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Great Plains Customization overview: Dexterity, eConnect, SQL stored procedures

Microsoft Dynamics GP ERP platform is ready for software developers for modifications, integrations, reporting, data export and other custom development projects.  

However, if you carry generic programmers in IT department, you need to know the options and how add-on development project should be structured: especially where your domestic programming workforce should be extended by professional Great Plains Dexterity developers.  Let’s review the tools:

 

1.       Microsoft Dexterity, former name was Great Plains Dexterity.  This is the shell, written in C programming language, specially designed to be the core of Great Plains Dynamics architecture in early 1990th.  Dexterity has its own programming language Sanscript, plus Dexterity programmer should be familiar with Dynamics GP tables structure, forms and windows architecture – this knowledge allows Dex developer to extend existing Dynamics GP business logic with custom rules and exceptions.  Dexterity allows you to alter Great Plains user workstation interface seamlessly, plus it work within Great Plains security realm.  Obvious drawback is the fact, that you cannot cook new GP Dexterity developer over night or have somebody to write Dexterity code in one month.  The recommended approach is to subcontract Dexterity programming part to GP Dex technical consultants, ISV or Great Plains VAR

 

2.       eConnect.  This is Software Development Kit, initially created for Dynamics GP ecommerce programmers to enable ecommerce web site project integration: natural example is ecommerce shopping cart integration to Great Plains Sales Order or Invoice.  eConnect is open technology and you are welcome to begin inhouse eConnect programmer if you internal C#, VB or SQL programmers.  eConnect turned into feasible option since Great Plains Dynamics GP version 9.0.  If you are deciding on eConnect programming, we recommend you to upgrade your Great Plains MRP to version 10.0

 

3.       Direct SQL scripting.  This is good option if you are extracting GP data with select statement.  In this case there is no way to occasionally cause Great Plains data integrity compromise.  Good example would be Crystal Reports with SQL stored procedure or view as the report base.  Another typical case is EDI export from Great Plains.  If you are trying to push data to Great Plains or update existing objects, consider Great Plains Integration Manager or as safer programming approach – eConnect

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR


Andrew Karasev, Alba Spectrum LLC, help@albaspectrum.com 1-866-528-0577, http://www.albaspectrum.com Serving GP community since 1994, local service in Chicago, Houston, San Diego, Atlanta.  Information portal: http://www.pegasplanet.com  We serve you USA and Canada nationwide from our Dynamics GP call center: California, Illinois, New York, Florida, Minnesota, New Jersey, North and South Carolina, Georgia, Louisiana, Texas, Ontario, Quebec



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