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Capturing Email Into Contact History

Copper Contributor
Posts: 47
Country: USA

Capturing Email Into Contact History

I am using Microsoft Office 365 Version 1701 (Build 7766.2060).  I have just upgraded to ACT Premium 19.1.63.0.  I am running the current version of Windows, updated as of today.

 

I am relatively new to ACT having started with ACT Premium  19.something in November, 2016.

 

One of the top 5 reasons that I want a CRM is to capture emails corresponding to my contacts.

 

This functionality is not a "nice-to-have".  It is not acceptable for it not to operate.

 

I don't trust ACT, yet.  I watch it closely as to ensure that all functionality operates as represented by SwiftPage.

 

ACT captures emails sent from MS Outlook in Contact History using the primary email of ACT.

 

I have observed that ACT History is not, on many occasions, undated to reflect the new email, even though I have clicked Refresh often.

 

I am fearful that my emails won't be captured under Contacts History.

 

Closing and re-opening both ACT and Outlook does not refresh ACT History.

 

ACT History is refreshed when I restart my device.

 

This behavior of ACT occurs on both my desktop and laptop.

 

This behavior should not occur.  This behavior contributes to my lack of trust of ACT.

 

My productivity is diminished, greatly, because I have to verify that ACT is working.  Restarting devices is not efficient.

 

I really do not like this behavior of ACT.  I must have my emails captured by ACT, without fail and with my full confidence.

 

This same behavior occurs when I Quick Attach and email sent to me in Outlook but for which I need not respond.  I want these un-responded emails to be captured in ACT via Quick Attach so that I know that my contact has responded to me.

 

QUESTION: What is the final resolution such that in every session of ACT, I will always see emails captured under Contacts History and I am not required to reboot my device in order to see the captured email under Contacts History?

 

Many Thank Yous.

Administrator
Posts: 3,751
Country: United_Kingdom

Re: Capturing Email Into Contact History

Hi princeedwardh,

 

To understand what might be going here, let me briefly explain how the Outlook email history recording works.

 

  • When Act! is installed, the Outlook Add-in for Act! integration is also installed. This is what produces the Act! options in the Add-ins tab in Outlook.
  • The Add-in also allows the Act! integration service to access and capture the sent emails in order to process them for history recording.
  • This process should appear in your task manager Processes tab like this: Taskmgr_2017-03-16_10-48-57.png although this alternate icon may be used Taskmgr_2017-03-16_10-45-292.png
  • When the service has captured an email, but has failed to attach it to Act!, then the second icon is shown. This indicates unattached emails in the queue.
  • Locating this icon in the system tray and right click > Show Progress will allow you to see unattached messages in the queue, and the reason why they haven't been attached.

We have a troubleshooting Knowledgebase article with has a number of solutions to issues that can cause this service to stop capturing or recording emails to Act!. http://kb.act.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/19948

 

For a detailed look into how the service handles errors, the following article has some advanced documentation: http://kb.act.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/26089

Copper Contributor
Posts: 47
Country: USA

Re: Capturing Email Into Contact History

Thank you for the reply.  I do appreciate it.

 

I'll read the KB.

 

But, my observation is that emails cannot be seen under Contacts History until I restart the device.

 

So far, I have not observed a failure by ACT to get an email under Contacts History; rather, it seems that emails get stuck somewhere on my device and don't get unstuck until a device reboot.

 

Any thoughts on this?

 

Lastly, your responses are really good, quite refreshing from what I have come accustomed to receiving.

Copper Contributor
Posts: 47
Country: USA

Re: Capturing Email Into Contact History

Follow Up..............

 

Here's my experience today.

 

1) Begin work at 4:00 AM.

2) Emails sent until 5:40 AM.  All emails captured under Contacts History.

3) Depart office for client meetings leaving ACT and Outlook running.

4) Return to office.

