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30 December 2010

kalmstrom.com Wishes A Peaceful and Prosperous New Year!

kalmstrom.com Business Solutions goes to a higher level
The year is coming to its end, and I look back to what I wrote when 2010 was new. I talked about the release of PF HelpDesk V11, about our big hopes for kalmstrom.com Community and about Outlook 2010, which I then tested in a Beta version. It feels so long ago!

PF HelpDesk V11
is now in common use and we even have version 11.1. It works well - which does not mean that we don't have a lot of plans for enhancements! The most important one is the addition of the SQL Azure database alternative, which will come in the beginning of 2011.

Many old and new customers have shown us the confidence of joining kalmstrom.com Community, and that has given not only the Members but also the team a new security. It means that we can take kalmstrom.com to a higher level, a work which has already begun and which inspired me when I chose the image for this blog post.

Update to support of Office 2010 went smoothly for all products but our resource booking tool Calendar Browser. We had hoped for a release of version 7 in December, but unfortunately we did not manage that. It will come after the holidays in the beginning of January instead, and for many of you maybe that does not make a big difference.

During 2011 we hope to engage more employees and also extend our partner cooperation, all to improve the current products and to develop new ones. For the new applications we will especially plan for use with iPhone and other smart phones.

The kalmstrom.com team thank all Community Members for a good relationship during 2010. We are grateful that you help us meet the coming year with confidence and high expectations. Let us hope for a peaceful development in the world and for the same good spirit among it's leaders as we have in the kalmstrom.com team and Community.

25 December 2010

Goodbye Calendar Browser V6

Book resources within your organization directly from the Outlook Calendar. Use Calendar Browser from kalmstrom.com Business Solutions! It is no longer possible to download Calendar Browser V6.1 from the kalmstrom.com website. As version 7 of our resource booking application requiered an extensive rebuilt, the documentation has to be renewed and the website info changed. We will do that during the quiet days after the Christmas celebrations, and then we hope to release Calendar Browser V7 during the first weeks of January.

I am sorry if this causes you any inconvenience. Please contact me at sales@kalmstrom.com if are a Community Member and need a setup of Calendar Browser V6.1. If you want to evaluate Calendar Browser, please be patient and come back in January to try the latest version instead!

23 December 2010

Merry Christmas!



Maybe you remember that Peter came home from warm India to a Swedish snowstorm? It has continued, even if there have been beautiful days like in the photo in between.

This year the snow begun falling early in Sweden, and today the whole country is covered by a white, soft quilt. This is not something we are used to in the southern part of the country, and it is also colder than normal in December ‒ between 10 and 20 degrees centigrade below zero.

Sigge and I have left Spain to spend Christmas with Peter and the family. Here most people celebrate on Christmas Eve, when we gather in the afternoon to eat traditional food and give Christmas presents. This means that when many of you celebrate Christmas Day, we usually spend that day resting or taking long walks to get rid of the calories we consumed yesterday!

The kalmstrom.com support will work as usual tomorrow morning, but in the afternoon Sigge will be away. Jayant and Alena can take care of urgent matters via the online chat for a bit longer, though. We have had many calls and visitors to the website this week, just as usual, but I guess Christmas Eve will be a bit quiter.

The kalmstrom.com team wishes you all a great Christmas holiday ‒ or weekend, if you don't celebrate Christmas!

21 December 2010

Watch The First Calendar Browser V7 Demo!



Now it is only a matter of days before version 7 of our resource booking application for Outlook is released. The Calendar Browser documentation is being updated while the testing continues, and as you see from the video demonstration above we now have a functioning product. Just some smaller adjustments have to be made before we can give Calendar Browser V7 to all Members who need a booking system that works with Office 2010.

Welcome to have a look at the demo! I think you can see just from this short video that it will be a joy to book resources with the new Calendar Browser.

16 December 2010

kalmstrom.com Gives Support To Evaluators

kalmstrom.com Community icon
"We would like to join the Community and use your product, but I have a problem with the configuration. Can you help me?" In spite of our efforts to make the kalmstrom.com applications easy to set up, this question from an evaluator is not unusual. The answer is YES. The kalmstrom.com team gives support not only to Community Members but also to evaluators.

For the kalmstrom.com team it has always been a natural thing to give support also to evaluators. If people take the time and effort to try our products, we should to our best to assist them. From the surprised and grateful reactions we get, we have understood that it is not always so.

Extensive documentation The kalmstrom.com products are abundantly documented. This is essential for giving evaluators and users a good understanding on how our product works and for helping them to get the most out of it.

However, when you are new to an application and its documentation it might be difficult to find exactly the kind of info you need in FAQ, manual or video demonstrations. In those cases you are very welcome to contact the support! We can help you find the info or solve your issue.

Support e-mail
Our support e-mail is support@kalmstrom.com, and we can often answer within hours. We use HelpDesk OSP to convert the e-mails to tickets in SharePoint, so using e-mail has the advantage that your case can easily be discussed and commented by the whole team.

Online chat
The online chat is popular and gives you immediate contact with a technician. (Or with me if you select the Sales department.) It is also used when a remote session is needed to solve the problem. We get transcripts of all chats, and they can be shared among team members if needed.

Praise for the kalmstrom.com support
The kalmstrom.com Support has been highly praised. As one evaluator expressed it: "You have the answers I need when I need them and deliver them professionally and with a smile that comes across in your chat! :)" We will always do our best to live up to these words

15 December 2010

Calendar Browser V7 Released Soon

Calendar Browser - resource management inside Outlook
We hear that users of our resource booking tool for Outlook are waiting eagerly for the new version, and I can now tell you that development of Calendar Browser V7 has entered the testing phase. The icons in the Outlook ribbon have been updated too, and you can see the result here above. The buttons are nice and well integrated, aren't they? I think it looks as if Microsoft put the Calendar Browser buttons there from the beginning!

The icon update has of course not been allowed to delay the release. Other issues have taken care of that quite well! Limitations in Outlook 2010 have been a challenge for our Lead Developer Jayant Rimza. As the ingenious developer he is he has found ways around them, so that Calendar Browser still can work as intended and be possible to enhance in the future. We hope to be able to publish version 7 before Christmas, with at least most of the documentation also updated.

