A new season begins…

Yesterday I went golfing, and it was the first day that really had that “autumn turning to winter” feel about it.  It was about 8 degrees Celcius when I teed off, and yes, I froze my backside off in the process.  But the sun came out and gradually I only needed 3 layers to keep warm. ; )  (Such is life in Canada when you want to golf in October!)

October 1st also is a new season business-wise: the new Microsoft partner requirements officially begin.  For my firm, that means I officially do not meet the requirements to be a reseller anymore.  This isn't new, it hasn't “crept up” or caught me off-guard… no, partners have been well aware of the changes for many months now.

Am I disappointed?  Yes and no.  When I started, I was really proud to be a full Microsoft Dynamics GP reselling partner… I had customers who wanted to work with me, and only me, and they switched VARs to demonstrate their committment to my business as I had to theirs over the years.  Little did I know when I started, how difficult it is to be a small fish in a big pond.  Systems are heavily geared towards larger partners, particularly on the business transaction side of things.  I've grown to realize that doing business with firms where I'm such a blip on the radar is not fun, and it's not easy.  If you don't have a partner service plan or credit terms, it just takes a lot of back and forth to get business transactions done unfortunately.

Overall it's been interesting, from a business perspective, dealing with Microsoft and a few third party ISV vendors.  I don't regret my decision to become a reselling partner in the first place… it's had its share of hassles but I've learned a few things.

Focussing on the future…

I've been living and breathing Microsoft Dynamics GP, Great Plains, eEnterprise, whatever you call it, for over 12 years now and losing my “reseller” partner status is not going to affect that.  I've spent FAR too much time with this product to change careers.  For all of my venting at Microsoft or others in terms of doing business with them, their products are great, they are well positioned in the marketplace, and they have a tremedous team of people behind the product many of whom I've met over the years and I know they really care about making GP better.

I'll still be a “consulting” partner which gives me access to everything I've really needed.  Heck, software was 4.6% of my revenue last year – mostly enhancement revenue at that… hardly worth fighting over.  I'm working with a great small GP reseller who is small enough to be a good partner for my firm to work with on the software side of things and large enough that they don't have to constantly worry about meeting new partner requirements.  That will allow me to give my clients a quality combination of two solid firms with years of experience to support them in both software and services over the years.  I'll give up a little on the software revenue side of things but in the end, the winner will be my clients… and at the end of the day, that's the only thing that matters!

By | 2017-08-13T11:46:31+00:00 October 2nd, 2011|News, Off Topic Articles|0 Comments

Canadian Payroll 2011 mid-year tax update

The mid year tax update is posted for GP10 and coming soon for GP2010.  Changes are only (so far) for Manitoba, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Saskatchewan.

New this time around: this is only the Canadian changes.  At the end of June there will be a hotfix which will contain US tax changes and other bug fixes.  You only have to install the tax update if you are in the jurisdictions involved – the hot fix in June will be cumulative and will contain the tax updates PLUS the regular bug fixes that normally would be in one service pack.

Here is the download link for GP10.

Here is the download link for GP2010.

Edited: June 9th – added download link for GP2010.

By | 2015-06-03T14:40:36+00:00 June 7th, 2011|Canadian Payroll, News|0 Comments

I’m back with a bug!

At long last I’m back, and aim to get back to regular weekly (if not more frequent) blogging!

First topic, last week I installed GP2010 SP2 (aka R2) at a client site and all was fine.  That is, until I was doing some unrelated work in Report Writer, and was getting an error message when coming back into Dynamics GP.

I had some trouble finding this specific error but did find a post on the partner technical forums with the same problem, from a couple of months ago, that had gone dormant.  I updated the post with my information, adding to the original poster’s info, and it turns out it is indeed a bug.

The scenarios

The errors are specific to the following situation, in GP2010 R2 (11.00.1752)

  • You have Extender installed
  • You go into Report Writer or Modifer during your session of being logged into GP
  • You go back from RW or Modifier into Dynamics GP and receive one if not two errors
  • You get a similar error when exiting Dynamics GP – but ONLY if you had been in RW or Modifier during your GP session.  (No error if you never go into RW or Modifier)

The errors

The first error is pictured below (top is the error, bottom is scrolling down to the rest of the text).  It is an unhandled script exception error:

“Illegal Address for field ‘

[Not Found]’ in script ‘Unregister_Triggers’.”

