User`s Guide
User’s Guide
3
Version
TOMORROW’S TECHNOLOGY…TODAY!
TowManager Corporation
TowManager
version3.18
TOW MANAGER CORPORATION
TowManager v. 3.18 Help File
© Computer & Communication Sciences
P.O. Box 199
Clementon, NJ 08021
Phone 800.379.1865 • Fax 856.435.1299
Table of Contents
Getting Started .......................................................................... 1
Introduction ..................................................................................... 1
Minimum System Requirements ..................................................... 1
Recommended Minimum Hardware/Software Requirements .................. 1
Installing TowManager3 ............................................................ 2
Starting TowManager3 for the First Time.................................. 3
Logging In for the First Time ........................................................... 3
Setting Up Your Company .............................................................. 5
Company Information ............................................................................... 5
User Security Setup .................................................................................. 6
Commissions Setup .................................................................................. 7
Employee Information............................................................................... 8
Truck Information ...................................................................................... 8
Invoice Options ......................................................................................... 8
Services .................................................................................................... 9
Call Reasons............................................................................................. 9
Motor-Clubs .............................................................................................. 9
Vehicle Database...................................................................................... 9
Destinations .............................................................................................. 9
Auto-Filled Data ........................................................................................ 9
Customer Setup ........................................................................ 9
Inputting New Customers................................................................ 9
Dispatching.............................................................................. 12
Creating a New Dispatch .............................................................. 12
Basic Mapping from Call Screen................................................... 14
Invoicing........................................................................................ 15
Motor-Club Invoicing ..................................................................... 17
QuickBooks Integration ........................................................... 19
QuickBooks Setup & Integration ................................................... 19
Troubleshooting....................................................................... 22
Frequently Asked Questions ......................................................... 22
Getting Started
Introduction
Welcome to the family of TowManager users. The third version of TowManager
promises to be the fastest, easiest to use and feature filled version yet.
As you know, TowManager is a full featured, professional software suite built for the
towing industry in order to help you run your business more smoothly and efficiently.
Not only is TowManager going to save you time and money, but it will also cut your
expenses and increase your profits! TowManager is the complete package…
Minimum System Requirements
If you are unsure how to check your system requirements, please see the
documentation that came with your computer or call Tech Support at (775) 787-8147.
Recommended Minimum Hardware/Software Requirements
TowManager3 requires the following minimum hardware/software requirements to
run:
•
•
•
•
Windows 2000 or Windows XP
600+ MHz Pentium Computer
64 MB RAM
1 Gig Hard Drive
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Installing TowManager3
To install TowManager, run the setup.exe file that came on the disk you received (or
from downloading the demo from our web site). Once the installer gets through
verifying your system specifications, you will see a screen as shown below.
Since you do want to continue, click the Next > button (highlighted above). Once you
click on next, you will be asked which directory to install the program in. It is
suggested that you keep the directory to the default setting (seen below).
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The final screen you will see is just the confirmation screen showing you your
selections. You can go ahead and click on Install to get the installation going. This
process will take approximately one minute. Once the installation is complete, you will
get a screen telling you that the installation completed successfully. Go ahead and click
on Finish to complete the installation process.
Starting TowManager3 for the First Time
When you installed the program, an administrator account was automatically set-up for
you to login. You will use this account when you initially login and begin to customize
TowManager for your business.
Logging In for the First Time
Once you have started TowManager, you will be greeted with the login screen shown
below. Fill in the username and password fields with the word admin. Remember that
this is case-sensitive so if you have CAPS-LOCK on, be sure to turn it off.
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Once you have the two fields filled in, click the Login button. You will now be able to
see where all of TowManager's actions will take place - the TowManager Desktop.
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The TowManager Desktop is where all the functions of TowManager will be executed.
You will notice a very similar look and feel to Microsoft products as we have tried to
model TowManager after them.
Along the top of the TowManager Desktop you will find the "Menu Bar" and directly
underneath that is the "Toolbar." The Menu Bar contains all the same functions as the
Toolbar, but you will have to open the individual menus to access the functions.
Below is the reference to the buttons on the TowManager Desktop.
Create New
Customer
Search for
Customer
Create New
Owner
Search for
Owner
Create New
Call / Dispatch
Search for a
Call
Call Status
Screen
Storage Status
Screen
Update Storage
Charges
Internet
Dispatch
Call Report
Generator
TowManager
Mapping
Send Text
Message
Notepad
Calculator
Setting Up Your Company
Company Information
Your very first task in setting up TowManager is to click on the "Setup" menu and go
to "Admin Options." "Admin Options" is the area of the program where you will
enter all the information that pertains to the setup of your company from the
employees, trucks, services and auto clubs.
