Heritage Operations Processing System
Minor updates and code changes occur every day. Only significant or noteworthy updates are shown here. Updates shown with a green background are only available to HOPS Subscribers.

Time Date
System Updates
00:00 Sun 21 Aug 2016
Scroggins; Danny
Please note, new parts of the system are starting to become live in readiness for the 'Competence Elements' functions, but Competence Elements are NOT yet factored into the competence matrix or any other competence output.
23:00 Wed 17 Aug 2016
Scroggins; Danny
Access to the Competence Archive List referred to earlier today now requires new permission 235. This is in response to feedback.
17:00 Wed 17 Aug 2016
Scroggins; Danny
In most cases, users give their availability for a roster, and maintain themselves available until the roster is published, whereafter they don't necessarily remain available on days they weren't rostered to work.

It is, therefore, misleading for the availability colours to continue to be shown on the quick-assign menus after the roster has been published, as it is potentially (and probably) no longer accurate. So these colours now don't show on published rosters. Orange (for 'busy') continues to show.

This is a configurable option, so if you would like to retain colours on the quick-assign list after the roster has been published the option is in Roster Settings (per department).

The colours continue to show in the full assign list.
16:33 Wed 17 Aug 2016
Scroggins; Danny
The REMOVING of a competence now requires a new permission (234). This new permission is a 'red dagger' permission, meaning it is only intended for the railway HOPS Admin.

This is because several railways have reported that users who ordinarily record competence decisions, such as inspectors and heads of department, are inadvertently misusing this feature.

If a user is no longer competent for a position, a grade of 'Withdrawn' (or similar) should be set. This way the user's competence record will be preserved. The competence should not be 'removed'.

When a competence record is removed.... the record is removed! Removal is only intended for occasions when, for example, a competence is accidentally awarded to the wrong user, and therefore it is appropriate to remove the record, and the history of it being there.

It is presumed that railways will, in general, wish to maintain records of competences, even if those competences are no longer current, so the ability to remove a competence now requires permission 234.

It is recommended that permission 234 is held only by an administrator or senior manager and a department's wish to completely remove a record of someone holding, or ever having held, a competence is directed to that person and they ensure the use of the function is appropriate to maintain the records that the organisation requires.


Danny S.
16:32 Wed 17 Aug 2016
Scroggins; Danny
Improvements have been made to the Department Competence page, including bringing the Expiry and Lapsing lists into tabs on the Department Competence page. In addition, an 'Archive' tab is available to show competence records of users who are no longer in the department (SLS only).
16:31 Wed 17 Aug 2016
Scroggins; Danny
It is now possible to note on rosters when a user is an employee rather than a volunteer. This is requested by railways who prioritise volunteers in turns and want to see what turns could still be filled by a volunteer, and also railways who allow volunteers to 'steal' turns off employed staff. The option is availabile in the turn properties to show this, editable in the full edit options or quick assign. A symbol (◈) will be shown by the name of the person doing the turn if this option is selected on the Roster Construction pages. There is an option in Roster Settings to determine whether or not to show the symbol on the roster viewed by users.

If the thought of making a distinction between employed and volunteer staff on rosters fills you with dread, then take no action and no change will take place!
16:30 Wed 17 Aug 2016
Scroggins; Danny
When a turn is edited via the new pop-up box method, and the position, column or diagram is changed, the turn text will now move to the new position on the roster upon saving and a page refresh will not be required.

This removes the temporary 'yellow message' system that has been in place for the last few weeks.
18:00 Tue 16 Aug 2016
Scroggins; Danny
Calendar organisation entries can now have 'days' set, ie, 'Every Monday and Tuesday between these dates', etc.
13:00 Tue 16 Aug 2016
Scroggins; Danny
Users who use an old link to volunteer for a turn that is no longer available as it has since been assigned are now given a nice message to explain.
11:00 Mon 15 Aug 2016
Scroggins; Danny
[Fixed - 2345 15/8/16]

There has recently been an issue with emails sent to users with BT Internet accounts being bounced (by BT Internet). We have done some considerable work to get round this issue, and hope to complete a fix tonight.

