Reporting?

Apr 4, 2011 at 10:17 PM

Hi - I really love this, it seems to do exactly what I expect in order to capture a TEAM's work effort quickly, easily, and painlessly.

Having said that, I need to produce reports to management, and I have team members asking if they can get a quick report out of it to show what they've recorded (and where) for the week.  Reporting seems to be nearly impossible to figure out though - the field isn't marked as reportable and isn't allowed to be.  I expect that the data is tucked away SOMEWHERE in the database in order to be displayed, but I can't seem to find where it's hidden.

Has anyone been able to create any reports against this?  Can I get a pointer as to where the data might be buried?

Thanks so much!

Steve

Coordinator
Apr 4, 2011 at 11:03 PM

Hi Steve,

I'm pleased to hear that you find the TFS Timesheet control useful - and I'm really embarrised that I still haven't found the time to get the reporting implemented.

One of the aims I'd had was to make sure that the data for TFS Timesheet was stored against the work item itself, rather than introducing a new database dependancy.  Therefore the timesheet data is stored as XML within a field against the work item.  If you've used the configuration settings from the Documentation section of this site this will be in the field 'Custom.Timesheets.TimesheetRawData'.  You can actually view this data by opening your tasks within Excel then adding the Custom.Timesheets.TimesheetRawData field to the list of displayed columns.

Reporting on this becomes a bit more tricky however - mostly around performance.  In order to produce a report, we have to first filter down to the work items we are trying to report on, deserialise the timesheet XML data and assemble this in a manner useful to the user.  My thinking is that this will have to sit in a web service (haven't decided if it's acceptable to add a web service dependancy or not though), which would form the datasource for a SSRS report.

Unfortunitely, the thinking is as far as I've gotten so far.  I'll make an effort to try to look at this over the next couple of weekends though and hopefully can get something released while it is still of use to you.

Regards,

Nick

Apr 5, 2011 at 5:19 PM

Thanks Nick,

Ah yes, I see that now inside Excel (I wasn't looking there)...That could be useful as it applies to looking at a specific workitem (which IS good), however I was looking from a different angle.  I'll likely throw your comment to one of my top developers and see whether he can do something (although I think we'd still go back to the first problem on where this [XML] data exists within the TFS database.

Beyond what this capability gives looking at a specific workitem, I'd like to do other managerial reporting such as to see where (without knowing workitem numbers) time is being logged; to be able to see how much of each developer's workweek is toward development tasks; and (even more "fun") whether we're [inadvertently] working on workitems that aren't in the current iteration.

As I've moved forward implementing this timesheet, my developers have (understandably) requested a report that shows them what they're already logged (across all projects and workitems) for the week...ideally, the ones who are contractors would like to copy and paste such a thing to their contract house timesheets.

If you have some idea nuggets that might help, I'm happy to share back anything we develop for the good of the community.

Steve

Coordinator
Apr 10, 2011 at 5:41 AM

Hi Steve,

I finally found some time to have a first go at reporting for the TFS Timesheets this weekend.  There are still a number of features missing, but you are welcome to have a look at the beta package that I have just released:

http://tfstimesheets.codeplex.com/releases/view/64141

In reality you only need to install the "Reports Panel Explorer" part of it - the TFS Timesheet Wokr Item Control itself has not been changed as part of this release.  I've included details on where to find the report panel once it's installed in the release notes (as I haven't yet written up the documentation etc).

Please let me know if this is in the right direction for the data you need.  If there are any other ways to break-down the data that would ber useful to you please let me know and I'll look at adding them to the feature list for when 1.0.4 is finished.

Cheers,

Nick

Coordinator
Apr 10, 2011 at 6:40 AM

Hi Steve,

A bit more detail, now that I read your last post properly.

As for the more advanced management reports you are thinking about - one of the next features I was concidering was a CSV export of the timesheet data.  If I include a couple more fields (such as the Work Item Type (eg, Task, Bug etc) and Iteration Path) then this could easily be imported into Excel and pivoted to give you the data sliced & diced any way you need (rather than relying on the pre-built structure in the reporting panel.

