Integration Options for Microsoft Great Plainsoverview

By: Andrew Karasev

Microsoft Dynamics GP, current version 10.0 as of October 2007, has excellent chances to fit your mid-size and even large corporate business requirements.? However as you can expect MS Dynamics GP implementation scope goes beyond the software installation, beginning balances entry and users training, we would like to arm you with some initial knowledge about Microsoft Great Plains integration scenarios and options:

  1. Great Plains Integration Manager.? This tool is very powerful and it is not difficult to get training and become IM professional and support various integrations within your organization as the member of IT team.? If you as programmer have VB and VBA skills, IM opens new horizons of integration opportunity for you: you can extend integrations with VBA scripts, allowing you to intercept standard integration logic and.? Example – you can change integrated invoice date, based on integration date – make it, let’s say be the first day of the following week.? The most popular scenario is when IM works with text tab delimited files, however you can build integration on ODBC connection.? Classical example of IM question is how to build integration for GL transactions, based on one file?? If you familiarize yourself with grouping techniques, you will get this job done.? Sometimes we hear low performance complains – IM in some of its integration components is OLE server, using GP workstation to do the job behind the scenes, this why performance might be disappointing.? If IM is too slow for your requirements, read further
  2. eConnect integrations.? If you are GP user, eConnect is not for you, it is for Microsoft Visual Studio developers: C#, VB is not really important, as you can call eConnect stored procedures from all .Net languages.? If IM performance is the concern, eConnect should be doing faster integration, however do not expect things to be 100% perfect: eConnect sort of replicates Microsoft Dexterity business logic in its encrypted stored procedures.? Dex is cursor based tool and eConnect has in some cases cursor-oriented logic
  3. SQL Stored Procedures.? When you need “immediate" transaction processing, both IM and eConnect might be too slow, in this case you kind of drop eConnect business logic validation (restricting your transaction to few simple patterns) and create simplified stored procedures, allowing you to integrate transactions with GP database
  4. Posting Server.? Albaspectrum Posting Server allows you to break through eConnect restrictions to post GP batches and post batches directly from your eCommerce application

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