Once you click on "Admin Options," a screen like that shown below should be
displayed. This initial screen allows you to edit the company information from Bill's
Towing to your company name and address information. To do this, click on the Edit
Company Information button on the bottom right of the "Admin Options" screen.
This will activate all of the fields so that you are able to change them.
Company
Information
Employee
Information
Truck
Information
Invoice
Options
Services
Call Reasons
Motor-Club
Information
Vehicle
Database
Destinations
Auto-Filled
Data
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As you will see, in the bottom left of the "Admin Options" screen there are three
check boxes. These three options can greatly help with your day to day operations.
The first of these options is the "Use Ticker Number on Call Screen as Invoice
Number." If this option is selected, whatever is entered in the Driver Ticket Number
field will be used as the Invoice number.
The second option, "Use Mileage on Call Screen for Invoice Billing," will carry over
the loaded and unloaded miles from the call screen to the invoice as line items.
The third and final option is "Enable QuickBooks Integration." Having this option
selected will cause TowManager to save the invoices you create not only in
TowManager but QuickBooks all at the same time. In addition to invoices, Customers
that are saved in TowManager will also be saved into QuickBooks.
User Security Setup
You will also setup the security for your company from the company information
screen. By pressing the security button on this screen you will bring up the security
setup screen.
Setting up security in TowManager3 is an easy task. TowManager comes with nine
levels already setup for you. These levels can be modified or deleted based upon your
needs. New levels can also be added if so desired. When you double click a level in
the security options box, the description and permissions will fill in. To edit the level,
select the appropriate button and when your changes are complete, select save changes.
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Deleting works much the same way, but rather than saving changes, the program will
ask you whether or not you really want to delete the level. If you say yes, then the level
is deleted with no saving necessary.
Commissions Setup
From the company information screen you will also set your commission rates by
pressing the set employee commissions button.
You can setup commissions based on percentage or by a flat rate. If the commission is
setup without checking the flat option, then the amount is the percentage the driver
will receive on commissionable items. If the rate is setup with the flat option checked,
then the driver will receive that amount for every dispatch that is done. The adding
and deleting of commissions is similar to the security levels.
Once you have entered all of your information here, click on the Save Changes button.
If this is not done, all of your changes will not be saved.
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Employee Information
The Employee Information section of the "Admin Options" screen will allow you to
add employees to your roster. To see the information currently associated with an
employee, double click that employee's name on the left hand side of the screen. From
there, you will see their information on the right hand side. If you would like to edit
this employee, click on the Edit Employee button on the left. If you are adding an
another administrator, make sure to set the security level to one (1) and have the Is
Admin option selected. You may also attach a photo of the driver if you would like.
To do this, click on the yellow and green button next to Last Name. Make sure you
have the photos directory set up. If you don't, see page xxx.
Truck Information
Setting up your trucks is about the same as setting up your employees. The only thing
to watch out for on this screen is to make sure the Is Active option is selected for your
active trucks. This is the screen where you would be able to make a truck inactive if it
were out for repairs.
Also you are able to keep track of maintenance on each truck. First, double click the
truck you want to see the maintenance log for, then click on the maintenance log
button on the bottom left. From there you are able to add, edit and delete items
relating to that particular truck. You can also run reports from within this area.
Invoice Options
On this screen is where you can edit some of the information that will be printed on
your invoices. If you don't call them invoices but instead call them receipts, you can
change the Invoice Title from this screen to read receipt. The Next Number field will
be the next auto-number for the invoice number. Default Invoice Format should be
set to Original Invoice. The Invoice Body Message will appear on the invoice just
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below the line items. Finally, the Default Invoice Message Text will appear at the
bottom of every invoice. Here you can place something like a Happy Holiday greeting.
Services
The Services screen is where you are going to need to spend the most time and
thought. This is where you will enter all the services you do for your customers, their
price, if it is taxable or commissionable, and if the service is active. This seems to be
the hardest part of setting up this program since there are so many services that your
company may provide. If you need further assistance, please contact technical support.
Call Reasons
In Call Reasons you will first need to have all of your services set-up. The reason for
this is that when you get a call, sometimes more than one service goes along with that
call. For example, say you get a customer that calls you that is broken down. They will
get the BreakDown call reason which gets the DOLL and HOOK1 services with
them. Those two services will automatically be added to the invoice. This makes call
taking that much quicker.
Motor-Clubs
The motor-clubs go in the same way as the Employee's and the Truck's. Make sure to
set the unloaded & limit mileage limits and rates.
