Tech Docs: History of Updates

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Chronological History of  Facil Updates

The issue date of your copy of Facil is displayed on the Main Menu, next to the Version number. The following describes updates to Facil and the date they were added to the program. The most recent updates are listed first.

11/15/2013 - Facil Version 5.1 Update

New Features

New Visitor Log - Keeps records of who has visited your facility. It offers a quick way for you to record when someone arrives and leaves. You can see who is currently in the facility, who visited on any past date, and when a particular person visited. If the visitor isn't already on your list of People, you can add them quickly by just entering their name or you can collect their contact information, helping you build your contact list.

In addition to the Visitor Log form for staff use, there is a new Public Visitor Login form. This is similar to the Public Appointment Book – you can let any member or visitor use it to record their own arrival and departure without allowing them access to any other information or Facil functions. See the Help Topic "Visitor Log, Public" for details.

Google Calendar Export for Reservations - This new report, in the Reservation report group, creates a data file (CSV format) that can be imported into a Google calendar. You can select a date range and the Equipment Types you want to include. The data lists each reservation with Equipment Type, Project Name, and Start/End date and times. When imported to a Google calendar, each reservation shows as an appointment. The calendar can be viewed by anyone either directly on the Google web site, or integrated into your own web site. The calendar offers day, 4 day, week, month, and "agenda" (chronological list) views. This new function is similar to the existing Google calendar export for the Program Schedule.


Streamlined Equipment Checkout by Tag # / Barcode - When adding an equipment item to a Reservation using the Checkout dialog, the item is now added without requiring user confirmation, i.e. no "Are You Sure?" This means you can barcode / scan in any number of items without using the keyboard or mouse.

Multiple Certification Codes for one Equipment Type - Facil 5.1 allows more than one Cert Code to qualify for using a given Equipment Item. The new Certification tab on the Equipment form presents a list of the Cert Codes that qualify a person to use the selected Equipment Type. You can add or delete Cert Codes at any time. If none are listed, no certification is required. If one is entered, only that certification qualifies the user. If multiple Cert Codes are entered, any one of them qualifies the user. The "Cert Required" field on the Equipment Types tab of the form shows "Yes" if any Certifications are entered, "No" if none are entered.

7/13/2011 - Facil Version 5.0 Update (2)

New Features and Enhancements

Google Calendar Program Schedule Export - publish your schedule on your web site using Google Calendar. The Facil Program Schedule can be exported and integrated into a Google Calendar. The Google Calendar can show daily, weekly, and monthly views of your programming as well as a chronological "agenda" view. The calendar will show the start time, title, and description of your programs. The public can view this calendar by searching in Google or you can easily embed the Google calendar in your own website. The viewer can navigate to any date on the calendar, click a program to see more details, and even print the schedule.

The Google calendar service is free and there are no advertisements. For an example of the embedded Google/Facil schedule calendar, visit the Facil web site at

Added mailing list splitting to Person Mailing / Save As New List.  Some users are limited in the sending of batches of email by their internet service providers. They may be limited to a smaller number of emails per hour or per day making the use of Facil's high speed batch email difficult. The "Save As New List" function on the Person Mailing Output now allows setting a desired number of addresses per batch and then saves the selected list into new, named, separate lists of that size. The smaller lists are saved as YourListName Part #1, Part #2, etc. You can then easily send each part of your mailing on your own schedule to stay within your ISP's limits.

Added "No Photo" ID card formats.  Two new ID card formats without photos include a much bigger space for your organization logo. This space is large enough that you can include an image with both a logo and your address or other text. One format is for 10/page business cards and the other for the 3/page Avery 5362 credit card size.

Added barcode of Reservation ID to Reservation Receipt printout. You can locate a reservation by this barcode. On the Reservation form, press Alt-L (or click) to put the cursor in the "Locate Resv #" box at the top of the form, then scan the barcode to bring up that reservation.

Added File Browse button to Program Form Signal Source Detail. Allows browsing and selecting any file on the network and automatically enters that full directory path and file name in the Signal Source Detail. (Centro NA)

Expanded Episode # field in Program Viewer to show up to 7 digits.  (Centro NA)


Improved Program Exit and User List Management. Some users encountered problems with the Current User List not clearing user records on exit. This change will reduce / eliminate this issue.

Fixed Person Activity Display. When Payments were displayed, the list was showing Refund transactions without corresponding Payment transaction. Fixed to show nothing if Payment was refunded resulting in no actual "Activity". Full records of all Payment / Refunds are shown in the Transaction viewer and other reports.

Fixed handling of multiple email attachments. When multiple files were attached, only the first file would be sent.

Fixed green/yellow highlight on Class Registration, Amount Paid. This color highlight indicates paid in full (green) or payment due (yellow). The highlight did not appear for some users.

Fixed Reservation Viewer data export. Export resulted in a error in some installations.

Added automatic save to Reservation/CheckOut command. Adding an item through Checkout without first saving the Reservation caused an error. Also added automatic save to Reservation commands Person Resv List, Project Resv List, and Check In.

2/4/2010 - Facil Version 5.0 Update

Rewrite of the mass email system. The new high speed email system in Facil 5.0 had problems with some email servers that did not respond to requests quickly enough. Facil repeatedly resent messages when no response was received from the server, resulting in some recipients getting multiple copies of the email.

The redesigned email system has been tested against multiple kinds of servers in the field by Facil users with excellent results. The system can send upwards of 1,000 emails per minute with perfect reliability. The “Mass Email Test”, on the Admin Menu, will let you test your email server at this high volume. If you use an email server that is managed by your ISP or your web hosting company, you may encounter restrictions against high volume email. Use the Mass Email Test and/or talk to your email provider to make sure you can take advantage of Facil’s mass email capability. Be sure to read the Help topic “Email, Mass” for details.

Fixed error in “Word Merge” export. An error prevented exporting data to a Word Merge file under some circumstances.

Fixed error in Organization Mailing. An error prevented doing a mailing to Organizations from the “Org. Mailing” form.

Fixed Person Reservation Rule. The new Person Reservation Rule, which controls which Crew persons can make reservations on a Project, was not working. Read the Help topic “Project Crew” for details.

Fixed ID Card Report pictures. The ID Card reports would correctly print “No Photo Available” where there was no picture available for a Person, but then would also include the picture from the Person previously listed in the report.

New Shortcut Key. Alt-N enters next Episode Number on the Program form.

Fixed format of Program Play Dates email. The automatically generated email listing Program Play Dates had the whole list on one line instead of each play date on a separate line.

9/1/2009 - Facil Version 5.0 Initial Release

Version 5.0 is a major update to Facil, built on a newer programming platform, and includes major new features, functions, and improvements. Click here for a complete list of the new features in Facil 5.0.

6/2007 - Facil Version 4.5 Initial Release

New Features

New Clip Library: (Click to Watch a Video Demo!) - Track all your best video segments for reuse. Record the clip's location by Program, start and end time. Enter a name for the clip, a description, and any number of keywords for later reference. Find your clips using any combination of keywords, by any text in the description or clip name, and/or by using the Program Viewer to specify dates, subject, etc.

New Person Activity Tab: (Click to Watch a Video Demo!) - This new tab on the Person form shows a chronological list of a Person’s activities, including Reservations, Classes, Programs turned in, Projects started and closed, and Payments made. You can select which of these five kinds of activity to display, you can choose a date range of activities, and you can print a report of the displayed data.

New “Facil Today” Form: (Click to Watch a Video Demo!) - Gathers together the items that may need your attention – all in one place, automatically! You can set this form to display automatically every time Facil starts up, or you can select it anytime from the main menu.  Seven different categories of items are listed in Facil Today. A count of each category is displayed and a “view” button displays detailed information on all the items in that category. The seven categories are:

  • Active Reservations past their End, i.e. reservations that should already be Completed or Cancelled. The View button shows these reservations listed in the Reservation Viewer, where you can review them and link to each Reservation form for editing.

  • Programs past their Due Date, i.e. programs that should have been completed but have no Received Date entered. The View button shows a new “Programs Past Due” form which lists the details of the Programs, in order by their Due Date, with links to the Program and Project forms. There is also a Mailing List option on the Programs Past Due form – easily send an email to all the producers of programs that are past due!

  • Active Projects past their End Date – easily review these Projects to see if they should be Cancelled, Completed, or have their End Date extended, i.e. renewed. The View button shows these Projects in the Project Viewer.

  • Active Persons past their Expiration Date – check on Persons who should be renewed or made Inactive. The View button shows these Persons in the Person Expiration form where you can see their latest Reservation or Class, email the expiring Persons, generate a report, or reset the Expiration Dates or Status in mass.

  • Reservations Starting Today and Reservations Ending Today – quickly see how much activity there is, including equipment check out or check in. The View button shows the pertinent Reservations in the Reservation Viewer.

  • Classes Starting Today – Click View to display the Class schedule for the details.

