Microsoft Great Plains: If You are Orphan Client ? What to Do and FAQ

Microsoft Business Solutions Great Plains, former Great Plains Software eEnterprise, Dynamics and Dynamics C/S+ is very popular ERP and since 1994 has been successfully implemented for mid-size and mid-size to large companies in the USA, Canada, UK, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and Middle East. During the economic recession time 2001-2004 the majority of businesses cut to virtually zero their IT/computer support expenses and stayed with hardware and software. At the same time consulting companies: Great Plains Software and later on Microsoft Business Solutions Partners, VARs, Resellers and ISVs had to reduce their workforce, merge with large auditing companies or simply close their doors. The result of these two tendencies was huge number of so-called Microsoft Great Plains and Great Plains Dynamics orphan clients. In 2005 we see the signs of economy recovery: companies invested into new computer hardware and OS: Windows 2003 servers, Windows XP Pro workstations, Microsoft Exchange, etc. Now it is time for them to upgrade/recover their Great Plains Dynamics or migrate Great Plains Accounting to Microsoft Great Plains. Let's consider the steps required to upgrade your ERP system:

? Annual Enhancement Program. Minimal plan is 16% of the software list price. Microsoft Great Plains requires professional support and Microsoft Business Solutions serves its clients through MBS partner network. This means that you need to pick up Microsoft Business Solutions partner you like and have them reenroll you into annual maintenance program. Unfortunately Microsoft requires you to pay penalty to reenroll, but from time to time it has promotion campaigns when the penalty is partially waived. When you are back in the program ? you will get reg key for the new version and if needed you can purchase additional user licenses and modules

? Hardware Requirements. If you have strong IT group in-house ? have them login to MBS customer source and get hardware and OS requirement for Great Plains version you plan on upgrade to.

? Upgrade. Very good scenario is to have outside consultant for initiating and finishing upgrade, when upgrade itself is done by your own IT group. Also upgrade has to do with modifications you have.

? Migration. If you are on Pervasive SQL 2000 or Ctree Great Plains Dynamics or Great Plains Accounting 9.5 or earlier ? you need migration tool and migration ? Modified Reports. Great Plains ReportWriter reports will be automatically upgraded, except the few of them, which needs to be redone. On the customer source you will find the list of these report which needs to be recreated. Crystal Reports usually do not need upgrade.

? Dexterity Customization. This piece is probably the one for outside Great Plains Dexterity consultant or programmer. Great Plains Dexterity is programming language and IDE and the complexity of the upgrade may vary, depending on the quality of customization design and coding and the level of integration with the main application (usually DYNAMICS.DIC)

? Integrations. The integration may work as is ? especially if it deploys SQL scripts and stored procs. If it doesn't work ? you need programmer help ? who understands Great Plains architecture and table structure.

Good luck with upgrade, implementation, customization and integration and if you have issues or concerns ? we are here to help! If you want us to do the job - give us a call 866-528-0577 or 630-961-5918! help@albaspectrum.com

Andrew is Great Plains specialist in Alba Spectrum Technologies ( http://www.albaspectrum.com ) ? Microsoft Great Plains, Navision, Microsoft CRM Partner, serving clients in California, Minnesota, Illinois, Washington, Florida, Arizona, New York, New Jersey, Virginia, Georgia, Louisiana, Texas, Canada, UK, Australia, Brazil, Germany, Russia

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