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Thread: Winagent and Outlook

  1. #1
    Member
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    Paul Hudson
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
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    221

    Default Winagent and Outlook

    Hi folks

    I've been happily using a small but fairly complicated A4v8 system for some years, and am pretty competent with it, but the latest issue has beaten me.

    Part of the A4 app generates a PDF from a selection of records, then emails it to a supplier using the default email client, which USED to be Outlook Express. It worked very well for years.

    However, I recently upgraded to Outlook 2003, which is now my default email client. Since that upgrade, when I create the supplier email it takes around 2 minutes for the Outlook message pane to appear, whereas with OE it was within 3-5 seconds. Then when I click to send the email from Outlook, the email is sent correctly but winagent crashes with a dialog box saying that winagent has generated errors and will now close. It also says that a log is being created but I cannot find such a log anywhere, so I have no clues as to what just happened.

    I have to restart winagent after every email sent from within A4, which is a real pain because we have a number of suppliers to send emails to. In all other respects, Outlook works fine, as does A4. They just don't seem to get on together.

    I'm using the very last version of winagent that was released by Alpha, the PC is running Win2000, and all available A4 patches have been applied over the years.

    Any ideas please?

    Best regards
    Paul

  2. #2
    Volunteer Moderator
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    Alan Buchholz
    Join Date
    Oct 2000
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    Delavan, Wisconsin
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    9,628

    Default Re: Winagent and Outlook

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul H View Post
    Any ideas please?
    Don't upgrade to Outlook 2003 - A4 and winagent preceded it and couldn't possibly know what to do with it..

    It's the old adage - if it's not broken, don't fix it..

    Or you're going to have to face the replacement of A4 to find an answer ........ I've converted a number of people from A4 to A5 and it starts with kicking and screaming - but in the end, the additional power that is available is overwhelming..

    :)
    Al Buchholz
    Bookwood Systems, LTD
    Weekly QReportBuilder Webinars Thursday 1 pm CST

    Occam's Razor - KISS
    Normalize till it hurts - De-normalize till it works.
    Advice offered and questions asked in the spirit of learning how to fish is better than someone giving you a fish.
    When we triage a problem it is much easier to read sample systems than to read a mind.

  3. #3
    Member
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    Paul Hudson
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
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    221

    Default Re: Winagent and Outlook

    Hi Al

    Sorry, too late.
    I had to change to Outlook a few weeks ago as part of a plan to share the email network between staff. Before the change I briefly checked that A4 still worked ok with Outlook - it did, with a couple of minor issues, but I figured I'd soon fix them, so off I went down the path of improvement.

    Everything went surprisingly well, actually, but I'm left with this one issue and I can't fix it. I anticipated that A4 wouldn't understand Outlook because of the generation gap (a bit like me not understanding my kids!) which is why I chose Outlook 2003 instead of Outlook 2007 (less of a gap).

    I might experiment with compatibility modes as a last desperate measure. Or try to create some code that re-starts winagent when it closes. Ok, that's fraught with potential problems but sometimes a crazy fix is all that's needed to get the job done.

    Many years ago I would have stayed up all night to fix an injured system properly. Nowadays I'm just grateful for a bandaid...

    Paul

  4. #4
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    Keith George
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    May 2000
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    Near Penzance Cornwall UK
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    Default Re: Winagent and Outlook

    Hi Paul,

    I wrote an application in 1999 and have had to resort to many new scripts & batchfiles to keep it going through system upgrades.

    I'm sure you can get winagent to re-start after each email with the aid of a script or batchfile.

    Good Luck

    Keith

  5. #5
    Member
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    Paul Hudson
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Posts
    221

    Default Re: Winagent and Outlook

    Hi Keith

    Yes, a batchfile to restart winagent is easy enough, but I don't know how to automatically close the error dialog box every time it pops up, nor indeed how to tell the system how to recognise that winagent has closed. Added to which, every time winagent restarts it puts another "alpha" icon in the tray. Typically we send 40 emails per session, potentially resulting in 40 icons in the tray. Simply wiping the mouse over them makes them vanish, but it's not very elegant at present... need to think this through.

    Best solution I've thought of so far is to switch the default email client to OE just before beginning the email batch, then process the emails (takes about an hour), sending a copy of the emails to a special address which can be later checked by Outlook (and not OE). At least then we have copies of the emails in Outlook for the staff to share, and winagent wouldn't crash. OE would have to be set to NOT receive any emails during the "switched" period.
    Needs a bit of refining but that may do the trick.

    I do have Alpha 5 but no time to make the conversion, excellent though the benefits would be.

    Paul

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