Some emails have been being queued while we have been working this, but all are being sent as the queue clears out after a few hours.

Apologies for the inconvenience.
16:00 Sun 14 Aug 2016
Scroggins; Danny
[Now repaired - 22:45]

There is currently an error in the 'Volunteer for Vacant Turn' email that is sent to the roster clerk when someone volunteers for a turn that is causing the reply links to fail.

The 'deal with on website' link still works, so this link should be used to respond via the website.

It will be obvious that the other link has failed as the 'Insufficient Access Rights' screen will show. No incorrect responses will be made.

I apologise for the inconvenience, the fault will be fixed this evening.

Danny S.
23:45 Sat 13 Aug 2016
Scroggins; Danny
It is now possible to send a reply message to users who have volunteered for turns. The message will be saved, and also emailed to the user in the case of Accepts and Declines.
22:00 Sat 13 Aug 2016
Scroggins; Danny
The carrying-forward of Remarks on competence awards is now a configurable option by department (editable in Department Details from the Department List).

(The default is set to YES.)

That should please both camps!
23:00 Fri 12 Aug 2016
Scroggins; Danny
A new link has been added to the 'Volunteers for Gaps' tab of the Roster Construction pages to view the details (including accompanying messsage) of offers after the offer has been accepted/declined.
22:00 Fri 12 Aug 2016
Scroggins; Danny
A new tab has been added to the User List to view archived users (permission 66 required).

A 'restore' option is available to un-archive the user (new permission 233 required).
00:00 Thu 11 Aug 2016
Scroggins; Danny
A new paragraph in the terms and conditions of use has been added:

"HOPS will only change the point of contact at a railway (and hence the person from whom we will take instruction on the use or release of the railways data) following a reasonable corroboration of the validity of the request for the change, and reserves the right to refused such requests if we suspect they are not legitmate."
01:00 Mon 08 Aug 2016
Scroggins; Danny
A new option has been added to turns (and templates) to specify whether 'Click to Volunteer' is available or not for the turn.

The default is that it IS available.

A ♣ is shown on the roster construction pages as an indication that Volunteering has been suppressed.
19:00 Sat 06 Aug 2016
Scroggins; Danny
A bug has been fixed in the messaging system that caused an error if a message was to be sent to a group that expanded to no members.
00:00 Fri 05 Aug 2016
Scroggins; Danny
The messaging system has been corrected so that the 'TO' field populates correctly in the 'sent' items for messages that were sent to new groups such as 'dates working between', etc.
19:00 Sat 30 Jul 2016
Scroggins; Danny
A tick-boxes function is now available in the operations calendar to allow the adding and removing of timetables and modifiers to many days in one operation.

The facility is available to users with permission 14 (Edit Operations Calendar) and is available in the columnar view (only).

This will hopefully help with your 2017 preparations!

Please let me know if you find any problems.


Danny S.
21:00 Thu 28 Jul 2016
Scroggins; Danny
It is now possible to:
- specify times on Calendar Organisation subjects
- allow a Calendar Organisation entry to spread over more than one date
- Specify whether the entry is one long entry from start to finish, or for the state times each day.

"All Day" options are also available.

The editing form was particularly difficult to achieve, there may be errors - let me know when you find them!
11:00 Sun 24 Jul 2016
Scroggins; Danny
There was an issue on rosters arranged by column (as opposed to by position/group) that has hopefully now been fixed.

This was caused by work upgrading the system to facilitate the addition of a turn to a roster without the need to refresh the page.

Any problems on rosters such as foratting bugs after turn operations can normally by fixed by refreshing the page (but please still let me know).

Apologies for this glitch, I hope you'll like the end product when it arrives and forgive any bumps on the path to it such as this.
06:00 Thu 21 Jul 2016
Scroggins; Danny
Some behind-the-scenes upgrade work took place last night on GRoup Bookings.

Some minor changes that you might notice:

Only valid numeric amounts can be inserted into the 'Deposit' and 'Ticket Price Lines' fields now. This is to enable calculation of totals into invoices etc.

