Foodman. Do-it-yourself Point-of-Sale (POS) Software Systems for Restaurants, Pizza, Fast Food, Delivery, corporate catering.
ATTENTION VISTA USERS:
When downloading and installing Foodman on a Vista computer,
you may receive a message from Vista that Foodman "may not have
installed correctly". It will have installed correctly in spite
of what Vista thinks.
If this occurs, you must run Foodman by right-clicking
on the Foodman icon, then click on Properties,
then click on "Run as Administrator". If you have any problems
with the idiotic Vista, just call us for help - 800-971-3663.
Modern computers are really ridiculously fast. Even the slowest
computer made today is much more powerful than a simple point-
of-sale system requires. This is good, it means you can buy
the cheapest computers you can find. The smallest hard-drive
which you can buy today (April, 2004) is about 10GB - big enough
to save all your POS stuff for several years. If you have old
computers sitting in the closet dig them out. If they will run
Windows (any version from 3.1 thru Vista) they will run Foodman.
Try them out to see if they work out OK. You need a minimum of
512mg of RAM to run dependably.
Search the Internet for your best hardware buys. You can buy
all the hardware you need at low-cost and just hire someone
to install it and set it up for you.
When you do it yourself, you don't have to pay anyone for
hardware support. If something breaks, just throw it away
and buy a new one - the hardware is inexpensive.
Refurbished equipment usually comes with a six-month warranty.
The odds are that if it survives the warranty period, it will
have a normal life-span. So, give refurbished stuff serious
Just about all you need to know about hardware basics follows, if
you have questions, just call 800-971-3663.
Just Click on the following Links to go to a particular Topic.
Input Methods (Keyboard/Touchscreen).
Monitors and Touchscreens.
Fonts and Colors.
Preparing to Install.
Foodman gives you the choice of using either the keyboard, a
touchpad, or a touchscreen monitor to enter orders. Before
deciding on which method to use, it is best to buy the
software first. Then, complete your Menu and try using
the keyboard. It may be that you can get by using the
keyboard. You may prefer to spend the extra money for
You should also be aware that you can use the Mouse on the
Foodman touchscreens. Using the Mouse is a viable alternative
to using a touchscreen. The Mouse will work on a regular
Your minimum requirements for a PC running Foodman, either
single-user or network are:
1. Any Windows PC with Windows 98, 2000, NT, XP or Vista.
2. One hard-drive. (Even a 10gb drive is MORE than adequate.)
3. One CD drive to load Windows.
4. At least 1024meg of RAM. (At least 2meg on the FILE-SERVER.
A machine with insufficient memory will run slowly and may crash.
5. A network card (if using a network).
6. As many parallel ports as are required for your configuration.
7. A mouse.
8. A keyboard.
9. We strongly recommend having a "Memory Stick" flash drive to
make backups on.
10. Foodman runs OK on Vista, but Vista is so horrible that you
would better off using XP.
Even the most basic computer sold today will typically meet these
requirements for less than $300.00.
See our home-page for sources of hardware.
Foodman requires your monitors to be set to 1024x768 resolution.
Touchscreen monitors start at about $360.00 retail. Shop
around on the Internet to look for the best deals. Be sure
you get the right cables and drivers for the one you choose.
IMPORTANT: If you have specified Large Fonts or changed the
colors of the desktop, you may have readability problems (Like
black letters on a dark-blue background!).
To fix this just change your settings back to the default settings.
You may also get improperly displayed screens if you are not using
True-Color 32bit colors.
To change your monitor settings, right-click on the Desktop,
click on Properties, click on Settings.
Touchscreen monitors can attach to either a serial port or
a special port provided by the manufacturer. The serial port
model is easier to install.
Touchscreen monitors pretend to be a mouse. You can use
your mouse on the Foodman touchscreens to see how a touchscreen
works - just click instead of touching.
Please Note: Firewalls on your computer can cause printers not to work.
Google "firewall printer problems" to see numerous example of Firewalls
stopping printers from working. Anti-Virus software and screensavers
can also cause weird problems. Get rid of all that stuff which you
should not need anyway, since your POS computer(s) should NOT be on the
There are dozens of printers. Epson, Star, Citizen are the big-
There are three types of printer: Serial, USB and Parallel. The parallel
model is recommended since you will encounter difficulties installing
serial printers in Windows. To avoid such problems, merely buy parallel
If you have a serial printer, you can make it work on a parallel port
by buying a Parallel-to-Serial Converter.
