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Using CPM Feedbanks

Set up your CPM Folders and Open a Feed Update

This document explains how to set up your CPM-Dairy session and feedbank folders and how to set up an automatically loaded feedbank using the feed updates available on the CPM-Dairy web site.

For this how-to, we have set up a folder in the Windows Documents (or MyDocuments) folder called 'CPMFiles'. The root of this file might contain general feedbank (.fdb) files. Under that root folder, we have other folders (FarmA, Farmb and FarmC) that may contain our ration (.ssn) files or client-based .fdb files.

Note: if you already have your files in a folder under the CPM-DairyV3 folder, you may not need to set up folders up as we show here. But be aware that in some distributions of Windows, you may have difficulty directly accessing data in the folder of an installed application like CPM-Dairy. We suggest that the best scenario is to keep your data files outside of the CPM-DairyV3 folder.

cpmFiles folder

One of the advantages to having all our work under a single top level 'CPMFiles' folder relates to backups. This arrangement makes it very easy to back up all of our work at once to a USB flash drive. We only need to copy the 'CPMFiles' folder to the USB drive to backup everything in one step. Once you have the backed up 'CPMFiles' on your USB drive, you can rename the file to “CPMFiles_2010_07_01”, for instance, to denote when you made the backup.

It is a good idea to back up this folder once a week or so.

Setting up CPM-Dairy for easy access to your files: Preferences

Now we want to make it easy to find our rations and feedbank files when we start up the CPM-Dairy program.

By default, CPM-Dairy looks in the C:\Program Files\CPM-DairyV3 folder - which contains all of the CPM-Dairy program components along with sample ration files.

But how do we tell CPM to look in the 'CPMFiles' folder rather than the program folder?

Start CPM and open any ration that is convenient. Then click the Preferences menu selection.

Preferences session folderNote that the default session and feedbank folder settings are the CPM program folder. In our expample, we want to change these settings to point to our 'CPMFiles' folder.

Preferences session folder selectIn the Preferences dialog, highlight 'Sesson Folder' by clicking in the text box to the right. Then, you will see the “…” button which allows you to browse folders. Click “…”. In this case, we want to find our way to our 'CPMFiles' folder and select it. (Note that the path to your own folder may be different.)

Change session folderSelect the 'CPMFiles' folder by clicking the Open button.

Preferences new default session folderWe now see that the CPMFiles folder is our default session folder.

Preferences new default FeedBank folderThe screenshot above shows Preferences after we have made 'CPMFiles' the default folder for feedbanks as well.

Downloading a feed update file

Download the zipped *.fdb files here: Feedbank file downloads

Open your 'All Updates' .fdb file on startup of the CPM-Dairy program

If the CPM-Dairy program is running, shut it down and re-start it.

Then select File → Open → Session

Open FeedBank fileThe 'Open the Feedbank' dialog prompts us to open a feedbank for this session. CPM is designed to force the opening of feedbanks prior to beginning a session.

Since we have set 'CPMFiles' as our default Feedbank Folder, the 'Open the Feedbank' dialog now shows us available .fdb files in our 'CPMFiles' folder. We see the 'All Updates' file along with another .fdb file that we may have generated ourselves in CPM.

Select the 'All_Updates' file.

Open session folderThe next step is the 'Open a Session' dialog which prompts us to select a ration (.ssn) file. There are no .ssn files in the root of the CPMFiles folder. We are looking for rations for FarmA so we click on the FarmA folder.

Select sessionThe above image shows the available ration (.ssn) files in the FarmA folder. We select the Cow.ssn ration.

Update feed ingredientsAfter selecting our ration, CPM asks if we would like to compare the ration feeds with feeds in the feedbank we opened earlier.

We will click “No”.

Note that this feature allows CPM to update a ration automatically with new feed data where the feed names match. We will not deal with that here but this is a function with which you may wish to experiment. Be sure that you understand the effects of this function on your rations before using and re-saving any ration!.

At this point, we opened both our feedbank and our ration. By clicking on the 'Feed Dictionaries“ icon in CPM-Dairy, we will have access to the feed dictionaries drop-down list box

Access feed dictionariesAbove we see the drop-down list box containing all the CPM-Dairy built-in feed dictionary feeds, our ration plus our 'All Updates' feedbank at the bottom of the list.

Be aware that external feedbanks like the All_Updates-2010-06-04.fdb do not replace or modify the built-in CPM feed dictionary in any way. As with any feedbank from any source, the names of feeds in the feedbank may match some of the those in the built-in dictionary but may in fact be different feeds. You need to be aware at all times which feed bank you are using.

Feedbank files are designed to be dynamically loaded, external data files. They are not “installed” but are loaded by choice each session.

Note also that it is possible to change the data in opened feedbank files, unlike with the the built-in CPM-Dairy feed dictionary. Feeds may of course be modified once copied to a ration or another feedbank regardless of source.

Set up CPM-Dairy to automatically open a specific feedbank on startup

Once again select the Preferences dialog from the main menu in CPM-Dairy

Preferences automatic FeedBank loadClick in the text box to the right of 'Feedbank 1' to make the ”…“ button appear. Click the ”…“ button to browse folders.

Select FeedBankWe now select the “All Updates” .fdb file and click “Open”.

Preferences auto FeedBank setThe “All Updates” .fdb file is now shown as 'Feedbank 1'.

Close the Preferences dialog.

Close the CPM-Dairy program and re-start it.

Then select File → Open → Session

Add FeedBank to DictionariesClicking 'OK' at this point, will add our “All Updates' feedbank to the dictionaries list in CPM for this session. Again, note that this has no effect on the CPM's own built-in feed dictionary.

Un-checking the check box before hitting the 'OK' button will cancel the load of the 'All Updates' feedbank.

The subsequent steps will be the same as the usual steps to load feedbanks and rations.

Categories: CPM


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