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Recurring Actiivties: Will the bugs be fixed on 2012?

Employee
Posts: 1,163
Country: USA

Re: Recurring Activities: Will the bugs be fixed on 2012?

Had a chance to watch the video and even snagged a couple of guys from support to verify what is occurring.

 

First, the reason we are seeing more than one actiivy on both the calendar and on the activity tab on the contact detail screen is because (and this is an assumption I'm making since I couldn't reproduce otherwise) we have the filter set to show activities from all users. Clearing an activity for a user doesn't clear it for all of the users, so Chris Huffman's instance of this recurring activity was cleared while Betty's was not.

 

The issue you demonstrated that prevented you from being able to delete an activity and caused the message "This activity has been deleted by it's organizer. It cannot be uncleared" has been reported if you'd like you can PM me and I can provide you with the ID and as much information as I have on the projected resolution date.

 

The orphaned activity issue is the expected behavior. When we clear an activity that was part of a series, it is no longer part of that series, thus when we delete the activity series we shouldn't expect the previously cleared activity to be erased as well, as it's no longer a part of the series. This is also why the FirstOccurrence property is transfered to the next activity in the series when the original is cleared.

Matthew Wood
Act! SDK Support
Community Moderator
Astute Commentator
Posts: 197
Country: United States

Re: Recurring Activities: Will the bugs be fixed on 2012?

Thanx for looking at it.

 

The clearing of activities really causes inconsistencies and corruption on the database. That is due to bugs in the clearing routines. For example:

  - Erasing a FirstOccurence activity should transfer the property to the next item on the series. It does not at the moment. The moment the FirstOccurence disappears from the series, everything else becomes pretty much corrupt.

  - That the IsRecurring property does not work for Daily activities will (and should) cause havoc in the handling of recurring activities since most likely any clearing routine will address this property and take incorrect decisions (as seen in the examples on the video).

   - The Calendar, funny enough, reads the Activities database and seems to get pretty much confused, displaying items that should not display. When key properties are not properly set, that will happen.

  - If I clear an activity without modifying the subject line, only 1 cleared instance shows in the Calendar. However, If I modify the subject line, 2 activities show, one cleared and one uncleared.

  - Cleared Activities Modification Date is the same modification date as the FirstRecurrence activity. That is wrong. The mod date should be the date when it is  cleared not the original date.

 

Finally, what's the deal with the Calendar not updating when you clear the activity or manipulate the activity in the contact? This is a PC Client software not a Web browser needing a refresh. Come on!

 

Someone at Sage should spend some time fixing these issues before your 2012 release.

 

T

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Copper Elite Contributor
Posts: 306
Country: USA

Re: Recurring Activities: Will the bugs be fixed on 2012?

I have looked at your video too...Very nice work.

 

I think some of the issues you are seeing are as much about an activity being scheduled for 2 users as they are about recurring activities, if not more. For the past several versions (that i know of) there has been an issue with having more than one user on the same activity. When one user clears the activity, it still shows as open on the other user's calendar. However, the second user cannot clear the activity themselves without unclearing then reclearing.

 

Not a good solution in a multi-user environment when users work in teams. It really gunks up the calendar when you are looking at more than one user at a time (say a receptionist). This is one reason an addon like Durkin's tools is very useful...you can show calendars for more than one user side-by-side.

Regards,

Anne Johnson
Patricia Egen Consulting
850-968-3374
Astute Commentator
Posts: 197
Country: United States

Re: Recurring Activities: Will the bugs be fixed on 2012?

[ Edited ]

Thanx.

 

The viewing through the Calendar of cleared Activities causes some confusion. The thing is that I'm getting customers contact me asking why are these items on their activities that cannot be removed, even with Admin privilege.

 

I've tested it on Weekly activities and I can reproduce the orphans the same way. Quite easy:

  1- Create a weekly recurring activity, namely Week 0 for multiple users.

  2- Clear any activity beyond the initial activity i.e. Clear for Week 1, Week 2, etc..

  3- Clear Week 0 Activity. You'll see that a new uncleared activity is created.

  4- Unclear Week 0 Activity.

  5- Erase Week 0 Activity Series.

 

From hereon, all cleared activities i.e. Week 1, Week 2, etc., become orphans and cannot be removed via the ACT! interface. Assume that if you have 10 users in the calendar item, then you'll have 10 orphans from 1 user's interaction. Now, if you have a weekly meeting with your staff of 10, and each person clears at different times/dates at leat 5 times during a period of 1 year, a single weekly meeting will be able to generate over 500 orphans. Now take that over a plethora of recurring events. Whew.......

 

BTW: I have managed to create duplicate recurring events by clearing/unclearing Weekly events with only 1 ACT! user included. So the duplication has nothing to do with multiple users being selected. I'll try to find a consistent way to replicate this issue.

 

 

T

Astute Commentator
Posts: 197
Country: United States

Re: Recurring Activities: Will the bugs be fixed on 2012?

Tested on 2012 and this issue is still present. Basically, clearing and erasing the original recurring activity corrupts the activity series. A few key properties are not transferred to the new "master" which ends up corrupting anything you do from thereon with the recurring activity.

 

If you have anyone that consistenly uses recurrence (which is most people), this issue will crop up and the only way to fix it is through the removal of the cleared activities via SQL or by removing old cleared activities (not withstanding the legality of doing that if your client deals with the FCC).

 

No wonder when I talk with ACCs and ask about the use of recurrence, that it sends shivers up their spines. Imagine having customers calling with this really basic functionality flaw........

 

T

New Member
Posts: 1
Country: USA

Re: Recurring Activities: Will the bugs be fixed on 2012?

I am having a similar problem with activities disappearing from the calendar in ACT! 2012 - do you know if they have fixed this problem or if there is a work around?   It sounds like recurring events, esp. for multiple people is a NO NO.  Any info you have would help.   I am currently using 2 remote databases and one server database (5 users) and the activities on the calendar disappear and reappear intermittently - i have to keep going up to the "select users" and change my selection to get them to reappear. 

 

Thanks,

Astute Commentator
Posts: 197
Country: United States

Re: Recurring Activities: Will the bugs be fixed on 2012?

I am amazed that the recurring event mechanism works at all. I think whoever wrote the code never intended to support it because there are numerous bugs on it and ACT! hasn't fixed any of them. That can only mean that whoever wrote the code is no longer with Sage and nobody understands what is going on with it. Not only does stuff dissapear, it creates duplicates at the minimum amount of modification, it creates orphan events and many other things that no decent piece of calendaring should create or do. My best suggestion is to stay away from it if you can....