08 December 2010

Three Generations In kalmstrom.com

Next generation has started to work at kalmstrom.com Business Solutions
In October Sigge and I had a dear visitor to our home in southern Spain. Our grandson Oliver ‒ Peter's eldest ‒ had holidays from school and came to see us. We had a nice time together and also took the opportunity to introduce Oliver to part of our work. During the week Oliver spent with us he learned and took over some of our administrative tasks, and now he has been managing them for well over a month. With a good result!

We of course knew that Oliver, being Peter's son, is very used to handling a computer. He had never before used a SharePoint intranet, but he promptly understood how it worked. We have also found that he is quick but yet careful, so that we can trust that his tasks are being performed correctly.

Oliver is still a student, but we hope he will make a great future for himself. It does not have to be within kalmstrom.com Business Solutions, but for now it feels good to have included the third generation in the family business! The image shows Sigge and Oliver while hiking by the Straits of Gibraltar.

03 December 2010

NameDays For 2010 + 2011 Released

NameDays from kalmstrom.com Business Solutions gives you name days in calendars for many different platforms The kalmstrom.com team is happy to announce that the earlier problems with updating the iPhone calendar with new name days is solved. Today we have therefore released new NameDays files, which give you name days in your calendar for both 2010 and 2011. Note that the ics paths have changed, so if you already have subscribed you need to do so again.

Use NameDays with an Outlook or Mac OSX calendar or with iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch. You may also add NameDays to the Google Calendar for use in your Android enabled device.

By the end of 2011 we will change the NameDays files so that they contain name days for 2011 and 2012 instead. NameDays is a free product, and we don't request anything from you for using it. But you are of course most welcome to try our other products as well ‒ and to spread the word about them!

29 November 2010

"HelpDesk OSP" Becomes "Outlook Publisher" When kalmstrom.com Partners With EPM Live

kalmstrom.com has developed a custom version of HelpDesk OSP for use with the EPM Live WorkengineHelpDesk OSP, the kalmstrom.com application that connects Outlook to SharePoint or Office Live, has become very popular among Community Members. Now we have also developed a custom version for use with EPM Live's WorkEngine.

The WorkEngine is built on Microsoft SharePoint and has evolved the Microsoft SharePoint stack to a more comprehensive and integrated Enterprise Project and Work Management platform. With the EPM Live WorkEngine companies can manage all project and work management within one solution.

EPM Live launched their new add-on this week. They have given their custom version of HelpDesk OSP the name Outlook Publisher, thus concentrating less on the helpdesk usage and more on the the possibility to publish e-mails to SharePoint for any work. Welcome to read the presentation of Outlook Publisher in the EPM Live blog.

In the years 2005, 2006, 2008 and 2009 Microsoft presented Gold Certified Partner EPM Live with their prestigious “Partner of the Year” Award, so the kalmstrom.com team feels proud of being able to make the EPM Live WorkEngine solution even better. The cooperation between EPM Live and kalmstrom.com Business Solutions will of course continue, and enhancements in HelpDesk OSP will also be added to Outlook Publisher. We look forward to a long and rewarding relation between the two companies!

28 November 2010

kalmstrom.com CEO Happy With Outcome Of India Trip

kalmstrom.com CEO Peter with developers Jayant and Abhishek

Today I have a guest blogger. My son and the kalmstrom.com CEO, Peter, writes about his visit to India and how he felt coming back to a snowy Sweden:

kalmstrom.com CEO Peter came home to a wintery Sweden after his visit to IndiaIt was quite a contrast coming home to Norrköping, Sweden, where there is a big snowstorm now! Just a few days ago I was in Indore, India, with temperatures well above 25 degrees centigrade. I definitely have to dress differently!

There were several reasons for making such a long trip. First of all I needed to meet with our developers, Jayant and Abhishek, see the image above. We discussed the current status of our products and shared a lot of exciting ideas and plans for the future. Also I was delighted to be invited to Jayant’s wedding. It was my first time at a Hindu wedding, and I was quite thrilled about it! Finally we are planning to expand the team by hiring at least two more people, so I had a long list of people to meet and interview.

The result of the journey was well above expectations. Not only was I treated extremely well at the wedding (see pictures on Facebook), but I also met some good people we now are in the process of hiring. An additional bonus was getting to know Jayant’s family, some really nice and interesting people. I can’t wait to come visiting again!

25 November 2010

kalmstrom.com CEO At Indian Wedding

Peter Kalmstrom attended kalmstrom.com Lead Developer Jayant Rimza's wedding in Indore, India

Yesterday was a happy day in Indore, India. kalmstrom.com Lead Developer Jayant Rimza married Sushma Likhar, and nearly a thousand guests celebrated the wedding. Peter, CEO of kalmstrom.com Business Solutions, was of course one of them. As you see above he was properly dressed in a beautiful kurta. The photo shows Peter with the bride and groom and kalmstrom.com Senior Developer Abhishek Sharma. Abhishek has given us more photos, published at the kalmstrom.com Community page on Facebook. Welcome to have a look!

21 November 2010

Calendar Browser Buttons Now In The Outlook 2010 Ribbon

Calendar Browser - resource management inside Outlook
Development of version 7 of Calendar Browser proceeds, and we hope to release it by the end of December. Today I can show you how the buttons in our resource booking tool look when they are moved to the Outlook 2010 ribbon. Nice, isn't it?

Here you see all four buttons, but the Manage button can be hidden. In that case the Administrator reaches the settings by running the Settings file instead. The Overview gives information about future bookings, the Search button brings up a dialog where you can search for free resources at a specific time and the Description button shows a description of the selected resource. Past resource usage is studied with the integrated Statistics application OLAP Reporting Tool, just as before.

Calendar Browser V7 will only support Office 2007 and 2010, and when it is released we will stop marketing the current version. Community Members who still use Office 2003 can keep version 6, though, because we will continue supporting it until all Members who use Calendar Browser have upgraded to an Office version with the Fluent Interface/Ribbon.

The Outlook 2010 Calendar was so different to earlier versions that it felt impossible for us to continue developing the product with the folder homepage (the main user interface in all earlier versions). Instead we had to find an solution that would keep for the future. This means using the Ribbon, even if it also means that we for a period will have to support two different versions of Calendar Browser.

19 November 2010

Peter Goes To India














Tomorrow morning the kalmstrom.com CEO Peter will fly to India to meet our employees and our partner there. Peter tries to make this journey at least once a year, and it is always a very rewarding trip. This time the visit will be extra enjoyable, since the kalmstrom.com Lead Developer Jayant Rimza will marry, and Peter will attend the wedding. The image here above shows a part of the invitation card we all received, with Jayant's and Sushma's names in Hindi and the date for the wedding.