Scrolling down further is:

“EXCEPTION_CLASS_SCRIPT_ADDRESSING”

and

“SCRIPT_CMD_LOAD_ATSI7”.

Pic_extenderGP2010error1

The second error occurs immediately after the first one AND when you exit Dynamics GP if you had been in RW or Modifier during your session.  Another unhandled script exception.

“Object has no reference.”

Scrolling down further

“EXCEPTION_CLASS_SCRIPT_BAD_PARAM”

and

“SCRIPT_CMD_DEREF_TABLE”.

Pic_extenderGP2010error2

The impact

There appears to be no impact on the functioning of Extender or Dynamics GP.  I didn’t do a TON of testing but what I did test, nothing seemed impacted by the errors.  The fact that there are no errors unless you go in and out of Report Writer or Modifier tell me they are not errors in functioning of the modules themselves but something else.

The resolution

Microsoft has written this up as a bug and hopefully it would get resolved in SP3 assuming they can determine the cause.

UPDATE: December 6, 2011 – this is resolved in KB2599505 (aka US Payroll 2011 Year End Update service pack)

By | 2017-08-13T11:46:31+00:00 May 9th, 2011|News, Troubleshooting|2 Comments
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Microsoft extends dates for new partner cert requirements

I noticed Microsoft posted a date extension on Partnersource to obtain the new certification requirements.  It was posted on April 1st, so in light of that being April Fool's Day, I didn't want to get sucked into some bad prank and looked again today at the information. 

Well, the joke's on me, it's real!  The original deadlines were to be this coming May 1st, now it's been moved to October 1st.  For me that is great news, the only thing better would be the elimination or reduction of some of the minimum requirements, like say SQL exams, multiple people or minimum revenues. 

For customers (& sometimes for partners too), the changes are not always clearly communicated.  Most customers have no idea of the changes and if they are affected. 

What is changing?

The requirements for being a GP reseller were one or more people (employees or consultants) combined to hold GP Financials and GP Install/Config exam certifications.  The requirements now, and being enforced as of this October, are:

  • 2 or more people (employees or consultants) combined exams of the below items
  • GP Financials exam
  • GP Install/Config exam
  • SQL Server Implementation & Maintenance exam (SQL2005 or SQL2008)
  • 1 of those people must have also passed the Implementation Methodology exam

After meeting these, there are also increasing revenue requirements which all but guarantee that small partners, even if they can obtain the certifications, may not be able to maintain the revenue requirements each year without adding new customers.

Once you get those requirements, you maintain eligibility to be a reseller, but still are not considered a Silver or Gold ERP Competency partner… the requirements there are even higher.  I have no issue with the significant requirements for the ERP competency levels of Silver and Gold.  The old Certified Partner and Gold Certified Partner requirements were too low a bar… everyone, unless you were small like myself, was Gold (it seemed), so there was no way to distinguish between partners that way IMHO.

I had achieved the old requirements and am currently a GP reseller.  Under the new requirements though, different story, and the extra time will help me determine if this is the right focus for my business.  The new minimums, when I factor in the revenue requirements, make it unlikely that I will be a reseller for long.

The impact of the changes

What is happening now is a lot of “partner aggregators” are popping up.  These are nothing more than a bunch of small people like me, and other independent consultants who didn't have the certs to be a reseller by themselves, joining forces to be one larger partner.  Combined all the people meet the certification requirements together, and all share access in Partnersource and have ability to sell to their clients.  My concern with this is it's artificial: sure, on paper they meet the criteria as a reseller partner but in substance they don't go to market as a large entity or otherwise act like a large firm because by definition they are a bunch of individuals, not colleagues that work together in proven ways to deliver results to clients.  However, it's a way around the system and if the MPN changes continue to move forward, this will be the new reality.  I'm quite certain Microsoft wasn't intending this to be the outcome of their changes!

What I see happening for customers

I see more customers opting to take advantage of their ability to designate a “reseller” partner and a “consultant” partner.  If the changes mean fewer larger partners for the software, and the customers are perhaps dissatisfied with the services or attention they get from the largers partners out there, they may look more towards independents like myself for their services even if they continue to keep their VAR reseller as just the software guy.

