# Define Shipping Methods (SHIP.CONTROL)
Read Time: 3 minute(s)
The SHIP.CONTROL procedure is used to define default information which will be used by the marketing and shipping procedures. This procedure, also, controls the shipping methods (ship via data), as well as integration information to UPS and Fedx software systems.
The integration between the freight carrier's software and M3 is handled by exporting and importing data to and from text files. The text files are comma delimited or CSV files. They must be saved in a shared directory on a server that can be accessed by both M3 and the freight carrier.
When you are ready to begin using this feature, please contact Rover Data Systems for a listing of the fields that will be imported and exported. One of these fields is the shipping method or ship via field. The first tab of SHIP.CONTROL contains a listing of the methods currently used by your company. These methods need to be mapped in the freight carrier's system to match their shipping methods. It is recommended that the limit entries option be selected when using this feature. Any changes to the ship via field in SHIP.CONTROL will need to be mapped in the freight carrier's software.
When setting up the process for the first time or making changes to the process, it is recommended that the field help be read as it contains additional information about how the integration process works. If you do not know how to set-up the import and export profiles in UPS or Fedex, you will need to contact your representative for assistance.
Frequency of Use
The entries in this procedure must be loaded prior to using any of the other procedures in the Marketing Module. This is usually done as part of setting up the system. The entries may be changed after that time as required.
When interfacing data between M3 and a freight carrier, there are two procedures - SHIP.P3 and SHIP.P4 - that must be run daily. These are mass update procedures that are usually included in a nightly batch routine. Ship.p3 regenerates a text file used by the freight carrier to import data into their system. If you are doing the exports to the freight carrier in real time, this file will be updated when ship records are created and/or changed. Ship.p4 is used to post the data from the freight carrier (tracking numbers, package dimensions, etc.) to the SHIP file in M3. When doing imports into M3 real time, the ship records may updated but in order to ensure that all updates have been made, SHIP.P4 should be run after all processing has completed on the freight carrier's software. Please note that when doing real time updates, there may be a period of time in which invalid tracking/waybill numbers are referenced in M3. If, for example, you process a package at 12:00 and void it at 3:00, there could be a period of time in which that voided waybill shows in the shipping and sales order procedures in M3. Running SHIP.P4 at the end of day will ensure that all voided packages are removed from the sales order and shipping records.