TurboNET bug and more
2016-09-21

This morning we released a few important changes:

1) TurboNET roster imports were failing for some Cub Scout Packs. This is now fixed.

2) Meeting schedules will now show the description of the event on the page where the recurrences are listed.

3) When recording payment for an event from the Event "All Payments" page, credit card fees were being applied even if payment was being made from an individual payment account. This is fixed.

That's it - have a great day!

~ Dave

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Nextdoor.com spam block
2016-09-12

This morning we are deploying a fix that blocks all emails from nextdoor.com. Apparently people who join NextDoor.com give NextDoor.com access to the contacts on their device and then spams them, which results in emails being sent to your mailing lists. NextDoor.com does not get any access to TroopTrack, just to the contacts that users of ND.com give it access to.

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Privilege book filtering and report menu improvements
2016-09-10

We just deployed a couple of smaller changes. Here they are:

 

1) A user can now filter by privileges and access level on the privileges book.

2) The menus for reports are cleaned up to make navigating easier. You can now get to "All Reports" from any individual report.

3) We fixed a bug that occurs when a user subscribes a calendar application to your main web site. This isn't actually supported (we have special URLs for calendar feeds) and it was generating lots of error reports, so now this will just return a 404 (Not Found).

Have a great weekend!

 

~ Dave

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Inbound email processing
2016-09-09

IMPORTANT NOTE: This announcement only applies to emails sent from your email client (Outlook, Mail, Gmail Web, etc). It does not apply to messages sent from Communicate -> Send an Email, Newsletters, Event Invites, etc. It also does not apply to customers using subdomain emails.

Lately you may have noticed that emails sent to mailing lists from your email client didn't get delivered. Until this morning. Some of you have brought this to our attention. Thank you for your help debugging this problem.

At first we thought it was a problem with specific email addresses and focused our attentions researching individual complaints. That turned out to be a dead end.

This morning I double checked our process (we call him Mailman) that checks for new messages and then puts them in our email processing queue. Years ago we had problems with that guy, but for the past couple of years he's been rock solid. Additionally, he's monitored by another process, so when he crashes we get notified.

At first glance everything looked okay. Mailman was running and looked healthy. So then I checked the last time he processed a message and well... I wish I'd been wearing dark colored pants today. He hadn't processed a message since August 31.

So I killed him. And started a new one. And this Mailman started processing messages right away, clearing out all the messages we've been sitting on since August 31.

This is really embarrassing to me personally for two reasons.

First, we thought we had this critical part of TroopTrack well-monitored. We were wrong. I'm sorry we messed this up. We are going to figure out a better way of monitoring mailman so we can tell not only that he's alive, but that he's also doing his job.

Second, I should have checked mailman first. It only takes a few minutes to verify that he is processing messages and it was a critical mistake for me not to do that immediately. To not do that for nine days is a humiliating error in judgment.

Thank you to everyone who helped us debug this problem and a sincere apology to everyone impacted by this mistake.

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Custom Awards
2016-08-29

Custom awards... you can create them and use them, but you can't ever go back and see them all...

 

FIXED! Yay! Manage -> Settings -> Create a Custom Award has been replaced with Manage -> Settings -> Custom Awards, which is a list of all your custom awards. From there you can edit them.

 

Also, custom awards are now listed in alphabetical order throughout the site.

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Bulk Transactions Bug Fix
2016-08-29

We just released a bug fix for adding bulk money transactions - saving transactions was failing. This is now fixed. Thanks to those who reported this problem.

 

~ Dave

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Achievements Update Bug
2016-08-15

As we've mentioned before, we are busily preparing for an upgrade of the web application framework that powers TroopTrack. We released a bunch of code changes over the weekend that get us very close to being able to release the upgrade. Unfortunately, these changes broke your ability to update certain achievements. We just released a fix for this and you should be able to update all achievements now.

Have a great day!

~ Dave

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Event Payment Problem Fixed
2016-07-29

We just released an bug fix for event payments. If you are using online event payments AND you had three specific settings turned on, you were affected by this bug. The settings are:

- Require members to pay credit card processing fees?

- Allow members to pay fees with individual money accounts?

- Allow members to pay fees with credit cards?

 

So... if you had all three of these turned on, a member would be assessed a credit card fee even if they were paying with a money account. This is now fixed.

 

Have a great weekend!

 

Dave

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Event Payments - Big News!
2016-07-29

We just released two significant changes to event payments - if you use this feature you have probably wanted these two changes.

 

1) There is now a payment setting that allows you to prevent members from purchasing event tickets using a money account with insufficient funds. You need to change this setting if you don't want to allow members to overdraw accounts.

 

2) If you allow event fees to be paid with money accounts and PayPal or Stripe, users will now be able to choose which payment method to use when they RSVP.

 

Many of you have asked us for these two features and we hope you are pleased to finally have them!

 

Have a great weekend!

 

~ Dave

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Two minor fixes
2016-07-26

We just released two fixes:

1) If you have multiple people in your troop with the same email address (this happens a lot in families) there was a chance that some of the youth in the family would not show up in the newsletter. This is fixed.