Having the team spread over the world has of course its disadvantages, but there are many benefits. We come from different cultures, and that means we see some things differently also when it comes to product development and marketing. Since we are all open to discussion, we often find better solutions together than I think we would have achieved if we all came from Sweden and had the same references.

Another great advantage is of course that we learn more about each other's countries and customs, something Peter will experience with good measure at the wedding. Peter or I will certainly come back and tell you more about it!

14 November 2010

Peter Left Skype for kalmstrom.com

Peter Kalmstrom, CEO of kalmstrom.com Business Solutions and the brain behind the company's Office add-onsOur CEO Peter left Skype in October, after five years as Product Manager for Skype Toolbars. He will now dedicate himself more to kalmstrom.com Business Solutions, and he has a lot of ideas ‒ as always! They are too many for a blog, so this time I give the information in a press release instead. Welcome to read it if you wish to know more about the inventive creator of the kalmstrom.com products and his plans for the future!

12 November 2010

Member Survey Gives Advice About Office Support

Office add-ons from kalmstrom.com Business Solutions will leverage your Microsoft How far back should we support? We begun asking ourselves that question after the release of Office 2010, when we had a situation where we supported five Office versions. Five versions are more than what is common in the business, but on the other hand kalmstrom.com Business Solutions is not ‒ and should not be! ‒ a common software developer.

But if we don't use our resources in the best possible way? Of course we want our products to be compatible with as many Office versions as possible, but on the other hand most Members of kalmstrom.com Community have modern environments. Should we spend time developing and testing our products for all five versions of Outlook, or is it better to take the time we use on the lower versions and spend it on other development instead?

To get an answer to that question we decided to ask the users ‒ the Members of kalmstrom.com Community. Our development efforts are for them, so getting their opinions was the right thing to do. Peter, our CEO, sent an e-mail to all Community Members to ask their advice, and now most of them have answered.

The information we received shows that we can take away support for Outlook 2000 and 2002 without problems. From now on we will no longer test new versions of our products on Outlook 2000 and 2002.

For Outlook 2003 the situation is different. A number of Members still use Outlook 2003, but most of them mentioned that they plan to upgrade soon or at least during 2011. We will therefore keep the support for Outlook 2003 for now and assess the situation again by the end of 2011.

We are grateful for all replies. Now we can feel certain we have made a good decision, and we must not ask ourselves if we might have left users stranded out there. We will still give support for Outlook 2003 for the organizations who need it, but by giving up the support for the lower versions we will have more time for product enhancements and maybe even new products.

Members, we have of course saved the info about your Office versions, so please tell us when you upgrade so that we can change our records. Thank you all!

08 November 2010

kalmstrom.com Community One Year Old

kalmstrom.com Community. We earlier felt that we spent too much time nagging about support purchases and hunting for new customers. Instead we wanted to take better care of the customers we already had, and we achieved that by offering subscriptions to our products. Add-ons need to be updated often to support and take advantage of new technologies, and as support and upgrades are always free for Community Members this is a very safe way of purchasing software.

After this first year we see that the transfer to a subscription system was just the right thing to do. Even if a few have not realized the benefits, a majority of old customers and evaluators has welcomed the service a Community Membership gives them.  We now have a satisfactory number of customers paying their fees, which means that we can plan company and product development with a much better security than before.

Organizations all over the world has shown their confidence in kalmstrom.com by joining the Community. Today 52 % of the Members are from European countries, 31% are from USA and 17 % come from the rest of the world. The part from outside Europe and USA has been increasing from only 8 % in May, probably because our products now give full Unicode support.

A bit more than half of our Members, 57 %, are well known customers who have transferred to the Community during the past year. The rest of the Members are new to us. To give good service we make an effort to learn more about the users of our products and their environments than we did before the Community time. I will not argue that we are all like a big, happy family, but it certainly feels nice that we are a Community!

06 November 2010

Happy Deepawali!

The Deepawali festival is celebrated by Hindus all over the world The Indian members of the kalmstrom.com team has taught us to wish "Happy Deepawali" this weekend. Deepawali, or Diwali, is an important Hindu celebration of the victory of good over evil. It is celebrated by Hindus all over the world, and as it is characterized by displays of candles, lamps and fireworks it is also called the Festival of Lights.

Most families celebrate Deepawali in their home, where they light special clay lamps with a cotton wick dipped in ghee or vegetable oil, as symbols for knowledge and enlightenment. The festival lasts for five days, each dedicated to prayers to a different deity. We thank our former QA Engineer Saurab Verma for the image of the altar with the lamps and offerings in the home of his parents.

04 November 2010

PF HelpDesk V11.1 Released

Public Folder HelpDesk for Outlook from kalmstrom.com Business Solutions may also be installed in a shared mailbox The kalmstrom.com team is happy to have released version 11.1 of our issue tracking add-on for Outlook, PF HelpDesk. Some bugs are fixed in this update, but above all there are several enhancements that will make PF HelpDesk even nicer to work with.

Among the improvements are better handling of the ticket attachments, better possibilities to drag and drop or paste to the ticket and better use of the Open Ticket button. We have also added an option for excluding a machine from the automatic conversions of e-mails to tickets. This setting is placed under the E-mail folders tab, where you add the folders to be monitored automatically. For more information about version 11.1, please refer to the PF HelpDesk Revisions page.

We could not add the SQL Azure database alternative this time, but Abhishek is working on it so we will soon update PF HelpDesk again. Now I just want to say a warm thank you to all Members who have reported problems or suggested enhancements. Your help is much appreciated, and you are very welcome to upgrade your PF HelpDesk installations.

Have you not tried PF HelpDesk yet? If you need a tool for handling incoming e-mails within a workgroup and still stay inside Outlook, I recommend you to take a look at Public Folder HelpDesk! In spite of the name it may also be installed in a shared mailbox.

31 October 2010

Calendar Browser 7 with Support for Outlook 2010

Calendar Browser for Outlook - for efficient resource managementIn August we felt forced to share the news that Calendar Browser, our resource booking application for Outlook, would not be compatible with Office 2010. There were big problems with Calendar Browser and the Outlook 2010 Calendar. I know, problems are for solving and that is what our developers do all the time, but in this case the task seemed nearly hopeless. But only nearly, because now the problem is solved and we have begun developing Calendar Browser V7!

