CSS selector engine. Live Events: Event delegation with a jQuery twist. jQuery Event Overhaul: Completely rewired to simplify event handling. HTML Injection Rewrite: Lightning-fast HTML appending. Offset Rewrite: Super-quick position calculation. No More Browser Sniffing: Using feature detection to help jQuery last for many more years to come.

 

jQuery at Dovetail Software

Almost all of our current development projects are using jQuery, so upgrading to the new version to take advantage of the new features and performance will be an exciting improvement. The performance gains in the selector engine and HTML injection should help us improve our software. The benefits of using jQuery is already apparent, and we continue to use it more


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