Navigating the QAD .NET UI > Overview of UI Navigation Features
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Overview of UI Navigation Features
The QAD .NET User Interface (UI) provides a common framework for multiple QAD applications. This framework, based on Microsoft .NET technology, has excellent performance and provides best-practice usability and deployment features, as well as extensive ways for users to adapt the UI to their preferred work style.
When you first log into the .NET UI, you see a screen like the one above.
1 The main menu bar includes selections for File, Edit, Tools, Workspace, Window, and Help.
2 The menu search helps you locate programs to run.
3 The Application area displays the application programs that can be run in the QAD .NET UI.
4 Use the dashed bar to close and open the navigation pane. Closing the pane gives you more area to work in.
5 The Favorites area can be customized by each user to list frequently used programs.
6 The Quick Search area lets you search for a value across all of the fields in a browse group, which are definable by each user (see Quick Search for details).
7 The Messages inbox displays messages generated through the QAD Enterprise Applications internal mail system.
Each distinct area of the UI can be resized to suit your needs by dragging the edge to the place you want.
Workspace
In the .NET UI, your application context is determined by a combination of domain and entity, called a workspace. Workspaces represent the area of your business where you are working. In this class, you are using the 10USA > 10USACO workspace, which represents the 10USA domain and the 10USACO entity.
Most users only use one workspace and once selected, it is always active by default. When you exit the QAD NET UI, the active workspace is saved and displays when you log in again.
If needed—and you have the necessary access—you can select a different workspace that displays on the Workspace menu. The check mark signifies the domain that is currently active.
If you need to change workspaces regularly, you can also enable the workspace toolbar, shown above. Clicking a workspace name in the toolbar changes the current domain and entity. The toolbar is enabled using the Show Workspace Selector option on the Tools|Options menu.
For information on the domain and entity concepts, see Training Guide: QAD Quick Start.
UI Navigation: Process Maps
The .NET UI provides many ways to navigate and find programs you are interested in. You can select programs from the menu on the left or enter a program name or number the search field. These methods are shown in following slides.
This slide shows a top-level view of the process maps supplied with the .NET UI. These maps are graphic representations of workflows that can include links to programs, browses, documentation, URLs, or other maps.
The .NET UI includes a Process Editor so that administrators can create their own maps that accommodate unique company standards. Users can edit process maps for any segment of the organization, or model unique environments in as much detail as appropriate.
The set of process maps supplied with the product has been carefully designed to incorporate best practice workflows tailored for various vertical industries.
Using process maps can:
Improve end user performance by making process instructions visual and readily available, increasing awareness of standard procedures for routine and special tasks.
Reduce errors and waste since users quickly access information regarding handling procedures, detailed documentation and instructions, eliminating guesswork.
Increase global staff communication through maps that are globally available and editable to match regional language and operational demands.
Drill-Down and Breadcrumbs
Processes are built with two basic components:
Nodes are represented by various shapes and typically indicate a step within the process.
Connectors are lines with arrows that indicate the direction of execution for the steps (nodes) within the process.
You navigate the process map using nodes, and can retrace your steps using the hyperlinked breadcrumbs at the top of the screen.
UI Navigation: Applications Area
The Applications area displays the menu items for the QAD applications running in the QAD .NET UI. When the system is installed, the default menu organization is automatically loaded. Multiple screens can be open at any one time.
You can use the mouse to select menu items. You can use the menu search to:
Find programs based on one or more menu label keywords, program name, or menu number. For example, enter sales to display all menu labels that include the word sales.
Execute a specific program based on full menu label, program name, or menu number. For example, enter Item Master Maintenance, ppptmt.p, or 1.4.1 and then press Enter to display Item Master Maintenance.
Execute a specific program based on a shortcut defined in the Name field of Menu System Maintenance (36.4.4.1 in EE, 36.4.4 in SE).
When typing in the menu search area, different screens appear as the typing continues until the proper screen is located. This is called predictive text.
Menu Properties
You can view the information about a menu item by right-clicking it and choosing Properties from the pull-down menu. The Properties window includes two tabs: General and Program.
The other options on the right-click menu let you:
Find the program in the menu system, so you can see its hierarchical position relative to other programs.
Note: The Find in Menu option changes to Collapse Menu when the hierarchy is already displayed.
Add the program to the Favorites area (you can also do this by dragging).
Open the program in the workspace so you can use it.
Design a custom version of the program. This option is disabled unless you belong to a special group of users with access to the Configurable Screens feature. Configuring custom program screens is an administrative function that is covered in Training Guide: QAD .NET UI Administration.
Properties Options
The General tab displays:
URL
The QAD Shell URL for the program.
Key
The program number; 7.1.1 is the program number for Sales Order Maintenance.
Aliases
The program number and name. For example, for Sales Order Maintenance, 7.1.1 is the program number and sosomt.p is the program name.
Menu
The menu item folder location.
The Program tab displays:
Domain
The current working domain and domain currency. If the specific program updates data that applies to all domains, All Domains displays.
Program
The program name. For example, sosomt.p is the program name for Sales Order Maintenance.
UI Template
If the user executing the program has been assigned a Configurable Screens version of the program, the name of the assigned UI template displays. The configurable screens feature is discussed in Training Guide: .NET UI Administration.
Desktop Version
Version details for the .NET UI.
Version
Product system version details.
Properties Options: Open With
Open with
Determines how the program will display in the workspace. Possible values are:
Desktop: The mode normally used by non-component programs in the .NET UI, which supports all of the enhanced navigation features.
.NET User Interface: This mode is supported by only a few programs that have been rewritten using a client-side plug-in that supports additional navigation features such as drag and drop.
Browse Viewer: This is the normal mode for browses that displays data in an interactive grid or chart format.
Terminal: This mode is a simple representation of a character-based screen.
You can change the Open with property from Desktop or Browse Viewer to Terminal according to your preference. If you do so, your choice will be retained from session to session.
Note: You cannot change the Open with setting for component-based programs.
This slide shows Sales Order Maintenance as it displays in the QAD .NET UI (Desktop mode) and the more traditional Terminal version of the screen below. In Desktop mode, you can use point and click, tab, Next, Back or Header, Lines, and Trailer Tab to navigate.
Favorites
The .NET UI lets you customize the interface in many ways to make your work easier. One way to do this is to set up your own personal favorites menu. You can do this in two ways:
Right-click a program in the top list and select Add to Favorites.
Use your mouse to drag the program to the area below. This makes a copy of the menu item; you can still find it in the list above as well.
Remove an item from the favorites using the same steps: either right-click and select Remove or drag out of the Favorites.
You can rename programs in your favorites so they are even more personalized. In addition, you can create folders and subfolders for organizing favorites by right-clicking in the Favorites area.
Two other options let you further manage favorites. You can:
Select one or more items to start automatically when you log in using the Auto Start option. So if, for example, you typically log into the system to approve requisitions, you can have the Purchase Requisition Approval program start automatically every time you log in. Items selected for Auto Start display in bold text in the menu.
You can change the icon associated with a program by loading the image you want to use.
One other useful feature for favorites is that you can add external files by simply dragging and dropping them into the favorites area. This slide shows a Microsoft Word file with work instructions added as a favorite.