New Program Schedule "Time Slot" View: (Click to Watch a Video Demo!) - This new form allows looking at the Program Schedule in new ways. See the schedule for only selected days of the week and/or any part of the day, i.e. Monday through Friday, 7 to 10 pm. Filter by Minimum length to show just programs, not promos, etc. Show one or all Subjects. Select any date range and one or all channels. Easily view just your prime time shows, weekends, late nights, religion or sports, etc.

New Equipment Usage Day/Time Report: Report equipment and facility use by Day of Week and Time of Day. Determine your days and times of peak demand for each equipment type. Reports hours of equipment use for specified date range and specified equipment types. You can choose to define four “day parts”, i.e. morning, afternoon, evening, late night – or the report can break down usage for each hour of the day. The report produces a table of the hours or day parts with a column for each day of the week.

New Tape Checkout Tracking: Keep track of tapes when they leave the library. Record the date out, who has the tape, which staff gave out the tape, and when it is due to be returned. Show all the tapes, just the ones that are checked out, or just the ones that are due to be returned.

New Functions

New Person Data:

  • Mobile phone number

  • Office phone extension

  • “ID” field – use to store Driver’s License, Social Security, or other ID number. Choose your own type of ID number or use more than one type.

  • User Name and Password – for use on your web site, your local network, or any other computer login.

New Organization Data:

  • Person Position in Organization – Record a Position (President, Admin Asst, Director, etc) for every Person affiliated with an Organization. No more guessing which person you want to contact!

  • Organization Expiration Date – Record an expiration date for the Organization and Facil will report organizations expiring in any selected date range.

New Program Data: Seven new data fields have been added to the Program records:

  • Production Date

  • Primary Audio Language

  • Secondary Audio Language

  • Close Captioned (Y/N)

  • Rating (G, PG, 14, MA, etc.)

  • Sub Rating (D/S/V/L)

  • Distribution Rights

Where appropriate, these items have also been added to the Project form (as Program Defaults), Program Viewer, Project Viewer, and Programming Analysis Report.

Reserve Specific Equipment Unit by Tag Number: Reserve any specific equipment item by entering its Tag Number in the Reservation when you make it. Facil checks to see that this particular Tag Number is not already reserved for that time. You can now reserve a specific camera from a set of identical cameras or track the specific hard drives that are reserved among all your identical drives. Of course, you can still just allow Facil to work with the available quantity of each item as before, and not worry about which Tag Number is going to be used until check out time – it’s up to you.

You can see exactly which Tag Numbers are reserved and which are available by clicking the new “?” button next to the Tag Number on the Reservation equipment list.

New Mailing List Features:

  • Owners, Permissions, and Descriptions – Make any staff member the “owner” of a mailing list. The owner can then set permissions to allow others to use the list, either full permission (edit and mail), read only (view and mail, but can’t edit), or no permission (can’t view the list.) Mailing Lists also have a description of any length.

  • Save any Person Mailing selection as a permanent named mailing list. Just choose “Save Selection As Mailing List” on the Mailing Output tab. A dialog asks for a name and then the Mailing List form is displayed with the contents of the new list. This allows editing who is on the list, reusing the list at any future time, or just keeping a permanent record in Facil of whom the mailing was sent to.

Email a List of Reservations: Now you can email an entire list of reservations selected in the Reservation Viewer. This is an easy way to send a producer a detailed list of ALL their reservations – future or past, selected by Project, by Equipment Type, etc..

New TV Guide X-List Export: Prepare your program schedule for submission to TV Guide with just a couple of clicks. Produces a data file in the correct format for submission through the TV Guide X-List system, with your program times, titles, descriptions, and categories – ready to send to TV Guide!

Improved Synergy Playback Integration: Enter your digital files, Windows Media streams, URLs, and other digital sources directly into the Facil Program list and schedule them just like other Programs. When you import your Facil Programs and Schedule, Synergy will create the new Title and MSN and playback the Program as scheduled – automatically, with no Synergy data entry.


New Class Registration Button on Person Form: This new button appears on the main Person tab and also on the Person Classes tab. Very often when you enter a new Person, the next step is to register that Person for an Orientation or other class. Click the new Class Registration button and the Class Schedule is displayed. Select the Class and click New Registration. Facil knows who you are registering and goes straight to the Registration form – no more searching for the Person you just entered!

Easier Person Data Entry:

  • Easier Phone Number data entry – All phone number fields now format automatically. Just enter 7 digits or 10 digits with no punctuation and the number automatically reformats to (###) ###-####.

  • Default Area Code - Enter a default Area Code in the Global System Settings. When you enter a 7 digit phone number, the default Area Code is automatically added. When you enter 10 digits, the Area Code you entered is used.

  • Default Zip Code – if most of your Persons are in the same Zip Code, set a default and you won’t need to enter that Zip

  • Lock Person ID Numbers – Facil allows manually entering new Person ID numbers, even though they generally are assigned automatically. This is to allow new Facil users to carry forward any existing Person IDs they may have. A new Global Setting allows locking the Person ID field, eliminating the possibility of accidentally entering an incorrect ID number, but still allowing manual control if needed.

  • Choice of automatic Expiration Dates – Previously, the Expiration Date always defaulted to the anniversary of the Joined Date. Some organizations expire all Persons on the same date, such as Dec. 31st. A new Global Setting allows using either the anniversary OR any calendar date of your choice.

New Data Exports: Export the selected data from

  • Reservation viewer

  • Person Expiration form.

  • Volunteer Service form

New Payment Receipt printing options: Print 2 or 3 copies of the Payment Receipt all on one page. Save paper!

Volunteer Viewer Report: Now includes total hours for all volunteers and a count of the volunteers.

Class Registration Report: Now has reports options for Date Range and choice of one or all Cert Codes. Previously the report always showed every class registration recorded.

Programming Analysis Report:

  • New Channel breakdown lets you compare programming between each of your Channels in a single report.

  • New Series/Not Series breakdown shows how many hours and shows are part of a Series.

Program Guide Chrono Export: The Project ID and Program ID have been added to the data exported.

Reservation Viewer:

  • New “Starts On” date and “Ends On” date options work with the date range you choose. Previously the Reservation Viewer always showed all the Reservations where any part of the Reservation time overlapped the Date Range you chose, i.e. all Reservations affecting that time frame. The new options allow you to also see only Reservations that start or only those that end in the Date Range

  • New “Show Late” Button displays all Active Reservations that are past their End Date/Time – with just one click.

  • New “+24” toggle button makes the End of the Date Range automatically follow the Start by 24 hours, making it simple to view a day at a time. You can always edit the End of the Date Range to any desired time, and you can turn off the automatic 24 hour range by “un”-clicking the toggle button.

Program and Project Viewers:

  • Sort the viewer displays the way you want!  Both Program and Project viewers can now be sorted by almost every field, including calculated fields such as the count of Past Due Programs or the First/Last Scheduled Dates. The report from the viewer will have the same selected sort order, giving you many new report choices

  • Performance of both viewers has been greatly improved! The initial load time is about the same but all subsequent filtering by criteria is virtually instantaneous. In addition, the Program Viewer now loads data only when necessary after mass changes; most often the Program Viewer will open instantly each time you go back to it during your Facil session.

  • Program Viewer Signal Source – A new criteria lets you find Programs that are Live vs. Taped vs. Satellite, etc.

  • Project Viewer Planned End Date – This new criteria allows you to easily see which Projects are due for review in any selected time period.

Program Schedule Editing: Simpler Project/Program Search. When searching for a Project or Program to enter into the Schedule, you now have the option to search by Title without using the Project or Program Viewer. Just enter any word that’s in the Title using the same search form you use elsewhere in Facil. This is a simpler and quicker alternative when you know the name of the Project or Program and don’t need all the tools of the Viewers to find what you want.

Person and Project Search Forms, Active Only Option:

  • Person search form - An option now allows showing “Active Only” or “All Persons”. Since you do most of your business with your Active persons, this can reduce the number of names to search through. Your last setting is saved for the next time you use the Person search.

  • Project search form - An option now allows showing “Active Only” or “All Projects”. Your last setting is saved for the next time you use the Project search.

Duplicate Reservation Form - New “View Dupe Reservations” Button:  After saving the newly duplicated reservations, click this button to open the Reservation Viewer and display a list of just those new reservations. From there you can print or email that list of reservations, or review/edit the reservations using the link buttons.

XML Data Exports: A new XML option has been added to the types of data exports available throughout Facil. This is particularly useful for moving data to a web based platform.


Volunteer Viewer – corrected error that occurred if Email or Report was attempted when no records were being displayed.

Email sent from Facil incorrectly marked as “Spam” – A few Spam filtering systems would sometimes reject email sent by Facil due to internal coding in the mail header.

Reservation form:

  • an error occurred if the Person was changed before any Equipment was reserved.

  • an error occurred when attempting to add equipment using the Check Out form if there was no other Equipment already reserved.

  • using Check Out to set Tag Numbers or add equipment did not update the Revised Date of the reservation.

Program form – Person notices were not displayed when the Producer was selected from the Person search form.

Active Reservation Limit – The Active Reservation Limit was not being checked when a Reservation was made from the Appointment Book.

