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AX for Retail 2012 R2: Working with Custom Fields for Receipts

AX for Retail 2012 R2: Working with Custom Fields for Receipts

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Note:  (2013-May-31):  We recently published a hotfix that backports this functionality from AX 2012 R2 to AX 2012 R1 (Feature Pack).  Please contact your Partner or Microsoft Dynamics Support for this hotfix (KB 2852548) if you would like to use this functionality.

In the initial release of AX for Retail 2012 we introduced the ability to add custom fields to sections of the till layout (see my earlier post AX for Retail 2012: Working with Custom Fields for an example working with the till layout).

In the recently-released AX for Retail 2012 R2 we have added custom fields for receipt layouts as well.  This is a nice addition to the product;  in order to accomplish this in previous releases you had “repurpose” infrequently-used fields (Euro Auth Code, Pharmacy Dosage Type??) and replace their value in the Printing service.  While the new functionality still requires a little coding, it results in a much more maintainable customization.

This article will show you how to add two fields to your receipt:  a line item field that shows the time that an item was added to a transaction and a header field that shows the total quantity of the entire transaction (similar to what you would see on a receipt at a warehouse club retailer).

Step 1:  Creating the Custom Fields

Like the custom fields for till layout, receipt fields are defined in Headquarters on the Custom Fields form (Retail > Setup > POS > Profiles > Custom fields).  For our example we will create two fields, both of type Receipt:  TotalQty and TimeScanned.

2013-02-13 15_23_48-‪Custom fields‬ (‎‪1‬)‎


A couple things to note here.  First, any fields that you create are available in all three sections of the receipt format designer:  Header, Lines, and Footer.  Secondly, the Caption text ID is a unique identifier for the text that is going to show in the receipt format designer itself (unlike the custom fields for till layout which use the Caption text ID in the POS itself).  The ID is still stored in the RetailLanguageText table but is only used at Headquarters.  See the AX for Retail: Modifying POS Labels and Strings article for more information about labels and strings.

Since there is no form for adding strings to the RetailLanguageText table, we will populate the values directly in the AOT.  Open a new developer workspace and navigate to Data Dictionary > Tables > RetailLanguageText.  Right-click and select Open.  Create two records by populating the languageID, Text and textID fields:

2013-02-13 15_35_45-‪Table browser_ RetailLanguageText‬ (‎‪2‬ - ‎‪ceu‬)‎


Step 2:  Adding the Custom Fields to the Receipt Layout

After the fields are created they can immediately be added to any receipt format.  Go to Retail > Setup > POS > Receipt formats and click on the Designer button for any receipt format:


2013-02-13 15_38_12-‪Receipt formats‬ (‎‪1‬)‎


If the fields and labels were created properly, you should be able to easily find them in the field list for any of the three sections:

2013-02-13 15_41_28-‪Receipt format designer‬ (‎‪1‬)‎

Note:  If you see something that looks like (22000)??Missing String?? you did not create the RetailLanguageText record correctly.

Find a place to drag the Total Quantity field onto the header section and add the Time Scanned to the lines section.  Give each a hard-coded text label.  Make sure to hit the Save button when you are finished (I tend to forget that step – in fact I just did so in writing up this article).  Run the A-1090 or N-1090 job to push the new receipt to your POS database.

2013-02-13 15_47_23-‪Receipt format designer‬ (‎‪1‬)‎



Step 3:  Hook up the Custom Fields in Code

Now you need to write some code to translate the two fields into actual values.  This happens in the FormModulation.cs file in the Printing service.  The logic for this is pretty simple:  the requested field name is passed in and a large switch statement is called to translate the field to a value.  There are a number of “GetInfo” methods:  values for the header and footer fields are handled in the GetInfoFromTransaction() method; for lines it is the GetInfoFromSaleLineItem() method.  Since we are ultimately printing text to the receipt, the developer is responsible for converting any values into a string variable.

