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The Tradebox Data Service application

Note – we recommend running Tradebox One as administrator, and it is set to launch this way by default. When troubleshooting any issues, always make sure you’re logged in as a Windows user with Administrator privileges; if you’re unsure, check with your local IT support.

One of the biggest changes between Finance Manager and Tradebox One is the introduction of a second application which runs from your Windows system tray: the Tradebox Data Service. The service controls a core loop of functions within Tradebox One: downloading orders from marketplace; checking query orders; posting to your accounts package; uploading stock levels. This keeps the main user interface (UI) free for you to use Tradebox One to manage your orders. And the fact that this core loop runs every minute means a much closer to real-time passing of information to and from the marketplace.

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Enabling the Service

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The Data Service needs to be told which PC to run on. During initial setup, Tradebox will have prompted you to do this, but it can also be done later via Configuration Preferences. Under the heading Tradebox Data Service, the Run on this Machine box must be ticked in order to launch the service on the PC. The program then needs to be relaunched to activate the service.

Note - if you need to later assign the service to run on a different machine, you'll need to untick this option from the PC assigned as the service, save, then open the same screen from the desired new service PC and tick the option; A secondary PC can't unset this.

The Data Service window itself displays a mirror of the Logs screen from the main UI, which will refresh every ten minutes, or whenever the Refresh button is clicked.

To minimise the service to the system tray, click Hide. You can then re-open the window by right-clicking the system tray icon Data_Service.png

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Click Close only if you wish to exit the service for maintenance or troubleshooting. When Tradebox One is running, it will check every 10 minutes for the service, and re-launch if it isn’t running already. Closing and reopening the main Tradebox One UI will also force the service app to launch.

When Tradebox is open, the service indicator is visible in the upper right of the program. Service_indicator_green.PNG indicates that the service is running. Service_indicator_red.PNG indicates that the service is stopped, and you'll also see (Service Offline) in the top border of the main UI. 

In normal circumstances, the service will start automatically on the PC where it is configured to run and not require any user input. If the service is stopped, no new orders will be downloaded so checking the service indicator should be the first port of call if you’re having trouble downloading orders. It is perfectly normal for the service to stop temporarily, to allow certain processes to run (e.g. backup, restore, or several options in the maintenance menu). In general these are processes that would only take a few minutes, after which the service will automatically restart and resume normal operations.

It’s important to be aware that antivirus software or Windows User Account Control/Smartscreen may prevent the service from running. If you see any notifications around either Tradebox One (Tradebox.exe) or the Data Service (Tradebox_Service.exe), ensure you’re marking these as safe and allowing the processes to continue running. See our anti-virus article for more details.

 

In a single user environment

After Tradebox has been launched for the first time and the service enabled, the Tradebox Data Service should start running on your PC. The service is set to automatic startup, meaning it should always run following a reboot of the PC, even if the main Tradebox UI is not currently open.

To check the status of either application, launch Windows Task Manager or view the list of running processes. Tradebox.exe is the main Tradebox One UI and Tradebox_Service.exe is the Tradebox Data Service.

 

In a multi user environment

If Tradebox is installed on multiple PC’s with users accessing data over a network, you will need to decide which PC you want the Tradebox Data Service to run on. We recommend that this should be the same PC where the data is held. Once enabled on a specified PC, the service will run only on that PC. To enable it on another machine, the Run on this Machine box in Configuration > Preferences must be deselected on the original machine first.

The service is set to automatic startup, meaning it should always run automatically on the specified PC following a reboot, even if the main Tradebox UI is not currently open.

Note: The Tradebox One installer will attempt to add the Data Service to the startup group both for the current Windows user and the general startup group for the PC if the installing user account has sufficient permissions. If your Service PC is regularly left running without a Windows user logged in while you're using Tradebox (or if you want constant download/upload), your local IT support should be able to help ensure that both the Tradebox Data Service and the Tradebox Application Service are running following reboot/user logout. The appropriate .exe's for these applications can be found by going to Support within the main Tradebox UI and clicking the Program Folder, which contains Tradebox_Service.exe and Tradebox_Application_Service.exe

Performing certain processes on a PC where the service is not currently running can still stop the service on another PC. For example, taking a backup on PC A will temporarily stop the service on PC B so that a backup can be taken. A third application, the Tradebox Application Service is responsible for sending commands to the data service; this will then tell the data service on PC B to relaunch once the backup process has completed.

The Tradebox Application Service Application_Service.png will launch following install and should hide itself automatically after a few seconds.

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Once running, the Tradebox Application Service can only be shut down through Task Manager on your PC. In normal circumstances it should always be running; only exit this application if you're updating your version of Tradebox One or if you're instructed to by Tradebox Support.

Constant Download

Because the Tradebox Data Service runs on a constant loop checking for and downloading orders, you may wish for this to continue running overnight so Tradebox is always up to date, rather than waiting for the first batch of orders to be downloaded each morning. This can be achieved by:

  • Leaving one Tradebox PC powered on with the Tradebox Data Service running. Normally this means a user should remain logged in to Windows on that machine

and

  • Leaving the PC or server that holds the Tradebox data powered on and connected to your network

Note - you can check your data location from any machine via Support > Data Folder

In most cases we’d expect the same machine to fulfil both requirements. If your data is held on a local server that is always on, it makes sense to install Tradebox on that machine even if users will not normally be running the program from there. So long as the data service is running, you’ll have constant unattended download.

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