 

2) In some cases, the start achievements button on user profiles was crashing. No more.

 

Have a great day!

 

~ Dave

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Draft sign up sheets and checklists and more
2016-07-22

We just released several changes:
1) Sign up sheets are now created in "draft" mode. Emails are not sent out until you hit the publish button.
2) Check lists are now created in "draft" mode. Emails are not sent out until you hit the publish button.
3) We fixed a bug that was preventing you from saving changes to the awards used by your unit and we renamed the menu item from "Awards in Use" to "Active Achievements".
4) We made some changes to our calendar feeds that we hope will improve time zone determination for Microsoft Outlook users.
5) When a scout "ages out" we stopped displaying leadership positions they held as a youth. This is no longer the case.

Have a great weekend!

~ Dave

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Google Analytics Support & Improved Profile Editing
2016-07-19

Good morning! We just released two significant changes.

1) We've added support for Google Analytics, a tool that will allow you to see how people use your TroopTrack account. You will need to sign up for a Google Analytics account to use it, but once you've done that you can go to Manage -> Settings -> Edit Troop Settings and then click on the Webmaster Tools tab.

2) We have re-designed the way user information is edited to make it more secure and to account for the varying ways different organizations allow that information to be changed (BSA, Trail Life, AHG, etc each have different information in the profile and some have rules about who can change it). You will now see edit links near each section of the profile instead of one huge form with everything on it.

Have a great day!

~ Dave

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Google Webmaster Tool support and more!
2016-07-18

Happy Monday!

 

A couple of things just went live:

 

1) We added support for Google Webmaster Tools. Now you can have greater control of how your TroopTrack web site looks in Google search results, how it's indexed, and more. Just go to Manage -> Troop Settings and click on the Webmaster Tools tab to set it up.

 

2) We moved settings related to how your web pages look to the new Webmaster Tools page.

 

3) We improved name matching on one of our data importers.

 

4) We fixed a couple of errors related to editing troop settings.

 

5) We updated the newsletter to consistently show events coming in the next 30 days.

 

Have a great day!

 

~ Dave

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Two minor updates
2016-07-12

We just released two minor changes:
1) We corrected the spelling of "canoeing" in various places
2) We now repeat the merit badge header on additional pages of the eagle report.

Behind the scenes, we continue to make updates in preparation for the Rails 5 upgrade mentioned previously.

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We've been quiet lately, but that doesn't mean we haven't been busy!
2016-07-05

Well, for the first time in a really long time we've gone 30 days without posting a product update. Please don't think that means we haven't been hard at work - we have in fact been very busy. Unfortunately, most of the changes we've been making have been things that aren't easy to see. I'm going to take a minute to explain, and then I'll list the changes we've made that you can see.

TroopTrack is based on a web application framework called Ruby on Rails (Rails, for short). This framework provides a lot of awesome features from security to database integration and more. Every now and then a new version of this framework is released and that usually means we have to make some changes on our end to be compatible with the new version. We work really hard to make sure that we never fall behind so that you always have the latest, most secure version of Rails.

Rails 5 was released last week. We knew this was coming and we are extremely excited about it. It has several new features, such as built-in web sockets, that we will be able to use on our never-ending quest to be the best scouting software on the planet.

One of the changes in Rails 5 is related to form security - this is a feature that prevents users from manually adding data to forms and then tricking our servers into saving changes they aren't allowed to make. Rails has made an important change to this to make it easier to use. This change, while extremely valuable, also means we need to make a pretty big number of changes on our end.

And that's what we've been working on. Spencer and Ryan have been leading the charge on this and so far they have submitted more than 50 "pull requests" (a pull request is a set of code changes that accomplish a single thing). I've been working on other smaller changes related to the Rails upgrade. In other words, we've been doing a lot. Unfortunately these changes aren't visible to users, kind of like replacing the pipes in a house. As long as we don't break anything, you aren't likely to notice.

During this time, we've also fixed a couple things you can see. Here's the list:

  1. We added West Central Wireless and Consumer Wireless to the list of carriers we support for text messaging.
  2. We now included old versions of merit badges (BSA only) in eagle required merit badge lists
  3. We fixed a problem causing Trail Life award orders to crash
  4. We added support for tracking cabin camping nights
  5. We improved the way our home page looks on mobile devices
  6. We added a Youth Manage importer 
  7. We added a home page about transition from Youth Manage, a competitor that is going out of business
  8. We fixed a bug that was preventing AHG users from being able to have the "unit" access level
  9. We fixed a bug that was causing service hours to be displayed with dozens of digits after the decimal in some cases
  10. We fixed a bug that prevented you from creating meeting schedules that start today
  11. We removed deactivated users from the power search and from mailing list displays
  12. We added a way for you to record training in bulk
  13. We fixed a bug that was causing an error when updating privileges in some cases
  14. We improved the household listing when adding new users
  15. We added a check to the PayPal integration to prevent duplicate transactions from being created
  16. We improved the performance of the Achievement Overview page
  17. We fixed a problem causing meeting schedules to crash under certain circumstances

I'll try to be better about keeping you posted on changes from now on. Have a great summer!

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