Barcode Scanning

You can quickly process incoming electronic part shipments (adding stock to your inventory and creating parts if necessary) by scanning barcodes. PartsBox supports both scanning from within the browser (using your computer's camera) and using external USB scanners. This greatly accelerates the process of adding stock to your inventory.

When a barcode from a distributor label on a package is scanned, PartsBox finds the part in your database and shows the "Add Stock" dialog (prefilled with information from the label, if possible). If the part doesn't exist, you will be asked to choose it from matching online parts. Once it gets created, you will be presented with the "Add Stock" dialog.

PartsBox supports the following barcodes:

  • 2D barcodes: DataMatrix and PDF417 containing ANSI MH10.8.2 data encoded using ISO/IEC 15434:2006 (Digi-Key, Wuerth Elektronik).
  • 1D barcodes from Digi-Key, Mouser, Farnell, RS Components, and most others that encode the MPN (Manufacturer Part Number) in the barcode,
  • ID Anything™ QR codes generated by PartsBox.

If quantity is encoded in the bar code, it will be prefilled in the "Add Stock" dialog.

External barcode scanners that generate keystrokes are supported (that includes most, if not all, USB scanners). The Zebra LS2208 is an example of a 1D scanner that is inexpensive, reliable, and works well. For scanning 2D barcodes, in addition to having a 2D scanner, you also have to configure it to replace special non-printable characters with ASCII sequences, so that it can work through a browser app. Please see the Users's Guide on how to configure a Zebra DS2208 scanner by scanning a special configuration code.


For always-accessible scanning there is the built-in scanner, right within PartsBox. It uses your computer's camera. It is recommended to use a camera with autofocus, as most low-end cameras will be unable to focus on the barcode.

When buying a dedicated hardware barcode scanner, PartsBox recommends a 2D scanner, in particular the Zebra DS2208. More and more distributors will be migrating to 2D barcodes, which can store significantly more information. A 2D scanner can also decode 1D barcodes.

Another scanning option is the Barcode to PC app. This solution consists of two parts: software that needs to be installed on your PC, and a mobile application that does the actual scanning. This solution does not yet work correctly with DataMatrix codes, but this is likely to change in the future.

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