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Working with Multiple Companies or Currencies

As an add-in program, Excel Invoice Manager creates a bridge between the front-end invoice templates and the backend databases, making it possible to exploit the advantages of both technologies to the full - at the front-end, Microsoft Excel is flexible enough to allow you create the invoice format you need; at the backend, a database engine makes manipulating large amount of data effective and productive.

This mechanism also makes it possible to work with multiple companies and/or currencies on the same computer. The add-in program is able to bridge different templates with different database files - all you need to do is to create one group of data files for one company or one currency type.

Step 1: Locating the data files

In Excel Invoice Manager, there are 3 types of data files:

  • Invoice template file: an Excel workbook file, usually has an ".xls" extension in Excel 2000/XP/2003, or an " .xlsx" extension in Excel 2007/2010.
  • Database file: a Microsoft Access database file, usually has an ".mdb" extension.
  • Database definition file: this file, "FDINFO10.rst", provides structural information about the database. Excel Invoice Manager does not allow renaming this file.

By default, the setup program of Excel Invoice Manager installs one group of the standard data files on your computer. On Windows 2000/XP, these files are stored in the following folder:

<System Driver>\Program Files\\Excel Invoice Manager\

On Windows Vista and Windows 7, the files are stored in the following folder: (See Installing / Upgrading for more information)

<System Driver>\Users\Public\Documents\Excel Invoice Manager\

Excel Invoice Manager allows you to change the installation folder when installing the program, so it is possible that the data files are not stored in the above folders if you changed the default installation folder. If this happens on your computer, or you are using a customized version of the template or database files, follow these steps to find out the exact path and name of your template file:

  1. In Windows Explorer, right click the shortcut icon with which you open your template, choose Properties from the menu.
  2. Switch to the Shortcut tab.
  3. The Target field shows you the exact path and file name of your template.

To find out the exact path and file name of your database:

  1. Open your invoice template as usual.
  2. Click the Settings button on the Invoice worksheet.
  3. Go to the Database tab.
  4. The Current Database field shows you the exact path and file name of the database that is working with the current template.

The database definition file, FDINFO10.rst, usually can be found in the same folder where the database file resides. If you cannot find a database definition file there, then simply use the database definition file in the installation folder of Excel Invoice Manager.

Step 2: Creating a separate folder for each of the companies / currencies

Now you have located all the 3 required data file: an Excel invoice template file, a database file, and a database definition file. The next step is to create a folder for each of the companies or currency types.

You can create these folders anywhere you like, for example inside C:\Excel Invoice Manager Data Files\ or inside My Documents\My Excel Invoice Manager\.

Name the newly created subfolder with the company name or currency type name. For example, if you are working with two companies, CompanyA and CompanyB, and you are creating the subfolders inside C:\Excel Invoice Manager Data Files\, the new folders could be C:\Excel Invoice Manager Data Files\CompanyA\ and C:\Excel Invoice Manager Data Files\CompanyB.

Step 3: Copying the data files to each of the subfolders

In each of the subfolders (company folder, or currency type folder), there must be an invoice template file, a database file, and a database definition file.

Tip: Name the invoice templates in different folders with different file names, say: CompanyAInvoice.xls and CompanyBInvoice.xls. This way, you will be able to open the two templates at the same time if you have a Pro or Enterprise edition of Excel Invoice Manager.

Step 4: Connecting each template to its own database

Connect each of the templates to its own database, by following the steps below.

  1. Open the invoice template inside one of your company folders (or currency type folders).
  2. Click the Settings button on the Invoice worksheet.
  3. Go to the Database tab.
  4. Click Open Database. Browse to and open the database file stored in the same folder as the invoice template file.
  5. Save the invoice template by clicking Excel menu File -> Save in Excel 2000/XP/3003, or by clicking Office button -> Save in Excel 2007, or by clicking File -> Save in Excel 2010.

Step 5: Customizing the templates

The last step is to customize the templates for each of the companies/currency types. The data files organized in this way are completely separate - this means that, you can have several very different invoice forms working on the same computer, and even the underlying databases can have very different structure - for example, you can use custom fields in one database and in the same time, use just standard fields in another database.

For more information about customizing the invoice templates, please see Customizing Invoice Template.

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