After many discussions and discarded ideas our CEO Peter and Lead Developer Jayant could find a solution that will not only solve the problem with Outlook 2010 but also make Calendar Browser strong for the future. The most important change in version 7 will be the removal of the folder homepage. During Calendar Browser's ten years on the market the folder homepage has been the main user interface in all versions. Now we will instead move that functionality to the Calendar Browser Client Tool, and the Microsoft Fluent Interface/Ribbon will display the needed buttons and fields.

In our efforts to solve the issue we discussed building a totally new resource booking software, to help all users of Calendar Browser who sooner or later would get problems because the application did not support Outlook 2010. We will probably still build something that uses SharePoint, just like we already have helpdesks for both Exchange and SharePoint. But when the immediate problem is satisfactory solved this can be allowed to take its time and  must not be rushed. This feels very good, and I congratulate Peter and Jayant who found the solution. I also congratulate the users of Calendar Browser. Now you can soon upgrade to the latest and best versions of both Outlook and Calendar Browser . I will of course come back with news in the blog, and we have also created a Plans page for Calendar Browser. Welcome to visit it!

29 October 2010

HelpDesk OSP Handles Proxy Server

HelpDesk OSP for Outlook and SharePoint/Office Live, an incident management product from kalmstrom.com Business Solutions
The kalmstrom.com issue tracking software that connects Outlook and SharePoint has been updated. Now HelpDesk OSP can use proxy settings, which is helpful for organizations who are using a proxy server for their internet connection. By default HelpDesk OSP reads the proxy host name and port from Internet Explorer, if proxy is enabled there of course, and makes the connection via the proxy server.

Another proxy server address and port may also be used. All proxy settings are done under the HelpDesk OSP Settings General tab. We thank our Lead Developer Jayant Rimza, who once again has created a new feature that has improved HelpDesk OSP for current and future Members of kalmstrom.com Community.

18 October 2010

kalmstrom.com Welcomes New Developer

Abhishek Sharma, Senior Developer at kalmstrom.com Business SolutionsThe kalmstrom.com team has been extended with a new developer, Abhishek Sharma. Abhishek is an expert of .NET development for Windows and web and of relational databases. He has already shown what difference he can make for our products, as he is the developer behind the third database alternative for PF HelpDesk, SQL Azure. It is not released yet, but Abhishek has already begun adding SQL Azure to TimeCard also.

Abhishek Sharma likes to counterbalance sitting in front of the computer with playing cricket and working in the garden. Cricket is nothing for me ‒ I walk instead ‒ but just like Abhishek I find gardening a perfect way to relax the brain and come closer to nature. I hope we get a chance to compare our gardens eventually.

Welcome to kalmstrom.com, Abhishek! We hope you will enjoy the work, and we are sure you will be a great asset to the team. Now we are even better equipped to meet the challenge of creating the best possible software for our Community Members.

13 October 2010

Use PF HelpDesk V11.1 With SQL Azure


Soon you may use PF HelpDesk with SQL Azur.


The kalmstrom.com team is currently developing version 11.1 of our Incident Management tool PF HelpDesk. It will be released now in October, and among the new features is a third database alternative: SQL Azure.

SQL Azure is Microsoft's cloud database, offered as a service and running in Microsoft datacenters around the globe. It is highly scalable, so you may either start small or serve a global customer base immediately. You only pay for what you use ‒ scale up when you need capacity and pull it back when you don’t.

PF HelpDesk has so far offered two database alternatives, Access and SQL Server. The Access database is free, but it  has security issues and only gives a storage capacity of 2 GB. This means that
you cannot handle large data requests, and if you are close to the maximum amount of data it will run slowly. Therefore we have often recommended customers to use an SQL Server database instead, and this is still a good alternative for big companies who need an SQL Server anyway. However, an SQL Server is not trivial to manage.

With an SQL Azure database Microsoft handles all maintenance. The environment is very secure and you don't have to think about backup and recovery. For a distributed team SQL Azure has another great advantage: you can reach it from any system. All you need is an internet connection!

Version 11.1 of PF HelpDesk will have more enhancements. Please refer to our Plans page and see what new features are "Under development".

07 October 2010

SharePoint Exam 11th MCP Certification for kalmstrom.com CEO

Peter Kalmstrom, CEO of kalmstrom.com Business Solutions, Outlook and now also SharePoint expert
Peter Kalmstrom, Outlook expert and CEO of kalmstrom.com Business Solutions, is a man of many talents. He loves to learn and is always eager to try the latest technologies on the market. Since he is also my son I feel very proud to tell you that he now also may call himself SharePoint expert. Today he has passed Microsoft exam 070-576 PRO: Designing and Developing Microsoft SharePoint 2010 Applications. This test was released in July this year, so you see Peter has been quick as usual.

According to Microsoft the typical candidate for this exam is responsible for designing custom code for projects that are deployed to SharePoint servers, including technology selection across the many ways to build code in SharePoint. He or she is leading a team of SharePoint developers and has several years of experience of SharePoint and ASP.NET development. Please refer to Microsoft for a full description of the skills measured and the tasks Peter had to handle to get the qualification.

In the kalmstrom.com team we use our SharePoint intranet extensively, and we also use HelpDesk OSP, which is the only SharePoint application we market ‒ today. I am sure we will have a resource booking product for SharePoint eventually, and more will probably come because SharePoint is a platform for the future. Congratulations to your achievement, Peter! It will benefit the whole team and many users of
our products.

04 October 2010

kalmstrom.com Welcomes New QA Expert

Alena Prokudina, QA Engineer at kalmstrom.com Business SolutionsThe kalmstrom.com team is happy to welcome a new QA Engineer, Alena Prokudina from Novosibirsk, Russia. Our former QA, Dina Romanova, has left us to study for a doctorate, but first she suggested that Alena should replace her. Dina was a very good tester, so she realized that we would
require a highly qualified person, and Alena has taken Dina's place in an excellent way. Her first task was the recently published HelpDesk OSP, and now she is testing and giving valuable input on the next update of PF HelpDesk.

Alena has a Master degree in IT and has worked for four years with Software Quality Assurance and Requirement Analysis. Besides her work Alena is interested in snowboarding, yoga, reading and cooking. Our team cooperation works great, in spite of the geographical distances, but unfortunately they mean that Alena cannot easily give us samples of her cooking expertise also!

