Working with STEP FORWARD - a Tutorial

STEP FORWARD enables the creation of user-defined general purpose and accounting information management applications. To build such applications, you require the Developer version of STEP FORWARD plus one of the supported relational databases: MS SQL Server, Sybase, Oracle and McKoi SQL.

Rather than showing you a full-blown overview of STEP FORWARD up front, we will walk you through various stages of configuring an application so that you will learn how to use the various tools and features. The first few exercises will be explained in minute steps. As you progress, you may find some of the instructions less detailed. Each tutorial is equipped with links to the next tutorial as well as back to the Index. The Index of the currently available Tutorials is shown at the bottom of this introduction.

All of these Tutorials are already completed in the Tutorial database. If you downloaded the current version and if you are unsure about anything, you can always review how we did it.

Enhance your Exercises
You can enhance your exercises by not only following the tutorial instructions but by also invoking on-line help and context-sensitive help, wherever available. Many of the windows and panels that you encounter have context-sensitive help attached to them. As you go through these exercises, click on the Help menu option and also learn the underlying generic concepts applicable to many of the tools and features.

Tutorial Prerequisite - Creating a database
This Tutorial is provided along with a database called "Tutorial" which contains all the completed tasks which you will perform. You can compare our tutorial instructions to the content of that database; however, a better way of learning is to create your own database and carry out all the instructions in a life environment.


Launch the Create New Database function.

This will display the Create New Database window with the Manual view. For some databases (MS SQL Server, McKoi) the name can be entered in the "Automatic" tab view. Other databases (Sybase) may require some additional parameters set in CREATE DATABASE command, such as the name of the data segment and amount of space to be allocated off it. In these cases the full CREATE DATABASE command should be entered in the "Manual" tab view.


Assign a unique name (replace <name> with the name of your choice, in our example we used MyTutorial), observing the naming conventions of the underlying RDBMS (most common restrictions on the database name are: the first character in the name must be alpha, blank spaces are not allowed, etc. In STEP FORWARD, the database name is limited to 30 characters).


Press the Create button

This will create the database. The Application Launchpad panel will now show functions, that can be started, as enabled e.g. you can create a Global Template; however, the Global Procedure will not be enabled until the first Global Template is created.


Tutorial 1 - Building a simple Global Template

Tutorial 2 - Duplicate Records, to Index or not to Index

Tutorial 3 - Defining Accessories

Tutorial 4 - Configuring another Global Template

Tutorial 5 - Adding Intelligence to the "Name" Global Template

Tutorial 6 - General Data Entry

Tutorial 7 - Building a Print Template (a format for Labels)

Tutorial 8 - Building a Report Procedure (to print Labels)

Tutorial 9 - Creating a Form Letter

Tutorial 10 - Take a moment and think about your needs

Tutorial 11 - Subledgers

Tutorial 12 - Defining Fiscal Periods

Tutorial 13 - Defining the Account Prototype

Tutorial 14 - Zero Balancing

Tutorial 15 - Headers for the GL Accounts

Tutorial 16 - The Chart (Account Chart)

Tutorial 17 - Source Documents

Tutorial 18 - Transaction Templates - Common

Tutorial 19 - Transaction Templates - Extra

Tutorial 20 - Chart Inspector

Tutorial 21 - User Functions

Tutorial 22 - Subledger Procedures

Tutorial 23 - Updating Subledgers

Tutorial 24 - Transaction Procedures for the Common Transaction Template

Tutorial 25 - Transaction Procedures for the Extra Transaction Templates

Tutorial 26 - Building a set of Print Templates and a Procedure (to print an Account Chart)

Tutorial 27 - An Opening Journal Entry


Tutorial 28 - Creating a Balance Sheet


Tutorial 29 - Creating a Consolidated Income Statement


Tutorial 30 - Creating a Branch Income Statement


Tutorial 31 - Creating a Process to calculate Average Cost


Tutorial 32 - Working with the Detail Object (Sales Order/Invoice)


Tutorial 33 - A Sales Order Report


Tutorial 34 - Sales Order, Generated Transactions as a Process


Tutorial 35 - Sales Order, Generated Transactions as a Procedure


Tutorial 36 - Transaction Data Entry Efficiencies - Procedures, Distribution, Allocation


Tutorial 37 - Check Writing (Accounts Payable)


Tutorial 38 - Creating an Aged Analysis of Accounts


Tutorial 39 - Creating a General Ledger - Trial Balance


Tutorial 40 - Creating a General Ledger - Detail

STEP FORWARD and the Triple Arrow are registered trade marks of Gestalt Corporation