Product explorer

Product explorer

The Product explorer is designed to help you quickly locate your products in Macaos Enterprise. A folder structure is used to categorize products.

Selecting a folder will load all products in that folder into the product list.The speed buttons at the top of the folder list give quick access to commonly viewed folders.

A folder is really just a label – even though a product may appear in more than one folder, there is only one copy of the product.

Macaos Enterprise automatically creates and populates most folders. The contents of these folders are dynamic, determined by the current state of each product. You may only create or delete folders in the My folders group. If desired, empty folders may be automatically hidden with the Configure|Options command.

With the exception of the Shopping list and Wastebasket, you cannot directly change the contents of automatic folders.

My activity

These folders are automatically populated according to recent activity by you, your colleagues or your partners.

  • Active orders lists all products which have been ordered but are not yet delivered.

  • Shopping list lists products that are to be ordered. This folder is useful, for example, when an engineer in a company specifies the products to order but the order will be placed by someone in the purchasing department. To add a product to the shopping list, drag it from the product list to the Shopping list folder name in the folder list.

  • Shipped orders lists all products which have been shipped within the few weeks. The number of weeks may be specified with the Configure|Options command.

  • Recent orders lists all products which have been ordered within the past few weeks. The number of weeks may be specified with the Configure|Options command.

  • Recently published lists all products which have been published within the past few weeks. The number of weeks may be specified with the Configure|Options command.

My products

These folders are automatically populated with products owned by your company or your partners.

  • Single-board products lists unpanelized PCB products.

  • Panelized products lists panelized PCB products.

  • Stencils lists solder paste stencil products.

  • Test fixtures lists test fixture products.

  • Depanel fixtures lists depanel fixture products.

  • Pallets lists wave solder pallet products.

  • Mechanical parts lists mechanical part products.

  • Other products lists other products, such as film.

  • Purchased global products: lists global products purchased by your company.

  • All products lists all products (that are not in the Wastebasket folder).

  • Previously ordered: lists all products which have been ordered at least once.

  • Never ordered lists all products which have been created but have not been ordered.

  • Partner products are products that partner companies have shared with your company. There is a subfolder for each partner which has shared a product with your company.

  • Shared products are products that your company has shared with partner companies. There is a subfolder for each partner company to which your company has shared a product.

  • On hold lists products that are temporarily disabled.

  • Wastebasket lists deleted products. These are typically obsolete products. Products in the wastebasket are removed from all other folders. Products may be moved to the wastebasket folder by dragging from the product list to the wastebasket folder name, or by right-clicking on the product and choosing Delete from all folders.

Custom folders

You can create additional folders to organize your products by department, person, project or whatever. The folders you create can have subfolders.

To create a new folder, right-click in the folder list, choose Add folder, and give the new folder a name. To create a subfolder, right-click on the parent folder and choose Add subfolder. To delete or rename a folder, right-click on the folder and choose Delete folder or Rename folder.

Products may be added to a custom folder by dragging from the product list to the folder name. Products may be removed from a folder by right-clicking on the product and choosing Remove from this folder.

All users in a company share the same folder structure. In other words, if you create a custom folder, then all users in your company will also be able to see and use that folder.

Global products

These folders are automatically populated with products that are visible to all users.

  • Global products lists products which may be purchased by anyone. These are typically kits for student projects.

  • Connectors lists connectors which have been previously purchased by your company. Use the Connector chooser module to browse and select a connector for purchase.

  • ESD accessories lists anti-static bags, tape, labels and related products.

  • Machines lists milling machines, laser engraving machines, etc, and accessories.

  • Other off-the-shelf products lists any off-the-shelf products not included in the preceding categories.

  • Software lists software and related products.

  • Stencil frames lists stencil stretch frames and related products.

  • Test accessories lists test jigs, test pins and related products.

Hidden folders

If you have folders that you do not make use of, then it may be useful to hide them. A folder may be hidden by right-clicking on it and choosing Hide folder. Use the View|Show hidden folders command to make the hidden folders temporarily visible. Right-click on a hidden folder and choose Show folder to unhide it.

Managing products

The product list displays several columns of information about each product in the selected folder. You can specify which columns to show in the product list with the View|Show/hide columns menu command.

Each product name is preceded by one or two icons.

The first icon, if any, indicates share/hold state:

  • A product which has been shared to partners (magenta left arrow)
  • A product which a partner has shared with you (blue right arrow)
  • A product which is on hold (red and white triangle)

See the Product sharing chapter for more info.

