Microsoft Retail Management System (RMS) is an okay point of sale system. We have found that the best Point of Sale for Hardware Store Owners and Lumberyards are either J3 Point of Sale or Rocksolid. Both are solid companies that have been around for a long time and have about the same pricing. the only difference is that J3 Point of Sale installs and trains onsite. Both companies were designed by people in the hardware store industry and seem to handle large volume of inventory better then most Point of Sale Companies.
We're actually on ECI's Advantage (Rocksolid on steroids) at the lumber yard I work in. It's java running on top of MySQL. MySQL backend has meant that I've been able to write a web interface so that account holding customers can come on the website and see invoices (in case they blow out of the truck). They can also get real time prices and inventory quantities, do their own estimates, etc.
I shudder to think what creating this using a Windows backend might look like, and whether or not it would work on phones or tablets when I was done. My stuff is php and just runs in a browser. That functionality (and the fact that my data is only a command line login away) is what I love about ECI. The client software also runs in Linux, so our POS boxes are easier to maintain as well. We have an XP box on it's last leg; I can't wait for it to die, then all of our POS boxes will be running Linux.
Pacsoft frightened me, escpecially after hearing about a local (multi location) hardware store and their first couple years of hell. Spruce didn't look any better. With any of the other I've seen (these two included) the data was not readily accessible. They were in Access-ish format or some other proprietary blahblahblah. I'm an open source fellow...
Microsoft Retail Management System (RMS) is the leader in POS from the most stable software company...Microsoft. Microsoft RMS is the best solution for "Do it Best" POS, True Value POS, True Value Rewards, Orgill POS, Handy Hardware POS, ACE POS, Moore-Handley POS and any other Independent Hardware POS retailers who need: POS, Rental, Lumber, Service, Forecasting and Ordering, AR Management, Farm Plan, Gift Cards, Service, and Mobile Inventory. Microsoft PC's and Microsoft RMS are the solutions for any retail system. Microsoft RMS is sold and supported by Microsoft and hundreds of Microsoft Certified Retail Partners who are expert in Retail, PC, and Networking offering an unparalleled support ecosystem of low support costs and knowledge that can't be offered by any other proprietary POS system. Contact us at http://www.syssolutionsllc.com/ to find out more.