We are glad to have Alena on board, and we wish Dina all the best in both life and studies!

21 September 2010

Merge Support Tickets with HelpDesk OSP


HelpDesk OSP for Outlook and SharePoint/Office Live, an incident management product from kalmstrom.com Business Solutions

If you have many support tickets, you might want to merge some of them into one ticket with more content. This is now possible with HelpDesk OSP.

kalmstrom. com is today happy to announce the release of an updated HelpDesk OSP with a new feature, “Merge Tickets”. This feature is very convenient if you wish to create tickets with content from several ones, for example by merging all tickets from a certain client into one "Parent ticket".

In the Configuration dialog, which opens from Outlook, we have added a button to open the Merge Tickets dialog. Here you may select what tickets and fields should be merged, what to do with the "Child Tickets" and if attachments should be included. Please read more in the updated manual.

We will continue developing this feature with a filter possibility and an option to have the Merge Tickets button directly in the Outlook toolbar, but those enhancements will come in a later release. Members, welcome to upgrade you installations and try the new Merge feature! I am sure you - like us - will send a grateful thought to the sponsor SuniTAFE, Australia, who helped us realize this improvement of HelpDesk OSP.

13 September 2010

Development of Public Folder HelpDesk


Public Folder HelpDesk for Outlook from kalmstrom.com Business Solutions may also be installed in a shared mailbox
Today came another minor update of one of our products. This time our incident management application PF HelpDesk had some bugs fixed. The bugs did not affect all users, so if PF HelpDesk works well for you there is no need to upgrade this time. Please refer to the PF HelpDesk Revisions page for more info.

This time we have not added a new feature or enhancement, but we have published our development plans on the website so that Community Members may follow them. As version 11 of PF HelpDesk is stable and well functioning we have no big changes in mind at the moment, but we have a list of improvements that will make PF HelpDesk even easier to work with for the users. Welcome to contact us with your own suggestions!

08 September 2010

Update of TimeCard for Office 2010 Users


TimeCard for Outlook - time reporting from inside the Outlook Calendar for single users and workgroups
Today kalmstrom.com has released a minor update of TimeCard, both the Workgroup and the Single versions. Minor, but still important if you use Office 2010. An evaluator reported a problem that had slipped through our testing: the metadata values in the dropdowns did not refresh if you first selected a marked appointment and then a blank appointment. We do our outmost to test all scenarios before we release a new version of a product, but it is virtually impossible to test all contexts. Therefore we are very grateful for bug reports, and we fix the problem as soon as possible.

If you evaluate a kalmstrom.com product and get problems, please contact us instead of giving up! In many cases the answer is in the documentation, but it might be difficult to take in all information in the beginning. And sometimes you have found a bug, and your report will not only help you but also other users.

We recommend Members who use Office 2010 to upgrade their installations. The rest of you should not have this problem, so there is no need for an upgrade this time.

27 August 2010

HelpDesk OSP for Outlook and SharePoint - a Product for the Future


HelpDesk OSP for Outlook and SharePoint - issue tracking and user support with Outlook and SharePoint
HelpDesk OSP is the youngest product from kalmstrom.com Business Solutions, created only two years ago. Since then a lot has happened to the product, and it has become the most popular among new customers. This feels very encouraging, and we will of course continue to improve HelpDesk OSP just like we do with all products.

Since the kalmstrom.com team is a geographically distributed group we use HelpDesk OSP ourselves for our support management, and even if it works well as it is we of course get ideas for enhancements and new features. We also get suggestions from users, and we are grateful for any input.

Yesterday we released a minor update of HelpDesk OSP, and today we have published a new Ideas page on the website. We will make such pages for all products, but this is the first. Welcome to have a look! And if you use HelpDesk OSP, or wish to start using it, please give us your comments.

24 August 2010

New NameDays For Many Different Calendars


NameDays from kalmstrom.com Business Solutions gives you name days in your calendar
Yesterday kalmstrom.com took a first step to broaden the portfolio and not only offer add-ons for Microsoft products. For many years our free NameDays application has been an excellent way of marketing our brand. NameDays adds name days to the Outlook calendar, and since it has been very popular it has drawn a lot of traffic to our website.

Now we have released a new version of NameDays, a NameDays that is actually not an application at all. By adding the name days to ICS files, we can let users either import or subscribe to NameDays, and
the files may be used for more platforms than the Outlook calendar. Do you use iPhone, MacOSX and iCal, or the Google Calendar and an Android device? The new NameDays will work just fine! As the files for the different countries ‒ currently 15 ‒ are downloaded from our website separately, it is very easy for us to update them and to add name days from more countries to the list.

Welcome to use NameDays you also! On our website there are video demonstrations on how to import or subscribe to NameDays. The iPhone demo is still missing, but it will soon be finished. NameDays is a new and modern product that takes advantage of new technologies, so it works best on fairly new platforms and applications. For Outlook that means versions 2007 and 2010, but if you have Outlook 2003 you may still import the name days to your default calendar.

Surprise and delight friends and colleagues by always remembering their name days. And if you have international contacts, like so many of us have nowadays, you can use one calendar for each country!

16 August 2010

Improved HTML Editor in Updated Public Folder HelpDesk

The PF HelpDesk Outlook Toolbar is shown under the Home tab of Office 2010 when the PF HelpDesk Outlook folder is opened

PF HelpDesk V11
has been updated again, this time with some enhancements and a couple of bug fixes. The most important improvement is the new HTML editor, which gives more possibilities than the old one. New buttons are added for font color and background color. A context menu is also added and will be shown when you right click on the editor. With the earlier editor font and color was sometimes changed  when a ticket was opened several times, but that will not happen with the new editor.

Please refer to the Revisions page for a description of all changes. We are grateful to Community Members who have pointed out to us how PF HelpDesk could be an even better application. All suggestions have not been implemented yet, but you can feel sure they are not forgotten! Welcome to upgrade PF HelpDesk, all Members!

Have you not tried PF HelpDesk yet? If you are looking for an application that helps your workgroup cooperate on incident management inside Outlook, this is the perfect tool for you. It can be installed in a public folder or a shared  mailbox, and the full product may be tested for 30 days without any obligations.

09 August 2010

TimeCard Single Integrated in the Outlook 2010 Ribbon

Report time and expenses from within the Outlook Calendar

The Single version of TimeCard, is now updated for Outlook 2010. The ribbon integration is the same as for the Workgroup version, refer to the blog of 5 August. The image above shows the Start tab of the calendar with the TimeCard buttons in the ribbon.