8/2004 - Update to Version 4.4

New Features

  • “Change Multiple Person IDs” utility in Administration Menu.  Because Facíl allows you to assign your own Person ID numbers, it's possible to mistakenly enter and save a number that is inappropriate - much higher then the highest previous ID number.  If this happens and the mistake is not immediately corrected, Facil will begin automatically numbering Person IDs starting with that high number, resulting in a large gap in the Person ID numbers.  This new utility function allows you to close such a gap in Person ID numbering by automatically reassigning ID numbers for a selected range of Persons and updating all related data.  See the new Help Topic “”Person ID Changes”

  • “Combine Duplicate Person Record” utility in Administration Menu.  If you have accidentally created two Person records for the same Person, and have entered related data (class registrations, payments, projects, etc.) for both of them, this function combines the selected Person records and all the related data.  See the new Help Topic “”Person ID, Combining Duplicate Persons”

  • Class Completion Certificates Export to Word Merge: A Word Merge file can be exported for the currently selected class by clicking the Export Word Merge button (blue ”W” Word icon) in the upper right corner of the Class Schedule or Class Registration form.  This export contains the Class Name, Student Name, Instructor Name, and Certification Date for all Certified registrants in the Class.  Using this exported file with the merge function in Word allows you to easily create a reusable design for class completion certificates and to produce certificates for a class with just a few quick steps.  See the new Help Topic “Class Certificates”.


  • Reservations: When the Person is changed in a Reservation that already has Equipment reserved, the new Person’s training Certifications are checked against the Equipment.  The user is notified of any required Certifications not held by that Person. 

  • Program Schedule and Auto Schedule: Project Notice Text is displayed when a Project, or a Program of the Project, is selected.  Other Project Notices (Status not Active, Past Completion Date) are not shown.

  • Program Schedule: Toggle button to turn off/on the automatic feature of the End Time following the Start Time by 24 hrs.

  • Program Schedule Chrono Report:  Added optional 24 Hr time format.

  • Financial Reports – “Persons Paying/Not Paying” and “Persons Paying, Compared by Date Range”:  Added total amount paid to report.

  • “Today’s Reservations” report now includes Equipment Description

  • Added Equipment Note to Equipment Report

  • Added Project ID to Reservation Receipt

  • Added Person ID to Payment Receipt and Class Registration Reminder

  • Option to include only Active status Persons in the Volunteer Availability Viewer.

  • Channels can now be deactivated by entering the text "Inactive" in the Channel Description.  The Program Schedule display now has a “Show” option to include/exclude the Inactive channels from the display.

  • Class Registration: The Email button for persons registered in a class now appears on both the Class Schedule and the Class Registration form.


All the following issues have been corrected:

  • When creating Programs using the “Add Planned Programs” function on the Project form, the default Project Description was not copied to the newly created Program records.

  • When the Reservation form was open and minimized, using the link button from the Reservation Viewer did not maximize the Reservation form or select the desired Reservation.

  • Appointment Books and Two Week Appointment Book forms were showing the record selector and record navigation buttons, which have no function on these forms.

  • Two Week Appointment Book form was showing the Public Appointment Book format.

  • Permission for Programs were not properly enforced when linking to the Program Form from the Program Viewer.

  • Custom Permissions settings for Reservation form changed to show new Add Equipment button and remove old “Add Item” and “Add Kit” buttons.  If custom permissions for Reservation form had already been set, the new Add Equipment permission is set to the same value as the old Add Item permission.

  • The Two Week Appointment Book Read Only permission didn't disable the New Reservation button.

  • “Public” format of Volunteer Availability report was not following the selected report option to include/exclude the Street Address.

  • An “Edit Conflict” error message appeared when a new Reservation was saved, then Equipment was added, and then the Add Equipment toggle was turned off.

  • In the Program Schedule, Open time slots were not displayed if no channel was selected, i.e. when viewing all Channels.  The “Show Open” checkbox was not available (grayed out) in this circumstance.  Now Open slots are correctly displayed when the Show Open box is checked, with any or all channels selected.

  • The Date Pattern form (used in Program Autoschedule and Reservation Duplication), the Today’s Reservation Report options form, and the Tape Label Report options form, all have the feature of saving their last settings and restoring them the next time they are used.  If the Local Settings for the workstation had never been edited, a “No Current Record” error occurred when using these forms because no record of settings for the workstation existed to store the options.  The Local Settings record is now created automatically the first time any of these forms are used.

12/2003 - Facil Version 4.4 Initial Release

More Flexible Program Schedule Editing

Several changes to the Program Schedule improve performance, reliability, and ease of use:

  • When the Start Time criteria is changed, the End Time criteria automatically changes to 24 hours later; I.e. the display defaults to the 24 hours following the selected Start. This eliminates the need to reset the End Time when moving from one day's schedule to another. To set a longer date range, simply set the Start first and then the End to any desired date/time.

  • The Edit function now allows moving an event more easily. When there is an empty space before or after the event, you can adjust the time of the event anywhere within the combined space. Note that the displayed "schedule space" includes preceding or following empty slots.

  • Previously, it was not possible to schedule an event in an occupied time slot without first deleting the events to clear the space. In version 4.4, you can schedule an event in a space containing an existing event or multiple events, or schedule an event that is longer than a selected empty slot and overlaps existing events. Facil displays a confirmation dialog listing the events that will be replaced. When you confirm, all the overlapped events are removed and the new event inserted, in a single step.

    For example, you might have two half-hour programs scheduled consecutively. You can select the time slot for the first program, select a new program that is an hour long, and replace both the shorter shows in one step.

  • It's also possible to change the time for an existing event to a completely different date/time, outside the selected schedule space. A warning message is displayed because this is an unusual action, but it is allowed. If the new time is occupied, the replacement confirmation is displayed when you save the event to the new time.

Signal Source Saved For Each Scheduled Event

The Signal Source (Live, Tape, etc.) for each event is now saved separately as part of the Program Schedule. This allows the same Program to be "live" in one scheduled play and "tape" in another. Previously, the Signal Source was always retrieved from the Program record, and therefore was the same for every play of that program. The Signal Source and Signal Source Details appears in the edit form. When you select a Program, these fields are copied from the Program record, but you can then change them before saving the scheduled event. You can also select any existing scheduled event, edit the Signal Source information and save the changes.

This resolves a problem with the accuracy of Program Schedule Analysis reporting that arose from programs that were shown once live and then repeated from tape. If you changed the Signal Source in the Program record from "Live" to "Tape", as you should when the Tape is received, the first scheduled play was also changed to Tape, making the reporting of Live vs. Tape events inaccurate.

For Programs that will be aired once Live and then repeated on Tape, it might be easiest if you enter the Signal Source as Tape when you create the Program record. When you enter the first play in the schedule, you will choose Live as the Signal Source for that scheduled event. For the repeat plays, the Signal Source for the scheduled events will default to Tape.

Improved Internal Design for Program Schedule

An internal change in the Program Schedule data design simplifies the operation and improves reliability, eliminating a problem that a few Facil users reported where two consecutive blank spaces would appear in the schedule.

Improved "Add Equipment" in Reservations

Adding individual equipment items or Kits to a Reservation has been made easier with a new design. The three command buttons "Add Items", "Add Kits", and "Off Time" are replaced with a single "Add Equipment" button.

Click "Add Equipment" and the reservation data on the left side of the form is replaced with a scrolling list of reservable equipment items. Click the "right arrow" button next to the desired item to add it to the reservation. The equipment list remains in place so you can select any number of items.

If your equipment list is long, use the Group dropdown to restrict the list to items in one Equipment Group. Click the "x" button next to the Group to clear the criteria and return to viewing the full list of reservable equipment.

You can use the mouse to scroll and add items by clicking the "right arrow" button on the desired item. Or you can use the keyboard to begin entering the name of an item in the "Seek" field. As you type, the first item matching your entry is selected, as indicated by the record selector - that's the right facing triangle in the box to the left of the active record.. Press Enter to add the currently selected item. You can also use the up/down arrow keys to move your selection within the list. The cursor stays in the Seek field, but the record selector arrow indicates the current item. Press the Enter key at any time to add the currently selected item to your reservation.

Select the Kits option button to switch from adding individual items to adding user defined equipment Kits. The Seek field works for finding Kits by name; the mouse, enter key, and cursor keys work for Kits as they do for individual items.

Click the "Add Equipment" button again and the form is restored to the normal appearance. The form also returns to normal when you move to a different reservation.

See the help topics "Reservations", "Reservations: Off Time", and "Kits" for more details.

Individual Class Certification Dates

Each Class Registration now has its own Certification Date, replacing the Certified "Yes/No" field. If no date is filled in, the person is not Certified. Previously all Certifications were dated the same as the Class Start Date. This improves data accuracy when the person completes the class requirements on a date after the actual class. This change also allows more accurately recording certifications awarded before you started using Facil, using one "historic" Class for each Certification Code. Set any Start Date prior to all other classes in that Certification Code for this "historic" class, and you can correctly enter the individual Certification dates, even though they might be years apart.

All forms and reports that reference Certification have been appropriately updated. When you use the "Certify All" button on the Class Registration form, the Class Start Date is still used as the Certification Date for all registrations, but you now have the ability to review and individually revise the dates if needed.