Having said that - I do think that some of the inbuilt reports within TFS could get you some of the high level information.  Depending on which development templates youi are using within TFS the actual report will change - but as an example in the MS Agile templates there is a report called "Status_On_All_Iterations".  The output of this report is based on the Work Completed and Work Remaining values (which TFS Timesheets maintains as timesheet entries are entered) and shows progress on each iteration etc.

Cheers,

Nick

Apr 19, 2011 at 9:33 PM

Hi Nick!

Things slowed down enough I was able to install and check out your work - it's an excellent start and fairly usable! :)  I do like the way the "By Resource" lets me drill down through the week all the way down to the task.  I'd love it more if that drill down was on the "By Week" side (to resource, workitem, day)...  Since I'm tracking tons of workitems it would be helpful if it had the title (or just a snippet of it) with the number.  For me personally, I'd love to get this "By Week" (with the subtotal like you have), then "By Resource" (again subtotaled so I could easily see someone who was well short of their workweek), then by workitem, then by day - I'm sure others would probably like the day sooner, but I'm much less worried about day to day.  Actually - since I have some people working across multiple projects (which you have at a top level) I'd really like to have it "By Week", "By Resource", By Project, By Workitem, By Day   ...   If I think long-term, I'll want by year before by week - but now my head is starting to hurt thinking too much  ;)

My wishlist (which I accept may not be possible) would include:

1) workitem details of title and iteration path listed (to catch/avoid work being done on workitems that would slip through the cracks having the wrong iteration)

2) ability to double-click a workitem and open it's details

3) ability to export/copy & paste or some other way of pulling this data to Excel so I can chart, etc.

 

You are 100% correct - most of the built in reporting already gives me what I need using the Work Completed and Work Remaining values, and I was already pushing those heavily since our rollout and was thrilled to see you were taking advantage of those.  The built in stuff gives me good reporting about an iteration, burn downs, estimated vs actual, and all those sorts of things... it doesn't give me good data about people, nor does it help me to find the things that aren't being reported because they're falling through the cracks.  I'm of the belief that this will close that gap for me based on similar implementations with other systems.

Nice work and thank-you! :)

Steve

Coordinator
Apr 20, 2011 at 5:54 AM

Hi Steve,

Thanks for all your feedback - it makes a huge difference getting information from someone else that is using the tool, rather than trying to invent all the requirements based only on how my team uses it!

From your wishlist:

1) workitem details of title and iteration path listed (to catch/avoid work being done on workitems that would slip through the cracks having the wrong iteration)
The latest beta version has the title in a tooltip.  I could certainly add some of it to the displayed tree node as well if that adds value.  I'll have to have a think about how to display the iteration effectively.

2) ability to double-click a workitem and open it's details
I've just added a feature request for this one. 

3) ability to export/copy & paste or some other way of pulling this data to Excel so I can chart, etc.
This one is aready in the feature list.  The way I was thinking of implementing this was to allow an export of a CSV file, which you could then open in Excel to produce your pivot reports etc.

In terms of the report breakdown, I think that most of the requests you've made are achievable - let me see what I can do for the next iteration of the beta.

Regards,

Nick

Coordinator
Apr 20, 2011 at 7:23 AM

Hi Steve,

I don't have all the requests you have made covered yet - but a fair few are now available in release 1.0.6 (Beta). 

http://tfstimesheets.codeplex.com/releases/view/64779

Note that you will need to uninstall the existing VS Extension (Tools -> Extension Manager) before you can install this one.

Regards,

Nick

Apr 20, 2011 at 2:45 PM

Love it!  :) 

I didn't realize at the time I posted that the tooltip text contained that; I see in the new version the tooltip has the iteration path included, which takes care of what I need...I think this serves me very well.

Exporting to a CSV would be fine, and as you said would allow me to do pivot reports and any of the charts & graphs I wanted to put together.  I could even throw to a database and look to slice it any way I wanted.  Just thinking out loud - is there a way this could be done to an outside DB area through some TFS workflow options?

My only "complaint" - this report viewer seems to be very slow at first load (nearly a minute on my system)...but it's reasonable after that on refreshes; I'm not sure if there's anything you can do about that.  Then again, I complain how slow Team Explorer is on startup too, so take with a grain of salt.