A 'Deposit Remarks' field has been added, and all the lovely non-numeric stuff that used to live in the Deposit field has been moved to there!

Non-numeric values in the Ticket Price Lines have been saved and are still visible on existing bookings, but no facilitiy has been provided for this for future bookings. The other Remarks fields can be used instead.

A 'free' tick box has been provided on Ticket Price Lines. The ticking of this box makes clear that a zero price means 'this ticket is intentionally free', rather than 'the price has not yet been entered'.

The Details page will return an error if it finds a deposit or ticket line price that is either non-numeric, or is zero and the 'free' box is not ticked.

Where zero amounts existed on old bookings (or the word 'free') this has been changed to a free tick.
19:30 Mon 18 Jul 2016
Scroggins; Danny
A new pop-out window method of editing turn details is now available on the Roster Construction page.

Use of this window means the Roster Construction page no longer has to refresh after a turn is updated and is the latest in a series of upgrades to this page.

I have left the old and new methods available in parallel for the time being in case of any problems with the new method. (It has been a lot more complicated than the other "non-refreshing" developments to this page.)

Please let me know if you find any problems.
19:00 Mon 18 Jul 2016
Scroggins; Danny
A small tweak to the Full Assign Turns page has corrected an issue that was causing a small number of users to appear in the bottom section even though they were fully available etc to appear in the top section.
17:00 Sun 17 Jul 2016
Scroggins; Danny
The Privacy page has been tidied up a bit to hopefully make it a bit clearer.

(It still doesn't load very quickly, but you can't have everything!)
22:00 Sat 16 Jul 2016
Scroggins; Danny
A new features has been added at the bottom of the timetables editing page to advise users of the update (or addition).

There is also the opportunity to write a message describing the change that you have made.

The message will be sent to users with permission 232, so assign that permission to the groups who 'need to know' (ie, roster clerks, operations managers, etc).

(I suggest you don't put your entire staff on the distribution list...!)
23:00 Wed 13 Jul 2016
Scroggins; Danny
The orange 'BUSY' background and blue 'EXPIRED' background now show up on the quick assign list. If the user is busy and expired then 'busy' orange takes precedence.

The suffix 'EXP' and 'BUSY' have been added to the user's line in the list where appropriate.
20:00 Wed 13 Jul 2016
Scroggins; Danny
Some updates to the Quick-Assign feature of rosters:

- The number of turns each user has in the roster, and the number their max number is now shown in the drop down list.

The format is a/b, where a is the number they already have, and b is their max.

A max of 'U' means unlimited.

A max of 'X' means they returned no availability.

Note that in this new format only the first fifteen characters of the staff members' names are shown. If anyone has two staff members whose first fifteen characters are identical (and therefore they now can't be distringuished from each other) please let me know and I will resolve it. (No adding extra characters into people's names for this purpose....!)
20:00 Wed 13 Jul 2016
Scroggins; Danny
The Turn History link (in the red drop down) now opens in a new tab/window (thus avoiding the need to re-load the roster construction page).
21:00 Tue 12 Jul 2016
Scroggins; Danny
A minor tweak to the Update User Competence page means that the expiry date picker is now only visible when the corresponding radio box is selected.

This is to avoid the possibility of a the user picking a date from the picker and then it not being saved as the radio box option had not been selected.
19:00 Tue 12 Jul 2016
Scroggins; Danny
Mark all 'yes' and 'no' links have been fitted to the top of the page for editing other users' availability (the same as already exists on the page for entering one's own availability).
15:00 Tue 12 Jul 2016
Scroggins; Danny
Users who have the capability to edit other users' personal details do not, by default, have the capability to edit their privacy settings. An additional permission (231) is now available to enable them to do this. This permission is a 'red cruciform' permission, meaning it is intended for adminstrators only, and should be used sparingly.

This permission will only be effective when the user already has 67 (view) [ 91 (admin view) ] and 68 (admin edit).