Moving Class Registrations

Previously Facil only allowed moving an existing class registration to a class that had not yet taken place. Now you can move a registration to any class of the same kind that took place within a year previous to the current date, or to any future class.

Better Control Over Giving Out Contact Information

In the Person form, the single Yes/No choice for the person to allow giving out their contact information ("OK to Give Info?") has been replaced with separate permission checkboxes for each piece of information - Home Phone, Business Phone, Fax, Email, and street Address. For example, this allows a person to give permission to distribute their email address while keeping their street address private. The Volunteer report "public" format, which is intended for distributing volunteer information to producers, now follows each of the five choices individually when listing volunteer contact info.

When data is converted from 4.3 to 4.4, if the Person had chosen "No" to "OK to Give Info?", then all five choices are set to No - unchecked. If they had selected Yes, all five choices are Yes - checked. This gives the same results in the report as the previous design. To take advantage of this new capability, you will want to contact your active volunteers and revise which info they want to make public.

New Volunteer Service Tab on Project Form

This new tab lists all volunteer service for the Project, in chronological order. New volunteer service for the Project can be entered. This is the same data shown on the Person form Volunteer Service tab, but grouped by Project instead of by Person. When a list of volunteers who worked on a particular project is turned in, it will be easier to enter the data on this form instead of the Person form.

Since data entry on this form will typically be done in a large batch, the form does not display the usual "Save Changes?" confirmation message; changes are saved automatically. Also pressing the Tab key while on the last field (Hours) moves immediately to the next record.

Exports / External Device Interfaces

Capital Networks Audience TV bulletin board system: Two new exports for use with this system - Program Schedule and Class Schedule. See the Capital Networks web site for more information on this system. This system was previously known as Matrox InfoNet - see the Facil Help Topic "Matrox Infonet" for specifics on the exported data.

Scala Infochannel bulletin board system: Two new exports for use with this system - Program Schedule and Class Schedule. See the Scala  web site at for more information on this system. See the Facil Help Topic "Scala Infochannel" for specifics on the exported data.

The TiltRac Event Export now offers a sort order option of "Channel, then Time" or "Time, then Channel". If you have a limited number of tape decks for playback, sorting by Time will more effectively rotate the deck assignments. The Channel sort order was the only order available in earlier versions of Facil, and is retained for compatibility with any procedures you may have established. Your sort choice will be saved as the default for your next use of the export.

New and Improved Reports

ID Card: Three formats are now available for ID card printing. The first is the original format, for Avery 5362 self-laminating ID cards. New is a second layout for the same cards, but optimized for a horizontal logo design. The third format is for Avery "tear apart" business cards. These cards come in a variety of colors and surfaces, with ten perforated cards on a sheet. This is a much less expensive alternative to the self-laminating Avery ID cards, and do not require hand cutting of the cards, however these cards can only be printed as a full sheet. The choice of format is set in the Global Settings; the original format is the default.

Programming Analysis Report: Added Project Funding breakdown.

Program Schedule Chrono Report: The Episode number is now optional in this report. Also corrected a problem with the HTML format of this report which incorrectly positioned some date headings.

Class Certification Report has been renamed "Class Registration". The new name more accurately reflects the fact that the report includes all registrants, indicating how many were certified, how many were not, etc.

Now Playing Report: Fixed a problem that prevented output in Word format.

Project Viewer Report: Corrected a problem that gave an error message relating to SQL syntax.

Equipment Usage Report: Added Grand Totals of Hours and Cost of all data shown in report.

Tape Label Report: Added a new tape label format, Avery 5161. This standard address label is 1"x4", 20 per page. Most label manufacturers have an equivalent product to this widely available and inexpensive label, such as the ACCO ML-2000.

New Tape Inventory Report: New report lists Tapes of all selected Statuses. The report can be sorted by Tape Location, by Tape Format, or by both in either order.


Emailing Reservation Receipt: If changes to a Reservation were made and a receipt emailed before saving the changes, the email would contain the reservation data prior to the changes. To prevent this, Facil now asks you to save any pending changes before the receipt is emailed.

An optional Email User Name and Email User Password can now be entered in the Local System Settings form. Most email systems do not require User Name and Password beyond those given when your system is first connected to the Internet, but a few systems request "logging in" for every email transaction. You only need to enter these new settings if your system does not work without them.

Email encoding: Some recipient's email systems did not correctly handle the advanced email encoding (base64) used in Facil, resulting in their receiving "garbled" email text. To prevent this problem, Facil's encoding has been changed to an older "common denominator" system (7 bit encoding).

Email form: The Test Message button did not work - fixed.

Other Changes

Improved Handling of Extreme Multi-user Contention: Record locking has been redesigned to better handle extreme cases of multi-user contention for data, i.e. multiple users simultaneously saving Program Schedule Auto-scheduling or adding Kits to Reservations.

Appt Book - New Reservation: Previously, if the requested equipment was not available for the specified time, the "New Reservation" form closed after the availability message was displayed. If you wanted to pick a different date/time, you had to start over, reselecting the Project and Person. Now the "New Reservation" form remains open so that you can adjust the time and complete the new reservation.

Setting Date Patterns: a new button on the Repeating Date Pattern dialog allows restoring the last settings used.

Project Viewer: Added Project Funding criteria to the Project Viewer criteria.

New or revised Help topics on "Email", "Email Setup", "Reservations", "Reservations: Off Time".

Tape Label printing: Fixed problems that occurred when selecting a start position on the page of labels. Corrected problem with the Play Date printed on some formats of Tape Labels.

Log Out: It was possible to log out while leaving forms open. All forms now close automatically on logging out.

The Project Viewer Export exported the Person data for the Producers of the listed projects, instead of the actual Project data itself - now it exports the selected Projects' data. You can still export data on the Producers of the selected Projects by clicking the "instant" Mailing List button on the Project Viewer and then exporting that Person data from the Mailing output form.

In the Program Viewer, the Variable Length criteria checkbox defaulted to False - unchecked - meaning No. Therefore, variable length programs were not shown in the default selection. The checkbox now defaults to Null - gray - meaning "don't care" and all Programs are included in the default selection.

Organization Mailing form: The Export button was improperly displayed on the Selection tab; now it only appears on the Output tab.

Program Schedule Export: Refined the generic Export to use a formatted date string (mm/dd/yyyy) for text file exports, and a standard Microsoft date/time value for data file exports - MDB, DBF, and XLS. This only affects the generic Schedule export; it does not change TiltRac or other specific export formats.

Programming Analysis Report Options: All/None buttons to select or deselect all breakdown sub reports.

12/2002 - Facil Version 4.3 Initial Release

New Email Capabilities

New Internal Email: Facil 4.3 uses its own internal system to send email, instead of depending on the installation of a separate email program on your computer. This has many benefits and allows important new email capabilities. Among the new features are:

  • Completely internal to Facil, no email program compatibility requirements

  • Works with any standard Internet email provider

  • Send email to large numbers of addresses quickly and easily using Blind Carbon Copy

  • Send HTML (Web Page) formatted email, including graphics

  • Send Carbon Copies

  • Include attachments with single or bulk emails, any number of files

  • Customize Reply To address and From Name - set your own default for Reply To and From and/or change it when you send the email

  • Create and save "template" text files with content for email messages you will send repeatedly. Retrieve that standard text when you send an email, and then customize as desired.

  • Update the person's email address from the Email form

  • For a fully detailed explanation of all the new Email features, see the help topics "Email" and "Email Setup".

Email Reservation Receipts: Facil can now email a Reservation Receipt. Facil creates the email with all the necessary reservation information, plus additional text that you can define. You can edit the email contents and use other options as detailed above in "New Internal Email".

Email Class Registration Receipts: Email a Class Registration reminder when you enter a class registration, when you move a registration to a different class date, or at any later time. Facil automatically creates the email message. You can edit the message before sending it or use other email options.

Email Project and Program Play Date Reports: A list of play dates for any selected Project or specific Program can now be sent as an email. A selected "start date" allows restricting the report to only future air dates, or including all past and future dates. See the help topic "Email" for more details.

Mailing Lists Form

This new form allows selecting any Mailing List and then displays an alphabetical list of the Persons on that list. You can use this form to more easily review who is on a list, and to delete or add multiple persons to the mailing list.

Data Export

Data from a number of Facil areas can now be exported to an external file in a variety of standard data file formats. The data that can be exported includes:

  • Person data - export the data for persons selected using the Person Mailing form, or persons selected in any of the "instant" mailing lists including the Reservation Viewer, Project Viewer, Program Viewer, Volunteer Viewer, Class Schedule, or the Mailing List form.

  • Organization data, as selected in the Organization Mailing form.

  • Project data, as selected in the Project Viewer

  • Program data, as selected in the Program Viewer

  • Program Schedule, as selected in the Program Schedule form

  • Equipment Inventory, using a new "Equipment Inventory Export" report

Choices of output format are:

  • Microsoft Access (MDB)

  • Comma Delimited (text file)

  • DBase IV (DBF)

  • Excel spreadsheet (XLS)

  • Tab Delimited (text file)

  • Word Merge (MS Word document, DOC)

See the help topic "Exporting Data".