Best,

Steve

Apr 25, 2011 at 4:06 PM

Found a bug - those will come with usage, right?  I just recorded it on this site as an issue (I hope that was the correct thing to do).  An employee "backfilled" his time (today) for the last two weeks; when I look at the TFS Timesheet Report, I see 80 hours entered for THIS week, however when I look at the workitems listed in the drill-down, they show entries for the last two weeks.  I would guess that the report is using the created date and not using the time entry date that's showing in the grid for each entry.

Best Regards,

Steve

Coordinator
Apr 25, 2011 at 8:03 PM

Hi Steve,

Well spotted - and I think your diagnosis is correct regarding the created date vs. the entry date.  The good news is that both values are stored against the timesheet entry, so it's just a problem with reporting not the data collected itself. 

This should be a fairly easy fix, so I'll see if I can put something together later in the day.

Regards,

Nick

Coordinator
Apr 26, 2011 at 5:41 AM
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Coordinator
Apr 26, 2011 at 5:41 AM
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Coordinator
Apr 26, 2011 at 8:55 AM

Hi Steve,

I've just created a new release that includes a fix to the bug that you raised last night. 

http://tfstimesheets.codeplex.com/releases/view/65147

I've also made a couple of other tweaks:

  • Changed the format of the 'Day' tree nodes, to include the date
  • Added functionallity to open a work item if you double click on a 'Work Item' tree node. 

Please let me know if you have any troubles!

Regards,

Nick

 

 

 

 

May 11, 2011 at 1:40 PM

Hi Nick,

Do you have some news about reporting for tfs timesheets?

The product you developed is very nice and simple and it was very useful if we could to export timesheet data to some kind of report, or excel, without those XML tags ;-)

Thanks,

MahatmaDi

Coordinator
May 11, 2011 at 7:30 PM

Hi MahatmaDi,

Have you tried the reports control in beta 1.0.7? http://tfstimesheets.codeplex.com/releases/view/65147

Exporting to a CVS file is next on the list of features, but using the control above will give you a lot of the detail you need from within VS.

Regards,

Nick

May 13, 2011 at 8:34 AM

Yes, I tried, but i get an error: "An exception ocurred while querying work items (UserDomain)"

Am I doing something wrong?

Coordinator
May 15, 2011 at 8:40 PM
Edited May 16, 2011 at 11:07 AM

HI MahamaDi,

I think you may have hit one of the known bugs ( TFS Report panel will only work if user is running Visual Studio as a user in the same domain as TFS ).  There is something wrong with the way the user session is being created (I'm just getting the current TFS details from the Team Explorer panel) that is causing authentication problems if you are not running in the context of your TFS user.  This is one of the last couple of things I need to get fixed before this component is moved out of 'beta'.

Up till now nobody had reported actually using the reporting component in this configuration, so I haven't prioritized this bug ... I'll see if I can get some time one evening this week to get a new version released for you.

Regards,

Nick

Coordinator
May 16, 2011 at 11:11 AM

Hi MahamaDi,

Can you please try the report control I just compiled into beta release 1.0.9 (http://tfstimesheets.codeplex.com/releases/view/66404).  This includes what I believe is a fix to the issue you are having connected to TFS from a different Domain.  Failing that, I've included more of the exception detail in the error message so we can identify the problem easier.

Regards,

Nick

May 18, 2011 at 4:07 PM
Hi Nick,

How do I uninstall the previous version?
when I try to install that release it gives the message: "this extension is already installed to all aplicable products" :-(

Thanks again!
Diogo



From: [email removed]
To: [email removed]
Date: Mon, 16 May 2011 04:11:19 -0700
Subject: Re: Reporting? [tfstimesheets:252503]

From: nickhoggard
Hi MahamaDi,
Can you please try the report control I just compiled into beta release 1.0.9 (http://tfstimesheets.codeplex.com/releases/view/66404). This includes what I believe is a fix to the issue you are having connected to TFS from a different Domain. Failing that, I've included more of the exception detail in the error message so we can identify the problem easier.
Regards,
Nick
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Coordinator
May 18, 2011 at 8:05 PM

Good Morning,

 That highlights something else I will need to do before moving this piece out of beta … I need to update the 'getting started' documentation!