Serial printers are used when there is some considerable distance
between the computer and the printer's location. You can buy inexpensive
PARALLEL EXTENDERS to make parallel printers go the distance.
If you want to use a single USB printer, you can get DOS2USB for
about $20.00 from: Click here to go to DOS2USB's website.
We have tested this software and it works just fine.
If you want to use a combination of parallel, serial and/or USB
printers, we STRONGLY recommend that you purchase PrintFil. This
is a utility which makes setting up multiple printers on a network
very simple and easy.
Click here for help with PrintFil.
Click here to go to Printfil's website.
Our preferred model is the Star DP8340 (pictured). It is small and you can
get a version which uses wide, 4.5" paper. The guest check looks better on
the wider paper. These printers are available for about $220.00. Be sure to
specify Parallel if you buy them.
Another Star printer worthy of consideration is the TSP800. This is a
high-speed thermal printer which also has the more attractive wide
On networks, printers should be installed on the physically-
closest computer. Any computer can print to any printer on
Buying printers depends entirely on how much you want to spend
and what you need. They are all basically the same. They are
all dot-matrix and use either ribbons or thermal paper. The
cost of ribbons and paper may influence your decision - ask
about those items before you buy.
Cash drawers must be physically attached to the PRINTER, not the
computer. For this reason, be sure to specify which printer you
are using before ordering a cash drawer.
The odds are that you will have to run cables, the cables may
have to be custom-made, so you might want to consider hiring
someone to do the installation for you, especially if you
require long cables.
-FONTS and COLORS-
Many of the screens in Foodman use Britannic Fonts. Sometimes
the fonts will be truncated on the screen. This is because
the Britannic Font in Windows is messed-up somehow. You can
fix this by copying the two Britannic files in the Foodman
directory into C:\Windows\fonts. You can fix this yourself
by doing the following:
Click on Start
Click on Run
Enter one of the following depending on which Foodman
C:\XOD\FIXFONT - For Office-Delivery.
C:\XSS\FIXFONT - For Server-Station.
C:\XHD\FIXFONT - For Home-Delivery.
After doing this, you may have to reboot.
If you still have font problems, it will be necessary
to delete the Britannic font from c:\windows\fonts
and re-install them from the appropriate Foodman
directory. If you need help doing this, just call
800-971-3663. (This is done via the Control Panel/Fonts)
If you have changed your colors, you might get unreadable
combinations. Just change your colors back to the Windows default
to fix this problem.
On a network, the Foodman software is installed on the
computer designated as the FILE-SERVER, the other
computers are called WORK-STATIONS.
Foodman does NOT require a dedicated FILE-SERVER.
The Foodman software is EXECUTED on each WORK-STATION, but takes
the software and the data from the FILE-SERVER. In other words,
it does not use its own hard-drive, but the one on the FILE-SERVER
via the NETWORK.
On a network, Foodman is installed on drive C: on the FILE-SERVER.
That drive must be designated as a SHARED DRIVE. When the drive
is so designated, it will have another letter assigned to it. This
is usually the next available drive-letter. On your FILE-SERVER
it will probably be E: or F:.
IMPORTANT: All users must have FULL WRITE PERMISSION to the
ENTIRE shared drive - not just the Foodman directory.
ON THE SERVER, the SHORTCUT to run Foodman will specify
drive C: as the TARGET. E.g., C:\XSS\SS.EXE would run
Server-Station. Be sure the START-IN directory is either
C:\XOD, C:\XSS or C:\XHD appropriately.
The SHORTCUTs ON THE WORK-STATIONS will specify drive E: or F:
appropriately. For example, F:\XSS\SS.EXE. DO NOT USE the
computer-name in the SHORTCUT TARGET on the WORK-STATION.
DO NOT INSTALL FOODMAN ON ANY WORK-STATIONS.
Foodman is installed in one of the following directories
(Folders): C:\XOD, C:\XSS or C:\XHD appropriately.
NOTE: If running Windows Vista, Foodman must be
"Run as Administrator" since it writes data to drive C:
To eliminate this annoyance, you need to turn off "User Account
Control". Turn it off in the Control Panel under "User Accounts".
-PREPARING FOR INSTALLATION.