Vehicle Database
This database comes with a plethora of cars already installed. If you find that there are
some missing, you would be able to add them here.
Destinations
The Destinations section of the Admin Options is where you would input the most
common destinations you would tow a vehicle, such as your yard.
Auto-Filled Data
The Auto-Filled Data is used quite often when entering dispatches. This is where you
can enter your zones that your drivers will be at (one company uses city names instead
of compass points), Employee types, your truck types, requested by types (eg.
Turnpike), customer types, priorities, cities, car colors, and body styles.
Customer Setup
Now that we have gotten through the toughest part of getting going in TowManager,
the rest is easy. In this section you will learn how to enter all of your customer
accounts.
Inputting New Customers
You will create customers by clicking the Add New Customer button on the toolbar.
Doing so should bring up a screen such as below.
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You will begin by assigning a customer id. This id can be any combination of letters
and numbers and has to be unique to each customer. Next you will choose the
customer type from the drop-down. This is a designation which you will be able to run
reports by at a later time to see all the "Law Enforcement" calls you took for a given
date range.
The "Active" checkbox lets you select this customer to be available when creating a
dispatch. The "AutoFill Dest" checkbox will use the address for this customer as the
destination address on the dispatch screen. The additional information on this screen
is simply for reference. The "Set Service Rates" button will bring you to another screen
which will allow you to enter individual pricing for each client.
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From this screen you can set individual pricing for each client. The default prices that
will appear will be the prices you setup in the Admin Options of the program. You
can change the pricing for each customer by selecting the service rate and pressing the
Edit Service Rate button. This will allow you to change the rate and weather or not the
service is commissionable. When an invoice is created for this customer, these prices
will be used rather than the default pricing which was setup in Admin Options. Once
you have the pricing correct, click on the Save Changes button. The next step is to
finish setting up the customer by pressing the Billing Information button on the
bottom right hand side of the screen.
L - Note
When making changes to service rates in this fashion, please keep
in mind that it will only affects this customer.
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The Customer Billing Information contains the address, terms and contact that will be
sent to QuickBooks when the customer is sent from TowManager. If this address is
the same as the address on the customer information screen, you will want to press the
Same As Prev button. This will pull the address from the customer information screen
and place it here.
When all the information is correct you will want to press the save button on the top
left of the screen (the disk). If you want to go ahead and enter another customer you
would do so by pressing the Add New Customer button.
Dispatching
Now that all the initial setup is entered, you are ready to start entering dispatches.
Creating a New Dispatch
To create a new dispatch/call, click on the phone icon (plain phone) on the top of the
TowManager Desktop. This will bring up the new call screen. For this example we
will go through the process of entering and invoicing a non-motor club call. When the
call screen appears for the first time, it is a bit intimidating with all the fields for
information available. Taking a closer look, however, will reveal that only the fields
highlighted in yellow are mandatory to complete an invoice. The remaining fields are
there if your customer requires that information. For example if this dispatch is from a
COD customer, you probably don't care too much about a VIN or Odometer
numbers. If this dispatch had come from a motor club then you would want to fill in
as much information as they require you to give them in order for them to pay you.
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L - Tip
You can either tab through the fields on the call screen, or you can
click on the individual fields you would like to fill in. Some people
find it quicker to tab through.
When you get a call, you will start the dispatch process by selecting the customer name
from the drop down. All the customers you previously setup (that are active) will be
listed here.
L - Tip
When entering customers you will find that if you begin to type in
the first few letters of the name of the company, the rest of the
name will come up. Once it does, press tab and the rest of the
information will be filled in.
Once you have the customer name filled in (or selected), you will want to press tab to
make TowManager do some work by letting it fill in the account balance, priority and
destination address (if this customer has that option turned on).
Most of the fields on the call screen are pretty self-explanatory, but a few do need some
extra explaining. The first one that would need explaining would be the owner name.
You will notice there are names in the drop down list. These are owners that are setup
for lien processing. Right now we will find Edward James and John Travis, as these
were part of our demo data to give you an idea of how to enter owners. If you do
select one of these owners and tab away, the vehicle information will fill in for you. If
you do not select one of the owners, the information that you enter will be the
information that is saved and printed on the invoice.
The next field that deserves some explanation is the call reason field. If you look in the
drop down list you will find all the call reasons you setup in admin options. When the
dispatch gets invoiced, this call reason will determine what line items will automatically
be placed on the invoice. Just like all the other drop down lists, this field will search as
you type.