The Single version is very popular among self employed people. One of them says: "I have configured TimeCard to assist me in keeping real time records of which client I was working on, the processes involved and the document type that I output. In this way I am able to provide clients with detailed analysis of the work I have done, the time involved and references to all documents associated with the time/processes." He even avoided a court process once thanks to his TimeCard records! Read the whole testimonial. It feels good to market a product that can help so many.

Calendar Browser and Outlook 2010

Normally I like to blog very much, but today I would have preferred to not have been forced to share the news about Calendar Browser and Office 2010. We saw from the beginning that there were big problems with Calendar Browser and the Outlook 2010 Calendar, but problems are for solving and that is what our developers do all the time. Therefore we assumed this issue would also be solved, even if it would take more time than for our other products.

However, if the software we build on is too much altered, the task gets impossible. Now Microsoft has changed the calendar to no longer fully support Outlook View Control, and because of that users of Outlook 2010 can only create meetings from the Calendar Browser button, and they cannot edit them at all from within Calendar Browser. Of course this is not acceptable, but even if our developers have spent much time trying to solve this problem they have not succeeded and we cannot offer a functioning Calendar Browser for Outlook 2010. We are very sorry for the inconvenience this will cause users of Calendar Browser who wish to upgrade to Office 2010.

Our only alternative is to totally rebuild Calendar Browser, and today we have no possibility to do that. We don't think it is the right way to go either. Maybe we will build a SharePoint based solution for resource booking in the future, but those plans are yet vague.

kalmstrom.com will continue to give support on Calendar Browser used with earlier versions of Outlook, and if we should find a solution to the problem later we will of course employ it.

05 August 2010

TimeCard Embraces Contextual Tabs In Outlook 2010



The Workgroup version of TimeCard has been updated to take advantage of the Outlook 2010 Ribbon (32-bit). If you earlier have used Outlook 2007, the difference is not so big, but Outlook 2010 has something called Contextual Tabs. This means that you while still in an e-mail folder can select an appointment in the To-Do bar, and the Calendar Tools will be visible ‒ with the TimeCard dropdowns and the Expenses button.

The new release has also a new feature, the possibility to map e-mail domain or ID for TimeCard metadata which earlier was introduced in the Single version (refer to the blogs of June 22 and 28). Members, you are very welcome to upgrade your installations.

Have you not tried TimeCard yet? This application for time reporting from inside the Outlook Calendar is suitable for both big organizations and single users who work for themselves. It is one of our most popular products, so why not see how it can help you also?

26 July 2010

HelpDesk OSP uses the finer points of Office 2010


Co-operate on issue tracking and user support with Outlook and SharePoint/Office Live


Office 2010 is a challenge for developers, but it also gives new possibilities. kalmstrom.com Business Solutions will of course not only support the new Office version but also take advantage of the benefits it offers. Today we released a new version of HelpDesk OSP, the kalmstrom.com issue tracking application for Outlook and SharePoint or Office Live.

In the new HelpDesk OSP the Outlook buttons are no longer hidden under the Add-ins tab but shown under the Home tab. Our technicians have made use of the possibility to create two buttons in one, so that users with several SharePoint lists can easily choose among them by clicking the little arrow to the left on the button. If you have one list you just click the button.

I recommend Members who have already started to use Office 2010 or soon will do it to upgrade their installations. I am sure you will like the new design with fewer buttons! Also the manual has been updated of course,

22 July 2010

Efficient Issue Tracking for Distributed Team with HelpDesk OSP

Connect Outlook to SharePoint/Office live with HelpDesk OSP from kalmstrom.comThe kalmstrom.com team uses HelpDesk OSP for support cases. We also use this incident management tool in other situations where e-mails need to be organized and discussed among us, for example to sort and comment on job applications.

Since the team members live and work far apart in different countries, we use OWA for the e-mail and have HelpDesk OSP installed on a server where Outlook is running 24/7. We can always access the tickets from our smartphones, which is a big advantage for those of us who travel a lot.

Even if we don't use all the possibilities SharePoint gives - because we don't need them - we are very satisfied with our software and with having this connection between our e-mail and our intranet. Since we often get questions about how to use HelpDesk OSP for a distributed group, we have made a faq that explains how we have set it up. Welcome to read more about our way of using HelpDesk OSP!

13 July 2010

Improved Manual for Resource Booking Application

The Administrator manual for
Book resources directly from within the Outlook Calendar
Calendar Browser, has been updated. This Resource management tool from kalmstrom.com Business Solution has been on the market for more than ten years, and even if the manual just like the application has been updated many times during that period, it was time for a new review again. This time we took help from our trainee, Niklas Svensson, who gave us valuable input.

During the early years nearly all users installed Calendar Browser in a public folder and also used public folder calendars for the resource descriptions. Today the situation has changed. Even if Microsoft has promised to support public folders for a long time ahead, some users prefer to use mailboxes. Therefore we have taken extra care to explain of the differences between use of public folders and mailboxes, both when it comes to installation and resource calendars.

Also with the new manual public folders are easier to manage, while mailbox installation and calendar creation require a deeper knowledge of Microsoft Exchange. Welcome to download the Calendar Browser Admin manual in DOC or PDF format!

07 July 2010

PF HelpDesk V11 Optimized for Office 2010

PF HelpDesk from kalmstrom.com Business Solutions is fully optimized for Office 2010 32 bit

The PF HelpDesk Outlook Toolbar is shown under the Home tab of Office 2010 when the PF HelpDesk Outlook folder is opened

Today kalmstrom.com has released an update of PF HelpDesk V11 that is fully optimized for Office 2010, 32 bit version. The PF HelpDesk buttons are no longer hidden under the Add-Ins tab.

When you open Outlook three PF HelpDesk buttons – Manual Conversion of e-mails into tickets, Open Ticket and Shortcut to the PF HelpDesk Outlook folder – are shown under the Home tab of the ribbon, see the first image above. These are the buttons you may need outside PF HelpDesk, when working with e-mails, so it is convenient to always have them at hand.

When you open the PF HelpDesk Outlook folder, more buttons are shown in the ribbon, refer to the second image above. These are the buttons you may need when working inside PF HelpDesk, and if you have used PF HelpDesk with earlier Office versions you will recognize them as the buttons of the right hand toolbar. Members of kalmstrom.com Community are very welcome to upgrade their installations!

