The DentaLab System... serving dental laboratories since 1979
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April 2008


DentaLab News

from Mainstreet Systems & Software...

April 2008

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DentaLab News
Product Costing


The April Release is Ready

The April release, officially named 1.14.000, is now available on our website in the support section. Adjacent to the download link is the list of new features and enhancements. If you have an up-to-date support agreement, please call for the authorization codes just before you are ready to download.


Preparing for Critical Changes

As the international press has reported in abundance, dental laboratory cases have been found to hold unsanitary bacteria and unsafe levels of lead. This has resulted in stepped-up examination of the manufacturing practices and safety procedures in dental laboratories by both industry and governmental organizations.

In conjunction with the upcoming increases in scrutiny and inspections, we are expanding the features in DentaLab for QuickBooks geared toward GMP (good manufacturing practices) and MD (material disclosures). The coding is nearly complete and we will be testing this in the weeks ahead in preparation for our next release.


And Here at Mainstreet....

For those who have followed over the years the Mainstreet basketball teams we have sponsored, this year's team has been both entertaining and phenomenal. In the post-season April tournament play, they have scored victories 117-78 and 108-95 and both young and old have been energized with championship fever.

And here in the office, we have begun the cleanout and packup for our upcoming move to larger quarters in the Village of Lederach. This is now scheduled for July 1. We have learned a lot about the other side of the fence while here in the company of dentists for two years. This has proven useful in the development of our web-access and DRX-Online projects geared toward better communication between the lab and the dental office. But we are more than ready for more space and are excited that we will have a training/meeting room again.

We have been Microsoft Partners but this past month, we were also invited to become part of the Microsoft Developers Network. We completed the documentation of our development plan for the next two years, submitted this and then were accepted into Microsoft's Empower program, which includes tremendous development software and support from Microsoft for our web-based applications.

Despite valiant efforts on the part of Elaine, Sergey and Nathan to resurrect it,, our Novell Netware network has died. It was a trooper and had lasted over 19 years. This means that we are now down to one local drive to support the legacy DentaLab systems for DOS and early Windows. We know those of you who are still working at these levels have really loved their ease and reliability, but we want you to seriously consider moving on to the newer technology while we still have some electronic capability for converting your master datafiles.



Easy, versatile software for the modern dental laboratory.


Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Do any of the DentaLab for QuickBooks reports show work in progress?

A: Yes, in Reports, then the Analysis tab are reports by product groups of items, customer groups for customers and items, and then work centers by item that provide tallies for your range of schedule dates on item units, estimated billings, actual billings and remake amounts. You can look at a current, future or historic range of dates for these. In addition, the Scheduler will give you tallies for scheduled units and completed units for specific work centers and dates.

Q: Is the DQB user manual available in printed format?

A:Beginning with DQB Release 1.13.000, the user manual has been formatted for Adobe PDF (portable data format) and available from the Help button. The Adobe Reader comes free with Microsoft Windows and can also be downloaded from The reader can be used to search, view and print all or a portion of the manual. If you would like us to do the printing for you, there is a service charge of $75 plus postage to have the manual printed, punched, placed in a binder and shipped to you.



With the same look and feel of QuickBooks.


What are VPN's?

VPN stands for Virtual Private Network, which means having a private dedicated network tunneled within a public network such as the Internet. VPN's are now in use for QuickBooks and DentaLab for QuickBooks by several of our labs that have multiple locations, but want to use their central database not only at their main offices but also at auxiliary locations. They are gradually taking the place of the older more expensive methods such as leased lines. In addition to remote locations, we are seeing their use by telecommuters, highway patrol officers, and subcontractors. Labs wanting hands-on support have given us temporary authorization to enter their systems through VPN.

VPN's require high-speed broadband Internet service by a provider that offers VPN services. Although their basic definition does not include security measures, in practicality a number of tools such as firewalls, encryption, routers and authentication are used in conjunction with VPN's to assure access only by authorized parties.


The Basic Guidelines

In our last newsletter, we said that some labs did not follow the basic guidelines for all computer systems. And so we were asked just what these were. Here's a list:

  • Be prepared. This means recognizing that the components of computers will eventually fail. If you are not proficient with electronic equipment, be sure that you and your staff know who to call upon if you run into trouble. We recommend having a local hardware/network source that is readily available to get you back into production as quickly as possible.
  • Backup your data at least once a day onto a media that you can take off-premise. Know how to restore your data if this becomes necessary.
  • Be organized. This may mean keeping a file or drawer with your installation media, your documentation, your warranties and contact information for the resources you would call upon if your system runs into trouble. Be sure your staff is trained on the location and use of these materials.
  • Keep your software relatively up-to-date. Know what has become obsolete and no longer supported. Take the time to review newsletters and other communications involving your software and to seek education on whatever you or your staff do not understand. Communicate your needs to your software support team.


The QuickBooks Invoice

For those who started with QuickBooks to run the business end of their lab, having DentaLab for QuickBooks transfer more of the case information to the QuickBooks invoice is, we are told, one of the highlights of the system. Currently, the case fields that can be transferred are: Patient Name, Teeth, Shade, Pan Code, Doctor's Request Date and Enter/Received Date.

In DQB Options/Settings for invoices, there are checkboxes for each of these. Their initial setting is On or Yes, to transfer from the case to the invoice. You can set any of these to Off or No if you do not want it to be transferred. These fields are then considered to be new custom fields in QuickBooks. Using the Forms Layout Designer, you can also set up your invoice form to show and/or print each of the fields. You can also request our help with this. Wherever there are Find options, you can use the search facilities of QuickBooks to find invoice transactions that match any of these fields.



Customization is available for all products.


Product Costing
Knowing the cost of producing a product or service is essential to any business. This knowledge can become critical if faced with competitive pricing or with opportunities for new business based on meeting price requirements. Cost analysis is an important part of maximizing profits. At times it may uncover ways to reduce costs.

  • Estimate production costs
  • Allows for price experimentation, potential profits
  • Easy to understand samples included to get you started
  • Clear and comprehensive reports
  • Integrate with QuickBooks, DentaLab for QuickBooks, or create your own entries


Available now at a special introductory price.

Call 1-800-257-4535 or visit to learn more about Mainstreet Systems and our software designed specifically for dental laboratories.

"I am really impressed with your newsletter and responses on the IDF(internet dental forum)...given me an education."

Randy Hicks, CDT
R & R Restorations
Texas, USA

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