The complete workflow surrounding the EDI environment can be summed up as follows:

Inbound Processing:

  1. Documents are received from the Partners or VANs
  2. Documents are separated by Trading Partner
  3. Acknowledgments are created and returned to the partner
  4. Documents are imported into SYSPRO

Outbound Processing:

  1. Documents are exported from SYSPRO
  2. Documents are collected together for transmission
  3. Documents are sent to the Partners or VANs

Communication Paths

In the SYSPRO EDI system a complete setup starts with the definition of the communication paths.  A communication path is any entity from which EDI documents are received.  This could be directly from a trading partner, through a VAN or over the corporate network. An EDI installation could have one or many communication paths.

Each communication path is defined within the "Communication Paths" cross-reference.  A 1-10 character code is assigned to the path to be used within the EDI system.  For each path the name of the file that holds the received documents is defined as the "Input Sort File".  The name of file which will hold all documents to be sent is defined as the "Output Combine File".  The Input Sort File name can contain a wildcard to indicate a series of files, the Output Combine File must be a single file. Each of the file names specified will be prefaced with the default EDI file path and both must reside on the SYSPRO server and be specified using the server drive paths.

If the access to the communications path is via FTP, the additional pages of the Communications path setup regarding server name, username and password etc. must be filled out.  When downloading information the files specified in the "Files to GET" field will be retrieved and stored in the "Input Sort File".  Multiple files may be retrieved from the server and combined into a single sort file.  When sending documents the Output Combine File will be sent to the server and named on the server as specified in the "File to PUT".  For both sending a receiving a directory can be specified on the remote server.

If an outside communications program is being used (such as an AS2 server), the outside program must be configured to save incoming data in the same location and using the same filename scheme as the Input Sort File. It must also be configured to look for files with the name of the Output Combine File for sending.

Input Sort

The EDI Input Sort program handles the breaking down of input files into individual documents by Trading Partner.  It will also initiate a download for any communications paths using FTP.  The Input Sort reads all the ANSI information from the Trading Partner records and the document information from all the document records.  This information is then matched against the information in the input document.  When a match is found, the document is written to the file specified in the EDI document record.  If no match is found a warning message is noted on the input sort report and the document is written to the Unknown Documents file specified in the EDI System setup.

In order to generate 997s, the input documents are actually written to two separate files.  They are written to the file specified in the Input document setup and the "Input" document specified in the outgoing 997 setup.  These two documents must have different names.

Once the input documents are broken down, they can then be imported using the EDI Imports and the outgoing 997 can be created.  Optionally, the input sort can automatically run the imports and the 997s.

There is an "Auto-Configuration" button on the ANSI tab of the partner setup.  This routine will read a input file looking for the ANSI ISA/GS information.  The correct information for a partner can be selected and it will automatically be filled in on the partner record.

Output Combine

The EDI Output Combine program is used for sending document to the partners.  After all exports are completed, the output combine program is run.  The communications path entered against each trading partner is checked and all documents using the same path are collected together into a single file.  If FTP is setup for a path the file will be transmitted to the server using the information provided. If FTP is not being used, it is assumed that the AS2 or other communications system will see the combined file and send it to the partner or VAN.

For the quick turnaround of 997 documents generated from inbound documents, the Input Sort can be set to automatically perform an output combine after it generated the 997s.

Acknowledgement Scanner

There is a facility for matching documents and 997s together which can be automated within the Input Sort and Output Combine programs.  By enabling the options to run the Acknowledgment Scanner in both systems, every file received and sent will be scanned. The documents sent and received will be logged and the 997s matched against them.  The acknowledgment query can then be used to check for missing acknowledgments.


The above processed may be automated using the EDI automation functions. The Input Sort and Output Combine are not yet available from the e.Net automation functions.