Office 2010 64 bit will have to wait, but note that PF HelpDesk just like our other products works on all 64 bit operating systems. It is just the Office version we don’t support. Next in turn for Office 2010 optimization is TimeCard Workgroup and after that Calendar Browser. I will report back to you about the progress!

30 June 2010

Ticket Toolbar With New Functions in PF HelpDesk V11


The new PF HelpDesk Ticket Toolbar Strip has new buttons for Save and close ticket and Importance

Today kalmstrom.com has released an update of Public Folder HelpDesk , our issue tracking tool for Outlook that also may be installed in a shared mailbox. Above you see the new ticket toolbar strip. It has been changed after Members have pointed out how it could be enhanced. As always it is the people who use the application each day who best can tell us how to improve it, so we are grateful for all suggestions. Even if we cannot realize them all, and certainly not at once, you can feel sure that we remember them.

The new toolbar has a button for Save and Close Window to the left. Further to the right we have new buttons for High and Low Importance and also a new button for Print Ticket. The old buttons Save, Close Ticket, Create Task, FAQ, Forward and Add to KBase are placed in the same order as before between the new buttons, and Delete Ticket is left on the far right side.

Some bugs were also fixed in this release, and I suggest that you take a look at the Revisions page if you are already using PF HelpDesk V11. All Community Members are welcome to upgrade!

Have you not tried PF HelpDesk V11 yet? Please download the application! I am sure you will like it.

28 June 2010

New Demo for the TimeCard E-mail Mapping Feature

Tha kalmstrom.com team tries to always keep the manuals up to date with new releases, so the TimeCard Single manual was updated with info about the E-mail mapping feature at the same time as the new version was published. Now we have also made a video demonstration about the improvement. Welcome to watch number ten!

22 June 2010

New Feature in TimeCard Single - Default Metadata from E-mails


TimeCard from kalmstrom.com Business Solutions Makes TimeSheets from Outlook Calendar Appointments
Today we thank Accounting on Computers Inc. for the sponsorship of a new feature in TimeCard Single: the possibility to get a default TimeCard value for an e-mail address or domain. This feature is very useful if you often get e-mail information about work from the same person or company. You can then drag the e-mail to the calendar or the To-Do list and make an appointment of it - with the TimeCard metadata already filled out.

A new checkbox is added in Personal Settings, and when it is enabled a new tab is shown after the TimeCard property tab(s): Map E-mails for Default Metadata. The metadata selected under this tab will be filled out automatically in appointments created by dragging an e-mail to the calendar or To-Do bar.

The TimeCard application is even clever enough to know what e-mail address is interesting. It will look for the "To" address if you drag the e-mail from the Sent folder. Otherwise it will look for the "From" address.

The new mapping possibility will of course soon be added to the Workgroup version of TimeCard also, but this time the Single users will have the first shot. All users with Single Support are welcome to
upgrade!

19 June 2010

Feel Safe with Digitally Signed kalmstrom.com Products from Tallstugans Forlag


Software from kalmstrom.com Business Solutions is digitally signed by VeriSign

When you download software from the internet and install them, you of course want to feel sure that they are clean and have not been tampered with by a third party. To ensure this most serious software houses digitally sign their products. So does also Tallstugan with all the kalmstrom.com Business Solutions software.

Around this weekend we are updating all our software with a new digital signature, since the old one will soon expire. If no other change is made to the product I will not blog about it, as I normally do for all new releases.

The VeriSign® Code Signing creates a digital "shrink wrap" for code and content which protects both the product and you when you download. The Tallstugan signatures on the kalmstrom.com software authenticate the source and verify the integrity of the content.

The Microsoft OS normally gives a warning if an .exe or .dll file is not signed, but to ensure that a file is signed you can also right click on it and select Properties. Always feel safe with the kalmstrom.com software!

15 June 2010

Office 2010 Released Worldwide - Compatible Products from kalmstrom.com

The kalmstrom.com products work with Office 2010Today Office 2010 is released for all, and we congratulate Microsoft to yet another step forward. There are many interesting things to tell about the new Office version, but I guess you rather want to hear what I have to say about the compatibility of our products.

The current situation is that all our products except Calendar Browser works with Office 2010. The Outlook buttons are not in their usual places, though, but under the last tab on top, Add-ins. We will of course optimize all our products for Office 2010 as soon as possible, but as all the others work we have to start with Calendar Browser.

If you use Calendar Browser, my advice to you is to wait with the upgrade to Office 2010 until we have published a new version of our resource management tool. If you use, PF HelpDesk, TimeCard, HelpDesk OSP, KBase or OLAP Reporting Tool, you may very well start using Office 2010 right away. The button issue is not a show stopper.

03 June 2010

PF HelpDesk V11 With New Technologies For The Future

Incident management in Outlook with Public Folder HelpDeskPublic Folder HelpDesk V11 is released! Many users have waited for the new version of this tool for incident management inside Outlook. So have the kalmstrom.com team, as V11 builds on more stable technologies than earlier versions.

It has not been an easy task to change the build and at the same time keep and even improve the benefits of the Outlook integration, but our skillful developers Jayant Rimza and Bahrur Ipham has managed it. QA Engineer Dina Romanova’s scrupulous testing and close cooperation with the developers has also been crucial to the creation of version 11, and our trainee, Niklas Svensson, has given valued input. Thank you all, for your efforts!

As I have written some earlier blogs about PF HelpDesk V11, you probably already know about the two major improvements, the new ticket form and the new installer. Welcome to visit the version 11 page for an overview and the Revisions page for a full list of the enhancements!

Since the ticket form is new, the upgrade was a tough nut to crack. At one stage there were two manual steps to perform, and not very easy ones either! Fortunately these issues were solved too, and now the upgrade is automatic. You may perform it from any client, and you only need to select your PF HelpDesk Outlook folder in the process. Then the installer will do the rest.

Upgrades are free for Members of kalmstrom.com Community, and the PF HelpDesk admin in each organization will get a personal e-mail with the new registration key. Then you may just upgrade and enjoy! If you are not a Member yet, I recommend you to join us as soon as possible to benefit from the advantages.

