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V.I.P. Zone - Current Edition and Upgrade

If you haven't already, we suggest you watch our recorded tutorials to discover everything that V.I.P. Zone can do. DRS add-in tutorials:

If you are installing V.I.P. Zone on a workstation, see issue #1 below.
If you are running RMS 1.x, see issue #2.
If you are an HQ user (multi-store), see issue #3.
If you have lots of mail order sales (many different City/State addresses), disable “Combo filters” in Setup for faster startup.

Windows 7/8/10: You must right-click on the desktop or Start menu shortcut after installation and select Properties, Compatibility tab, Change settings for all Users, enable ‘Run this program as an administrator’, OK, OK.. 

General Information

V.I.P. Zone appears as a custom POS button in POS and as a standalone shortcut on the Desktop. This utility is designed to replace most F7 Customer functions in POS with an enhanced version, similar to how DRS Power Ops replaces F2 Lookup. You can continue to use all POS functions as normal. Installing V.I.P. Zone will not interfere with running RMS in any way but be aware the merge account function cannot be reversed. You run V.I.P. Zone from within Manager by selecting Utilities, Add-ins.

IMPORTANT: The Merge function for HQ users is only active when V.I.P. Zone is connected to the HQ database. Global customer editing does not become active until you install V.I.P. Zone at all store locations and HQ. You should install at store locations FIRST before installing at HQ (see error 1009 below).

WARNING: Do NOT use merge in an HQ environment unless your customer accounts are 100% global and in sync between all stores and HQ. If "select * from customer where HQID = 0" produces results on any database (store or HQ), you should NOT use merge as that means HQID's are not unique.

Known Issues and Resolutions

CANNOT CONNECT TO DATABASE/WORKSTATION REQUIREMENT: Run Start, Programs, Microsoft Retail Management System, Client Network Utility, and select the Alias tab, Named Pipes. Insert the name of your server, click Apply, then OK to exit. If you do not know the name of your RMS server, run Store Operations Administrator and select File, Configuration. Repeat on any workstations that require this step.

ERROR 1009: In an HQ environment V.I.P. Zone must be installed and run once at each store location, before installed and run once with the HQ database. After the next 401 series, global customer editing will be active at the stores. If installed first at HQ, you will receive a table sync error at the stores until V.I.P. Zone has been installed and run once at each store (to create the necessary tables). You may also receive this error the first time you run V.I.P. Zone on a store's database.

SLOW STARTUP: If V.I.P. Zone is running slow every time you run it, go to Setup and change the "Load list upon" setting to something other than Startup. You can also Disable Combo Filters if you don't plan on using this search feature. This will significantly speed up startup time, especially if you have a large customer database spread across many different states. 

LAST NAME SEARCH NOT SORTED BY FIRST NAME: Enter last name, tab to first name and type in any portion of the first name before hitting Enter (example: smit tab jo Enter would locate all variations of John Smith). While the results won't sort alphabetically by first name, the list will likely include who you are looking for without any scrolling. This is MUCH faster than if we add sort by first name which would disable other features in V.I.P. Zone. If you need to sort by first name, click on the First Name column header.

DRIVING DIRECTIONS DO NOT WORK: Make sure your store address is entered correctly in Manager, File, Configuration, Store tab. Address1 must contain a valid street address for mapping. City, State, and Zip must appear in separate fields. If Address1 says something like "Eastside Shopping Center" and Address2 is the actual street address, reverse these entries.


ACCESS RIGHTS: You must install V.I.P. Zone while logged into Windows as a user with administrator rights. If your workstation PCs will have limited rights, you must run V.I.P. Zone once from the desktop and once from within POS (if a POS lane) before switching to a user with limited rights. On Windows 7 you must enable Run as Administrator for All Users by right-clicking on desktop shortcut, select Properties, Compatibility tab.

