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Frequently Asked Questions - TMS Millennium

This page contains answers to common questions handled by our support staff, along with some tips and tricks that we have found useful and presented here as questions.

bulletWhat are Maintenance Updates and what should I do with them?
bulletWhy does TMS-Me run slower?
bulletHow do I remove duplicate Training Subjects?
bulletHow do I get the POST TRR Form (or Course Roster Form, etc.) to work properly?
bulletWhat should I do when the system crashes while running TMS ?
bulletWhat does "The number of users logged in with the specified user id exceeds the maximum." mean?
bulletI'm getting a new PC. How do I move my TMS program?
bulletHow do I use TMS to track POST "Perishable Skills Training" requirements?
bulletI get a "Not a Table/DBF" error when running TMS.
bulletWhat benefits does the Software Support Subscription provide?
bulletTMS 3.8 FAQ

What are Maintenance Updates and what should I do with them?

We get questions about the Maintenance Updates all the time. This FAQ will try to put all the answers in one place.

All useful software constantly evolves. We listen carefully to your comments and suggestions on how TMS can make your life easier. We do our best to include these into the program design. Our goal is to give you the best, most advanced TMS program that we can.

We posted the public release of TMS Millennium in November 2005. Through the end of June 2006, we've made over 240 enhancements and issued 13 program updates! Why do we make so many changes and post so many updates?

We have two choices in posting updates: 1) Make program changes but only release these once or twice a year in major version update; 2) Post frequent updates so that users will get the latest updates right away. We know what it's like to be a User who waits for months for that enhancement that will make their life easier, so we decided to take the second option.

Maintenance Updates fall into three categories:

bulletApplication Updates - These updates include changes to the main TMS application, as well as shared program resources like reports, icons, and database definition files. Application updates are applied to the TMS Server\Source folder in multi-user TMS installations and the TMS Millennium folder on single-user installations. These are the most common updates.
bulletRuntime Updates - These updates include changes that affect the computers that are actually running TMS. They are applied to the TMS Millennium folder on all workstations on multi-user TMS installations and the computer running TMS single-user installations. These are less common. When we release a runtime update, it is very important that they be installed on ALL computers that are running TMS-Me.
bulletHelp Updates - The nature of Windows HTML Help files makes them inefficient to include in normal program patches. For this reason we post help updates separately. Help updates are placed into the TMS Server\Source\Misc folder on multi-user TMS installation and into the TMS Millennium\Misc folder in single-user TMS installations.

All TMS updates are "one size fits all" updates, meaning that the latest patch will update all previous public releases. If you miss an update don't worry. You can still apply the next one to bring TMS up to the latest version.

Maintenance updates are quite a bit smaller than the original program setup files because only the changed portions are shipped. This lets you download the updates faster. Updates are also designed to leave parts of your program, such as your Serial # registration, alone so that you do not need to reconfigure.

Why does TMS-Me run slower?

Exactly what do you mean by "Slower"? Do you mean form load times, reports, general queries, or something else? Each may involve a different issue and solution. We find that the causes of most "speed" issues can be identified and corrected. The key is to contact us so that we can work with you to find the solution.

You can be a big help. Every system is different and what you see may or may not be the same thing that we see on our test systems. You can help us identify speed issues by providing precise metrics to describe what you are seeing at your end. Time the operation that you feel is too slow and send us a Support Request with what you are doing and the actual time, to the second, that it takes to complete. Also, let us know about your environment -- CPU, RAM, operating system, network environment, etc. As with any support request, the more information you can provide, the better we can serve you.

TMS-Me Needs a More Powerful PC than TMS 3.8 - Ensure that your PC has the power to run TMS Millennium by comparing it to the minimum system requirements.

TMS Explorer Forms have been revised to load resources incrementally, the first time each resource is needed. While will still take some time to load these resources, the loading is broken into smaller "chunks" and only happens the first time. My development PC (P-4 3.4 Ghz) takes about 4 seconds to load the Persons Explorer, which is the most complex of the explorers. Loading of child resources when the root node is expanded takes about 8 seconds. The Training Activities Explorer and the other explorers take less time.