Reservation Receipt Shows When Printed and When Changed: The Reservation Receipt now includes:

  • The date/time the Receipt was printed.

  • If the Reservation has been changed since it was originally made, the date/time it was changed and by whom.

  • This information is printed at the bottom of the receipt, along with the date/time the Reservation was originally made and by whom.

Reservation Duplicating: Date Pattern: When duplicating a Reservation, there are two new functions for setting the dates. A "1 month" button adds a new date a month after the last date. A "Set Date Pattern" button allows setting a series of dates in a repeating pattern, such as every other Wednesday and Friday, the 10th of every month, etc. This is the same date pattern function used in Program Scheduling.

Volunteer Tracking

Volunteer Service Viewer: The Volunteer Viewer now has two tabs. The Volunteer Available tab is the same Volunteer Viewer from the previous version of Facil. That viewer is used to identify volunteers that are available for a particular volunteer area, subject, production type, or with a needed certification.

The new tab is the Volunteer Service Viewer. This new viewer allows identifying Volunteers who have performed services in a particular Volunteer area or in a selected date range. The listing shows the total volunteer hours for each person within the specified criteria. The persons are listed in descending order of total hours. A report or instant mailing list can then be generated. This viewer would be used to identify all volunteers who have worked a certain number of hours during a specified date range, or to find the most active volunteers. See the new Help topic "Volunteer Viewer: Service"

Volunteer Service Report: New Totals: This existing report now has totals showing number of different Persons volunteering, total number of times volunteers worked, and total number of hours.

Equipment Maintenance

Maintenance Scheduling: Each Equipment Unit now has a Next Maintenance Due Date field and a Maintenance Interval field. The Next Maintenance Due Date can be edited manually or by using the new "Reset Maint Due" button; this button sets the Next Maintenance Due Date to the date of the last maintenance record you entered plus the Maintenance Interval, or to any other date you specify.

A new "Maintenance Due" Report lists all equipment items that have a Maintenance Due Date prior to the date specified when running the report.

See the Help topic "Equipment Maintenance" for new information under the sub heading "Scheduling Maintenance"

Equipment Form, Maintenance Tab Totals: The Maintenance tab of the Equipment form now shows totals of the number of maintenance events, labor hours, and parts cost, for the selected equipment item.

Program Schedule

Program Schedule form - Fill Gaps: A new feature in the Program Schedule form is the "Fill" button, which allows inserting a selected program into all the empty spaces - gaps - in the displayed schedule. Use a station ID, schedule crawl, or other variable length program to fill in all the odd gaps in one step. Options include setting a "Fill Limit" - the maximum size gap that will be filled. This allows filling the few odd seconds, while leaving open any larger empty spaces. A second option is to fill only to the next even half hour. Using these options together, you can fill all the spaces following programs that end slightly short of the half hour, while leaving open any available time slots that start at the half hour.

Program Guide report, improved HTML formatting: The previous HTML version of this report used the built in HTML conversion provided by Microsoft, which created unnecessary page breaks and hyperlinks. This has been replaced with custom programmed HTML formatting, resulting in a cleaner HTML formatted Program Guide.

New "Program Schedule, Chrono" Report: This new Program Schedule report is an alternative to the "Program Guide" report. Instead of the TV Guide style of half-hour time slots, this report simply lists programs in chronological order by their Start Time. A minimum length can be specified to exclude promos, station IDs, etc. Optional data in the report includes Program Description, Subject, and Play Length. The report can include one or all channels and any date range. The report can be output to standard report, HTML (web page) format file, or Word.

New "Now Playing" Report: This new report lists all Programs playing during a specified date range, sorted alphabetically by title. Options include a play date list for each program and grouping the report by Subject. Program Subject, Length, and Description can also be included. A setting for "minimum length" allows excluding promos, station IDs, etc from the report. The report can be output as a standard report, to Word, or in HTML (web page) format.

New "Playback Log" Report: Simplified Program Schedule report, designed for use by Master Control during playback. Includes space for Operator Comments, i.e. problem reports.

New "Media List" Report: This report can be used as a "pull" list when retrieving tapes from the library for playback. The report lists all source media for playback during a selected date range, for one or all Channels. Sorted by Signal Source, then by Tape Number (or Signal Source detail). Options allow choosing which Signal Sources are reported.

Playback Automation

Faster Synergy Broadcast (TiltRac) Title Export: The Synergy Broadcast Title export function now references the new "last changed" date for Program data. When you export you can specify the last date you exported Title data. Facil will only export those programs that are new or have changed since the last update. If you have a large Program library, this greatly reduces the time to perform the export/import function.

Synergy Broadcast (TiltRac) Media Types: A new reference list allows adding a new Media Type. See the help on "TiltRac Playback Control" for details.

Sundance Automation System Export: A new report, in the Export group, exports a data file of the Program Schedule for use with the Sundance Digital Fastbreak playback automation system. Information on Sundance products is available at


Improved Tape Label Printing: New options improve the flexibility and control of Tape Label printing. There are now seven different tape label formats, including Avery VHS labels, and labels for DVD disks. The user has the choice of printing a single label for each tape, or a pair of labels for the tape and its case; previously all labels were printed in pairs. A "vertical print adjustment" setting allows fine control over the position of printing on the page. This compensates for variations in paper feeding from one printer to another. All option settings are automatically saved and restored for the next print run, improving ease of use. See the help topic "Tape Labels" for full details.

New "Today's Reservations" Report: This report provides a simple listing of active reservations that can be posted publicly, or just used for quick reference. The report is user defined by creating "headings" that include selected Equipment Types. For example, you might create a heading for Edit Suites and one for Camcorders. The report then lists the reservations for all the Equipment Types entered under that heading. The simple format shows the Start Time, Person's name, End Time, and optionally the Project Title.

New Project Expenditure vs. Budget Report: This report summarizes the expenditures for all Projects, or Projects of a selected Status (Active, Completed) and compares the totals to the Budgets. Report details include dollar totals for Active and Completed reservations, the Budget amount, and the percentage of the Budget expended. The report is sorted by the percentage of budget expended, starting with the Projects that are over Budget.

New Person Expenditure vs. Allocation Report: This new report summarizes Expenditures for all Persons of Active Status. Report details include the Allocation Start and End dates, dollar totals for all Reservations, totals for Completed and Active Reservations, the Allocation amount, balance, and percentage used. The report can be sorted by the Allocation Balance in dollars, the Allocation Balance percentage, the total Expenditures, or by Name. An option allows including the expenditure total for each Project the Person is producing.

New Maintenance Summary Report: This new report shows total Labor hours and Parts costs by Equipment Type and by Equipment Unit.

Demographic Report: Age Ranges: The Demographic report now includes the ability to report Age Ranges based on the Date of Birth, instead of entering and saving an Age Range, which would be out of date as time passed. The desired Age Ranges for the report can be defined in the Admin menu, Demographic Setup.

New Program Schedule Reports: New reports are "Program Schedule, Chrono", "Now Playing", "Playback Log", and "Media List".  See Program Schedule topic above for detailed information about these new reports.

Other Changes

Who Changed The Information and When: The Person, Reservation, Project, and Program forms now display the date and time of the last change to that data and who made the change. This data is recorded automatically whenever edits to the form are saved. The Reservation form also shows the date/time and who made the Reservation initially.

User Log Out: The "Log In New User" button on the main menu has been replaced with a "Log Out" button. Click "Log Out" and all selections on the main menu are disabled except "Exit" and "Log In". A user can Log Out and leave the Facil workstation for another user to Log In, all without closing the program. This makes a shared workstation secure and insures that permissions are enforced, without the delay of shutting down and restarting the Facil program.

Person Form, Expenditure Tab: Improved Performance: The calculation of expenditures has been rewritten to be approximately twice as fast.

Adding a new item to Reservation using Bar Code during Checkout: This existing function added a new item correctly, but it did not record the Tag Number in the Reservation. Users found that they had to bar code scan the new item twice - once to add it and again to record the Tag Number. The Tag Number is now entered when the item is added.

Organization form - validate Email addresses: The Email address in the Organization form is now validated for correct format, as it is in the Person form.

Program Form: Tape Number Required: Previously a Tape Number was required on any Program form where the Signal Source was set to Tape. Now, the Tape Number is required only when the Signal Source is Tape AND the Received date is filled in. This allows creating a Program record with a Tape Signal Source before the actual Tape is received.

Program Form: Warn if Replacing Existing Tape Number: When the "new tape" button (the yellow plus) is clicked and a Tape Number has already been entered, a warning message explains that this will replace the current Tape assignment.

Person Notices for Payments: Person notices (status not Active, Notice Text) are now displayed when receiving a Payment.

Address Export - Missing Address Line #3: The export of Person addresses to a Word Merge file did not include the third line of addresses. This has been fixed.

