First Option Newsletter      


November 2011  


In This Issue
First Option Holiday Schedule
First Option Help Desk Phone and Email Address
FOI Financial Software Suite Upgrades
FOI Has Gone Social!
FOI/DAPREX Survey Results
Quick Links
First Option Holiday Schedule

All of Us at First Option Wish You and Your Families a Very Happy Thanksgiving!


First Option will be closed the day after Thanksgiving, Friday 11/25.  If you have a  work stoppage emergency,  we will contact you as soon as a resource is available.  Otherwise, we will respond to your ticket on Monday, 11/28.  


  Click for 2011 & 2012 Holiday Schedule 

First Option Help Desk Phone Number and Email Address
software services

Below is a link for the First Option Help Desk number and email address. It is in pdf format and can be printed as a quick reference guide.  If there is anyone in your organization who has not received this information and is someone who is authorized to contact the Help Desk, please forward it to them.


Help Desk 


We will be rolling out training on the Help Desk software in January but below are some helpful tips in the meantime.


Email is the quickest and most efficient way to enter an issue, because it automatically creates a ticket in our Help Desk software.  Any supporting information is also helpful because our representatives can start analyzing the problem right away without having to call or email you back for documentation.  This includes full description of problem, screen prints, error messages and any other materials you think may be relevant.   


Also, once a ticket is opened please continue to respond to that ticket since it provides an audit trail for the next representative who may be working on that ticket. Always open a new ticket for a new issue so it does not get appended to one of your old tickets that probably will be closed at that point.


All of this will assist FOI to ensure the best level of service and help us to continue to build the knowledge base which will be rolled out in 2012. Stay tuned for exciting details!


We have had a few instances of people either calling the old DAPREX number or an old First Option number (508-339-0588) that is no longer in service. The First Option main number is 508-452-7809. Contact info is also located on our website at  


Lastly, if you are not a First Option hosted customer and have a printer problem, please contact your internal network staff. The maintenance is strictly for software related issues.  If you would like to explore hosting opportunities please email [email protected]. 



FOI Financial Software Suite Upgrades

We are half way through the FOI Financial Software Upgrades!


First Option is implementing a new upgrade/PTF process.  Our intention is to provide a command that can detect that an upgrade/PTF is required, send the upgrade/PTF to the customer iSeries, and email upgrade instructions.  


After a detailed review of the DAPREX upgrade/PTF process, the rollout requires that we complete two tasks.  The first is to get all existing customers on the latest version of the application software using the old upgrade method.  You should have already been contacted by the help desk to schedule an installation date.  If not, please send an email to [email protected].  The second is to install two new libraries and a new folder in the IFS for the new upgrade/ PTF java programs.  There is a minimum operating system requirement of V5R4 and Java Developer Kit 5.0 license program.  Both of these tasks will be completed in this upgrade and the first customer installation should be completed in early September!


As with any software upgrade, the number of non DAPREX customer created programs can impact the cost of your upgrade implementation.  In some cases, it may be more cost effective to determine the nature of the customer created programs and if there is an opportunity to use the base functionality.  If you would like First Option to provide this type of analysis, please contact the help desk and we will provide a quote for the effort.


Please check out our website and blog for updates on the upgrades!



First Option Has Gone Social!

IT Services
For the next couple newsletters, we are going to highlight each of the social media outlets and how First Option is using them to better communicate with our customers.  Last month's topic was The Blog.

First Option's blog is located at  


This newsletter will focus on Facebook.


You can find us on Facebook at: 


Many of you may already use Facebook in your personal endeavors. It is a great way to share information with friends and family as well as catch up on what is going on in people's lives. Sometimes we get too much sharing but that is a whole other topic!


For business purposes, First Option has created a Facebook page to communicate news, events, and product updates.  We also use Facebook to share information from other sources that may be of interest to our customers. For example, we frequently share articles from IBM regarding the iSeries or articles related to financial services, hosting and programming.


If you already have a Facebook account, you can just click on and click the "Like" button on our page.  First Option posts will now be visible in your daily news feed when posted. You can also just periodically click on our site to see what's happening if you prefer not to have the feeds.  Our current policy is to post once or twice a month and only if we have important information to share with our customers.


For those of you who do not have a Facebook account you will have to create a new account if you would like to view our posts. The account is free and the set-up is very quick.


Below is a link that gives you the basics about Facebook and how to manage your privacy settings as well as some other helpful information. Privacy settings are very important and must be set by the user, otherwise your page may be open to the public.  


If there is any information you would like to see on our Facebook page please email [email protected].



FOI/DAPREX Survey Results
software services

If you did not get a chance to review the survey results, please click the link below.

 Survey Results


The survey's goal was to better understand your business needs and to enhance our level of service to you.  At the next meeting/webinar in January First Option will review the survey in further detail and discuss some of the areas we can improve upon, and further analyze software enhancements that will aid you in your day to day responsibilities.



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