You only need to load the Explorer once. We cache these forms once they're first loaded so that the second time you click the button the form it should load almost instantaneously. We are working to optimize these load times even more, but TMS-Me Explorers will probably always load slower than the very simple TMS 3.8 forms. This is a factor of all the code we've added for the resulting increase in data, functionality, and safety in TMS-Me.

Query times should be fairly fast, on the order of 2-3 seconds from the time that the Search button is clicked to the time the Data Tree is refreshed. Always enter selection criteria to identify as small a data set as possible, ideally, just the desired record.

One common mistake made by new users is to enter very broad criteria, resulting in a large data set. Not only does this take awhile to bring over the network, it also takes much longer for TMS to draw the data tree.

Some tips for better Selection Criteria:

bulletTraining Activities - Use the TMS Activity # when available to quickly select just the Activity you need.
bulletTraining Activities - When the Activity # is not available, use the Subject Title and a date range to search for the Activity. The Subject is more specific than the Activity Title and should be used when possible.
bulletPersons - Enter a unique value, like Social Security # or ID # if you have it. Otherwise, enter enough information to identify the person you need.
bulletEquipment - Enter a Serial # or User Code, when available. Always use more criteria than just Equipment Type, since this could result in many records.

System Memory (RAM) is often the key to faster performance. Even a fast processor will be handicapped if it does not have sufficient RAM. Insufficient RAM forces the program to flush to virtual memory, resulting in very slow performance. Absolute minimum RAM for TMS-Me is 256MB, but 512-1GB is highly recommended. If running on a low-RAM machine, all other programs should be closed before running TMS-Me.

New Config.sys file included with the TMS Runtime Update provides settings for optimizing TMS Memory use. These settings can be modified to optimize memory usage for your system configuration. Contact Training Innovations for advice on modifying these settings.

Reports in TMS-Me are much more complex than the simple listing reports in TMS 3.8. TMS-Me also uses the Crystal Reports engine to generate high quality reports with extensive new output options. The Crystal Reports engine must render the report after TMS has selected the data. The more memory you can make available for Crystal Reports the faster it will be able to render the report. Complex reports, like the Complete Person Report, require extensive processing by the report engine. You can reduce the time to display or print reports by setting selection criteria to select just records you need rather than running the report with little or no criteria.

Code modifications and reporting enhancements added with Version 1.0.233 provide dramatic speed increases when creating TMS reports. The most dramatic increases will be seen with larger data sets. In one test using real-world data from a client agency, we timed a Training Status report evaluating over 20,000 training requirements complete in just 8 minutes!

Network issues are most likely the cause if all of the above have been addressed. To identify if this is, in fact, the case, we suggest that you install the Server folders on the workstation temporarily and see what the performance difference is when the network is taken out of the picture. Contact Training Innovations and we will walk you through this process.

We're working on ways to make TMS-Me run faster--Optimizing the code and revising report queries to make them more efficient. As we make these changes we will include them in the regular maintenance updates. Make it a habit to download and apply each program update.

TMS-Me incorporates many new capabilities and functions that were never available in TMS 3.8 because the TMS Users asked for them. TMS 3.8 is a very basic program that could never support the additions that are present in TMS-Me. If TMS 3.8 is a sail boat, TMS-Me is an aircraft carrier. With the proper configuration and hardware, TMS-Me is a powerful program that can take you places TMS 3.8 could never hope to attempt.

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How do I remove duplicate Training Subjects?