 Unlike the timesheet work item control, the report panel is a Visual Studio extension.  To uninstall, in Visual Studio click on the Tools Menu, then select Extension Manager.  In the “All” section of “Installed Extensions” you should see an item called “TimesheetControl.Reports.VSPackage”.  Select that, then click the Uninstall option.

 Regards,

 Nick

May 19, 2011 at 9:22 AM
Hello Nick,
it's not easy... I uninstalled successfully.
Then installed the new version and when picking it in "other windows" I get the error in the attachment :(
;-)


From: [email removed]
To: [email removed]
Date: Wed, 18 May 2011 13:05:49 -0700
Subject: Re: Reporting? [tfstimesheets:252503]

From: nickhoggard
Good Morning,
That highlights something else I will need to do before moving this piece out of beta … I need to update the 'getting started' documentation!
Unlike the timesheet work item control, the report panel is a Visual Studio extension. To uninstall, in Visual Studio click on the Tools Menu, then select Extension Manager. In the “All” section of “Installed Extensions” you should see an item called “TimesheetControl.Reports.VSPackage”. Select that, then click the Uninstall option.
Regards,
Nick
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Coordinator
May 22, 2011 at 3:08 AM

Hi Diogo,

It doesn't look like the attachment came through, so I'm at a bit of a loss as to how to resolve this one.  I haven't hit this issue before - although, I have only had feedback from half a dozen people who have tried this particular component. 

My next step will be to release a version with some additional logging, but first could you please either describe the error you are getting, or send me an email to (tfstimesheets at silvercode dot co dot nz).

Cheers,

Nick

 

May 23, 2011 at 10:13 AM
This is the error message:

"An exception occurred while querying work items. (UserDomain: ). TF248015: Your work item query could not be completed due to an unexpected error returned by the microsoft SQL Server Full-text engine. Contact your system administrator to check the application event log
for Team Foundation Server."

:-)


From: [email removed]
To: [email removed]
Date: Sat, 21 May 2011 20:08:59 -0700
Subject: Re: Reporting? [tfstimesheets:252503]

From: nickhoggard
Hi Diogo,
It doesn't look like the attachment came through, so I'm at a bit of a loss as to how to resolve this one. I haven't hit this issue before - although, I have only had feedback from half a dozen people who have tried this particular component.
My next step will be to release a version with some additional logging, but first could you please either describe the error you are getting, or send me an email to (tfstimesheets at silvercode dot co dot nz).
Cheers,
Nick

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May 24, 2011 at 2:09 PM

Hi Nick,

Just wanted to reiterate what Steve said about this being an excellent control. I have created some SQL that I use to extract the information directly into an Excel Pivot grid and thought I would share it.

 On the project specific data in TFS, I created a view:

 /****** Object: View [dbo].[vw_WorkItemLongTextsTimeSheet]   Script Date: 05/24/2011 15:07:05 ******/

IF EXISTS (SELECT * FROM sys.views WHERE object_id = OBJECT_ID(N'[dbo].[vw_WorkItemLongTextsTimeSheet]'))

DROP VIEW [dbo].[vw_WorkItemLongTextsTimeSheet]

GO

 /****** Object: View [dbo].[vw_WorkItemLongTextsTimeSheet]   Script Date: 05/24/2011 15:07:06 ******/

SET ANSI_NULLS ON

GO

 SET QUOTED_IDENTIFIER ON

GO

 CREATE VIEW [dbo].[vw_WorkItemLongTextsTimeSheet]

AS

SELECT     AddedDate, FldID, ID, Words, [Changed Order], Rev, CAST(Words AS XML) AS XMLWords

FROM         dbo.WorkItemLongTexts AS WILT

WHERE     (FldID = 10084) AND (Rev =

                         (SELECT     MAX(Rev) AS Expr1

                           FROM         dbo.WorkItemLongTexts

                           WHERE     (ID = WILT.ID) AND (FldID = 10084)))

 

GO

 Then Run the following SQL:

 select WorkItemsAre.ID,(select [Area Path] from dbo.xxTree where ID = WorkItemsAre.AreaID) as AreaPath,