3/2002 - Update to Version 4.2

ID Card Printing:

●  On the Person form there are now three buttons for printing an individual ID card, letting you choose whether to print in the first, second, or third position on the page. This allows the use of partially used sheets.

●  The ID Card Report now lets you select the Persons by multiple criteria, including Type, Status, ID Number, Joined Date, and allows including/excluding individual persons. See the updated Help topic on ID Card for complete details.

●  If an organization logo file was specified for the ID card, and that file did not exist, an error message occurred when trying to print and the ID card was not printed. Fixed.

Program Form - Default Data from Project: Selecting a Project on the Program form automatically fills in many fields copied from the Project data. This data always replaced any existing data. Now, if there is existing data, a message allows you to choose whether you wish to replace or keep the existing data. If the relevant fields on the Program form are blank, the data is copied without the message appearing, as before.

Program Analysis Report: Programs where no Project Funding was filled in (on the associated Project form) were not included in the Program Analysis report. Fixed.

Person Form - Error when Searching after Editing: Searching for a new person immediately after editing the Person record, and without first saving the changes, resulted in an Error message, but only if the new Photo File name field in the Person record was blank before the edit. Fixed.

Programming Auto Schedule: In the Auto Schedule form, the Event Status display did not always update when manually editing individual event fields. This did not affect the actual scheduling of the programs, but could mislead the user when deciding how to modify the event list. Fixed.

Reservation Length Warning: If the value of the Reservation Length Warning global setting was blank, an "invalid use of null" error occurred when updating a reservation. Fixed.

Project Form - Add New Program: The Add New Program button opens the Program form to a blank record, ready to add a new Program. If there were no existing programs in the Project AND the Program form was already open, then an error occurred. Everything did work correctly, despite the message. Fixed.

Reservation - Complete and Change Times: This problem occurred when changing an Active Reservation to Completed and changing the reservation times at the same time as the Status. This would most likely happen when a person completed a reservation early, and you updated both the status and the time to reflect the actual duration of the completed reservation.

When both status and time were changed in the same edit, the individual reserved item times did not update. The item(s) would then show an Off Time flag (the clock icon) since it was no longer at the same time as the main reservation times. If you did not notice this and edit the individual item times, then the time/charges for the reserved items would still be the original time and not the modified time. This has been corrected so that the item times update when the overall reservation time is changed, regardless of any other changes to the reservation.

Changing Reservation Length when there are Off Time items: Changing reservation times when there are no Off-Time items is simple; all items change from the old reservation time to the new reservation time. Changing Reservation times when there are Off-Time items is still not a problem when the reservation length does not change; all items are shifted forward or back the same as the overall reservation time - staying in the same relative time position.

When there are Off-Time items and the length of the reservation changes, revising the Off-Time item times is somewhat difficult. Facil attempts to maintain the users intent; for example, if an item is reserved for a period of one hour ending at the overall start time of the Reservation, that item time is adjusted to end at the new start time of the reservation. However, there are cases where the relationship between the item time and the overall reservation time is ambiguous. For example, in a three hour reservation an item is reserved for the middle hour. When the reservation length is changed to four hours, does that item move in relation to the start of the reservation or the end?

A warning message will now appear when changing the length of a reservation that contains Off-Time items. The message reminds the user to review the changed times of those items for correctness, and the item times are automatically displayed when the message is acknowledged.

While there is no way to guarantee that Facil can automatically get the correct time for Off-Time items when the Reservation length changes, the logic for determining how to change the times of off-time items in the reservation has been rewritten to be as effective as possible. Combined with the new warning message and user review of the Off-Times, this should prevent any problems with this subtle issue.

12/2001 - Facil Version 4.2 Initial Release

Persons, Volunteers, Organizations...

Person Data Summary Report: A report of all the data shown on the Person form is available for the selected Person by clicking the report button in the upper right corner of the form.  The data from each page of the form may be included or excluded from the report.  This eliminates the need to "print the screen" by providing a properly formatted report.  See the Help on "Reports" for additional details.


●  All Demographic questions and their answers are now user definable.  See the Help topic on "Demographics" for full details.

●  Up to 20 questions and any number of multiple-choice answers for each question can be defined in the Admin Menu, Demographic Q & A form.

●  A new report of Demographic statistics is available from the Report menu, People category.  The report allows choosing any combination of Person Types and Person Statuses to select those persons included in the Demographic report. 

●  An additional report, "Demographic Questionnaire" prints a form of all questions and answers in a check list format for use in collecting Demographic information.

Person Photo: A digital photo can be associated with each Person record.  The photo displays on the Person form and can included in an ID card report or in the Person Data Summary report.  See Help Topic "Person Photo" for full details.

Person ID Card Report: This new report prints an identification card for the selected Person or Persons and can include a photo of the person.  See Help Topics "ID Card" and "Person Photo" for full details.

Volunteer Viewer: This new viewer replaces the Volunteer Finder.  The Volunteer Viewer locates the Persons who have volunteered using four criteria: the Volunteer Areas (what they have offered to do), Program Subjects and Production Types of programs that they want to work on, and their training Certifications. Selection lists for each of the four criteria allow multiple choices. A report or an instant mailing list of the selected persons can be generated.  See the Help Topic "Volunteer Viewer" for full details.

Organization Form, Copy Existing Person as Contact:  This function now includes the Person's Email address.

Organization Mailing, Mail Merge Output:  Fixed problem that caused the Mail Merge output to include all Organizations instead of only the selected Organizations.

Equipment, Reservations...

Maximum Active Reservations Warning:  A warning is displayed when selecting a Person for a Reservation if the number of Active Reservations for that Person exceeds the number set in Admin Menu, System Settings, Global, Active Reservation Limit.  The warning message shows the number of Active Reservations found and offers to display a list of those reservations in the Reservation Viewer.

Add Items to Reservation by Entering Tag Number:  In the Reservation Form, the Checkout function now allows adding new items to the Reservation by entering just the item's Tag Number.  This allows using a bar code reader to add "last minute" equipment to a reservation by simply swiping each piece of equipment.  See Help on "Reservations: Check In and Check Out" for details.

Inventory Data and Reporting:  A new field "Status Change" date in the inventory (Equipment Units form), automatically maintains the date of the last change in status.  The Inventory report has new options for Status Change data range and Purchase date range.  These additions allow reporting items purchased, disposed, sold, missing, etc. during specified time period.

Appointment Book Display:  Corrected a problem in the Appointment Book display that occurred only when a Package was overbooked, i.e. by making the status of the Package not Available while Active Reservations existed.  In this situation, the Appointment Book displayed the name of the Person holding the overbooked reservation in the time slots following the reservation instead of the times included in the reservation.  The quantity displayed was correct, as was the color coding.  Only the display of the name was incorrect.  This problem had no effect on correctly determining the availability of the Package when making reservations.

Class Fees, Payments...

Class Registration Payment Flexibility: Class Registration payments are now fully flexible.  A Deposit and a Fee for a Class can be separately defined.  Any amount can be collected at the time of registration, including no payment or a payment greater than the set class fee or deposit.  Any number of additional payments for the registration can be collected at any other time.  Any amount can be refunded at any time, representing any part of the payment.   Canceling a registration is now independent of refunding the payment.  The Class Registration page shows the current amount paid for each registration, including all payments and refunds.  This is color coded to indicate whether the registrant has paid an amount more than, less than, or equal to the fee.  This system now allows: collecting and refunding a deposit for the class, in addition to or in place of a fee; charging variable fees for different persons in the same class; registering for a class and collecting the fee at a later time; retaining fees or deposits if a registration is cancelled; etc..  See the Help Topics "Class Registration", "Class Definition", and "Refunds" for full details.

Refund Flexibility:  The Refund system now allows partial refunds - either refunding some of quantity of items purchased (sell 4 tapes and refund 2), or part of the cost of the item (collect $10 for an item and refund $5).  See the Help Topic "Refunds" for full details.

Refund Receipt:  The Note entered on the Refund form is printed on the Receipt.  The Receipt Number of the original Payment is automatically added to the Note.

Payment Form: Item entries do not need to be individually confirmed ("Save changes?").

New Financial Report "Persons Paying / Not Paying": Reports either all Persons who paid or all Persons who did NOT pay for a Selected Category or Category/Item in the Selected Date Range. Example: everyone who paid for a Class last year, everyone who bought a tape this month, everyone who did not make a donation this year, etc. Can create an "instant" Mailing List of the persons included in the report.

New Financial Report "Persons Paying, Compared by Date Range": Compares Persons who paid for a Selected Category or Category/Item during one Date Range with those who paid in a second Date Range, and reports the difference. Example: everyone who made a donation last year but not this year, paid for a tape this quarter but not last quarter, etc. Can create an "instant" Mailing List of the persons included in the report.

Financial Report, Category Item Summary:  Fixed problem that caused an error when a Category was specified for the report.


Class Schedule, Show Classes After:  A new date field, "Show Classes After", replaces the checkbox 'Show Past Classes".  The schedule displays classes from the selected date forward. A default setting for the initial date in "Show Classes After" can be chosen in Admin, System Settings, Global, under "Class Schedule, Show Past Days".  Using this setting, the Class Schedule will open showing classes going back two weeks, a month, or any other selected number of days.