The second icon indicates the product type:

The system automatically populates standard folders according to the current state of each product. You can organize products into custom folders however you like.

To add a product to a folder, locate the product in any folder and drag and drop the product to the desired folder. The only standard folders to which you may add products are the Shopping List and Wastebasket folders.

Right-click on a product to do any of the following:

  • Refresh reloads the product list

  • Folders has a submenu listing all other folders containing the product. Choosing one of the listed folders selects the same product in the selected folder.

  • Put product “on hold” temporarily disables a product

  • Remove from this folder deletes the product only from the current folder

  • Delete from all folders moves the product to the Wastebasket folder

  • Modify product identification allows you to change the product name, article or description

  • Modify product specifications allows you to change certain product specifications

  • Make variant of product lets you create a copy of a product with alternate specifications

  • Shares allows you to manage Product sharing.

  • Download allows you to download product data for use outside of Macaos Enterprise

  • Remove product from cache deletes cached product data

The speed buttons at the bottom of the product list give access to common product operations.

Modifying products

You may create a variant, or modify the product identification of any product that you own. If a product has never been ordered or manufactured, you may also modify some of its specifications. Right-click on the product and choose one of the modify commands:

  • Modify product identification allows you to modify the product's name, article, and description.

  • Modify product specifications allows you to change the product's identification, as well as the stackup, surface finish, and mask colors.

  • Make variant of product creates a copy of the product with modified board specifications.

Downloading product data

The Download menu in the right-click menu allows you to download panel documentation, solder paste stencil data or all manufacturing data files for a product.The Download CircuitData.org data command creates a CircuitData file containing product parameters, which may be imported to other CircuitData-enabled systems.

The Download all data files command is disabled by default. Your use of Macaos Enterprise is sponsored by your PCB supplier, on the basis that products in the system will be purchased from your supplier. Downloading all data files makes it possible for you to purchase from a competing supplier. You may obtain this data on a pay-per-download basis. Contact Macaos Support (support@macaos.com) if you need to have this service enabled.

Products on hold

A product may be temporarily disabled by putting it on hold. It is not possible to create a panel or a solder mask stencil with a product that is on hold. Neither can prices be gotten or orders placed for on hold products. The On hold status applies also for all partners with whom the product has been shared. On hold products are marked with a icon and listed in the On hold folder..

The on hold state of a product may be changed by right-clicking the product and choosing Put product “On Hold” or Remove product from “On Hold.”

Deleting products

Deleting a product does not actually delete the product, but rather adds the product to the Wastebasket folder and removes it from all other folders. It is still possible to view the product, order history, etc. from the Wastebasket folder. To delete a product, right-click on the product and choose Delete from all folders.

Products in the Wastebasket may be undeleted by right-clicking on the product and choosing Undelete. This restores the product to the All products folder (and other standard folders, as appropriate). A product in the Wastebasket must be undeleted before adding it to any other folder.

If a product in the Wastebasket folder has never been ordered, it may be deleted completely from the system, by right-clicking on the product and choosing Permanently delete product. A product which has been deleted in this manner can not be restored.

Product browser columns

You can show/hide columns in the product list with the View|Show/hide columns menu. The list may be sorted by clicking on the header of the sort column. Clicking a second time sorts in reverse order. The column order may be changed by dragging a column to its new position.

Filtering the product list

When you enter a search text in the Filter product list edit box, only products having one or more columns that contain the search text will be shown. Click the X button to remove the filter.

The View|Hide products not published by me command may be used to locate your own products by hiding all products published by other users.

Searching for products

If your company has many products, it may be difficult for you to locate the product you are looking for. The Operations|Find product menu opens an expanded product search dialog box, allowing you to search for products by name, number, article, description, owner, publisher or requisition number. Once you have located the desired product, double-click on it to load the product into the product explorer.

Caching product data

Macaos Enterprise uses a local data cache on the user's hard disk in order to improve performance when browsing products. The cache stores a copy of the data for each product as it is viewed. The cache automatically updates the product data if it finds that there is newer product data on the server. This cache update function assumes that the user's PC clock is synchronized with the server's clock, which may not always be the case. Usually, this will not matter, since the product data on the server will change only infrequently.

If you have reason to believe that the data on the server has been changed, and yet you are unable to view the changes then you can do one of the following:

  • Right-click on the product and choose Remove from product cache

  • Run the Operations|Clear cache command to remove all products from the cache

After clearing the cache, view a different product and then return to the desired product.