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Basic Mapping from Call Screen
Map of Location
Enter Second Location
Map of Destination
Location to Destination Route
On the call screen you will find some buttons that extend the functionality of
TowManager. The small buttons that look like globes are where you access the
mapping functionality. Next to the destination name drop down list you will find
another small button which will enable you to enter a second destination. In both the
primary destination and secondary destination drop downs you will find all of the
destination addresses that you setup in admin options.
Once you have tabbed through the destination information, you will come upon the
motor club information section. If this dispatch were a motor club dispatch, we would
fill in the insured name and the policy number. Next we would select a plan from the
drop down list. When you tab away from the plan list, you will see all the plan details
fill in below. Next you will enter the expiration date and the authorization number.
This is very important because TowManager will not automatically calculate the
overage charges for the member without the authorization number. Next in line are
the actual plan details. These are the number entered by you in the admin options
setup. These numbers are not written in stone so they can be changed on the fly here
on the call screen, since we know there is a lot of negotiation that goes on a call by call
basis.
Your next step will be to assign a driver and if you have given this driver an assigned
truck and commission, they will be filled in when you tab off the driver name. Again,
these are the default trucks and commission rates and they can be changed on the fly.
Next to the commission drop down, you will find another small button. This will
automatically send the dispatch information to the driver for this call if you have a
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pager address specified. If this button is disabled (grayed out), then you have not
purchased the additional paging module. There is a section provided if a second driver
needs to be assigned. Again you can assign him a truck and a commission for this
dispatch.
The next fields that may need some explanation are the ULM and LM fields. The
ULM field is where you will record the unloaded miles (miles to the scene) and the LM
field is the loaded miles (miles from the scene). These fields are used for calculating the
mileage charges on the invoice if this call reason requires unloaded or loaded miles.
Next up are the dispatch times and mileages. You can fill in the times with the current
time by clicking the small button next to the time field, or you can type in a time if you
are entering this dispatch after the fact. There are five different stage times, but the
only one that has to be filled in to invoice this dispatch is the clear time field. Once the
clear time field is filled in, the storage detail section becomes active in the bottom right
hand corner of the screen. You can also access the storage detail section by pressing
the "Stor Detail" button.
Places Car in Storage
To put a vehicle in storage you would click on the check box under "In Storage Date."
The date is defaulted to the current date, but you can back date this if needed.
Invoicing
All that is left now is to assign an invoice number if you do not have TowManager
numbering your invoices for you. If you use your driver's ticket numbers for invoice
numbers, then the number that is entered into the ticket number field will become the
invoice number.
With an invoice\ticket number assigned, you will save the dispatch by clicking the save
button on the top of the call screen.
Save Call Button
If all the mandatory fields are filled in, you will get an expanded toolbar which (among
other things) will contain the create invoice button. Pressing this will bring up the
invoice screen.
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Expanded Toolbar
Again, the information that will show up on the invoice screen is based on the call
reason given. This particular call reason called for a standard towing charge and that is
all.
Had my call reason had called for more items, they would have shown up on this
invoice screen. If you need to add more charges, all you have to do is click on the
service on the right hand side of this screen. The invoice should recalculate the total
after each line item is added. When you have the charges the way you need them, you
will save the invoice. If you are using QuickBooks Integration, you will have to have
QuickBooks running to save the invoice. If you do not have QuickBooks running and
try to save an invoice, you will get a friendly reminder to start it up and try saving again.
Once the invoice is saved you can print out a copy by pressing the view invoice button.
This will display the invoice in a preview screen which you will print from.
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Motor-Club Invoicing
Invoicing for the motor-clubs is very similar to the invoicing process that we just went
over with a few minor exceptions. I have to stress that if you want TowManager to
calculate overage charges for the member, you must fill in an authorization number. If
the motor-club is picking up all of the charges, then you would enter the authorization
number in the PO number field and leave the authorization number blank. In this
example I have entered an authorization number to start the dual billing.
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You can see the Geico Plan allows for ten (10) unloaded miles and ten (10) loaded
miles. You will also see that the dispatch actually requires twenty-three (23) unloaded
miles and seventeen (17) loaded miles. Because of this, when we invoice the dispatch
with the authorization number filled in we will get the dual invoice screen.
The dual invoice screen is actually two invoices on one screen. The top invoice is for
the motor-club, in which case we are billing for a $40.00 hook-up charge because that
is our negotiated rate. The bottom invoice is for the member. If you will remember,
the Geico plan gave the member 10 unloaded miles and 10 loaded miles. This dispatch
actually went 23 unloaded miles and 17 loaded miles. Accordingly, the owner\member
invoice is for the difference. Just like in previous examples, you will add additional
charges to this invoice by double-clicking the service you want from the service listbox.
