Why do my purchase orders come up blank when I print them?

Answer: You may be printing a purchase order that is coming up blank.  This can happen as the result of several things.  Below are the possible circumstances and resolutions to the problem.

1. At one time a copy of the original data was distributed with a defective purchase order document report.  This has been corrected for over a year but occasionally a user reports the problem.  Because we do not want to overwrite any user’s customized reports, we are unable to redistribute the report automatically.  It is possible you have the defective version of the report.  You should click on the link below to download the original report template.

2. The report is linked to parts or some other table where records do not match or no records have been entered.  Check the purchase order data to insure that valid vendor and parts are selected.  If the problem persist even though you know all data is correct, consider item 3 below.

3. The report may have been alter in the Data tab in such a way that the report no longer returns any valid data.  Users are free to alter and customize all reports.  However, altering the query in the Data tab can render the report where it no longer returns any valid records.  This is usually the result of incorrect table joins.  You can check and attempt to correct the query or you can download and import the original report template from our website from the link below.

Click Here to download any original report templates from Express Technology Inc.

Can I have duplicate PO numbers in Express Maintenance?

Answer: By default ExpressMaintenance allows you to have duplicate PO numbers in the purchase orders.  However, you can limit this by going to Administration / Defaults / PO Defaults.  Select the option Warn on duplicate POs and change the value to Yes or No as desired.

In addition, you may need to adjust the database table constraints to allow for duplicates.  To do this, you can use the option under Utilities / Run SQL Statement or you can use ExpressSQL or some other SQL program to execute the following commands.

Drop the existing Index with does not allow duplicates:

alter table porders drop ix_porders

Re-create the index without duplicate contraint:

CREATE NONCLUSTERED INDEX ix_porders ON porders(Numbered)

How do I setup a web page for users to enter maintenance requests?

Answer: ExpressRequest is a simple program for users to enter maintenance requests via the network.  Request are written directly into the ExpressMaintenance database for processing into work orders.  In addition, maintenance requests can be entered via a web page interface directly into the Requests table of the ExpressMaintenance SQL database.  We provide you with sample .asp files which you simply adjust to connect to your server and to fit your organization needs.

Using a website development tool such as Microsoft FrontPage or Expression, you can easily edit the sample website pages to work in your environment.  You must have your the computer which contains the SQL Server or MSDE on the network or the internet in order to use this method.  Your web page must include a connection to the ExpressMaintenance SQL database and the Requests table.  To make this connection in Front Page follow the steps below.  Other website development tools will involve different steps but basically work the same way making a connection to the SQL server and database.

Setting Up Web Requesting

1. Begin by setting up your website and web pages as desired

2. Include the three sample web pages we provide which are eRequest.asp, eRequestOk.asp and eRequestErr.asp.

Download the .asp Files in Zip Format.

3. Using FrontPage, open the website and locate the eRequest.asp page

4. Right click on the requesting form and left click on Form Properties

5. Click on Send To Database radio button

6. Click on Options button and the dialog will appear as shown below

What is the simplest way to distribute ExpressRequest to my users?

Answer: It is very easy to use setup ExpressRequest for use on your non-maintenance personnel computers. The target user workstations must be connected to the network where the program and database engine reside.

What is ExpressRequest

If you have purchased a copy of ExpressRequest, you can provide users with a short cut to ExpressRequest.exe. This program allows users to enter maintenance request in an easy to use screen. Users do not necessarily have to know the unit name or proper service to provide. They can simply enter a description of the equipment and service needed or problem.

ExpressRequest Defaults

There are a few defaults settings for ExpressRequest which are located in ExpressMaintenance. You can access these settings under Administration / Defaults / ExpressRequest Defaults help topic in ExpressMaintenance help. See that section of the help for more details.