5) Send emails from 1:35 PM - 2:00 PM

6) At 2:00 PM, I notice that none of the emails sent from 1:35 - 2:00 PM are under Contacts History.  I can see all of these sent emails in my Outlook sent folder.  Under History List, there are no Activities with a  Result of E-mail sent for the emails sent between 1:35 – 2:00 PM.

7) ACT is shut down and restarted.

8) None of the emails sent between 1:35 – 2:00 PM are under Contacts History or History List.

9)Nothing has failed to be attached.  None of the emails sent between 1:35 PM – 2:00 PM are even listed. I see the emails before 5:40 PM that are listed that did attach.

10) Desktop shutdown & restarted.

11) ACT restarted

12) Emails sent between 1:35 PM – 2:00 PM are under Contacts History and History List

 

This functionality of posting emails from Outlook to ACT just stops.  Shutting down the device and restarting it is the only way that those emails get into ACT.  These emails are stuck somewhere on my desktop.

 

 

From Answer ID 19948

 

 

  • Unsupported version of Microsoft Outlook – confirmed by everyone and their brother at SwiftPage that I am good here.
  • History Recording is not enabled in the E-mail System Setup wizard – it must be enabled given that I am capturing emails
  • Administrative preferences set to not allow files and emails to attach (Sage ACT! 2011 and higher) – preferences must be set to allow as emails are attaching
  • The Act.Outlook.Service.exe is not running – hmmmmmmmmmm, if this is it then why does it just decide to stop running?
  • The Act.Outlook.Service.exe is being blocked by your antivirus or firewall – emails are attaching
  • The ACT! Address Book has not been properly added to Outlook – well, if this is the problem then why did the ACT software not properly add the Address Book to Outlook using the wizard
  • Insufficient Windows folder permissions for the folders of a shared database – nothing frustrates me more than my $25,000 of hardware & software telling me that I don’t have permission
  • Microsoft Word® is set as your e-mail editor (Outlook 2003) – not using Microsoft Word
  • The History Queue folder is backed up – have no clue what this is
  • File path to History Queue folder is incorrect in registry – good grief, I did not buy ACT to fix the registry; small business owners, the target market of Swiftpage, do not have the core competency of editing a registry because their core competency is running their business
  • ACT! Outlook add-in disabled – it is enabled
  • ACT! address book is setup with the wrong database. – I really don’t think this is the case; I only have 1 database
Administrator
Posts: 3,751
Country: United_Kingdom

Re: Capturing Email Into Contact History

Hi princeedwardh,

Thanks for the level of detail you've provided here.

The next time the service seems to have stopped recording history, before restarting, please can you open the system tray, and right click > Show Progress on the icon ( the second one I posted above). Can you let us know what you see there? Are any of your most recently sent messages appearing in the Progress or Not Attached Messages tab?
Copper Contributor
Posts: 47
Country: USA

Re: Capturing Email Into Contact History

Will do!

 

I did check this for the emails sent between 1:35 - 2:00 PM.

 

I could not "see" any of the emails there, neither in successfully posted nor failed to post.  After rebooting, I could see here hat they had successfully posted.

 

Many thank yous for the fast response.  It is truly appreciated.

Copper Contributor
Posts: 47
Country: USA

Re: Capturing Email Into Contact History

I just started up my desktop, ACT & Outlook.

 

Two sent emails were not captured under Contacts History.

 

Per your post, I looked for and observed:

  1. 32-bit Act.Outlook.Service (32 bit) was not running under Task Manager.  
  2. The Attach To ACT! Contacts Progress icon was not in the System Tray.