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The difference in this scenario is that to add services to the owner invoice you would
select the owner invoice option in the add line items box. Additionally you have the
option of assigning the owner invoice a number different than the motor-club invoice.
If you do not assign a number, then the owner invoice will just receive the same
number as the motor-club invoice. Again, just like before, to view the printed invoices
you must save the information and press the appropriate button for the invoice you
want to print.
QuickBooks Integration
QuickBooks Setup & Integration
TowManager will integrate the Account Receivable with your QuickBooks
2002/2003/2004 Pro editions. There are a few steps that will need to be completed
before the integration can happen. QuickBooks 2002 Pro right out of the box is going
to need to go through the online update that is available in the company section of
QuickBooks.
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This will get your QuickBooks to the latest version that will accept the TowManager
information. If you have QuickBooks 2003/2004 Pro, this step is not necessary. The
next step you will need to perform is to download and install the QuickBooks update
that is on the TowManager website (www.towmanager.com). You will get to this
download by going You will get this download by going into Support then Client
Support and clicking on QuickBooks Update.
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The file is zipped up, so when it is finished downloading you will need to unzip the
contents into a directory and then run the setup.exe file.
This will take you through the QuickBooks Foundation Class installation. Once that is
completed, your QuickBooks is ready to receive information from TowManager3.
In TowManager3, you will need to tell the program that you are using QuickBooks.
You will do this by checking the Enable QuickBooks Integration checkbox in Admin
Options.
With that completed you are now ready to start sending the information over to
QuickBooks. TowManager3 has built in a QuickBooks integration menu that will send
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over all the customers, services, and employees that are setup in TowManager3. You
access this by clicking the help menu and selecting the QuickBooks Integration option.
Clicking each of these buttons will send the respective information to QuickBooks.
Troubleshooting
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: How do I update my version of TowManager?
A: Once the update has been completed, make sure that you go into TowManager, go
to the Help menu, and click on Database Update. This will perform the update on the
database to make sure that it is up-to-date with the program.
Q: When closing TowManager, I get an error "Bad file name or number."
A: TowManager is just trying to close a file that isn’t running in the background. This
causes no harm to the program, your data or your computer.
Q: I get an error, "BOF / EOF is true…", how do I get rid of this?
A: If you get this error it is because you haven't done the database update from inside
the help menu. Doing this will fix the problem.
Q: How often do you update the TowManager program?
A: TowManager Corporation places an update on our web page about twice a month.
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END USER LICENSE AGREEMENT
FOR TOWMANAGER SOFTWARE
COMPUTER & COMMUNICATIONS SCIENCES, LLC (CCS) LICENSES THIS SOFTWARE PRODUCT TO YOU
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LICENSE
The Software is licensed, not sold. Subject to the terms and limitations of this agreement, CCS hereby grants you a
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PARTICULAR PURPOSE, AND NON-INFRINGEMENT.
LIMITATION OF LIABILITY
IN NO EVENT WILL CCS BE LIABLE FOR ANY LOST PROFITS OR BUSINESS OPPORTUNITIES, LOSS OF USE,
BUSINESS INTERRUPTION, LOSS OF DATA, OR ANY OTHER INDIRECT, SPECIAL, INCIDENTAL, OR
CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES UNDER ANY THEORY OF LIABILITY, WHETHER BASED IN CONTRACT, TORT,
NEGLIGENCE, PRODUCT LIABILITY, OR OTHERWISE. THIS LIMITATION SHALL APPLY REGARDLESS OF
WHETHER CCS HAS BEEN ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES. CCS’ LIABILITY UNDER
THIS AGREEMENT WILL NOT, IN ANY EVENT, EXCEED THE LICENSE FEES, IF ANY, PAID BY YOU TO CCS
FOR THE SOFTWARE LICENSED BY YOU UNDER THIS AGREEMENT.
GENERAL
This agreement is governed by the laws of the State of New Jersey, U.S.A. without regard to conflict of law principles. The
United Nations Convention for the International Sale of Goods shall not apply. This agreement is the entire agreement
between us and supersedes the terms of any purchase orders and any other communications or advertising with respect to the
Software. If any provision of this agreement is held invalid, the remainder of this agreement shall continue in full force and
effect. This agreement may be modified only by written agreement signed by authorized representatives of you and CCS.
CONTACT INFORMATION
If you have any questions about this agreement, or if you want to contact CCS for any reason, please direct all
correspondence to: Computer & Communications Sciences, LLC., 100 W Park Ave., Lindenwold, NJ 08021, United States
of America or email [email protected]
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