Search MYOB Help files

11 10 2007

UPDATE: The information below only applies to versions of MYOB prior to v17. I received v17 the other day, installed it today, went to make these modifications only to find that MYOB v17 now uses the excellent Zoom Search (I installed Zoom for a previous client’s intranet – it works really well and I can highly recommend it). The new MYOB search now allows you to specify the number of results per page.


Another thing I don’t like about the MYOB Help is that only 10 items per page get displayed when you do a search. This means a lot of clicking if the results are well over 100, for example.

So I’ve fixed that too! Here’s how:

  1. Go to where your MYOB program files are stored (e.g. C:\MYOB16; NOTE: the information below is not applicable to MYOB 17 or later).
  2. Open the Help folder.
  3. Find the searchtopframe.html file and open it in a text editor. (NOTE: I use EditPlus but any text editor will do; I just prefer text editors with colour coding as the syntax is easier to read.)
  4. Near the very top of this long file, find the line that starts var displaymatches = 10; (it’s around about line 18).
  5. Change the value from 10 to whatever you like – 25, 50, 100, or however many results you’d like to see on a single page of search results.
  6. Save your changes.
  7. Refresh your MYOB Help window.
  8. Do a search for something with a lot of results, such as balance. You should now see the number of results you asked to display on a single page, with appropriately labelled Next and Previous buttons.

Woohoo! I’m on a roll!

MYOB Help files

11 10 2007

I’ve been using MYOB for my business and personal accounts for some years now. And it does what it’s meant to do, though there are times the user interface is frustrating. Anyhow, as with most software, you eventually learn to live with it and work around it.

Some versions ago they made all their Help browser-based. Which is a good thing (even though it takes up most of the installation time of upgrades!).

What’s NOT a good thing is how these MYOB Help files resize your default browser window on opening. To hell with whatever your browser has open right now, or how you’ve resized your window to fit how YOU work – no, MYOB ‘knows better’ and resizes your browser for you… to a ridiculously small size!! (350 px wide, 600 px high for those of you who know what these dimensions mean; and 350 px wide and 500 px high for the Search window—which opens in a new browser window too, by the way)

I put in a complaint to MYOB’s support team about this a couple of years ago in January 2006 and suggested that users get the option to set their own browser window size, or, even better, for MYOB to open in the browser window size you currently have set (<sarcasm>now, that’d be novel!</sarcasm>). I got the most ridiculous answer (reproduced here with typos and all):

Although the code supplied would generate a new browser if you where using it in the HTML code of a website, when asking a program to open a website the program has no HTML code and simply asks Windows to open a web browser.

It is infact windows that is fiinding an open browser and using this.

All programs when opening a web page will simply ask Windows to load the webpage and Windows finds an already open page.

For example i selected Help and then Online help in Microsoft Word and it used my Browser that was already open.

However that beinig said we only support the operation of MYOB not its interaction with other programs and this information may need to be checked with an IT Professional.

Even after trying to figure out what it meant (!) it still didn’t answer the question or address the problem.

So today I opened MYOB Help looking for how to do something, and the browser resize p***ed me off that much I decided to find the cause and fix it myself if it was something I could do.

A little bit of digging into the Help file code and I found the culprit – and fixed this window resizing once and for all (until the next upgrade anyway, when I’ll have to spend one minute changing these settings again).

For those who want to do this themselves, here’s how:

  1. Go to where your MYOB program files are stored (e.g. C:\MYOB16).
  2. Open the Help folder.
  3. Find the webby4menu.js file and open it in a text editor. (NOTE: I use EditPlus but any text editor will do; I just prefer text editors with colour coding as the syntax is easier to read.)
  4. Find the text that starts with in the Exposed Menu Events section. NOTE: Make sure you’re at the real code, not the commented out ‘’ bit above it. For those unfamiliar with JavaScript, any line starting with // is a ‘commented out’ line – ignore those lines.
  5. Change the values in self.resizeTo(350,600);self.moveTo(450,25) to something more reasonable, like self.resizeTo(950,900);self.moveTo(250,25). The first set of values specify the browser width and height; the second set the position of the browser window from the top right (?) edge of the screen – these aren’t as annoying so you can leave them if you want.
  6. Go down a couple of lines to the search window specifications, and change the height and width (500 and 350 respectively) to something like 900 and 750.
  7. Save your changes.
  8. Refresh your MYOB Help window (or open MYOB Help if it’s not already open) and you should see the contents in a decent-sized window. Yay!
  9. Adjust the height and width settings to suit, if the ones I’ve documented here aren’t quite what you want.

Hopefully this will help someone else who is as equally annoyed with this ‘feature’ of the MYOB Help. Let me know how you go!

Tech support

11 10 2007

If you’ve EVER worked on a Help Desk or in technical support of one form or another, you should enjoy this YouTube video (6 mins). I especially loved the “12 o’clock flasher” reference!