Features include:

- Setup options: We suggest you leave these settings alone initially, but change them as needed once you are familiar with the program; Validate upon View is recommended for US/CA users
- Global customer editing at stores (HQ users); this will only work once V.I.P. Zone has been installed at HQ and at store locations
- Dropdown filters by State and City, plus Zip search (starts with; supports multiple zips separated by comma)
- Advanced lookup options by Last Name, Last Name + First, or Phone
- Quick scan lookup by Acct#, Company, Last Name, First Name, or Phone
- Search by any column header field
- Exclude Company column in results
- Reverse phone number lookup (new customer adds)
- Reverse phone number lookup (existing customer/update)
- Merge duplicate customer entries; HQ users can only use this feature when V.I.P. Zone is connected to your HQ database
- View map location of customer address
- Driving directions to/from customer address
- Standard tabs for Billing Information, Purchase History, Shipping Address, Account Information*, Customer Options, and Additional.
- Address correction button or auto address correction (Setup)
- Order recall (layaway, workorder, backorder, quote)
- Order selection dropdown (layaway, workorder, backorder, quote)
- Full set of hot-keys (click the key icon on main list view for a complete list)
- Right-click menu options from main list view
- Delete a customer if added in error and no activity and not a global customer (HQ)
- Targeted list extraction to CSV, tab-delimited, or Constant Contact format; or print labels

*Account Information is limited to view functions only.

IMPORTANT: A detailed Help file is included with V.I.P. Zone. Click the Help button or press F1 to view the file. We suggest you print out the two-page Quick Guide. Most operations should be self-explanatory as this tool emulates the customer lookup/find/properties in RMS. Hot keys to remember include F5 Refresh and F6 Reset but there are many more (click key icon or see the General topic in the Help file).


-  If you are a current V.I.P. Zone user, you can install an upgrade over the top of your existing installation. If an upgrade key is required, the application will start a trial period as noted in the title bar.
-  If you have multiple users defined in Windows, make sure you are logged into Windows with administrator rights before installing a DRS application.
-  In an HQ environment you must install V.I.P. Zone at each store location first then HQ before global customer editing is supported. To connect to HQ, run the desktop version of V.I.P. Zone. You cannot connect the POS version to an HQ database.

1) Exit POS and Manager if already running.

2) Download installer: 

3) Unzip and run the installer.

Windows 7/8/10: You must install the application as admin user, then right-click on the desktop or Start menu shortcut after installation and select Properties, Compatibility tab, Change settings for all Users, enable ‘Run this program as an administrator’, OK, OK.. 

-  Follow the onscreen prompts to complete the installation and activate a new custom POS button.
-  We suggest you install V.I.P. Zone on all your POS stations and at least one back-office PC.
-  If you do not have the .NET framework installed, you may be prompted to install it (select the x86 option). Otherwise, you can use Windows Update to obtain the .NET download (Start, Programs, Windows Update, Custom, Software, .NET Framework).
-  If you'd like to uninstall the program at any time, exit POS if already running and select Start, Control Panel, Add/Remove Programs, DRS V.I.P. Zone, Remove. You will need to manually remove the custom POS button in Manager, Database, Registers, Custom POS Buttons.
-  If you would like online assistance with setup and operation, please visit our online help desk and engage a support rep by starting a conversation.

Suggested procedure for adding new customers

1) Search for existing customer by typing in last name (or partial), then tab and type in the first name (or partial), then press Enter to display the results.

Example: smit Tab j Enter would find all occurrences of Smith, John (or similar entries). 

You could alternately tab twice and search by phone number instead. If you suspect the customer is already in file, the last 4 digits of the phone number should suffice.

2) If customer is not found, select New.

3) Move to the telephone number field on the New form (if not set as the default), enter a 7 or 10 digit number, and press Enter. This step is skipped if you performed a telephone search in Step 1.

4) Return to the New form, enter a partial street address (such as "204 main") then tab to the zip code. Enter a 5 digit zip and press Tab again. USPS validation will occur if auto address validation is enabled in Setup. Otherwise click on the address correction button. 

If you need assistance with installation, setup, or operations, visit our online help desk and engage a support rep by starting a conversation. Charges may apply.

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  1. Dave J

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