It's an interesting time for my customers… I have a handful of active clients, only one of which switched over to my firm as a GP client.  The other clients are all “customers” of other VARs in the Greater Toronto or Southwestern Ontario area who have chosen to obtain services from me, due to dissatisfaction with the attention or service or skillset from their current VAR.  All of them have had conversations with me about switching completely to me, GP wise, and I've been open with them about proceeding with caution while I am not yet meeting the new requirements.  I don't want a client to switch to me only to find I can't resell the software to them in a few months – and I've been totally up front and honest with my clients about that.  They are happy that I am open with them, and that I am not taking the chance to add to my customer list without them knowing these little details.  The customer that did switch to me early on is well aware that I may end up helping them identify a new local VAR for reseller status only, at the point when I no longer meet the requirements… they went in with eyes open and fully aware that it may be temporary.

Know your rights

My last word on this subject is customers should know they do have choices and a little known fact is they have the ability to designate in essence two partner firms on their Dynamics account – a reseller and a consultant.  Of course, it's no surprise that most people out there are unaware of this, why would a partner tell their customer this? 

By | 2017-08-13T11:46:31+00:00 April 4th, 2011|General Stuff, News|1 Comment

GP Tech Conference Day 3

Today is day 3 in Fargo, and the majority of the day is wrap up and some chances for the vendor sponsors to present their wares.  The room is emptying gradually as the day progresses as people are heading to the airport to catch their flights.

This is mostly some observations of the overall conference and a wrap up of my own.

Meeting people

I'm very much a “put a name to a face” kind of person.  I'm fortunate to have a lot of contacts in the GP community both Microsoft and others but there are many whom I either have never met personally or just don't get a chance to see except at conferences like this.

This week I had a chance to catch up with some Microsoft folks who I have had contact with over the years – Terry Heley, an escalation engineer who I get a lot of payroll scoop from throughout the year, and Jodi Christianson, who is now in pre-sales but I've known her since she did a training course in Toronto many years ago for Project Accounting.

I met some fellow bloggers, including David Musgrave, Mariano Gomez, Leslie Vail and Steve Endow.  There may even be others here that I haven't run into yet, but it's neat to get a chance to talk shop with others who also share their knowledge and in most cases have been pioneering the GP blogging LONG before I have been doing it.

How cool is it to be sitting here at a session, catching up on blog posts, reading Mariano and David's blogs and they are sitting right in front of me while I read them?  Neat stuff… a bit surreal.  As I write this, David is writing another blog, so I'm keeping my eyes on my blog links for when it's posted to read it.

Learning new stuff

I'm not sure if this is a Canadian thing but I'm reminded of the Mastercard “priceless” commercials.  If you haven't seen them, they go something like this: Flight to Fargo: $435.  GP Tech Conference: $500.  Learning the upcoming GP features first: Priceless!

I love to learn.  People who know me, know I can soak this stuff up all day every day.  I think that is part of being a geek… it's not the pocket protectors and bad glasses, it's the sitting at a computer all day at work, being glued to your smartphone on your way home to stay in touch, and then spending all night on the computer or tablet or smartphone again, constantly learning, researching, and looking up new things.  That's me in a nutshell!

Seeing new places

Part of going to conferences and things like this is seeing new places.  Given how cold it was this week, and I'm still getting over a cough and cold, I didn't venture out too much.  The furthest I went was to the Sandbag Central for the volunteering I did on Tuesday night.  Otherwise I ventured to the West Acres mall across the street, it was the closest source of entertainment without getting into a cab!  One of the neat things there was a small Roger Maris Museum which was more of an exhibit than a museum.  There was a video room where you could watch a brief video and sit on actual Yankees stadium seats – cool!  The glassed in area was tons of memorabilia and a fabulous walk through some baseball history.  I love watching baseball and it was neat to dive into this exhibit to soak up some history and learn more about a great baseball player.

