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Filtering the Time Records
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A filter is one or more conditions that must be met in order for the time records to be displayed in the main window. For example, Client = ABC Corp is a filter that says, "Only show me time records where the Client is equal to ABC Corp.
This section contains in this order:
IMPORTANT: If you can not find time records that you entered, they may simply be excluded by the filter. Choose Filter/Clear Filter or press <F6> or click to turn off the filter.
For example, if you wanted to see all of last month's records, you would set your filter to:
Start Date >= First of Last Month and
as shown in the screen image below.
The "First of Last Month" and "First of This Month" are special variables. See: Start Date and End Date's Special Variable Values below for details on how this works.
You could specify your own dates like this as well:
Start Date >= 9/1/07 and
The Field drop-down list contains an alphabetized list of all the fields on a time record.
Select whichever one you wish, including the same one on multiple rows.
NOTE: The field Start is actually the Start Date and Start Time together. There is a known defect in Time Logger version 4x that prevents you from successfully entering a Compare To value for this field and it should not be used in a Filter.
The Comparison field can take one of these values:
TIP: The contains can be used to match a string in a field. It is handy for searching the Description in time records.
Description contains mouse end
would show you all time records with the word "mouse" anywhere in the Description.
When you select a Field: on the Filter window, Time Logger automatically populates the drop-down list in the Compare To: field with corresponding values (if a there are any). Note that you can either select one of those values, or type in your own.
Here is an example:
Let's assume that you currently bill at two Rates, $90 and $110 and those are the only two Rates you have listed in your Rate Descriptor. When you select "Rate" as the Field on the Filter window, then the Compare To drop-down list will show 90 and 110.
However, last year you billed at $80 and $100 and you have all of your time records from last year in your time records database. In this case, if you wanted to see time records that had a Rate of $80, you can type the value 80 into the Compare To field even though the drop-down list only shows 90 and 110.
The Last Column - and, end, or
IMPORTANT: Be very careful when you combine "and" with "or". The resulting filter might not do what you expect. Time Logger's Filter window is simple quick and effective to use in most cases, however it does not support using parenthesis to group "and" and "or" conditions to deliver what you want. For this reason, Time Logger lets you modify the Structured Query Language (SQL) statement that is built from the Filter.
For example, if you want to filter time records where Client is ABC Corp and the Project is one of three (Build Website, Revise Help, Test System) the following will NOT work in the Filter window:
The above Filter shows time records where A) Client is ABC Corp and Project is Build Website, or B) Project is Revise Help, or C) Project is Test System. While the filter "works" it is not what you want.
However, build the above Filter and then select Advanced/SQL Command and change the statement by just adding parenthesis around the three "or" conditions as illustrated in the Before and After below and click OK and the Filter will work just as you intended.
Both Start Date and End Date have special variable values that get replaced with actual dates. When you build filters where all of the dates use these special variable values, the filter can be used at any time in the future and it will effectively apply to the same date range.
These special variable values are:
First of Last Month
Below is a thorough explanation of how the following Filter works.
Start Date >= First of Last Month and
Note that by specifying Start Date >= [greater than or equal] First of Last Month, we are including time records that were started on or after the first of last month (ie: 9/1/07 if today is 10/15/07).
We can then complete the date range for the month by adding and Start Date < [less than] First of This Month which says that we also want (because of and) the time records that were started before and not on the first of this month (ie: 10/1/07 if today is 10/15/07 - which would mean time records started on 9/30/07 would be included, while those started on 10/1/07 or more recently would not be include).
You can save your Filters in an Environment file. You can give the Environment file a logical file name like: "Filter - Last Months Records.ev4" (you cannot use special characters in a file name).
Whenever you want to use your saved Filter, just select Tools/Load Environment: Filter - Last Months Records (Time Logger shows you an alphabetized list of the first 30 Environments on the Tools menu).
TIP: If you're only saving a Filter, be sure that only the Filter checkbox is checked when you save your Environment file.
See Saving your Settings In Environments for more on this.
Here are additional examples to help understand how filters work:
Client = AR Software or
Shows this: All records for which AR Software or Microsoft is the client.
Client = AR Software and
Shows this: All records for AR Software that have not yet been billed.
Person = Mary Smith and
Shows this: All of Mary Smith's records that appeared on invoice number 2033.
Description contains W2 end
Shows this: All records for which contain the text "W2" somewhere in their description.
Client = AR Software or
Shows this: All records which either have AR Software as the client or have Microsoft as the client and Mary Smith as the Person. That is, work performed for Microsoft by John Doe will not appear. Note that filters like this are tricky, since you might have expected it to show all of Mary Smith's records for AR Software or Microsoft. In cases in which both "and" and "or" appear, the and's are evaluated first. If you'd like more control over this – that is, if you'd like to use parenthesis to control how the filter is evaluated, see Filtering Time Records via SQL.
Start Time < 8:00 AM and
Answers this: Does Arthur ever start working before 8 o'clock?
Mileage > 120 end
Shows this: All records that include a trip of more than 120 miles.
Project = EasyImage and
Answers this: Has Mary worked on the EasyImage project? If so, how many hours?
Duration < 2 minutes and
Answers this: How often do we bill for very small amounts of work?