More details/guidance: https://www.heritage-ops.org.uk/help/99
20:30 Thu 07 Jul 2016
Scroggins; Danny
Some further significant work has taken place on the Roster Construction pages. The red and green drop-down boxes now load lazily (which means they load when required, as opposed to always being there 'ready').

This may produce a short but distinguishable delay in requesting the red or green drop down menu, but will return a huge improvement in page load time overall.
14:00 Thu 07 Jul 2016
Scroggins; Danny
There was an issue with the drop-down to assign turns on the Construct Roster page returning a 'page not found' error.

I am working on this now.


Danny S.

[Now fixed - 14:25.]
16:00 Wed 06 Jul 2016
Scroggins; Danny
The deleting of both main and 'additional' turns has now also been given the same treatment as the changing of turns has over the last couple of days.

Please let me know if you have any problems. I hope this is making the functions easier!
19:00 Mon 04 Jul 2016
Scroggins; Danny
The changing of names of (existing) "additional" turns (ie, training, etc) now behaves the same as main turns in that it does not require the page to be refreshed.

[Update 5/6/16: Note this had a compatibility issue with IE and Safari which was fixed at 12:00 5/7/16. If you experience any problems after then please let me know.]
14:00 Wed 29 Jun 2016
Scroggins; Danny
After much hard work.... the roster construction page does not refresh when a turn is re-assigned any more.

The page itself does not load any quicker, but it will now load a lot less frequently (system-wide). This will help the performance of that page, and the system as a whole.

Other roster functions from the drop-down will be similarly treated in the near future.
16:00 Thu 23 Jun 2016
Scroggins; Danny
I have added a roster period splitting function (in the Roster Operations tab). This enables an existing roster period to be split into two individual roster periods.

This is designed for (and as requested by) railways that publish a month's roster, but with a gala in the middle blank (as they are inevitably more difficult to plan for), and then subsequently wants to split the roster to deal with the gala in 'unpublished' mode.

The newly-created roster will gain the same properties and status as the original (ie, publication status, etc)

Another development is the interlocking on roster period date adjustments has now been further extended to prevent overlapping roster periods.
12:00 Thu 23 Jun 2016
Scroggins; Danny
Options have been added to the properties of Calendar Organisation subjects (Operations > Cal Organisation) to determine when they are shown on the Operations Date page, viz:
- Always
- Never
- Only when populated with data.

This will hopefully help railways that have a high number of calendar organisation subjects.
18:00 Wed 22 Jun 2016
Scroggins; Danny
The roster operations page has been adjusted to make sure that the roster period dates aren't adjusted in such a way as to exclude a turn that is already in the roster.
17:00 Fri 17 Jun 2016
Scroggins; Danny
A minor bug has been corrected (that I think has existed for as long as function has), so that people on 'add-on' turns (such as training, etc) now show as 'Busy' in the Full Assign Options. Also, their add-on turns are now counted in their 'Turns allocated / turns left' count, which they previously weren't.
00:00 Fri 17 Jun 2016
Scroggins; Danny
I've made an editable sort-order field in System > Directors (Anything to stop the a certain prefixing their directors disciplines with numbers!).

It will require each place in the system that shows information from more than one department to be updated to respect the new sort order. I have updated the Daily Operations page, Monthly Roster and a few others, but please let me know when you find other places in the system that need to respect the new order.
18:00 Wed 15 Jun 2016
Scroggins; Danny
The sort order of Calendar Subjects on is now consistently by name, unless a numerical sort order is specified.

A field to add a numerical sort order to Calendar subjects has been added. The sort order is: Numerical Order of Sort Order then Alphabetical Order of Name.
14:00 Wed 15 Jun 2016
Scroggins; Danny
As promised in the lead-up to the Support License Scheme, there is now a support ticket system in HOPS for use of companies in the Support Scheme. (It is actually the old ticket system from years ago revamped a bit).

If you allocate yourself permission 78 via Permissions Admin * you will gain a 'My Support Tickets' option in the System menu.

(* - and of course you'll allocate this to your HOPS Admins permission group rather than to the individual user, because that's a much better way of managing permissions ISN'T IT!!!)