 

I restarted my desktop, ACT & Outlook.  My observations:

  1. the two emails were now posted under Contacts History
  2. 32-bit Act.Outlook.Service (32 bit) was running under Task Manager
  3. Attach To ACT! Contacts Progress icon was in the System Tray

 

By observation:

  1. 32-bit Act.Outlook.Service (32 bit) appears to stop running, necessitating a reboot of the device to restart this functionality.
  2. After rebooting the device, new emails are captured under Contacts History.
  3. Prior to rebooting the device Something is capturing and storing emails.  Post reboot, Attach To ACT! Contacts Progress indicates that the emails not recorded under Contacts History are located under tab Not Attached Messages.
  4. Attach to ACT! Contacts Progress has a record of the emails not captured under Contacts History; however, after device reboot ACT does not use this information to post these emails automatically under Contacts History.  Rather, it appears the user is required to Retry Attach manually these emails.

 

QUESTIONS:

  • Up to this point, are my observations consistent with your professional knowledge of ACT?
  • If no, what is inconsistent?

 

QUESTION:

  • If my observations are correct then the user has no knowledge that 32-bit Act.Outlook.Service (32 bit) because no notification is provided to the user that it has stopped working, correct?

       If no, then what has  this user done incorrectly as not to have observed such a notification over these past 3 1/2 months?

 

  • If, in fact, no notification is provided to the user that 32-bit Act.Outlook.Service (32 bit) has stopped working then emails will be retained under the Not Attached Messages tab of Attach To ACT! Contacts Progress; however, the user is ignorant of this fact.  Therefore, the ignorant user is at risk that these emails not captured under Contacts History will never be posted under the contact record because such emails are only retained for a certain period of time.

       What are best practices for SwiftPage's target customers, we small business owners, such that we do not have to worry about the spotty performance of not only this functionality but also other functionality?

 

 

Bear in mind, ACT is not a "nice-to-have" piece of software for us small business owners.  We cannot manage a customer relationship with functionality that is not reliable, the sole purpose of purchasing a CRM solution.  Nor can we sit around constantly fixing problems because we small business owners are required to go out and do business; we don't get paid to fix software that doesn't work.

 

BACKGROUND - Why Is Resolution Important:

      

This post is made under the following circumstances.

 

I purchased ACT mid-November, 2016.  So far, I am 100 hours into ACT Level 2 Technical Support, and higher, to get ACT to operate as it is represented in all of SwiftPage's marketing materials.  No one at SwiftPage volunteered to me, pre-sale, the agony that I would be getting into.  I've stuck with ACT because I do like it compared to its competitors.  I'm willing to hang in there but I have got to figure out how to use it with confidence.

 

I must reduce the amount of energy that I expend baby sitting ACT to get it to work.  I must increase my usage of ACT so that I can achieve the business goals that I set, which require a reliable CRM. 

 

 

 

Thank You for your help.  You are good, very good, because you actually answer people's questions.

 

Highlighted
Administrator
Posts: 3,751
Country: United_Kingdom

Re: Capturing Email Into Contact History

[ Edited ]

I'll do my best to answer your questions. I'd just like to clarify on the below:


princeedwardh wrote:

Two sent emails were not captured under Contacts History.

 

Per your post, I looked for and observed:

  1. 32-bit Act.Outlook.Service (32 bit) was not running under Task Manager.  
  2. The Attach To ACT! Contacts Progress icon was not in the System Tray.

 

I restarted my desktop, ACT & Outlook.  My observations:

  1. the two emails were now posted under Contacts History 

You imply here that post reboot, the emails become attached to Contact History. Does this happen automatically, or do you need to manually attach the emails from the Not Attached Messages tab in the Attach to Act! Contacts Progress window as you refer to later on in your post?

 

In answer to your questions: 

  • Up to this point, are my observations consistent with your professional knowledge of ACT?

Yes, we just need to find out why the service is exiting.

 

  • If my observations are correct then the user has no knowledge that 32-bit Act.Outlook.Service (32 bit) because no notification is provided to the user that it has stopped working, correct?

Currently, there is no function in the software to notify users if the service has exited. The process is not expected to end.