Updated PF HelpDesk V11 supports Office 2010

Incident management in Outlook with Public Folder HelpDesk

Public Folder HelpDesk V11
was released nearly three weeks ago, and the interest for our incident management tool for Microsoft Outlook has been great! This was expected, and expected was also that some of all who downloaded the new version would have problems.

Our products work in such a complex environment that it is virtually impossible to test every combination of software and ways of using them. Therefore we are always grateful for reports from users.

As always our technicians have done their best to solve the problems as quickly as possible, and today we have published an update where all known bugs are solved. The users who have complained about errors have been very helpful in the troubleshooting, and they have already received files that have solved their problems.


We get more and more questions about Office 2010. PF HelpDesk V11 and our other products already work with the new version of Office, but we have not yet optimized them for Office 2010. For PF HelpDesk this means that you will find the toolbar on top if you use Outlook 2010, in the last tab.

The improvement work continues, so our Members can feel confident about the future of PF HelpDesk.

31 May 2010

Updated TimeCard Gives New Possibilites For Appointment Subject

kalmstrom.com Testimonials
Today we have had another release, as the Workgroup version of TimeCard was updated. This tool for time reporting from inside the Outlook Calendar has many users, so I know the new feature is welcome. It is now possible to write a subject of your own and still have the TimeCard data automatically added to the Subject. If you check the box for this alternative in Personal Settings, you may now have it all – both the metadata and you own comment. They are separated with :: to avoid misunderstandings, and the metadata always come first. Welcome to upgrade, Community Members!

28 May 2010

Excellent Statistics for Sweden and kalmstrom.com

Join kalmstrom.com Community to always have modern sofware and rapid supportToday we can feel happy in Sweden. The government agency Statistics Sweden has reported that Sweden's GDP increased by 3.0 percent in the first quarter - an astonishing recovery from the recession.

Also kalmstrom.com is going fast forward. In May kalmstrom.com Community has existed for six months, and we are glad we made the transfer to the new payment model. The number of Members is growing steadily, and we feel confident for the future. Now we have a group of organizations that will contribute to the development of our products for a long time to come, and they can feel sure we have their best in mind. Without you we are nothing, dear Members!

What surprises us a bit is that as much as 87 % of our full Members only use one product, even though they may use another one for free. Obviously that fact is not important for the Membership. Instead organizations like one of our products and decide that the Membership fee gives them good value for money also for only one product.


10 % of the Members use two products and only 3 % use three. 58 % of the Members are former customers, while 42 % are new to us. There are Community Members all over the globe, but Europe (48 %) and North America (46 %) dominate. We hope that all Members spread the word about kalmstrom.com Community, but we are especially grateful to you who work in other parts of the world!

16 May 2010

Public Folder HelpDesk V11 - One Step Closer to ITIL

Incident Management with PF HelpDesk for OutlookThe release of Public Folder HelpDesk V11 comes closer. In this version of our Outlook issue tracking application we have made an adjustment to ITIL terminology: The earlier terms Problem, Problem Type and Problem Category have been replaced by Incident, Incident Type and Incident Category.

In ITIL backed organizations the term Problem is used for recurring errors which need a long term solution, while Incident is an error that have a relatively quick solution. As most issues reported to a helpdesk is of the Incident kind, we decided to use that term instead.

As the PF HelpDesk V11 ticket form is easy to customize, you may of course use any terms that suits your organization in the tickets. However, from version 11 Incident is the default term for the problems, suggestions and other issues that PF HelpDesk helps workgroups to cooperate on.

03 May 2010

TimeReporting for the Lazy with TimeCard for Outlook

Make it easier to report with default data for TimeCard

In April the kalmstrom.com team released an update of the Workgroup version of TimeCard, the application that lets users report time and expenses directly from inside the Outlook Calendar. Today also the Single version has the same improvements and also an additional feature.

A Single user pointed out to us that she wanted to see the default values in the appointment also, when she had enabled default values for empty fields in Personal Settings. Earlier new appointments were not marked with the default values, but they were added at time of appointment posting. Now users who wish to see the default data when they create a new appointment just have to check a box once in the Settings. This box is only active is default values for empty fields is enabled, of course.  

We are always grateful for suggestions that will make our products even more efficient and smooth. The users are the experts on this, and if at all possible our development experts will do their best to make the suggestion reality.

22 April 2010

First Setup of PF HelpDesk V11

Public Folder HelpDesk for Outlook - issue tracking, support handling and information sharing based on Outlook and ExchangeI have received the first setup of version 11 of our issue tracking application Public Folder HelpDesk. Our developers still have some problems with the upgrade procedure to solve, but I could make a new installation and record a Presentation demo where you may see the new HTML ticket form

Another improvement in the new version is that we use our own installer, which you can use as many times as you wish. This means that it will be much easier to install and upgrade multiple installations with PF HelpDesk V11. Welcome to watch the demo!

16 April 2010

TimeCard Workgroup Updated after Member Request

Report time and expenses directly from within the Outlook CalendarToday we have released an update of the Workgroup version of TimeCard, the kalmstrom.com add-in for reporting time and expenses directly from the  Outlook Calendar.
A Community Member had problems with duplicate entries, and it turned out that the TimeCard users in this company only reported their appointments once a month. Then the reporting takes some time, and if the connection was lost during the reporting there were duplicate entries in the database.
Therefore our developers have changed TimeCard so that the appointment POST status is updated after each database entry, not when they are all reported. The users in the Member organization – and others too, of course – can upgrade and continue reporting once a month, an everyone is happy! In this update also a few smaller problems were fixed. For details, refer to the TimeCard Revisions page.

29 March 2010

Support for Forms Authentication in new release of HelpDesk OSP

Co-operate on issue tracking and user support with Outlook and SharePoint/Office Live

Forms authentication is a common mechanism for authenticating users in online applications. The kalmstrom.com issue tracking software for Outlook and SharePoint, HelpDesk OSP, has not handled this log in method before, but now it does! Today we released version 2.1, which of course will attract new users to HelpDesk OSP. Community Members and HelpDesk OSP support customers who want to use forms authentication are very welcome to upgrade their installations.

Let HelpDesk OSP convert emails to SharePoint or Office Live list itemsThe SharePoint login info tab now has a dropdown where the user can select the Authentication alternative. Windows authentication is the default alternative, but no longer the only one.

Have you not tried HelpDesk OSP yet? Welcome to download and evaluate the application!  SharePoint is a great platform for cooperation within a team, and with HelpDesk OSP you can connect your Outlook or OWA to it.