Most TMS users will run into this situation at some point. You find several Training Subjects that really refer to the same training. You want to "clean up" the Training Subjects lookup so that there will be only one entry for each Training Subject. Here's how to do it:

  1. Open the Training Subject Explorer.
  2. Enter a value into the Subject criteria field that will select both the subject you want to remove and the subject that you want to replace it with. For example, if you have several entries for "CPR" training you could enter "cpr" in the criteria field.
  3. Click Search. The Subjects matching your criteria will be displayed in the Data Tree.
  4. Select one of the Subjects that you want to REMOVE.
  5. Click the Delete button.
  6. If the subject is currently used in a Training Module or a Training Plan Requirement, TMS will display a form listing the remaining Subjects and asking you to select a replacement.
  7. Select the Subject to replace the unwanted Subject. Click Save.
  8. TMS will replace all references to the unwanted Subject with the desired Subject. It will then remove the unwanted Subject.
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How do I get the POST TRR Form (or Course Roster Form, etc.) to work properly?

All Cert-Org forms and reports depend on information stored in the various Certification records, both Person/Employee Certifications and Activity/Module/Student Certifications. When a cert-org report doesn't work as you expect, check these certifications to make sure they are present and that they contain the correct information.

One easy way to make sure that you create all of the required Certification records is to add them all as soon as you enter the new Person or Activity, as follows:

bulletAdd the basic entities, such as Person & Employee, or Activity / Module / Session & Students.
bulletSelect the Certification header node off the root node. (Person Certification or Activity Certification)
bulletRight-click the node and select the appropriate "Certify All..." option.
bulletSelect the appropriate Cert-Org from the Dialog. Click Save.
bulletTMS will automatically add the Cert-Org associations to all the entities.
bulletThe TRR reimbursement information is stored in the Student Certifications. Edit these to the correct values.
bulletIf all students will have the same reimbursement information, edit one record then select it's node. Right-click and select the "Apply properties to all Certified Students" from the menu. All Students will have the same reimbursement properties.
bulletThe POST Control # and POST Plan # are Module Certification properties.

What should I do when the system crashes while running TMS ?
What does "The number of users logged in with the specified user id exceeds the maximum." mean?

System crashes can be causes by power failure, hardware and network problems, memory conflicts between programs, and other things. System crashes can possible result in corruption of your TMS data. This is why you should backup your TMS data daily.

One thing that happens when the system crashes is that the user does not get "Cleared" from the Login Journal. The Login Journal is a table that keeps track of who has used TMS and when she was in the system. When a user tries to login to TMS after their system crashed, they may receive a message similar to the following:

The number of users logged in with the specified user id exceeds the maximum.

If the user is an administrator, she can then clear the Login Journal and remove the error. Please refer to the topic "How to: Clear the Login Journal" in the TMS Millennium on-line help.

If you are not a TMS administrator, you should contact your TMS administrator for assistance.

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I'm getting a new PC. How do I move my TMS program?

Congratulations! Moving TMS to a new PC is simple.

Single-User Version:

  1. Backup your TMS Millennium database using the TMS Backup Wizard. Place the backup archive file on a removable disk or network folder where you can read it from the new PC. Refer to the topic, "Backup Wizard" in the TMS Millennium On-line help.
  2. Uninstall TMS Millennium.
  3. Run the Crystal Reports XI Runtime setup on the new PC.
  4. Run the TMS Millennium setup on the new PC.
  5. Run TMS Millennium on the new PC.
  6. Restore the database from the backup created in step 1.  Refer to the topic, "Restore Wizard" in the TMS Millennium On-line help.
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How do I use TMS to track POST "Perishable Skills Training" requirements?

Refer to the topic, "How to Define California POST Requirements" in the TMS Millennium On-line help.

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I get a "Not a Table/DBF" error when running TMS.

One or more of your data tables has been corrupted, probably as a result of a system failure. Please contact Training Innovations Technical Support for help in resolving this problem.

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What benefits does the Software Support Subscription provide?

The TMS Software Support Subscription is your one-stop solution to maximum production with your TMS program. It provides:

bulletUnlimited toll-free telephone and e-mail support
bulletFree program upgrades and regular maintenance patches.
bulletGuaranteed compliance with applicable state and federal mandates.
bulletGuaranteed data conversion to each new TMS release.
bulletAccess to the Client Downloads section, for the latest program upgrades and white papers with detailed information on how to get the most from your TMS program.
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Last modified: 02/02/15.