The versions of Windows which come with computers from
the big companies like Dell, Gateway, etc. have customized
versions of Windows which may not be compatible with other
hardware. Also, when in need of support you have to call
the appropriate manufacturer. For this reason, we recommend
buying computers which do not have Windows installed and
buying your own version of Microsoft Windows. Those computers
also come pre-loaded with lots of software which you
will probably never use (or even know about) and which
may well cause problems. And, you can get support directly
from Microsoft rather than the manufacturer.
You can tell if there is other software running on
your computer by running MSCONFIG (See below).
You need to get rid of that extraneous software which
will free up resources on the computer and make it run
faster. Most computers come with all sorts of stuff
installed which you will never use and which are
That other software can also interfere with Foodman. So,
before you install the system in your business, it may
be a good idea to REFORMAT the hard drive to get rid of
software you neither need nor want, and install the SAME
VERSION of Windows on all computers.
You should also take care to prevent installation of other
software on your computers by your employees either with
or without your consent. You might wish to remove the CD
drive from the computers since you will rarely use it.
It is not a good idea to have your POS computers on-line to
the Internet. To do so exposes your computers to risk of
viruses, and other types of nasty software. In addition, you
do not want your employees surfing the Internet on your POS
When short of space, be aware that you can hang computers on
the wall or stand them on their side.
When you buy a computer, buy one that does not come with
Windows already installed. Just buy a legitimate copy of
Windows (any version) on eBay or elsewhere and install it
yourself. This will entitle you to support directly from
Microsoft in case you need it.
After installing Windows on the re-formatted (see above) drive,
be sure to run MSCONFIG (Click on Start, Click on Run, type
Click on the start-up tab on the right. Then, uncheck everything
that is checked and re-boot your PC. It may be that you might
have to go back to MSCONFIG to re-check something if it turns
out that something doesn't work. Don't uncheck the drivers for
PLEASE NOTE: Foodman systems purchased after October, 2007
do NOT use Environment Variables so the following may be
Network versions of Foodman require an ENVIRONMENT VARIABLE which
identifies each user on the network.
WINDOWS VISTA REQUIRES THAT YOU SET THE ENVIRONMENT VARIABLE
USING THE CONTROL PANEL, AS BELOW.
The environment variable is normally automatically inserted
when Foodman is installed in C:\AUTOEXEC.BAT and is in the form:
SET xxUSER=xxUSERyy where xx is either OD, SS or HD depending
on which Foodman system is used. yy is either 01, 02, 03, etc.
and must be different for each user.
Environment variables in XP and Vista can be set as follows:
Click on Start
Click on Control Panel
Switch to Classic View
Click on System
Click on Advanced
Click on Environment variables
Click on New
Enter variable name as xxUSER
Enter variable value as xxUSERyy
To put the environment variable in C:\AUTOEXEC.BAT (Windows 98).
using Windows Notepad, do the following:
Click on Start
Click on RUN
Click on File
Click on Open
move the cursor to the bottom and enter one of the following:
SET ODUSER=ODUSERxx (Office-Delivery)
SET SSUSER=SSUSERxx (Server-Station)
SET HDUSER=HDUSERxx (Home-Delivery)
(Where xx is either 01, 02, 03, etc. Each computer must have
a different value.)
Click on File
Click on Save
Click on File
Click on Exit.
After setting variables, reboot.
If you have any questions, or would like to talk about
your requirements, just call 800-971-3663.
1. GENERAL PROTECTION FAULTS.
These are always caused by conflicts with OTHER software running
on the PC. To make the problem go away, do the following.
Click on Start, Click on Run, type in 'MSCONFIG'.
Click on the start-up tab on the right.
Then, click on the DISABLE ALL button, then APPLY.
You must then reboot your PC. Periodically, run MSCONFIG
and DISABLE things which have miraculously appeared on the
2. LOAD FAILURE (on xxxxxxx).
This should only happen on networks and indicates that there
is something wrong with the shortcut to the software on the
server. See: Networking.
Foodman uses the standard Windows Fonts which SHOULD be on every
Windows PC. Unfortunately, because of bugs in Windows, the fonts
on the Foodman screens may not display correctly.
Foodman uses the Britannic Bold font.
If you have changed the colors in Windows, you may get unreadable
screens with black text on a blue background.
See: Fonts and Colors.
4. NOT INSTALLED PROPERLY.
On some Vista machines, there can be an occasional machine which
gives a message to the effect that the software did not install
properly. When you run Foodman after this message, Foodman gives
an appropriate message. If this happens, right click on the Foodman icon
on the desktop, then click properties, then click "Run as Administrator".