Friday, March 3, 2017

The final update to LenovoLook Pro for Android is now posted on the Google Play Store.   What's new ?  Instead of relying on the user to download a database with Lenovo product info, the latest version downloads and installs eleven databases.  The search engine is thus ready to go immediately.  Next is to see if there is any interest in an iPhone/iPad version.  I set up to see if anyone will donate towards the cause.  I have exhausted my passion and especially my personal funds for all three tools (1. PC Sales Guide/Configurator....2.  LenovoLook Pro.......3. FRU to Marketing Cross Reference.  I do not plan to make any updates after this, as I have given up on Lenovo.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

I have changed the way memory sockets are described for system units.  Before, the text was something like this

RAM sockets: total/free 4(2)

it is now

RAM sockets: total 4, open-yes (2)

This is to allow users of LenovoLook, the free app for Android devices and selected BlackBerry smartphones, to locate any system units which have at least one open memory socket as shipped from the factory.  So for example, if you have installed LenovoLook on your Android device, then at least one database (e.g. US-ThinkPads), you can enter a search string like this........e450, open-yes..............and LenovoLook will find and display any and all ThinkPad E450 models that have at least one open socket unless upgraded after they left the factory.

This will help when the Lenovo Multitool database is ready for release.  Using that database, you will (1) be able to look up a FRU number - e.g. a memory module removed as part of a field upgrade, (2) find the marketing option equivalent, (3) see the price & supply of the marketing option, and (4) see a list of all the system units that support that module.   Suppose you recognise one of the system unit families (e.g. 20DC ThinkPad E450) as among those you have in your inventory. Switching databases (from Lenovo Multitool)to the appropriate system unit db (again, example US ThinkPads) you can then search using the string above, and the resulting list may be suitable homes for that memory module.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

It occurs to me that some users might be interested in interim updates.  After each update, I start work right away on the next, adding one new product after another, testing each one as I go.  Anyone interested in seeing a particular model should contact me, and I will send them the interim update.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Another time-saving function

Suppose you have created a rather complex configuration for a customer, with multiple hardware, software and services options.  Then you decide it would be useful/interesting to 'clone' this configuration, using a different system unit but where most/all of the options are still required.  Possible reasons include

  1. withdrawal of the initial system unit
  2. pricing action on either the original or the substitute system
  3. supply issues
  4. changing one or more concepts (rack mount versus floor-standing, warranty extension/upgrade, etc.)

Rather than go through the entire process of finding and selecting all those options again, try this.

  1. Save the initial proposal.
  2. Use File-->Open/Load an existing configuration to open the original.
  3. When the Configuration Load window appears, double-click on the system unit in the top window.  This puts a bracket symbol in the left-most column, indicating it is to be ignored when you press Validate later.  Scroll down to see how far those brackets go.
  4. Switch to the New Configuration-x window that just opened when you clicked on the system unit, and select the substitute/alternate system unit, using whatever method is easiest for you.  If there are any automatic choices that are forced when you select the substitute, make either the same choice(s) as the original, or not, as you wish.  
  5. Once the substitute system unit is on the quote page, bring the Configuration Load window to the foreground, and now you can press Validate.  The Configurator engine will try to install all your choices on the new system.  Successful additions will be marked with a plus sign in the left column (you will have to scroll down in the upper window to see all the components). Any that fail will be identified in a popup message, and marked in the left-most column of the upper window, so you can examine them and take appropriate action.  Once completed, you can press Close.
  6. Note that when you reload the initial configuration, the name, address and other customer information is copied to the new version when you Save the file.  Be sure to rename it so you don't overwrite the original.

This should help save you time when doing multiple "what-if" scenarios.  Each version can be presented to your customer separately.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Needs Assist Update

It is getting more and more complex trying to provide choices for wireless components.  This area is becoming very granular, and for the sake of simplicity, I have decided to separate WLAN and WWAN into two separate "needs", as opposed to the current status, where they are combined.  This will take some time as I am also in the middle of adding all the new system units from PSREF 455.  Anyone needing an interim update where this area of product specs is not a concern, please contact me directly.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Coming soon.....a FRU to Marketing Cross-reference database

Work is close to complete on a new type of database.  Instead of system units and options for various countries, this new project will contain selected FRU (service) parts and their marketing equivalents. This is an update of the concept I had many years ago, and may help solve the problem of what to do with parts left over after a field upgrade.  For example, consider a Lenovo system unit with two memory sockets, each containing a 1 GB memory module, for a total of (1+1=) 2 GB.  Any increase in total memory will require removal of at least one of them, to free up one or more sockets, and replacement by one or more larger modules (e.g. 2 GB, 4GB or 8GB).  The question then arises - what to do with the removed memory ?  Each memory module has on the back a FRU partnumber (Field Replaceable Unit), but this number cannot easily be identified as a valid option for other machines, especially for different families.  This new database, when installed on selected BlackBerry phones or Android devices in combination with the LenovoLook app, may help.  Start the app, enter the FRU number of the memory, press FIND, and you may get a hit, showing

1.   the marketing (option) partnumber
2.   a list of system units that support this option (this may be a long list, and it may include a list of situations  where use of this memory module is NOT supported, from among the first list)
3.   the current price of that option from Lenovo and/or one U.S. Business partner
4.   the supply from that U.S. Business Partner

This will help re-use memory which you purchased as part of a complete system some time ago, and can still be used in other machines with open memory sockets.  Initially the bulk of the current parts with supporting systems are memory.  More types of options may be added, on request.  These might include hard drives, optical drives,  and adapter cards.

Once you have found a match, with a list of supporting systems, you can copy-to-clipboard, and email it to your customer, right then and there - which they can use to compare with their existing inventory, to find any matching systems.  If your LenovoLook also has system unit databases created by the PC Sales Guide/Configurator, you can look up a sample system, and send that as well, which will list the number of memory sockets and if they are all filled with the standard memory.


This database can also be used for a reverse search, starting from the other direction - you want to increase your memory.  Suppose you have a ThinkPad L520, a 7859xxx model.  If you search on 7859, it will give you a list of both partnumbers containing 7859 (e.g. 53G7859), plus those options supported on a ThinkPad 7859.  So if you need to know which memory options will increase your 7859xxx memory, this will tell you.  But there is one more piece of information you need, that of how many memory sockets are provided, and how many are used.  For that you need one of the other databases you can create using the PC Sales Guide/Configurator.  In fact, you may need for current model ThinkPads, and another for withdrawn models, since you may not know if your model is still current.  Try the current one first, and see if you can find your exact model.  The Show function will open the extended description, and you can see the number of sockets, and if they are both filled with the standard memory.

Those interested in trying the prototype FRU database should send a note to

Thursday, February 14, 2013

BlackBerry version of LenovoLook now free

To make things even easier for those who would like to try LenovoLook on their BlackBerry, the app is now free.  It is a search engine, which reads databases created by PSCFG (the PC Sales Guide/Configurator tool, which is updated monthly or more frequently).  If you have not yet installed a copy of this Windows application (also free, from, there are a few sample databases on that web site.  You can create your own, with

  1. current or withdrawn Lenovo system units, options, software and services
  2. current prices and some supply values (possibly as many as Canada, USA, UK, France, Belgium, Spain, Germany
  3. with product descriptions in English, French or German

Each database can contain one or many product families (ThinkPads, ThinkCentres, IdeaPads, ThinkStations, ThinkServers, etc.)  Or, you can load multiple databases on your smart phone.

If you have your own price/supply/SKU values for Lenovo partnumbers, please contact the Help Desk for free assistance in having PSCFG display your values.  All PSCFG needs is a text file.