General Usage

  1. The icon for running Sumac has disappeared. How do I get it back?

  2. Watch the troubleshooting video here or follow the instruction below.

    For Windows:

      Click on the Start Menu, and choose Control Panel.
      In the Control Panel, choose Programs, then choose Java, to open the Java Control Panel.
      Once you have the Java Control Panel open, on the General tab, click the button View, to open the Java Cache Viewer.
      In the Java Cache Viewer, make sure the the ‘Show:’ drop down is set to Applications. In the white space below you should see Sumac.
      To get your icon back, highlight Sumac, then click the button with the black arrow curved upwards at the top of the Java Cache Viewer, this will install a new Sumac shortcut.

    If you do not see Sumac here, please try downloading Sumac again from sumac.com/install, step 2.

    For Mac:

      Open your System Preferences.
      In your System Preferences please open the Java Control Panel.
      Once you have the Java Control Panel open, on the General tab, click the button View, to open the Java Cache Viewer.
      In the Java Cache Viewer, make sure the the ‘Show:’ drop down is set to Applications. In the white space below you should see Sumac.
      To get your icon back, highlight Sumac, then click the button with the black arrow curved upwards at the top of the Java Cache Viewer, this will install a new Sumac shortcut.

    If you do not see Sumac here, please try downloading Sumac again from sumac.com/install, step 2.

  3. When I run Sumac, it tells me it cannot connect to the database server…

  4. This message means that for some reason Sumac is unable to establish a connection to the database server computer.

    Single-User Sumac (Trial, Bronze, Silver)

    If you are running a single-user version of Sumac, the data is on your computer, so this message almost always means that another copy of Sumac is still running. Quit all running versions of Sumac and wait for half a minute, then run Sumac again. The problem normally goes away and you can run Sumac normally after that. If this does not fix the problem, restart your computer and try again.

    Multi-User Sumac (Gold, Platinum, or Bronze and Silver combined with Sumac Cloud)

    If you are running a multi-user version of Sumac, then Sumac connects to the database through a communication network. So there could be a problem with your network, with the database server, or with some other aspect of connecting to the server. The window in which Sumac tells you it cannot connect has a Test button; click the Test button.

    In the test window, click the Check Server button. It tries to connect to the server whose name is to the left of the button. If it succeeds, it reports the IP address of the server. If it fails, then your server name is incorrect, or your network is broken and Sumac is unable to connect to the server; fix the network then restart Sumac and try again.

    If the Check Server button was able to connect to the server, click the Connect button. Sumac attempts to connect to the MySQL server. If it works, it tells you so. If it fails, then confirm that MySQL is up and running on the specified server. You can ensure that MySQL is up and running by using the Services Manager on a Windows server, or the MySQL System Preferences on a Macintosh server.

    If both Check Server and Connect worked, then the problem is with your database name or the database user ID and password: Sumac is attempting to connect to the database server and giving it a database name and the user ID and password for connecting to the database, but the server is rejecting them. You need to carefully check the database name, user ID, and password; these are displayed at the top of the Test window. If one of them is incorrect, you can click Edit to edit the databases.txt file (which is where Sumac gets information about database connections), save the changes to databases.txt, then quit Sumac and start again.

  5. My RTF or DOCX template is not working. What’s wrong?

  6. Here are some problems that may arise when doing Mail Merge using an RTF or DOCX template: It is possible that the template is too large. This usually happens because the template contains high resolution pictures. In RTF documents, pictures are saved in a format that makes them rather large, so a high resolution picture can make the template enormous. Shrink the template by reducing the resolution of the pictures to a more appropriate size; usually 300 dots per inch works well since that is around the resolution of what people can see. Another possibility is that you are saving many merged documents (for several contacts) into a single RTF file, and the resulting document is too large. Again the problem may be caused by pictures. If the template contains pictures, then make sure they are as low resolution as possible. Also, if at all possible, put the pictures into the template’s headers and footers; this ensures that the resulting output file contains only one copy of each picture, instead of one copy for each contact.

    If Sumac complains about a formula, inside angle brackets <<…>>, but the formula works fine in Sumac’s Make Template window, or when you use it in a text-only template, then the problem is probably embedded formatting codes. Some document editors (e.g. Word) insert invisible codes into your documents. Sometimes it inserts these codes in the middle of your formulas. So even though it looks like << c_name >> (which is correct) on the screen, it may actually be << c_XXname >> (which is incorrect) where XX is some embedded command which Word does not display on the screen. The way to fix this problem is to type the entire formula in a plain text editor (e.g. Sumac’s Make Template window, or Notepad on Windows, TextEdit on Macintosh), then copy the formula, from before the opening angle bracket to after the closing angle bracket, and paste it into Word as a single piece.

  7. How do I remove countries from addresses when doing mail merge and generating labels?

  8. First, tell Sumac which country to remove. You do this by ensuring that the country in your Office record is correct. A Sumac administrator can choose Offices from the Administrator menu, and put the correct country in the default office record. Second tell Sumac that when it is performing a mail merge, it should remove the country from mailing addresses. A Sumac administrator can click Utilities/Customize Database/Preferences/Mail Merge, then click the checkbox telling Sumac to remove the default office’s country name from addresses. Third, whenever you generate labels, choose an office record (usually the default office record), to tell Sumac not to put the default office’s country in the labels.

  9. Sumac says someone else is editing a record, but no one is. How can I edit the record?

  10. When you edit certain types of records (e.g. contacts, programs, ticket orders) Sumac locks the record so that only one person can edit it at once. If, while the record is still being edited, Sumac is terminated or the computer crashes, the record is left locked. Later, when someone tries to edit the locked record, Sumac prevents the record from being used, thinking it is already in use. If you are sure that no one is editing the record, a Sumac administrator can unlock it by clicking Utilities/Sumac Administration/Clear All Locks.

  11. People enter name and address information on our website. How can I get this information into Sumac?

Usually you must check any data that comes off a website: people enter things incorrectly, whether maliciously or inadvertently. You will also likely get information from people who are already in the Sumac database and you won’t want them in there twice. Websites typically store the information entered on their forms into databases. They can make this information available as files. Import these files into the Sumac database. Sumac has a very powerful and flexible import command, that looks for duplicates, validates fields, etc. The import can be semi-automated, so that column selections and other time consuming parts of the process don’t have to be repeated. If firewalls and server security allow it, Sumac is also able to import directly from the Website’s database, making the operation much faster and simpler.

Sumac can integrate directly with your website: when people enter or update their contact information on your website, it is entered directly into your Sumac database.