MLS Test data

Discussions around using and interfacing with the Church MLS program.
simonawright
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MLS Test data

Postby simonawright » Sat Mar 17, 2012 9:39 am

I have tried installing MLS 3.4.2, on my personal laptop for training purposes, and then setting up the test data as per the Wiki article. I get an error on the following 2 files:

C:\program files\lds church\mls\updates\membership\word\en\testwardEN.001
C:\program files\lds church\mls\updates\membership\geo.001

MLS recognises the presence of the membership data as I can assign a member to be the Bishop. Unfortunately it doesn't get beyond the initial setup screen. This has been a problem on 2 separate systems and so I believe the issue is with the test data.

Can this error be fixed? Does the raw data need changing in any way?

Your help would be appreciated.

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Biggles
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Postby Biggles » Sat Mar 17, 2012 10:03 am

I think you need to be very careful about installing MLS on any computer other than an authorised Church supplied computer. When I asked about this, I was informed that this action in Europe was not approved.

If this has been rescinded, please could you point me towards the relevant approval notices etc.

simonawright
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Postby simonawright » Sat Mar 17, 2012 10:12 am

I received the following from our local office by email on the 7th November 2011. It was sent to Stake clerks and STS

"Just in case anyone doesn’t know there is a test unit available for MLS training. All the data, both finance and membership is false so it can safely be used by anyone who wants to learn more about MLS. This can be installed on existing MLS computers (add the unit in System Options / Unit) or on a home computer. Please note that real ward data is not permitted on personal computers. "

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aebrown
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Postby aebrown » Sat Mar 17, 2012 10:42 am

Instructions for using the test units can be found on the wiki under MLS test data. Note that the finance information is pre-CUBS and there is no way to convert it to CUBS, so some of the financial features aren't very useful.
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simonawright
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Postby simonawright » Sat Mar 17, 2012 10:45 am

As we don't have CUBS in the UK that part isn't an issue.

I would have liked to use the membership stuff but I have not been able to get it to work following the wiki instructions. I was wondering if the software had added functions that needed information not in the test data.

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Biggles
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Postby Biggles » Sat Mar 17, 2012 10:47 am

I received the following from our local office by email on the 7th November 2011. It was sent to Stake clerks and STS

"Just in case anyone doesn’t know there is a test unit available for MLS training. All the data, both finance and membership is false so it can safely be used by anyone who wants to learn more about MLS. This can be installed on existing MLS computers (add the unit in System Options / Unit) or on a home computer. Please note that real ward data is not permitted on personal computers. "


Thanks for the update. :-)

The reason I queried being able to use it on a home computer, was whilst living in France, I asked if it was OK, but was informed that it was Europe wide directive not to have it installed anywhere else other than on a Clerks computer. . Returning to the UK and being called to a position where I was again required to use MLS, I again asked and the answer was the same. No!

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aebrown
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Postby aebrown » Sat Mar 17, 2012 11:12 am

Biggles wrote:The reason I queried being able to use it on a home computer, was whilst living in France, I asked if it was OK, but was informed that it was Europe wide directive not to have it installed anywhere else other than on a Clerks computer. . Returning to the UK and being called to a position where I was again required to use MLS, I again asked and the answer was the same. No!


There's a worldwide directive not to install MLS anywhere other than a clerk computer -- but there is an exception for the test data. Did you specifically ask about the test data? Because if you don't specifically mention the test data, then I'm not surprised that the answer is no.

Note that the Policies and Guidelines for Computers Used by Clerks for Church Record Keeping (current version is dated 18 Aug 2009) says (point 11 on the last page): "Ensure that priesthood leaders and clerks do not install Church record-keeping software on their home computers, except for training purposes using test data" (emphasis added). The previous version (dated 27 Mar 2005) of that same policy document did not include that bolded text (even though it should have), so if someone in your area office is unaware of the updated document, they might make such a blanket statement.
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Postby jdlessley » Sat Mar 17, 2012 1:03 pm

Another issue with the test data is for stake leadership positions. There are no stake leaders in the test data. Because tier one positions must be entered through a LUCRS it is not possible to populate stake leadership positions for the test stake. Without a stake president the test data will not allow entering any other positions. When trying to add a test member to a position none of the standard positions are available. This makes creating callings using standard positions impossible.
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Have you tried finding your answer on the LDS.org Help Center page or the LDSTech wiki?

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Biggles
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Postby Biggles » Mon Mar 19, 2012 9:47 am

aebrown wrote:There's a worldwide directive not to install MLS anywhere other than a clerk computer -- but there is an exception for the test data. Did you specifically ask about the test data? Because if you don't specifically mention the test data, then I'm not surprised that the answer is no.

Note that the Policies and Guidelines for Computers Used by Clerks for Church Record Keeping (current version is dated 18 Aug 2009) says (point 11 on the last page): "Ensure that priesthood leaders and clerks do not install Church record-keeping software on their home computers, except for training purposes using test data" (emphasis added). The previous version (dated 27 Mar 2005) of that same policy document did not include that bolded text (even though it should have), so if someone in your area office is unaware of the updated document, they might make such a blanket statement.


Many thanks for supplying the reference to this.

I had left France by the time the amended letter was posted. In the UK, it had/had not filtered down to the Ward level at the time of my second request which happened to be in December 2009. I have now been working with MLS since then, so the test data option didn't occur to me. However its useful to know for when new clerks, bishopric members etc.. are called.

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Mikerowaved
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Postby Mikerowaved » Mon Mar 19, 2012 5:05 pm

This overhaul of the test data has been on my wish list for several years. I'm starting to wonder if some of the new functions in MLS might not have the needed built-in Send/Receive simulations for when the test data is in use.
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