Day 3 Content & Wrap Up

Other than the sponsor sessions and presentations this morning, there was another presentation on GP12 and details on the UI changes.  It was exciting to see the upcoming changes, although nowhere near final.  We can't talk in depth about this stuff, you know, lawyers and things like that.  What was cool is among the planned changes are introducing thin client functionality, and the screens they showed us were pretty cool looking.  The UI redesign, whenever it happens, for the thin client will be a big improvement to GP! 

The Q&A was mostly the usual questions except for a spectacular litany of questions and criticisims around the Partner Network changes, and other related things, from Mark Rockwell of Rockton Software.  Kudos Mark for saying some of the things that have been on many of our minds before!

Time to head home

It's nearing the end of the conference and it's time to pack up, wrap up and head back home.  For me, I leave Fargo later this aft, about 4:30pm and I will arrive in Toronto, after a stop in Chicago, after midnight tonight E.S.T.  It will be a long day by the time I get home (another 45 minute drive from the airport to home).  Friday is a rest day fortunately and I imagine I will be sleeping in a little bit!!!

By | 2017-08-13T11:46:31+00:00 March 3rd, 2011|News|0 Comments

GP Tech Conference Day 2

Day 2 at the Dynamics GP Technical Conference in Fargo:  It was another long day, with a lot of information presented in the sessions.  On the weather side of things, it was quite a bit warmer today vs day 1, which I have come to learn was unseasonably cold for this time of year.  Great…. it reminds me of a trip I took to Sault Ste. Marie a few years ago in January where it was the coldest weather on record at the time (and still was the record low temps).  I must be blessed!  🙂

I would say today there was not a lot of “new new” content provided, just more details on the same general functionality introduced in the prior day's sessions, where it related to the upcoming R2 release.

Customization Tools

The first session I sat through was presented by David Musgrave and Mariano Gomez on Customization Tools.  It was a fabulous session looking at how to handle 3 similar customizations using three different tools.  First they used purely Dexterity, second was purely Modifier with VBA, and third was a hybrid using Visual Studio Tools for GP, with a little Dex and a modified window with Modifier.  It was a very neat way to remind us there are lots of options for customizations and no one tool is always the answer.

SRS Reporting

Another session I sat through was a deeper dive into SRS reporting for GP2010 R2.  The session covered the possible* new features and changes, most notably some of the following items:

  • Integrated deployment with Dynamics GP Utilities, instead of having some server tasks and some client tasks to complete.
  • Some refreshing of look & feel elements such as visual indicators where a drillback to GP exists and some style changes to reports to make them a little nicer presentation-wise.
  • Demos of new mapping functionality in Report Builder 3.0 that is used with SQL Server 2008 R2.  Imagine, sales reports by geography, visually showing high and low sales numbers on a map instead of just a graph or report.
  • Multi-company reports and how they have accomplished it, looking at some of the background stored procedures to combine data into one report across companies.

* the disclaimer is what we say is not final and the constant reminder to us all in attendance was until you see this in the final product, these features may change!  🙂

GP2010 R2 Overview

I sat through another session with more of a general overview of the upcoming R2 release, not just the BI tools.  We got a chance to see in a little more detail how some of the following items are coming along (same disclaimer applies!):

  • A clean up of the Reporting Tools Setup window, less clunky and better organized data
  • Excel Builder will have multi-company abilities as well as an option to bulk-deploy excel reports
  • Navigation List performance (speed) improvements are coming – SIGNIFICANTLY improved load times!  Yay!
  • Email message setup changes, more in depth details of the ability to add data fields to message ID's
  • Adding email options to the Report Options windows on any report, where users want to email a report to someone instead of printing (or printing to PDF and emailing manually).
  • More details on the Word Template Generator showing just how nice it will be to convert ANY Report Writer report to a Word Template.  Wow, am I ever looking forward to that functionality!
  • Smartlist Builder gets an upgrade with a column ordering tool, no more having to re-order columns in Smartlist afterwards, for default smartlists created by Smartlist Builder!
  • Extender gets a minor tweak with the ability to copy list values from one field's list to another.

