NOVEMBER 2010


IN THIS ISSUE

The Importance of Smart Packing in VCK-SQL & VCK

Backup Saves the Day

All Smiles at the Pumpkin Carving Contest

Holiday PR Idea for Veri-Shred Users

Tana's Tech Tip


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Tana's Tech Tip

Over the Limit in VCK-SQL?

If you receive a message in VCK-SQL that you have exceeded your concurrent user limit even though you are sure that no one is logged into VCK-SQL, more than likely your server still has an open connection.  You can clear all users by following these steps:

  • Go to Administration/Records Center Settings/General Settings/System tab
  • Select “Show Login Info”
  • Logout of system
  • Login

After entering your username and password, a message will appear on the screen.  There will be a “Clear” button at the top of the screen.  Click “Clear” to clear all VCK-SQL user connections.This should clear all users, correcting the problem.


Register for ASI WebShare Webinars

WebShare provides ASI Users with online webinar training sessions including step-by-step instruction and review of neat features offered by ASI's many records and information management software solutions. Visit our Online Learning Center for details of upcoming WebShare webinar learning opportunities!


Upcoming Events

Holiday Office Schedule
In observance of Thanksgiving our offices will be closed on November 25, 2010. As always support will be available by calling 440-546-9771 and following the voice prompts.

Shred School
December 1-3, 2010

Spartanburg, SC

PRISM Fundamentals of Records Center Management
December 8-9, 2010

Phoenix, AZ

Asia Pacific Region Conference
February 21-23, 2011
Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam


Useful Links

ASI Learning Center
Here you can view all ASI product help manuals.


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Have an issue you need assistance with? Get help today by visiting our online Support Center with FAQs and more. Don't see an answer to your problem? Create a support trouble ticket. One of our support staff will respond within 24 hours, plus you can view the status of your support question at any time simply by logging in!


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Toll-Free: 800-807-2093
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Pile It On!
Scott Bidwell, President/COO

I sit staring at my desk, piled to overflowing with paperwork – documents that seem to reproduce exponentially everyday – documents that require review, signature – attention of some sort and I feel…thankful. Thankful? Yes, thankful.

That desk and all the paperwork means I have a job. I'm thankful for that. I'm thankful that, as an industry, we seem to be holding our own during these tough times. More specifically, I'm thankful that ASI continues to grow, adding customers and expanding services for existing customers each month. I'm thankful for these customers who represent some of the brightest, most talented businesses in the RIM services industry. As they grow and flourish, they'll hire more employees and add more facilities. I truly believe it is on the backs of small and medium-sized businesses that America, and the rest of the world for that matter, will pull itself up from its economic meltdown. I'm thankful that ASI and our software solutions and support are part of their growth.

I'm thankful for the dedicated team of ASI employees who put in 110% everyday to support, design and deliver smart software solutions for records centers, media vaults and shredding operations. It's not always easy, but they tackle their daily “to do” lists with enthusiasm and critical thinking to remove road blocks and push our projects over the finish line.

While ASI does a lot of what we do very well, we know we aren't the best at everything. If one company could do everything better than all the rest, that'd be great. This isn't the case with any company that I'm aware of (sorry Apple!), which is why I'm thankful we have identified those ASI business partners whose products and services strengthen the function and value of ASI solutions.

This is a small part of what I am thankful for, family and friends and good health notwithstanding. I'm also thankful that I have an office I can walk out of, with a door I can close – knowing those stacks of paper will be waiting for me tomorrow.

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All Smiles at the Pumpkin Carving Contest

<ASI pumpkin carving contest>

It wouldn't be fall without pumpkins and it wouldn't have been Halloween without a good ol' pumpkin carving contest. Thanks go to Andrea Villasenor for organizing this fun event which had lots of impressively carved pumpkins to choose from. When all the votes were tallied, congratulations went to Marty Hrovat who took first place and first prize with his spider web carving.

<Marty Hrovat wins the pumpkin contest.>


The Importance of Smart Packing in VCK and
VCK-SQL

Each month, at the close of invoicing, VCK and VCK-SQL prompt you with a message asking “Do you want to run smart pack?” Are you selecting “yes”? If not, you should.

Smart packing is an important part of your monthly invoicing process. It takes a “picture” of the data (referred to as “de-normalizing” the data) as it exists at that moment and moves the work order records from an active database to an inactive or archive database. This allows you to view the work order as it existed at the time of invoicing and means that, should the client's address or other information be changed in the system, the original data will remain unchanged.

Smart packing also ensures your system will operate more efficiently and faster because the search data is much smaller. For example, one ASI client had 90,000 work orders in its system because smart packing had never been implemented. Needless to say, this affected the performance of the computer system. It's also worth noting that smart packing is required when moving from VCK to VCK-SQL to ensure the data is as clean as possible.

It will typically take longer to run smart pack the first time if it has never been initiated. This is simply due to the amount of data to be processed. Once the first smart pack is complete, subsequent smart packs should take just a few minutes if they are undertaken on a monthly basis. We do recommend that you make smart pack part of your monthly housekeeping.

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Backup Saves the Day

In previous editions of “The ASI Archive,” we've discussed the value of a solid data backup protocol. Recently, ASI client Metropolitan Archives, located in Landover, Maryland, had reason to test the integrity of its backup data.

The Situation
Metropolitan Archives President Joe Incarnato contacted ASI Support and stated that VCK was reporting a problem with an index trying to be used with a particular function in the system. It was determined that one of the work order database tables was corrupted and no longer operable, most likely stemming from a network event.

The Solution
Joe was advised to retrieve a backup of the needed table and was able to do so within five minutes. The backup table was copied into the system and was fully functional, keeping interruption to an absolute minimum. This was possible due to the fact that Joe and his team have in place an accurate and complete backup system that is routinely tested.  In a real-time event, the backup protocol proved worthy and allowed Metropolitan Archives to continue its workday with minimal disruption and impact to the company or its clients.

The Take Away
Data is the life blood of your business. Once a month, set aside time to test your backup, usually no more than four hours. Make this part of the permanent schedule each month. Also, switch it up and do “backup drills” like fire drills where you unexpectedly ask for a restore to a work station. Your business is too important not to do everything possible to protect it.

This scenario also provides an example of why ASI's VCK users may want to consider upgrading to VCK-SQL. While VCK is an excellent records center software solution, VCK-SQL utilizes SQL server, recognized for excellent stability and performance . For more information on how you can initiate your VCK-SQL upgrade, contact an ASI Sales Representative via email or call
1- 800-807-2093 (within North America) or 440-546-9771 (outside North America).

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Holiday PR Idea for Veri-Shred Users
Patty Nagel

Veri-Shred users…Before you mail your holiday cards to your clients, you may want to print the “Scheduled Service Dates Calendar” and include it in your holiday greeting. Part of Veri-Shred Version 2.3.57, this one-page graphic calendar provides the service schedule by customer and address for the entire year. It could also be provided when servicing routes at the end of the year or first weeks of the new year. Either way, the Scheduled Service Dates Calendar is a great way to say “hello” during the holidays, while also providing a useful tool customers can reference throughout 2011.

If you like this feature, next month we'll be revealing cool new features that will be part of our upcoming Veri-Shred release - such as the ability to email Certificates of Destruction to clients!

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