The Maximum Migration to ACT!
C I Corporation - ACTConvert.com
ACT! - Data Conversions
Many people want to convert from Maximizer to ACT!, but there has been no easy way to do it, without retyping the data.
The Maximizer.Map file provided inside the ACT! Import feature only brings in the Contact data (and no secondary contacts), without the important activities (calls, meetings, todo's), history, notes, groups, or email addresses. So, you're only left with basic rolodex information. "History was history." But you need to benefit from your many hours of data entry with Maximizer.
Beneath the similar user interfaces of ACT! and Maximizer, are some complex tables, index keys, and data relationships. ACT! and Maximizer store their contact data in different ways, using differing fields and approaches. ACT's complex .BLB file is especially challenging to work with, which stores user information, notes, and attachment references. One small error, and the file is corrupted. This is perhaps why no one has yet created an effective data conversion program.
For years, Maximizer enjoyed the strategic advantage of being able to almost completely convert data from ACT! - while ACT! was unable to do that in the other direction. Once an ACT! database was easily assimilated into Maximizer, there was no way back.
The "Maximizer to ACT Conversion Process" is a series of procedures and programs which convert any Maximizer database into any ACT! version format. We can convert your:
We can also convert the Documents, Email Content & Email Attachment links, but it is presently a tedious process. We are developing macros to assist. But it can at least now be done by an assistant. The documents are File Exported from Maximizer in to Microsoft Word compatible RTF (Rich Text Format). We can do this for $1 per document.
We do a lot of this type of conversion, and have refined the process down to about 3-4 hours. We've put the data back and forth between ACT and Maximizer many times over the years. Usually we do the job overnight, so people can leave off with Maximizer one day, and start with ACT the next day.
As different organizations use Maximizer and ACT! in different ways, we would like to have a phone number to call someone familiar with your database, just in case we have questions about unusual particulars during the conversion.
Your data should first be compressed, using a program such as WinZIP or PKZIP. This is to make the file small, so that it can be sent more quickly. It will be sent in the form of a Maximizer.ZIP file. When we are done converting your database, we will send you an ACT_DATA.ZIP database file to uncompress and use with ACT!
Just use our form at DataUpload.com
If your company has an FTP site, we can download and upload it there. You will need to supply us with a login and password.
Either way, your data is kept in the strictest confidence.
A complete list is included at the above link. A MaxZip.Bat file, placed in the Maximizer EXE folder, will get the proper files automatically. Or, you can create a compressed "Zip" file on your own. Please do not send the C:\Maximizer\MAILBOX\ATTACH folder, as this may have hundreds of Word processing, Excel spreadsheet, and PowerPoint files. These do not need to be converted, and only make the Zip file larger. This makes it take longer to send your files to us.
When we are done with the process, we will call and send you an email with the ACT_DATA.ZIP file attached (if it is a small database), or a link to download the file with your browser. For your security, this folder will be have an unguessable name. In addition, we will encrypt the ZIP file. We want zero chance that anyone else will get your data.
Our Consulting Rates - Usually the job takes
about 3-4 hours of human work time (computer processing is free), for about US$ 200-300.
The cost depends on several factors:
We can provide you an estimate at no cost or obligation.
For some clients, we do the conversion on a weekly basis at a substantial discount. For example, a salesman who likes to use Maximizer, can send his database to his Sales Manager who uses ACT! for activity analysis. This way they are both happy.
Some features of Maximizer have no direct or easy equivalent in ACT! But we can discuss alternatives or ACT! Add-Ons for such features as:
Each conversion improves the process as more and more of these limitations are overcome.
We do a thorough check to make sure all the information that is possible,
comes across from Maximizer to ACT!
For example, we perform a Field Name Checking procedure. You will find an ACT Admin record used for this check. But if we miss anything the we should have converted, we do that at no additional cost. Please keep in mind that the reason this conversion was not included in ACT! was that it is very difficult.
We have been working to develop a generic software package that "does it all" but this has proven difficult as there are a surprising number of variations in the way people use Maximizer and ACT! Plus, the GM data is not always in the right place and may require some cleanup preparation. It's the exceptions that require special data handling.
The process still involves a number of expensive different programming tools which must be bought from software companies.
This list does not include the all important special programs and scripts written to make the conversion work. So it is best converted by a qualified database technician who already owns and has experience with these tools.
Even if we were able to create one conversion program, you would probably only need it for a one-time run. The program (and possible technical support) would cost more than our service work to do it, anyway. You might not use these database tools again and they would sit on your shelf.
We take care and run cross checking routines to verify that the data has converted properly. We know what to look for. The process is getting better and more refined just about every day. So you benefit from the latest refinements.
Intellisync can convert most of the contact data, and activities for Palms, and other simple rolodex systems. But, unlike Intellisync, we also retain the relationships - the way a contact relates to the activities, groups, histories, and notes. After an Intellisync conversion, the contacts, activities, groups, histories, and notes are separate entities.
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We also have received very positive feedback from ACT! Certified Consultants and commendation from Interact Commerce Corporation senior executives from around the world. This has "evened the playing field" with Maximizer, which was long able to convert from ACT! Before Maximizer was able to assimilate ACT! files, but not vice versa. Now ACT! can convert from Maximizer equally well.
That is a good question. If ACT! did, we would not have bothered developing the procedure.
For one thing, it takes a number of different software packages to accomplish the job: Novell BTrieve
or Pervasive.SQL, Sequitter Codebase, Microsoft Visual Studio and ZedTek's ZTreeWin. This would be too expensive.
It may come down to one word: "BLoB." ACT's BLB file stands for "Binary Large oBject." This is where the Notes, Email addresses, Attachment paths, Passwords, Usernames, etc. are stored. Blob is a good name for it. It is a complex file, and one wrong byte corrupts it. So special care must be taken to ensure the information from Maximizer goes into the right place.
The conversion process takes more than a simple MAP file. Other programs, such as Outlook, can be easily imported. It is just a matter of matching the fields from one data file into ACT!'s structure. But Maximizer's data structure is not that simple.
Another reason is Maximizer's unusual field use. Maximizer uses its fields in quite unusual and let us say, creative ways. For example, in Maximizer's CONTSUPP.DBF file, the Address and City fields are sometimes are used for secondary contacts. But at other times, these fields are used for the "address" of a linked document template! At other times, for an email address. This is too inconsistent for standard import procedures. We are familiar with such idiosyncrasies, and take care of them in our conversion process.
Another obstacle is the date format used in ACT! Instead of storing March 15, 2001 as "03-15-2001", ACT! stores this as "ZJ1D!" This was done to save bytes of storage space while storing the date as well as the time of day. So simple field mapping cannot be used, and a special conversion function must be used. So it may come down to another word - ZJ1D!
We are working to develop something that could be included in the ACT! product. But it would have to be compact enough, easy to run, and fit well into the ACT! menu system. That is a challenge in itself. So, for now, it is a special process.
ACT-Maximizer - not to be confused with AB-Maximizer
Before in Maximizer
After in ACT!