Management Reporter

Last was a session relating to Management Reporter.  I've seen it before but haven't gotten really hands-on very much yet.  It was good to see the differences between MR and FRx, where the improvements are and what isn't changed.  Here are the things I found interesting:

  • It's now native 64bit, built on the .net platform and C# with the data stored in SQL.  No more G32 and F32 files!
  • User setup includes security more similar to GP Security – role based
  • The report viewer no longer uses the cheesy green drill icon!  Too bad really, there goes my one opportunity to have a little fun during training and make some jokes about the drill.
  • The row formats are purely dimension based, and from the looks of it, very easy to use and more flexible than in FRx.  It will list your segment descriptions, account categories and any AA dimensions and you can build a row GL link by entering data in any or multiple of those cells.
  • The column filtering feature uses the exact same functionality as the row format.  No more masking the entire GL account with “?” marks
  • Logos are now possible on the report defiinition level (aka catalog)
  • Another new feature in columns is the ability to specify a page break. If you're familiar with FRx you know that it will not break naturally width-wise so if you have a wide set of columns, it will try to cram them all in on one page.  Eye chart anyone?!!?  So this isn't fixed with MR but they threw us a bone – the ability to specify in the column where to page break.
  • Report groups are available, an improvement to the FRx chaining feature to print multiple reports together

We got a little bit of insight into the Feature Pack 2 release which will be later this calendar year as well as the roadmap.  More to come on those as we get closer.

The end of this session was an interesting discussion on domains being required to install Management Reporter.  I had asked the question initially, if that was ever going to change.  It turned into quite a hot topic and the end of the session morphed into discussions with the development team who were in the room.  The beauty of being at this conference is getting a chance to talk directly to the development team and the product team, with the opportunity to explain a requirement to them directly.

The Night Life!

After yesterday's sessions, there was a reception and expo.  It was a great chance to meet others in a more social setting, and talk to more Microsoft folks as well as vendors who were present in an expo setting.

Of course, the Tim Tam Slam was also a featured event at David Musgrave's table.  I chickened out completely – wearing a white sweater and trying to suck hot chocolate through a Tim Tam cookie before it disintegrates just didn't seem like a good idea!  Keep your eyes on David Musgrave's blog (link above at the top of this article) for more info on this.  I was watching him start a blog post with content of one of the participants in the event so I'm sure it will be up and online soon to watch.

Some other Tim Tam Slam links of interest!  David Musgrave's post of his own effort and Leslie Vail's post of what is involved.

 

EDITS: Updated confusing opening sentence to clarify this is about the second day; added links to other Tim Tam Slam posts.

By | 2017-08-13T11:46:31+00:00 March 3rd, 2011|News|0 Comments

GP Tech Conference Day 1

Today was day 1 at the Dynamics GP Technical Conference in Fargo.  It was a long day of sessions, lots of interesting information to be had.  It was also bitterly cold outside, and it’s safe to say not too many people ventured outside between sessions today!

These update posts won’t have a TON of detail on the new stuff coming.  I do hope to get a chance to talk more about the details another time…

The Weather

It’s funny, you know?  When I say I’m from Canada, the reaction is mostly the same.  “Oh, you must be used to this weather!”  Yeah, right!  We get temps like this maybe once a year.  The temperature right now is -2F with a windchill of -20F (that’s -19C and -29C respectively).  Brrrrrr.

Just for fun I looked at a map to see where I live in comparison to Fargo.  I had no idea I was so much farther south than this in comparison.  The city where I live is not on this map but Hamilton is our neighbour to the west and the closest thing to compare to.

FargoMap

The Content

Today was a long day with a lot of content to digest.  First was the keynote, which was a combination of GP2010 “R2” release information and some sneak peaks at GP “12”.  It sounded like, in reading the R2 release news, that it was mostly a BI release but in reality there are quite a few gems in it, and BI is only a part.

Some sneak peaks of the GP2010 R2 coming soon:

  • A new BI tool called Business Analyzer, offering a desktop application for light user access to SRS reports as well as a new piece inside the core GP install.  In short, the tool is purely for SRS reports, offering contextual BI (particularly within GP).  Example: in GP, the tool will be visible in the Navigation Lists area.  You simply click on one or more items in your navigation list and the content within the reports in Business Analyzer change to reflect the records you have selected.
  • Additions to the Rapid Migration Tools allowing for migration from anything, via Excel.
  • Another new tool, Microsoft Word Template Generator, which will allow you to make a Word template out of ANY report in GP.  Yes, I said any report!
  • Some improvements to the Email features, such as inserting document information into the email body or subject line.