The Support Ticket system is mainly for support, as distinct from future development requests. But if you want to submit tickets for future development requests then that's fine - I'll copy the text to the future developments wish list and close the ticket, just to keep things nice and tidy.
18:00 Tue 14 Jun 2016
Scroggins; Danny
A new option has been added to the System menu - Admin Login - for quick access to the Admin Login feature. Permission 80 required.
00:00 Tue 14 Jun 2016
Scroggins; Danny
There will be a brief period of downtime on Tuesday 14 June at approximately 8pm for approximately 30 minutes in connection with server upgrade work. Apologies for the inconvenience.
00:00 Mon 13 Jun 2016
Scroggins; Danny
It's been a long-haul getting here, but the HOPS Support License Scheme starts today! HURRAH!

I have emailed all the railways in the scheme with full details (if you've submitted a contract but not just received an email with details please let me know)

As promised, I have added all the modules that were previously subscription-only to all companies in the scheme, so I hope you will find those useful.

There is a to-do list a mile long that you've given me, so please bare with me as I tackle all the items on it, and hopefully this will be the start of another great step forward in the development of heritage railways!

Thank you!
Danny Scroggins, HOPS employee number 1!
00:00 Thu 19 May 2016
Scroggins; Danny
I am aware this site has some speed issues at the moment. I apologise for this.

HOPS has become a bit of a victim of its own success in this respect - it is great to see so many people using HOPS, but some of the pages are now struggling a little bit.

Rest assured this will be one of the first priorities to work on when the support scheme starts in June.

Danny S.
00:00 Tue 17 May 2016
Scroggins; Danny
A fix has been made to overlapping headings and cells broken across pages on PDF output of rosters.
23:00 Mon 28 Mar 2016
Scroggins; Danny
Part of tomorrow's server upgrade work has upgraded our SSL functionality. This may cause issues for anyone using very old browsers:

* Windows XP and using IE 7 or 8. (IE 7 on Vista or later is fine).

* Anyone running *really* ancient versions of Safari, Chrome (on XP only), Firefox or Android Browser.

Please let me know if there are any problems.
15:00 Mon 28 Mar 2016
Scroggins; Danny
There will be a brief period of downtime on Tuesday 5 April evening for a server re-start following some minor upgrade works. Apologies for the inconvenience.
22:00 Wed 23 Mar 2016
Scroggins; Danny
Support Scheme Update 4 has now been sent to railway HOPS administrators.

If you didn't receive yours, please let me know!

Thanks. Danny S.
20:55 Wed 23 Mar 2016
Scroggins; Danny
Some minor bugs fixed on the Visits to Operations Personnel page, the Edit Permission Group page and the Deleting Permissions page thanks to relentless pestering from the SDR....
00:00 Mon 15 Feb 2016
Scroggins; Danny
A minor bug has been fixed which was caused by the (much-requested) reintroduction of the 'quick' login form in the left hand menu.

The quick login function caused the login form on the main login page to stop working properly.

Apologies to those who were struggling to get into the system via the main login page.

(If it helps, you can now adjust your bookmarks to www.heritage-ops.org.uk instead of www.heritage-ops.org.uk/login.php


Danny S.
00:00 Thu 11 Feb 2016
Scroggins; Danny
Non-https use of the system has now been phased out. All HOPS activity is now under https, which aids preventing "sniffing" of information as it travels between your computer and the server.

If this causes a problem anywhere please let us know.
22:30 Sat 30 Jan 2016
Scroggins; Danny
Powerpoint files added to the list of acceptable file types for upload.
01:40 Tue 05 Jan 2016
Scroggins; Danny
Department Competence Expiry list bugs corrected.
00:01 Mon 04 Jan 2016
Scroggins; Danny

All Railway HOPS Administrators have been sent an email regarding our latest news. (If you are a Railway HOPS Admin and haven't received one then please let me know!).

All will be revealed later today!
14:00 Sun 03 Jan 2016
Scroggins; Danny
Some minor updates to the Updating Competence pages.