(select [Area Path] from dbo.xxTree where ID = WorkItemsAre.IterationID) as IterationPath,

WorkItemsAre.[Created Date],

WorkItemsAre.[Changed Date],

WorkItemsAre.State, .WorkItemsAre.[Work Item Type], WorkItemsAre.Fld10054 as [Original Estimate],

WorkItemsAre.Fld10053 as [Remaining], WorkItemsAre.Fld10055 as [Completed],

ATSE.TSE.value('@CreatedDate', 'Date') as TimeSheetEntryCreatedDate,

      ATSE.TSE.value('@CreatedBy', 'nvarchar(250)') as TimeSheetEntryCreatedBy,

      ATSE.TSE.value('@TimeSheetDate', 'Date') as TimeSheetEntryDate,  

     ATSE.TSE.value('@Minutes', 'float') as TimeSheetEntryMinutes,

     (ATSE.TSE.value('@Minutes', 'float') / 60) as TimeSheetEntryHours,

     ATSE.TSE.value('@Comments', 'nvarchar(250)') as TimeSheetEntryComments

from WorkItemsAre

join vw_WorkItemLongTextsTimeSheet on WorkItemsAre.ID =

vw_WorkItemLongTextsTimeSheet.ID

CROSS APPLY XMLWords.nodes('ArrayOfTimeSheetEntry/TimeSheetEntry') as ATSE(TSE)

where ATSE.TSE.value('@TimeSheetDate', 'Date') > '2011-05-01'

order by ATSE.TSE.value('@TimeSheetDate', 'Date')

 This returns me the relevant information.

 

Thanks again

Coordinator
May 24, 2011 at 6:14 PM

Hi Diogo,

It seems something has gone wrong with the way that TFS internally runs queries against the SQL Server database.  The query that the TFS Timesheets Reports Panel uses the standard TFS query to run the following TFS (not SQL) query:

@"SELECT [System.Id], [System.Title], [System.State] FROM WorkItems WHERE [Custom.Timesheets.TimesheetRawData] contains 'xml'"

I'd be interested to know whether this query runs for you from Team Explorer.  Could you please try a couple of the checks below to confirm? 

  • What version of SQL are you running (Express or Standard)?  Both should work - but the answer to this might become relevant to further troubleshooting.
  • Check that SQL Server has the full text search feature enabled, and that the full text indexes are being created.  One of the posts on the following thread describes how to check this: http://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/tfssetup/thread/00c3231d-508a-4103-94e0-bd4317954db0/
  • Check the Team Foundation Server Event Logs to see if any more details are available.  I believe this will be in the event log of your TFS Application Tier.
  • Try to run the query above in Team Explorer, and see if you get any results
    1. Open Team Explorer
    2. Open a Team Project
    3. Right Click on Work Items
    4. Select "New Query"
    5. Setup the following query:
  • TimesheetRawData Contains xml

Hopefully one of the above helps highlight where the problem is.

Regards,

Nick

Coordinator
May 24, 2011 at 6:22 PM

Hi Richard,

Glad to hear that you find the control useful.

That SQL Query looks great - next time I'm spending some time on the project I'll see if I can tweak it a bit (mostly just to make the FldID dynamic) and include it in the documentation for reporting. 

At this stage, I'm wondering whether I'd be able to get it to work in one of the embedded reports in the associated SharePoint portal - though this is an area I've spent limited time in so I'm not sure if this is possible.  It would be a great way to publish the data to non Team Explorer users though!

Thanks again!

Nick

Coordinator
May 24, 2011 at 6:38 PM
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May 31, 2011 at 3:51 PM
Hi, Nick... good news :)
The service of Full text search was not running! And now I put it running and I don't get the error anymore!
Thanks!
But, when I open the window "TFS Timesheet Report" I can't do nothing because it just appears 3 lines:
- by week
- by project
- by resource
without further options...

What is it supposed to do?

I get the window as in the attachment...