Distributing ExpressRequest

Like ExpressMaintenance, you do not actually distribute ExpressRequest. You create shortcuts to the application. However, ExpressRequest is handled slightly different from ExpressMaintenance. ExpressRequest uses an ini file for its settings including the Server and Database names. The ini file is stored on the client workstation in the Windows folder. However, the first time the program is executed, the ini file does not exist. Therefore, the program looks in the folder of the executable program for the ini file and copies it to the client workstation. It is not necessary to pass parameters in the shortcut with ExpressRequest. Instead, follow the steps outlined below:

A. Server Setup

1. Install and make sure ExpressMaintenance runs properly.
2. Install and make sure ExpressRequest runs properly.
3. Make sure both applications point to the same database server.
4. Run ExpressRequest and click on the Setup button and to setup values.
5. Leave the Requester Name blank.
6. Save the setup settings for ExpressRequest.
7. Exit ExpressRequest.
8. Look in your Windows folder on the server for the “ExpressRequest.ini” file.
9. Copy the “ExpressRequest.ini” file to the \ExpressTech folder.
10. Make sure the \ExpressTech folder contains the following three files:


B. Client Workstation Setup

1. Go to the client workstation
2. Look in the Windows folders and remove ExpressRequest.ini if it exists.
3. Use the windows explorer to locate the server drive and the \ExpressTech folder.
4. Right click on the ExpressRequest.exe file and click copy.
5. Right click on the client workstation desktop and click Paste Shortcut.
6. Run ExpressRequest from the shortcut.
7. Click on Setup button to setup for the user.
8. Exit ExpressRequest and setting will be saved locally in ExpressRequest.ini.

ExpressRequest Help File 

As mentioned above, make sure the ExpressRequest.hlp file is located in the same folder with ExpressRequest.exe. This will insure users can run the help file from within the ExpressRequest application. The ExpressRequest uses the standard windows help system rather than the HTML help system (used by ExpressMaintenance). The standard windows help is more likely to be available on every computer. The HTML help system is more powerful and more compact. However, it is not necessary with this small application.

How do I use PMs and create work orders?

Answer:  One of the major features of ExpressMaintenance is the process of managing preventative maintenance tasks.  ExpressMaintenance allows you to setup certain maintenance tasks (services) that are to be periodically performed on your equipment.  You can then use a powerful service overview screen to view all services due and have the program instantly create work orders.  When work orders are completed, services are then rescheduled based on the setup period and interval.  You can even have ExpressMaintenance perform the service overview query every time you open the program and flash to notify you services are due.

The following is a step by step explanation of setting up preventative maintenance items and creating work orders in ExpressMaintenance.


  1. Always make sure you have the latest release of ExpressMaintenance by checking the Updates Page of our website.
  2. The following is a diagram of the overall maintenance process and flow within ExpressMaintenance.

Setting Up Services

  1. Click on Administration /  Services to access the Services setup screen of ExpressMaintenance.  In this screen, you can enter all of the services that may be performed on Units (equipment).  As you enter services, you can assign a category to the service such as Repair, Cleaning, Inspection, etc.  You can define your own categories under Administration / Codes / Categories.  For more information on setting up codes, see the Codes Setup Tech Bulletin on the Express Technology website.
  2. When entering Services in the Services setup screen, you can also define the Period and Interval that is most common for the Service.  For example, a particular service might most often be performed every Five (Interval) Months (Period).  When the service is applied to the Unit, you can change the Period and Interval to meet the needs of the equipment.
  3. Note that you can always return to the Services setup screen and add new services as needed.

Assigning Services To Units

  1. Click on Maintenance / Units to view the Units (equipment) screen.  You can use the Next and Previous buttons or the Search button to locate the desired Unit.
  2. Once the desired unit is located or entered, click on the “Scheduled Services (PMs)” tab in the center portion of the screen.
  3. Click the Insert button for the Scheduled Services and insert a service item record.  You will select the service from the pick list and assign the Period and Interval information.  You will also want to enter the Last Date Performed and the Scheduled Date.
  4. Once you have entered the services that apply to the particular units, you are ready to review scheduled services and create work orders.
  5. You can also enter specific notes or procedure checklists for the service and that unit by clicking on the Service Notes button.
  6. You can also specify required parts for the service by clicking on the Service Parts button.
  7. You can also inherit / copy service from another unit to the current unit.  See Helpful Hint at the end of this bulletin.

