Early one morning the bakery down the street called our Data Detective asking for help with their QuickBooks Point-of-sale. It seems at the start of the day the merchant found that one of his QBPOS terminals could not connect.
Upon arriving at the bakery, the warm aroma of fresh baked bread filled the air, along with pastries of all sorts, the smell was intoxicating to anyone with a love for baked goods; our sleuth could hardly contain himself from partaking of something yummy while starting the process of identifying the culprit.
After insuring that the merchant’s QBPOS server was in multi-user mode, and verifying that the firewalls were properly configured, the Data Detective began testing network connectivity. Our sleuth knows that even though a QBPOS workstation should be able to connect to the server if everything is set properly, sometimes other network setup issues can potentially interfere with the ability of the workstation to find the server automatically. In these cases it becomes necessary to edit the Host file to direct each workstation to the QBPOS server manually.
In order to accomplish this process our sleuth must first begin by finding important computer identification information for the QBPOS Server.
- On the server, he clicks the Windows start button and in the Start Search field, types in cmd and then clicks Enter.
- In the MS-DOS window, he types ipconfig/all, and then selects Enter.
- Under Windows IP Configuration, our sleuth identifies and jots down then name of the Host in his case notes.
- Under Ethernet adapter Local Area Connection, the Data Detective identifies and writes down the IP address.
- He then Closes the window.
Equipped with the Server computer information our Data Detective proceeds with editing the Host file on the merchant’s QBPOS client workstation. This process begins by making a copy of the Host file since it cannot be edited in place, to do this our sleuth:
- Right-clicks the Windows Start button and then Opens the Windows Explorer.
- He then clicks Computer in the left window and navigates to C:\Windows\System32\Drivers\etc\.
- The Data Detective then copies and pastes the Hosts file to the desktop.
Having made a copy of the Host file, our sleuth now edits the file and restores the edited file to its source.
- On the Desktop, he double-clicks the Hosts file, and when prompted, choose Notepad as the program to open it.
- He then clicks in the first available line after the last IP address listed and types the IP address he identified for the server.
- After pressing the Tab key once, he then types the name of the server.
- Our sleuth then chooses File > Save and closes the file.
- Now the Data Detective copies the newly edited Hosts file back to the C:\Windows\System32\Drivers\etc\ folder.
- When asked if he wanted to overwrite the file, he clicked on Yes.
Our Data Detective was now able to open QuickBooks Point of Sale on the workstation and the hosting QBPOS Server was found along with the baker's company file. Happy that his POS was now fully operational, the baker rewarded the Data Detective with a fresh fruit and cream cheese tart; of course one delicious pastry simply would not be enough for our hungry sleuth. An hour or so later as the Data Detective finished stuffing himself, he thought while the POS solution may be complex, the baker's delicious offerings are "elementary (and yummy) My Dear Watson."