Diogo Gil Barbosa


From: [email removed]
To: [email removed]
Date: Tue, 24 May 2011 11:14:39 -0700
Subject: Re: Reporting? [tfstimesheets:252503]

From: nickhoggard
Hi Diogo,
It seems something has gone wrong with the way that TFS internally runs queries against the SQL Server database. The query that the TFS Timesheets Reports Panel uses the standard TFS query to run the following TFS (not SQL) query:
@"SELECT [System.Id], [System.Title], [System.State] FROM WorkItems WHERE [Custom.Timesheets.TimesheetRawData] contains 'xml'"


I'd be interested to know whether this query runs for you from Team Explorer. Could you please try a couple of the checks below to confirm?

  • What version of SQL are you running (Express or Standard)? Both should work - but the answer to this might become relevant to further troubleshooting.
  • Check that SQL Server has the full text search feature enabled, and that the full text indexes are being created. One of the posts on the following thread describes how to check this: http://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/tfssetup/thread/00c3231d-508a-4103-94e0-bd4317954db0/
  • Check the Team Foundation Server Event Logs to see if any more details are available. I believe this will be in the event log of your TFS Application Tier.
  • Try to run the query above in Team Explorer, and see if you get any results
    1. Open Team Explorer
    2. Open a Team Project
    3. Right Click on Work Items
    4. Select "New Query"
    5. Setup the following query:
  • TimesheetRawData Contains xml
Hopefully one of the above helps highlight where the problem is.
Regards,
Nick
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Jun 7, 2011 at 10:05 AM

We have just started using TFS 2010 and this time sheet extension so we’re not advanced users but we have found an elegant way to browse through time sheet data so I thought to share it. It is more like a workaround until reporting features are completed because it involves creating a view in project collection database which is kind of a hack in TFS database. Since it enables using the time sheet data like it is stored in normal tables it makes very easy to make simple reports. Workaround is not ideal not just because of hacking the database but I’m sure it isn’t the best way for doing things when we look at the performance but for now it happened to be very useful to us. Here’s the code…

SELECT
 XDATA.XROW.value('@CreatedDate', 'datetime') AS CreatedDate,
 XDATA.XROW.value('@CreatedBy', 'nvarchar(250)') AS CreatedBy,
 XDATA.XROW.value('@TimeSheetDate', 'datetime') AS TimeSheetDate,
 XDATA.XROW.value('@Minutes', 'numeric(15, 5)') AS Minutes,
 XDATA.XROW.value('@Comments', 'nvarchar(4000)') AS Comments
FROM
(
SELECT CAST([Words] AS XML) AS XMLDATA
FROM [dbo].[WorkItemLongTexts] WHERE  [Words] LIKE '<?xml version="1.0"?>%'
) AS XMLTABLE
CROSS APPLY XMLDATA.nodes('/ArrayOfTimeSheetEntry/TimeSheetEntry') AS XDATA(XROW)


We’ve also noticed that it isn’t possible to log more than 8 hours on the task per day for a single user. While this is easily workaroudable by adding more time sheet entries it would be nice to have this ability. When the deadline is near it can happen some overtime and single developer can work more than 8 hours on a single task in one day.
And for the end some future request. It would be useful to have ability to view/enter/change timesheets for available task in the week timeframe for the current user. Something like in http://tfstimesheet.codeplex.com/. Just a suggestion .

Best regards and keep up the good work

Feb 9, 2012 at 8:26 PM

Hi vladek,

I used the query above and it's very helpful. How can I add the work item id and title in the above query? That will give me what I am looking for.

Thanks,

Vik

Mar 14, 2012 at 8:27 PM

Hi Nick,

We've been using your control for a few months and really appreciate your contribution.  I'm installed the reports control but the TFS Timesheet Report just comes up empty with only a Refresh button which doesn't do anything.  I'm connected to TFS with a project open.  I tried the query above to show that full text is running and got back my work items.  Any suggestions?

Tim

Mar 18, 2012 at 9:14 PM

I was able to get it working by copying these dlls from my TFS server to my desktop - Microsoft.TeamFoundation.WebAccess.WorkItemTracking.dll and Microsoft.TeamFoundation.WebAccess.Controls.dll (from another post).  Looks great Nick!  I'll post some suggestions after reviewing further.  Hopefully, this is something you are still active on.  It's a great addition to VS!  I have one quick request - would you post a 32bit version of the web.setup file that needs to be on the TFS server?  Ours is still running on 32bit.  Thanks!

Tim