Viewing Services / Creating Work Orders

  1. Click on Maintenance / Service Overview to access the Service Overview screen and view all services that are due.  Enter the date range and other parameters for the desired services and click the “Search” button.  All services that are scheduled within the date range will be displayed.
  2. The services that are due are listed and grouped by Unit.  You can select certain services for generating work orders or you can click the “Select All” button to select all services.  You can also print a report of services due by clicking the “Print List” button.
  3. Once you have selected the desired services for creating work orders, click the “Create Work Orders” button.  You will be prompted for an Employee Name (optional) and Scheduled Date (required).  Enter this information and then click the “Ok” button.  Work Orders will be created for all selected services.  A separate work order will be created for each Unit.
  4. Once Work Orders are created, you will be prompted to Print the Work Orders.
  5. Finally, you can view the work orders data by clicking on the Work Orders tab.  A query will be automatically performed of the newly created work orders.  You can make further edits to the work orders at that time.  You can also scroll through the new work orders by using the Next and Previous buttons of the Data Navigator bar.

Note: ExpressMaintenance includes a flag notification method that automatically queries the services due and notifies the applicable users if services are due.  For more details on service due notification, please see the Service Notification Tech Bulletin on the Express Technology website.

Viewing Work Orders

  1. The most convenient way to view work orders is the Work Order Overview screen.  Click on Maintenance / Work Order Overview and perform a search to see all Scheduled Work Orders for the range of dates desired.  Once work orders are displayed in the grid, you can double click on a work order to see the Work Order data entry tab and make edits.
  2. Another way of viewing work orders is to click on Maintenance / Work Orders and then click on the “Search” button to search for the work order.
  3. Finally, you can also click on Navigate / Maintenance / Reports and print the “Work Orders – Scheduled” report.

Manual Work Orders – Breakdowns

Often it is necessary to create work orders for matters other that preventative maintenance.  For example, you might need to create a work order for the repair of equipment that has been damaged or is a breakdown.  You can quickly enter a work order directly in the work order screen.

  1. Click on  Maintenance / Work Orders to open the work order screen.
  2. Click the Insert button to insert a new record.
  3. Complete the upper portion of the work order screen by  selecting the unit, employee, etc.
  4. In the services section of the work order screen, click the insert button and select the service that is to be completed / performed on the equipment.
  5. Post the record and print the work order.

Completing Work Orders

  1. To complete a work order, use option one or two above to locate the desired work order.
  2. Once the desired work order is displayed in the work order screen, you can complete the work order by completing the data entry fields.  To complete a work order, you must enter a Completion Date and click the Complete checkbox on each service in the Services Performed section.  You can also click the “Complete Entire Work Order” button to automatically complete the entire work order with one click.
  3. You may also want to enter the labor time on each service and any parts used.
  4. Once all completion data is entered for the Work Order, click the Post button at the top of the screen.  Total costs will be calculated.  Most importantly, each services will be updated in the Units screen.
  5. When the work order is posted with completion data, the service items will be written to the Units Service History.  In addition, the service items will be updated and re-scheduled in the Units Scheduled Services screen.

Once services are assigned to Units, ExpressMaintenance makes tracking the PMs and generating work orders easy.

Note: For more information on how ExpressMaintenance re-schedules PMs, see the tech bulletin on PM Scheduling.  Also for information on how to limit the parts and services displayed in the work order screen to those of the same category of the Unit, see the tech bulletin on limiting selection  lists on the Express Technology website.

Helpful Hint

  1. When entering services for each Unit, there is a way to save time if you have multiple units of the same type and similar services.
  2. Enter the PM Services for a particular unit and complete all informattion.
  3. When entering a new unit, click on the Services (PMs) tab.
  4. Click on the Apply Standard Services button and a dialog will appear listing all units of the same type as the unit on the screen.
  5. Select the desired unit from which you will inherit / copy the services.
  6. Click the OK button and the program will copy all of the services from the source unit to the new destination unit.