Class Registrations, Note:  A new note field has been added to the Registration record.  When a registration fee is Waived, the waiver reason is automatically recorded in the note.

Projects and Programs...

Project Data Summary Reports: A report of all the data shown on the Project form is available for the selected Project by clicking the report button in the upper right corner of the form.  The data from each page of the form may be included or excluded from the report.  This eliminates the need to "print the screen" by providing a properly formatted report.  See the Help on "Reports" for additional details.

Project Viewer: Added assigned Staff person and Series checkbox as selection criteria and to the Project Viewer report.

Project Form: Fixed a problem where the Add New Program button did not start a new Program record if the Program form was already open.

Project and Program Select (Title Search Forms):  Fixed problem where "keyword" search could not find titles containing quotes or apostrophes.

Program Scheduling and Playback...

Synergy Broadcast (TiltRac) Playback Controller Data Interface:  Synergy Broadcast Systems has included the ability to import Facil data in their newest software release.  Facil includes the export of the Program library and Schedule data for use with Synergy Broadcast, as well as features to match Signal Sources and Tape Formats to the defined Synergy Broadcast media formats.   See the Help topic "TiltRac Playback Control".

Programming Analysis Report:  This highly customizable new report summarizes the Program Schedule data, detailing the nature of your programming over any selected range of dates.  Programming is counted by plays and by hours, and broken down into First Run and Repeat.  Further details are available in optional sub-reports including break down by Origin, Subject, Organization Type, Organization, Owner, Production Type, Signal Source, Project, Program, Producer, Adult Content, and Filler.   See the Help topic "Programming Analysis Report" for full details.

Program Schedule Mass Delete: New Delete function in Program Schedule deletes just the displayed Schedule Events.  By setting the display criteria before deleting, it is now possible to delete all occurrences of a Program or Project in a selected date range in one step.  See the Help Topic "Program Schedule", subsection "The Delete Button - Mass Deletes" for full details.

Auto Schedule: When adding All Programs of a Project, you now have the option to repeat each program any number of times in the sequence.  I.e., play Program 1 three times, then Program 2 three times, etc.  See the Help topic "Program Schedule, Auto" for further details.


Permission System:  A complete permission system allows specifying the desired level of access to each part of Facil for each user.  Access levels are Full, Read-Only and None.  Permissions can be set for the overall data area, such as the Person form, or for individual form pages and command buttons.  Defined user groups allow easy management of complex permission schemes for large numbers of users.  The default permission settings allow every user full access to the program, so the use of the Permission system is completely optional.  See the Help Topic "Permissions" for full details.

Data File Password:  An optional password may be set for the Facil data file, which prevents opening the data file, even from applications outside of Facil.  See the Help Topic "Data File Password".

Data Validation Improvements:  Validation has been improved in four ways:

●  The Project Producer and CoProducer fields are linked to the Person records, so that a Person can not be deleted if they have been entered in a Project as the Producer or CoProducer.

●  The Project Organization field is linked to the Organization records, so that an Organization can not be deleted if it has been entered in a Project as the Project Organization.

●  The same Organization name can not be entered in the Organization records twice.

●  One Person can't be associated with the same Organization twice.

4/2001 - Update to Version 4.1

Person form, Organization tab: Using the link button to jump to the Organization form now triggers a save of any changes in the Person form.

Organization form:

●  Copy Existing Person button enabled.

●  Sequence of fields when using Tab or Enter key corrected.

●  Currently selected tab remains selected after searching for a different Organization. Previously, the form always returned to the first tab after a search.

Class Registration: Corrected problem that could result in over filling a class when moving an existing registration (using the Move button on the Class form). The Move Registration form displayed classes with no available spaces with the zero spaces shown in red. If the user still selected a class with no spaces, the form allowed the registration to be moved, exceeding the stated Capacity of the class. The Move Registration form no longer displays classes which have no spaces left.

Class Roster: Added Person ID to report. Rearranged Class Payment Summary section to match Payment Detail report with Net first, then Sold and Refunded.

Payment Detail Report: Added grand total of all payment types, added separate subtotals for Received and Refunded amounts.

Category/Item Summary Report: Rearranged to match Payment Detail, with Net first, then Sold and Refunded.

Project form:

●  Changed so that currently selected tab remains selected after searching for a different Project. Previously, the form always returned to the first tab after a search.

●  Corrected problem that occasionally caused expenditure / budget / balance amounts on the Project Expenditure tab to display "Error".

●  Drop down lists are now sorted in alphabetical order.

Project Viewer: Criteria drop down lists are now sorted in alphabetical order.

Program form: Drop down lists are now sorted in alphabetical order.

Program - Next Episode Number: Command button (# symbol) next to Episode Number field enters the next highest Episode Number for that Project. This button appears on both the Program form and the Programs tab of the Project form.

Program Viewer:

●  Criteria drop down lists are now sorted in alphabetical order.

●  Displayed list of Programs is now sorted in descending order by Date Received, i.e. newest programs are listed first, oldest programs at the bottom.

Program Scheduling:

●  Added optional display of Signal Source details to Program Schedule form. Command button (">>>", upper right) will alternately display/hide a second line for each event showing the Signal Source and Signal Source Details. If the Signal Source is Tape, then the Tape Number, Format, and Location are displayed.

●  Corrected problem where replacing a scheduled Project or Program with a shorter Project/Program could result in two consecutive open time slots. If you currently have two consecutive open time slots in your schedule, it is easily fixed by scheduling a program that completely fills either of the slots (a Variable length program can be used) and then deleting it.

●  Corrected problem that could allow entering a Project or Program into a time slot that was too short for the Length of the Project/Program. When using the Proj/Prog selection lists (Viewers), they automatically show only the Proj/Prog that will fit. However, if the user removed the length criteria and then selected a longer Proj/Prog, it could be scheduled in the shorter slot. This potential mistake is now prevented.

●  Prevent scheduling a Project without a Program (Project Hold) when the Project has no default length. While Programs must have a Length, Projects do not require Length (since they may not be video production projects).

●  Scheduling a Program prior to its Earliest Air Date or later then its Latest Air date now gives a warning message.

●  When setting date range criteria for the Program Schedule display, Facil prevented setting the Start Date after the End or vice-versa. This reduced the chance of a mistake, but could also make changing the date range somewhat awkward. Now the Start/End dates can be set independently without any restriction. If the Date Range is reversed, the display simply shows no events found.

Program Detail report (from Program Scheduler): Report now shows Episode Number for all events and Tape Location, Format, and Starts At H:M:S for events with Tape Signal Source.

Program Guide report:

●  Improved speed on multi-user systems and where some channels have no programming.

●  Fixed problem where if the exact same program was scheduled twice in a row, the second scheduled play did not appear in the report.

●  Added option to include Program length in Hours and Minutes to the program listing.

●  Fixed problem where saving Guide to Word resulted in error. Read Help on Program Guide for information on the formatting difference between saving the Guide to Word and running the standard Guide report and sending the preview to Word.

Program Auto Scheduler:

●  Corrected problem that caused status symbol (exclamation point, check mark, question mark) to not update reliably on change of status.

●  Prevent selection of Project that has no default length.

●  Now checks selected Projects and Programs for Available status, Adult Content, Earliest/Latest Air Dates and gives warning messages.

●  Adding all Programs of a Project (button) now fills in all dates without Project/Program. Previously, it started after the last program entered and skipped over any earlier empty events.

●  Corrected error message when selecting Repeating Date pattern duplicated a date/time/channel that was already in the list of events.

Reservation Duplicating: The Reservation Duplicate form now checks reservation start/end times against Holidays and Hours of operation and displays appropriate warning messages.

Reservation Viewer: Prevent using the Complete button (check mark) to Complete a future Active reservation. Only a reservation that has passed should be marked Completed; otherwise it is being Cancelled, or some other status.

Reservations: Reservations that have been completed may now be made Active again, even if their Start Time has passed. This was not allowed previously.

Equipment List report: New report allows listing Equipment Units that are in any one or more selected Status. The report can be grouped and sorted on three levels by any of seven values: Equipment Type, Location, Manufacturer, Model, Status, Serial #, and Tag Number. For example, you could report only equipment in Repair, Surplus, and Missing statuses, then grouped and sorted by Location, and then by Manufacturer in each Location, and then by Model in each Manufacturer.

Appointment Book:

●  Equipment Type selectors for columns in Appointment Book no longer display Equipment Types where field "Can Reserve" is set to No.

●  Reservations that start before the current time can now be made from the Appointment Book. A warning message is displayed.

Tape Labels: Tape labels can now be printed for either VHS or DVCPro (and similar digital formats). Labels may be printed in batches from the Report menu, Tape category. Single labels can be printed from the Program form or the Tape form. See the Help Topic "Tape Labels" for full details.

Person Expiration Utility:

●  Changed Help button to display the correct help topic.

●  When resetting Expiration date to Next Anniversary date, the next Anniversary was calculated to the current year, even if the date had passed. This has been corrected so that the Next Anniversary is always after the current date.