GP12 previews looked pretty cool but I’ll keep those under wraps for now… 🙂

The rest of the day was too much content to go over in any “brief” manner.  Suffice to say a lot was covered in the areas of taking advantage of Light User licenses, the new Business Analyzer tool, Word Template changes, and my favourite of the day, the session on the Support Debugging Tool.  That tool is not new of course but the session was super-informative and since it’s out there right now, it’s the only thing today I could put to good use immediately!

The Night Life!

If there is night life in Fargo, someone else can write about it!  What I did after the sessions were over tonight was a little volunteer work.  Every year there is a huge risk of flooding here in the spring, and I’m probably WAY understating that.  I’m doing a little research to get the facts straight and this is where I’m getting the info from.  Currently the Red River is just under 16 feet.  Flood level is 18 feet, and in 2009 it reached a level of over 40 feet!

One of the preparatory emails we got before coming to Fargo talked about opportunities to volunteer at Sandbag Central!  The goal this year is to have 3 million sandbags filled, the effort started two weeks ago and as of yesterday they have filled 1.4 million so far.

Tonight I went down to volunteer and am glad I did.  It was a great experience and good to see the sense of community here.  I did a 1.5 hour shift til closing this evening (8pm).  At closing, they announced today was the best day so far, filling approximately 175,000 bags!  That’s impressive!

Here are a couple of photos of the area I was working in.  First, the “spider” filling machine.  I didn’t get better pics unfortunately but there is a giant pile of sand to the left, that is being run up to the top of this spider machine and then one at a time being sent down the “legs” to the bagging machines with the right quantity of sand per bag.  This pic is the group of folks I was teamed up with, all from the same softball team.

One person gets the bags ready, one holds the bag at the botttom of the spider leg for filling, then passes it to the next two people. The ones at the front of the picture, one spins the bag to get it as tightly closed as possible, then the other person uses a hand gun type of machine to strap the bags shut with a metal wire.  Then there are two people putting the bags on the skids, that was where I spent my evening!

IMG_0239

Here is a view of the skids, we had to pile the bags in a certain way, anywhere from 8 to 10 bags high (approx 85-100 bags).  We filled about 7 skids while I was there.

IMG_0240

It was a crazy place, you really had to watch where you walked with forklift operators constantly moving skids that are full before the next “leg” finished their skid.  We often were piling on someone else’s skid (and others on ours) as skids filled up quicker than the forklift operators could move them out.

All in all, it was a great first day here and now it’s time to call it a night!

EDIT: Updated a typo

By | 2017-08-13T11:46:31+00:00 March 1st, 2011|News|0 Comments

Canadian Payroll 2010 Year End Tax Update – Round 2

The Dynamics GP Canadian Payroll Round 2 tax updates for year end are now all released (this is old news now as the first one, for GP9, was released on January 20th).

There are downloads for release 9.0, 10.0 and 2010, however the new T4A functionlity is only included for GP10 and GP2010.  The GP9 download is bug fixes and a Quebec RL-1 slip change only.

The installation guide had everything you want and need to know in terms of what is changed and what is included or not.  That guide can be downloaded here: Canadian Payroll Round 2 tax update 2011 (on customersource).

Release 9.0:

Download Link (Customersource)

Versions after install:

Dynamics 9.0.386
Canadian Payroll 9.0.387

 

Release 10.0:

Download Link (Customersource)

Versions after install:

Dynamics 10.0.1701
Canadian Payroll 10.0.???? (to be determined)

 

Release 2010:

Download Link (Customersource)

Versions after install:

Dynamics 11.0.1677
Canadian Payroll 11.0.1674

By | 2015-06-03T14:40:28+00:00 February 7th, 2011|Canadian Payroll, News|0 Comments

The end is near (or is it here?) for GP 9.0

It’s a sad day for all of you Microsoft Dynamics GP 9.0 users out there.  Today is the official end date for mainstream support of that release.  There is a small asterisk here: tax updates will continue until January 31, 2011.

For more information about the lifecycle of this and other products, here is the link

To ensure you are on a supported version of Microsoft Dynamics GP, you will need to update to GP 10.0 or GP 2010.