Here is the switch statement for GetInfoFromTransaction():

switch (itemInfo.Variable.ToUpperInvariant().Replace(" ", string.Empty))
	case "DATE":
		return ((IPosTransactionV1)theTransaction).BeginDateTime.ToShortDateString();
	case "TIME24H":
		return ((IPosTransactionV1)theTransaction).BeginDateTime.ToString("HH:mm");

To print a value for your custom field, all you have to do is add your field name to the switch statement (note that we strip out all spaces and convert to upper case):

case "TOTALQTY": return GetTotalQuantity(theTransaction);

GetTotalQuantity() is a very simple helper method that you can add elsewhere in FormModulation class:

private string GetTotalQuantity(RetailTransaction theTransaction)
        decimal qty = 0.0m;
        foreach (SaleLineItem s in theTransaction.SaleItems)
            qty += s.Quantity;
        return qty.ToString();
        return string.Empty;

Step 4:  Testing the Receipt

That’s all there is to it.  Once you compile your Printing.dll service and copy it to the /Services subfolder in your POS installation, you can test it by running a transaction (I like to print my receipts to Microsoft OneNote or XPS files for testing):

2013-02-13 16_44_41-1.oxps - XPS Viewer


Step 5:  Using PartnerData Fields for Line Items

Our header example used a simple calculated field to print a value.  The real power is being able to extend the RetailTransaction object itself to store extended values which can then be printed on the receipt.  This is done with the PartnerData object which was introduced in AX for Retail 2012 Feature Pack.

The PartnerData object is a generic collection that can be defined at runtime instead of compile time; fields can be stored at the transaction level, the sales line level, or the payment line level.  These fields are then stored in transaction object and can be used in triggers or services.  In our example we will create a field called “TimeAdded” on the sales line and then use it when printing the receipt.

Open the Triggers solution in Visual Studio and go to the ItemTriggers project.  We have to add a few things to the project before adding our code:

  • The PartnerData object relies on a feature introduced in C# 4.0.  To use PartnerData in any of your POS code, your project needs to add a reference to Microsoft.Csharp
  • Our example uses the SaleLineItem POS object which is in the Transaction class.  Your project also needs a reference to the Transaction.DLL file from the POS installation folder.  Make sure to set the Copy Local property to False when you add this reference.
  • Finally, a using LSRetailPosis.Transaction.Line.SaleItem; line needs to be added to the top of your ItemTriggers.cs file


2013-02-13 17_01_49-Triggers - Microsoft Visual Studio (Administrator)

2013-02-13 17_04_04-Add Reference


After this setup, we only need to add these two lines to the PreSale() method:

using LSRetailPosis.Transaction.Line.SaleItem;
public void PreSale(IPreTriggerResult preTriggerResult, ISaleLineItem saleLineItem, IPosTransaction posTransaction)
SaleLineItem s = (SaleLineItem)saleLineItem; s.PartnerData.TimeAdded = System.DateTime.Now.ToString("HH:mm:ss");


Note that we are converting it to a string as we store it to PartnerData – we could have just as easily stored it as a DateTime value and converted it in the Printing plug-in.  If we were doing calculations on the value (average time to scan an item??) we would have left it as a DateTime value.

Compile your ItemTriggers dll and copy it to the /Triggers subfolder in your POS installation.

Now we just need to read the TimeAdded value when printing sales lines on our receipt.  This is done in the FormModulation.cs again, this time in the GetInfoFromSaleLineItem() method.  Note that since we are now using PartnerData we also need to add a reference to Microsoft.CSharp in this project.

switch (itemInfo.Variable.ToUpperInvariant().Replace(" ", string.Empty))
case "TIMESCANNED": returnValue = saleLine.PartnerData.TimeAdded;
    case "TAXID":
        returnValue = saleLine.TaxGroupId;

Our updated receipt now also shows our scanned time:

2013-02-13 17_29_33-2.oxps - XPS Viewer


As you can see by the small amount of code in this article, there really isn’t much development work involved in adding custom fields to receipts in AX for Retail 2012 R2.   In discussions with Partners and Customers this topic comes up very frequently; I think this will be a popular feature of the product.

See the attached .zip file for customized ItemTriggers and Printing projects with the code samples mentioned above.

