Microsoft Great Plains Integrations - Tips for Developer

In this short FAQ style article we would like to introduce you - software developer, programmer, database administrator into Microsoft Great Plains Integration tools and options

Microsoft Great Plains is main Microsoft Business Solutions product for US mid-market. Historically Great Plains Software designed Great Plains Dynamics and Dynamics C/S+ as multiplatform application and the integration was possible via Great Plains Dexterity or Dexterity-based end user tools, such as Import Utility and later on via Integration Manager. When Microsoft Windows platform won the OS market (the last battle was in 1997 with PowerMac) Great Plains recommended OLE Server approach: Continuum for VB and Delphi and new Microsoft light programming technology - VBA (Visual Basic for Applications), which was integrated into Dexterity application - Great Plains Modifier (requires customization site enabler license). Since then Great Plains Dynamics/eEnterprise integration techniques use Microsoft technologies.

1. Microsoft SQL Server approach. This integration technique uses SQL stored procedures and views to pull data from your legacy or third party application and push it into Great Plains. The nice thing about MS SQL Server - it has linked server technology - you can establish the link to virtually all ODBC ir OLEDB compliant databases: Oracle, DB2/Unidata, Sybase, Ingress, Lotus/Domino, Pervasive SQL/Btrieve, Ctree/Faircom, Microsoft Access, Foxpro to name a few. You can schedule your integration as maintenance job or DTS package. However keep in mind that Great Plains tables structure is rather complex (it has master records, summaries, historical, work, open tables) and you should probably verify your stored procedures business logic with Great Plains source code (DYNAMICS.DIC with Dexterity procedures and functions scripts - in regular DYNAMICS.DIC these are stripped out - not every MBS partner has source code subscription - so do your selection work)

2. Great Plains Dexterity integration with Great Plains process server. This is more advanced and recommended approach, however it requires advanced Dexterity programming skills and access to the source code. The idea behind is simple - you populate so-called triggering custom table and then check it from Dexterity custom application every 5 seconds or so. If the record is there - then you process it. Processing is usually Dexterity source code stored procedure call. Great Plains uses similar logic when you post the batch and see the status in Process Monitor window. If you don't have source code - you can try to do the best guess with Microsoft Great Plains Software Development Kit (SDK)

3. Great Plains Integration Manager. This is end user tool and is easy to use. However - it uses Great Plains as OLE Server and calls Great Plains forms behind the scenes. As the result - it is very slow - we recommend using integration manager when you have up to one thousand transactions per day.

4. eConnect ? it is type of Software Development Kit with samples in VB.Net. Obviously the development environment should be Visual Studio.Net. eConnect will allow you to integrate master records - such as new customers, vendors, employees, etc, plus you can bring transactions into so called Great Plains work tables (eConnect doesn't allow you to bring open or historical records - you need to post work records in Great Plains, the same limitation applies to Integration Manager above) eConnect is rather for ongoing integration. It was initially created for eCommerce application integration to Great Plains.

Happy integrating! if you want us to do the job - give us a call 1-866-528-0577! [email protected]

About The Author

Andrew Karasev is Chief Technology Officer in Alba Spectrum Technologies ? USA nationwide Microsoft CRM, Microsoft Great Plains customization company, based in Chicago, Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco, Denver, Houston, Dallas, New York, Boston, Atlanta, Miami, Canada, UK, Australia and having locations in multiple states and internationally (www.albaspectrum.com), he is Dexterity, SQL, C#.Net, Crystal Reports and Microsoft CRM SDK developer; [email protected]

In The News:

TCP Software Acquires Aladtec  FireEngineering.com

Bridging the Gap between Paper and Data

The cornerstone of successful automated office systems is the ability... Read More

Great Plains Dynamics/eEnterprise Upgrade ? Things to Consider and FAQ

If you have Great Plains Dynamics/eEnterprise (version 6.0 or earlier)... Read More

Microsoft CRM Programming Secrets ? Tips For Developers

This article is for advanced Microsoft CRM SDK C# developers.... Read More

Can You Calculate Complex Financial Calculations?

Are you a whiz at calculating financial information? Not the... Read More

Cross-Platform Custom Software Development & Integration ? IT Strategy for Large Corporation

Microsoft Business Solutions products: Great Plains, MS CRM, Navision, Axapta,... Read More

A Guide To Purchasing Professional XP Icons Online And Enhancing Your Applications

Icons are used everywhere; right from software applications, to internet... Read More

C++ Tutorial 1, Introduction to C++

Introduction to C++Why Learn C++?C++ may at first seem like... Read More

DVD Burning Tips

CD and DVD replication is a process that works by... Read More

25 Things Mapping Software Can Do For You

1. With mapping software you can create a report that... Read More

Pros and Cons of Using FREE Software in Your Business

Itâ??s easy to understand why you might be drawn to... Read More

Linux ? Keyboard Or Mouse

Just stress testing one of the latest Linux distributions. Been... Read More

Microsoft Great Plains Partner Selection: Overview

Microsoft Great Plains, Navision, Solomon and Axapta are Microsoft Business... Read More

Microsoft Great Plains FA: Fixed Assets ? Overview For Consultant

Great Plains Fixed Assets Management module is a robust tool... Read More

Software Engineering: An Introduction

Software Engineering is the Systematic Approach for analysis design implementation... Read More

Software Piracy - Global Increase

Pirated software is on the increase and now accounts for... Read More

Do You Want Your Own Fully Programmable ERP? - Part 1

We are in a transition phase in the Managerial Administration... Read More

Microsoft Business Solutions Customization Options - Overview for Programmer

Several years ago Microsoft purchased Great Plains Software, then Navision... Read More

Microsoft Great Plains Middle East - Arabic Language Support

Microsoft Business Solutions Great Plains is marketed for mid-size companies... Read More

Mapping Software: Putting Data Visualization on the Map

Mapping Software Improves Data VisualizationFrom the outset, it is important... Read More

Quick Summary of Basic and Common Linux Commands

There are many commands that are used in linux on... Read More

Microsoft Great Plains BR: Bank Reconciliation

Microsoft Business Solutions Great Plains is marketed for mid-size companies... Read More

Should I Use Windows Update?

Should one use Windows Update?This topic has good and valid... Read More

Microsoft CRM Customization ? Programming Closed Email Activity

Microsoft CRM is CRM answer from Microsoft and attempt to... Read More

Microsoft Great Plains PM: Payables Management

Microsoft Business Solutions Great Plains is marketed for mid-size companies... Read More

How the Firefox: How to... Manual Helped Me

A few months back I really got sick of my... Read More