15 April 2013

Incident Management Tool For Outlook - See New Version

Folder HelpDesk logoThe application for incident management within Outlook has been on the market for more than ten years, so we have had time to both fine-tune our Outlook helpdesk and add a lot of useful features to it.

Now we will soon release version 13 of Folder HelpDesk, and below you can see the V 13 slideshow. We have earlier told you about the new Folder HelpDesk ticket form, but version 13 gives a lot more.

64-bit support
An important part of the update has been to make Folder HelpDesk for Outlook compatible with the 64-bit versions of Office. Even if most Outlook add-ons only support the 32-bit Office we will no longer content ourselves with that. Instead we will add support for the 64-bit version of both Office 2010 and 2013.

Some subscribers to Folder HelpDesk have asked for 64-bit support, and as our first priority is to keep Members of the Community happy, we have listened and acted accordingly.
Office 2013 icon
Maybe you don't know if you have the 32- and 64-bit version of Office? In that case you probably have the 32-bit, because that is what Microsoft recommends for most users. You only need the 64-bit version if you work with extra-large databases or worksheets.

For the use of Folder HelpDesk you actually don't need to know what version you have installed at all. The indicent management application will understand what version you have and automatically choose the correct files to execute.

New settings form
Not only the ticket form but also the settings form has been changed in version 13 of Folder HelpDesk for Outlook. At a first glance there is not such a big difference, but under the surface the developer team has made a significant enhancement.

We have now used a grid that makes it possible to rename categories, for example Incident types, without getting problems with the statistics and search of old tickets. When you change a category name in version 13 of our incident management tool, the old tickets will just take the new name, and the statistics and search can continue as before.

Search closed tickets by ID
When a case is closed the Folder HelpDesk ticket is removed from Outlook and only saved in the Access or SQL server database used with Folder HelpDesk. That is done with a click on a button, but before that you may click another button to save the ticket as a knowledge base article.

It is however important that closed tickets are easy to reach also from Outlook. You should not have to go to the database to see them! Therefore Folder HelpDesk for Outlook can search the closed tickets from within Outlook and easily re-open them when needed.
Folder HelpDesk search closed tickets dialog
In version 13 our incident management tool handles the closed tickets in an even better way, as we will add yet another parameter to search them by: ticket ID. This means that if you know the ID of the ticket you are looking for, you can directly enter it in the dialog and get only one hit - the ticket you are looking for.

But for cases when you don't know the ticket ID there are a lot of other parameters to search by, besides free text, so there is no risk that you won't find the right ticket.

Save attachments for closed tickets
New in version 13 of the incident management add-in is also that attachments will be saved in the closed helpdesk tickets. These may be both attachments of the e-mail the ticket was created from and attachments added to the ticket by the helpdesk staff.

When an SQL Server database is used with Folder HelpDesk for Outlook, the actual attachment file will be saved in that database. When the database is Microsoft Access, the attachment will instead be saved in a subfolder to the Folder HelpDesk network folder. The Access database will only store the path to the attachment, so that it can be rapidly fetched if the ticket is re-opened. This is because Access has a limited capacity and the performance would soon decline if we stored the attachments directly in the database.

Sponsorships Business Solutions has a sponsor system for additions to our standard products, and all Community Members are welcome to suggest sponsorships to enhance our applications. We will only add such features that we think will be useful for many subscribers, as we must undertake to document them and support them in future versions, but even if we cannot accept a sponsorship we will do our outmost to give another solution to the problem that the sponsorship was thought to solve.

For version 13 of Folder HelpDesk for Outlook I have happily accepted sponsorships from two Members of the Community: The Swiss Post and Rail Cargo Hungaria. Some of the enhancements mentioned above has been implemented thanks to their generous contributions.

When the new version has been released, all current and future users of our incident management tool for Outlook will benefit from the trust the sponsors have shown the team.We are very grateful!

Please have a look at the Folder HelpDesk V13 slideshow while you are waiting for the real thing.

By Peter Kalmström
CEO and Systems Designer Business Solutions

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