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  • Hi Shane Erstad

    Thank you very much for your very helpful blog.  

    I got a stuck problem, I have a new receipt (Daily Sales grouping by product category) and have to print it from a button.  How can I send data from a POS button (BlankOperations.dll) to POS Printing component (Printing.dll)?  

    Thank you in advance.  


  • Hi Phannasri,

    There are a couple of ways that you could approach this.

    First of all, if you want to calculate and create the report directly in C#, you could do it like we do with the X report and the Customer Transaction report.  Take a look at the Print() method in Customer\TransactionReport.cs for an example of how that could be done.

    If you actually want to print a true "receipt" layout that you have created in HQ, you would have to call the Application.Services.Printing.PrintReceipt method from the Printing plug-in with a temporary transaction that you have create and the formtype that you are printing.

    If it's a very simple report, I would recommend the first approach.

  • Hi Shane,

    1000's of thanks.

    Its really worth full. Thanks a lot.

    Thanks & Regards,

    Veeramani. D.

  • How can i show store phone number in receipt in reciept format designer i dragged the storephone field but getting empty value in storephone is der any alternative

  • Srinivas,

    There should be nothing you have to do to get the phone number to print on the receipt - the only trick is finding the correct place to enter the phone number for the store.  You have to go to Organization Management > Common > Organizations > Internal Organizations and then find the Operating Unit Number of the store.  Under "Contact Information" fast tab enter a phone number and make sure to mark it as primary.  After that, replicate the data to the store database and restart the POS.  That should pick up the new phone number.

  • Thanks Shane,

    for the placeholder tip,

    and for confirmation that the other fields on the RetailLanguageText table are obsolete.

    Can you tell me if there are "official" Microsoft documents or White papers somewhere that can tell us which other (undocumented) POS fields are no longer used? I'm particularly thinking of POS payment methods.

    Thanks again!

  • Also, thanks for the answer you gave to Srinivas. Very helpful.

    Are the stores' address fields also taken from the stores' Operating units' adresses?

  • Hi Shane Erstad, great blog.

    Can we control which receipt to print through code?

    Example. Only print the order receipt in Customer Order with edit and create CustomerOrderMode and print normal sales receipt only in Customer Order with pickup CustomerOrderMode.

    Thank you in advance.


  • Hi Christopher,

    The code that decides what to print in different scenarios is in non-customizable code (PrintTransaction method of the TransactionSystem dll).  That code uses logic to determine whether to print a Sales Order receipt, Pickup receipt, etc.  Each receipt is printed with a call to a method in the Printing DLL (PrintReceipt, PrintInvoice, PrintCreditMemo, etc.)

    The Printing DLL is customizable, however, so you might be able to intercept these various calls and add some logic around whether or not to actually print a particular receipt.  You have full access to the transaction that is going to be printed in each of these methods, so you should be able to create some rules based on the transaction data.

    Hope this helps out a little bit...

  • Hi Nicholas,

    I'm not aware of any documentation that would detail obsolete fields and database columns.  There are a few notes about deprecated features in the "what's new" documentation that accompanies each release, but that's about all I know of.

  • I have done some customization in Footer part of POS receipt. Receipt getting correct output on screen [along with Customized fields] but while System has some "Change Back amount" [additional Line added in between Total and custom field] then actual print does not take custom fields. Could you please suggest us the resolution.

    Let me know if you require some more information.

    Thanks in advance.    

  • I saw this blog great. I know this thread is old but I'm looking where can I access the info for those custom fields? I mean, I have a custom field called "Flight" where can I read the flight info that the cashier wrote down?

  • Hi i have two rows with custom fields in each row. there are instances that the 2nd field could be blank. and when it prints there will be a blank space. and what i want to happen is that there would be no empty space. is that possible?

  • Hi Shane,

    Nice to see this article.I would like to know that i want to enable/disable the buttons like cash,card,exact based on my condition.So do i do this as i cannot be able to get the object/reference of these buttons, as these buttons are created dynamically.

    Can you help me in which area do i need to do customization to achieve this functionality and how do i get the objects of the dynamically created buttons.



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