Kit Definition: Fixed problem causing error message when a Kit was deleted.

Start Up Performance: Simpler File Validation process improves speed of program start up for first user log in on multi-user installations. Redesign of file/license validation allows retrying, simplifying resolution of problems with moved/renamed data files or missing license files.

9/2000 - Facil Version 4.1 Initial Release

Facil 4.1 includes the following new data and forms...

●  Organizations

●  Organization Mailing

●  Programs

●  Program View

●  Project View

●  Program Schedule

●  Auto Schedule

●  Tapes

New help topics are available for each of these forms and their functions.

Facil 4.1 includes the following changes to existing data and functions in Facil 4.0...


●  The term "Member" has been replaced with the  generic term "People". This more accurately reflects the fact that Staff, Contacts, and other people may appear on the list.

●  A Salutation field (Mr., Ms., Dr.) has been added.  This data appears on mailing labels and in mail merge.

●  Addresses: The address space is expanded to three lines instead of two, and to 35 characters per line instead of 25. The City length is now 20 characters instead of 15.

●  Date of Birth and Social Security Number fields have been added. These appear on the Demographic tab of the Person form.

●  An "under age" warning for Persons has been added. See System Settings, Global, Person Age Warnings.

●  A shortcut button "Payment" has been added to the Person form to allow quickly recording a payment when viewing the Person record.

●  Fixed problem with Mail Merge exporting of Zip Code and Phone Number formatting.

●  Person Allocation Amount: A default for this value can be set in System Settings, Global, Default Person Allocation.

Public Appointment Book (PAB):

●  The password to exit  the PAB can be set in Global User Settings. When the PAB is opened a reminder of the current password is displayed.

●  A new field in the Equipment Type form, "Public Display?", allows selecting which Equipment Types are shown in the PAB.


●  The Project form now has three tabs, the original Project data, a tab for Expenditures calculated for the Project, and a Program List ("Programs") tab. See the Help Topic "Projects" for more on the Program List.

●  The Organization field now refers to the Organization data list. An Organization record must be created before the Organization can be referenced in a Project.  The 4.0 to 4.1 conversion process automatically creates Organization records for each organization that has been referenced in an existing Project. You will want to check your Organizations for duplicates resulting from different spellings or abbreviations of the same organization name.

●  Special Notice text is a new field where you can enter any text you wish to appear when you select a Project while making a reservation. This is just like the Special Notice for Persons.

●  New check boxes allow controlling how Project expenditures relate to the producer and to the Organization. It is possible to count the expenditures against either, both, or neither.

●  Other new Project data includes new Program Defaults for Signal Source, Variable Length, Adult Content, and Filler flags. See the Help Topic "Project" for details on all these new fields.

●  The Project form now has an "Add New Reservation" button as a shortcut to create a new reservation while viewing the Project. Another new button "Program View" displays the new Program Viewer with the current Project set as a criteria.

Equipment: Replacement Cost is added to the Equipment Unit data. This cost of replacement can be included in the printed reservation receipt.  See System Settings.

Reservation Receipt Settings: New system settings allow including or excluding both the reserved item "cost", i.e. the value of use of the reserved item and the actual item replacement cost in the printing of the receipt.


●  A prerequisite class (certification code) can be set for each type of class. This new field appears on the Reference List for Classes. When a prerequisite is set, then every new registration in a class is checked to see if they have the prerequisite certification and a warning given if they do not.

●  If a class fee is Waived, the reason for the Waiver appears on the Class Roster and is also displayed when the Payment link button for the registration is pressed.

●  The Class Schedule text size is now unlimited, allowing a full detailed description of the class meeting schedule or other information. This information prints on each class registration reminder as well as the Class Schedule report.

Reference List form: With the addition of new reference lists, the form is divided into two forms - the Main reference form and the Project/Programs reference form. Some reference lists from the original form are now found in the Project/Program form.


●  Added Resize Form button to toolbar.

●  New Help on "Toolbar".

5/2000 - Update to Version 4.0

Class Registration: Corrected error that occurred when moving a Class Registration for which no Fee had been paid.

Report Date Specifications: Corrected error in some report specification dialog boxes, where data from the specified Ending date was not included in the report. All reports now include data up to 11:59:59 PM on the specified ending date.

4/2000 - Update to Version 4.0

Equipment Usage Report: The report now shows the total value of equipment and Facílities reserved, in addition to the number of uses and the total hours of use. The report options now allow selecting a Member or a Project, in addition to a date range and the equipment types to be included. This report now can be used to analyze equipment usage by date, equipment type, member, project, or any combination of these criteria.

Reservations: The program now allows adding new items to reservations that have already taken place and/or are not Active. A warning message is displayed, and the user can choose to cancel or to add the item anyway. The warning is issued only once when editing a reservation, when the first item is added. This change is in response to requests from users to be able to revise reservations after they take place or to enter "historic" reservation data.

Class Registration: The "Roster" command button is changed from the text label "Roster" to an icon (magnifying glass on document), to be consistent with the same function on the Class Schedule form.

Duplicate Reservation: The Note field of the duplicated reservation now contains the Note text from the original reservation, in addition to the notation "Dupe of ###" (where ### is the original reservation number).

Equipment Inventory Report: Added Status criteria so report can be used to list Missing equipment, equipment in Repair, etc.

2/2000 - Update to Version 4.0

Reservation report (from Reservation viewer): Added option to show equipment list for each reservation. Click the report button on the viewer; a message asks if you want to include the equipment lists. If equipment items are reserved for a time different from the main reservation, this is highlighted in the report.

Equipment Units form: an equipment unit can now be moved from its current equipment type to any another. Previously, a unit could only be moved between "Package" equipment types. This change allows easily correcting mistakes of entering units in the wrong type, or redefining types and reassigning the units.

Class Registrations: If the class date had passed, the program would not allow registering a member. This is changed to a warning message and the user can choose to continue. This allows correcting class lists by adding members after the class takes place.

New Help Topics:

●  "Certifications without Classes'

●  "Backing Up Your Data"

●  "Troubleshooting"

●  "Copy and Paste Data"

New report Equipment Unit labels: The labels will be printed in the same label size/format selected for the Address labels. See System Settings, Local.

Appointment Book: Appointment Book window title now shows hours of operation, or holiday or closed notice as appropriate.

1/2000 - Update to Version 4.0

New Reports:

●  Equipment Usage

●  Classes Not Completed by Member

●  Volunteer Service (Member category)

●  Equipment Overbooking - checks one or more selected items for overbooking.

New Help Topics:

●  "Filter by Selection"

●  "Date Ranges"

●  "Deleting Records" (updated)

●  "Appointment Book"  (updated)

Public Appointment Book: A "safe" restricted version of the Two Week appointment book designed for public use. New help topic "Public Appointment Book"

Appointment Book and Two Week Appointment Book: Improved display to show four colors: No reservations - Green, Some reservations- Blue, None Available - Yellow, Overbooked - Red.

Two Week Appointment Book: Additional version of the appointment book that shows one item's availability for a two week period "at a glance".

Member Expiration form: Added Last Reservation Date and Last Class Registration Date selection criteria

Reservations: Modified reservation data locking to improve simultaneous recording of multiple reservations

Mailing Selection: Added Zip Code to Mailing selection options

Reservation Viewer: Added instant Mailing List Selection

Email from Forms: Changed "Mail" button on forms to Envelope icon

12/99 - Update to Version 4.0

New Reports:

●   Added report "Reservations Canceled by Member"

Class Roster report: Added Total Fees per Class to report

Reservation Viewer report: Added value of each reservation, total value of all reservations, and count of reservations to the report.

New Help Topics:

●  "Member Expiration"

●  "Editing Longer Text Fields"

●  "Check Out and Check In"

Membership Expiration form: New form is used to review and update Member status and expiration dates of multiple selected Members.

Class Registration: When canceling a registration and refunding payment, payment status is set to Refund.

User Defined Help: Corrected problem that occurred if quotes or an apostrophe were used in the title of a user defined help topic; the selector list on the Help file would not correctly select that topic.

Startup Performance: Revised initial Data File validation process that runs on startup, improving performance and eliminating delays that had occurred in some circumstances.

Reservation form: Added link button on reserved item list, linking to Equipment form for that item. If the reserved item has a Tag number entered, the link goes to the Unit record for the piece of equipment. If there is no Tag number, the link displays the Equipment Type tab with that equipment type selected.

Member ID: Fixed problem with automatic assignment of next Member ID when Member IDs had been manually entered or imported.

Email Addresses: Changed validation of email addresses so that an address with a dot in the user's name is allowed. For example, is now an accepted address.

Equipment Unit form: Added command button to Move a Unit from current equipment type to a different type, i.e. move a VCR from one edit suite to another.

Mailing Selection: Added Class Certification to mailing list selection options

Mailing Labels: Added label format Avery 5160 to choices of mailing labels. See Admin, System Settings, Local, Address Label Format

Low Resolution Displays: Form sizes adjusted for correct display in lower resolution (800x600 pixels)

11/23/99 Facil Version 4.0 Initial Release


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