 

  • If, in fact, no notification is provided to the user that 32-bit Act.Outlook.Service (32 bit) has stopped working then emails will be retained under the Not Attached Messages tab of Attach To ACT! Contacts Progress; however, the user is ignorant of this fact.  Therefore, the ignorant user is at risk that these emails not captured under Contacts History will never be posted under the contact record because such emails are only retained for a certain period of time.

As I've mentioned above, we do not expect the service to stop working, however there are other reasons why emails may end up in the Not Attached Messages tab. It is recommended to occasionally check this tab to become aware of any emails that may not have automatically matched against a contact in Act!, and require a manual contact selection, or the creation of the contact for which to attach the email to.

 

  • What are best practices for SwiftPage's target customers, we small business owners, such that we do not have to worry about the spotty performance of not only this functionality but also other functionality?

Along with my recommendation above, there are a few other steps that we should take to help troubleshoot this issue:

  1. There could be some interference from anti-virus or firewall software that is causing the process to end. Visit this Knowledgebase article and try adding the process exceptions to any anti-virus or firewall software running on the machine.
  2. Check to see if there are any automated system backup tasks that are attempting to back up the History Queue folder. Add exclusions to any that are. Having multiple programs access this folder may be causing issues.
  3. Turning off UAC in the system settings would be a worthwhile troubleshooting step. This can help us rule out some issues caused by access limitations.
  4. To help diagnose the problem, Please check in Windows Event Viewer after the Act.Outlook.Service process has ended unexpectedly, to try and capture the error that caused it to end. Look under Windows Logs > Application.
  5. To rule out the cause of the process ending being linked to it encountering errors when processing a specific type of email, are you able to manually attach the first email that was sent but not attached to Contact History after the process has re-started? Does sending the same email again work okay, or does it cause the issue to recur?

As an additional note, instead of rebooting the machine to get the Act.Outlook.Service to start again, you should be able to start it again by running it from it's location in C:\Program Files (x86)\ACT\Act for Windows\Act.Outlook.Service.exe

 

Copper Contributor
Posts: 47
Country: USA

Re: Capturing Email Into Contact History

Ah, Many Thanks!

 

For your question: 

 

You imply here that post reboot, the emails become attached to Contact History. Does this happen automatically, or do you need to manually attach the emails from the Not Attached Messages tab in the Attach to Act! Contacts Progress window as you refer to later on in your post?

 

They attach automatically.

 

 

I scanned the rest of your post.  It looks like what I need.  I'll read it thoroughly today or tomorrow.

 

 

Thank You, 1M.

Copper Contributor
Posts: 47
Country: USA

Re: Capturing Email Into Contact History

This AM between 4:00 - 8:30 AM I used ACT extensively.  It worked well.

 

I left at 8:30 AM and just returned at 1:20 PM.  I left both ACT and Outlook running.

 

Upon returning, I had a Windows message that ACT.Integration had stopped working.

 

I left that error message up; I did not close it.

 

I went over to Outlook.  Outlook was frozen.  I could not do anything with it.  Nothing.

 

Then, I clicked on the ACT.Integration error message to close it out.

 

Then Outlook worked.

 

So, the ACT. Integration error severely impacted Outlook, in an environment with no user input.

 

 

 

QUESTIONS:

 

  1. Could ACT.Integration because my issue with emails not readily posting to Contact History short of a device reboot?
  2. Here again is another issue with the stability of ACT in that ACT.Integration just stoppped working, just stoppeed working.  How do we get ACT to operate such that we are confident in its stability, particulary in a static environment?  

       On this one, here is my concern:  Heaven help we should I add employees to ACT.  I'm willing to pay them money to earn me money but I don't want

       to pay them money to resolve ACT's techical issues.  It's bad enough that I'm forced to deal with them, gratis.

 

       Over the course of 40 hours of SwiftPage Level 2 Technical support, and higher, this brand new desktop of mine was torn apart and rebuilt 3 times in order to get ACT operational.  So, SwiftPage owns all ACT software on this desktop.  This is frustrating.