What does “Supported” mean?

A supported version generally means feature requests are continuing to be reviewed and bug fixes are continuing to be fixed with service packs or hotfixes.  Being supported also means being able to purchase new modules and/or user licences for GP.  Being supported has nothing to do with being “current” on your annual enhancement plan.

Customersource will still have a wealth of knowledge for a recently discontinued product although over time you will find, as the knowledgebase grows, articles will be increasingly relevant only to the newer supported releases.

Partners generally continue to support the product as well as they have a wealth of knowledge themselves on all releases of a product for which they have been working with Dynamics GP.  That being said, over time, as you get farther away from your product being supported, you may find it harder to obtain support for your release.  Partners will not always keep a ready library of functioning test environments of old versions of a product should testing a scenario be needed to answer a question.

Upgrade Implications

While most clients do not upgrade every time a new release comes out, the vast majority of clients I see upgrade every other version, once mainstream support ends.  Keep in mind when planning to upgrade, if you are on an older unsupported version, your cost to upgrade may increase as there is less likely to be a direct path of upgrade from your current version to the version you want to upgrade to.  That means more time spent, more potential issues and added complexity to the project. 

Overall Recommendation

You have made a significant investment in Dynamic GP and part of the cost of maintaining it and budgeting for it should include upgrading every couple of releases at least.  This doesn’t mean it’s an annual cost, but more like an “every three year” scenario based on the current rate of new product releases.  Being “supported” means you have more resources at your disposal – Partners, Microsoft, Customersource, Blogs etc. – all with information relevant to your investment.  There is little worse than reading about some fabulous new features or functionality only to find out you can’t get it on your release!

By | 2017-08-13T11:46:31+00:00 January 11th, 2011|General Stuff, News|0 Comments

Canadian Payroll 2010 Year End Update – issues for GP9?

Hey Canadian Payroll fans out there… it’s me again with some possible bad news.  It seems there is an issue appearing that is pretty specific to a group of customers that fit a certain criteria, namely: customers on GP9 who had previously upgraded from something else to GP9.

The issue is with the table conversion on CPY10100, CP50100 where 4 columns in these two tables have incorrect lengths and the failed tables list is showing a status 135 meaning not having the correct structure prior to upgrading the database.

Updated Dec 23, 2010: the original download page now includes the file to correct issues with the incorrect column lengths.  Look in the Overview section for the link to the file.  Link is here.

The bad good news

There is no fix ready yet – Microsoft is working on a script and I’ll update the status of this post as we get more details.

Mid-way through writing this post I received another email with a resolution for this.  A script has been created and will be posted to customersource on Thursday.   I will update this post with the link once it’s posted.  (I have the script but don’t feel it’s wise to post it here, I’d prefer readers get the script via their partner or via their customersource account).

What to check

These scripts can be run at any time, ideally the earlier the better so that you can identify potential issues before you start your tax update.  There is nothing worse than coming in over the holidays, possibly during a seasonal shut down period, to do an update and only then find you have an issue.  Often times these year end updates are being run during times when partners and support-networks are on reduced hours due to holidays so preparing in advance and doing risk-assessment is very wise!

  • Run these scripts in SQL Management Studio
  • It is a database specific so select the company db(s) that have Canadian Payroll in them when you run the script.
  • It is wise to check ALL of your companies even if you don’t run payroll in them because the tables may still exist.
  • If you haven’t run an sp_help command before, it returns a bunch of information about a table that is irrelevant for this issue; the second set of results is the list of column names, field type, and length among other things with “Length” being the column of interest here.

sp_help CPY10100

sp_help CPY50100

  • Look for these fields in both sp_help results lists and determine if you see the proper field lengths for each or not.

PAddress1 – column length should be 61, incorrect table structure may show 31
PAddress2 – column length should be 61, incorrect table structure may show 31
PCity – column length should be 35, incorrect table structure may show 30
Pcountry – column length should be 61, incorrect table structure may show 20

(Edited Dec 23, 2010 to re-post link to GP9 tax table download where the link to the script to resolve this issue is located.)

By | 2017-08-13T11:46:32+00:00 December 22nd, 2010|Canadian Payroll, News|0 Comments