Microsoft Great Plains or former Great Plains Software Dynamics/eEnterprise was designed in 1990th with specially created Great Plains Software Dexterity programming language and development environment. Currently Microsoft Business Solutions (renamed into Microsoft Dynamics) is applying new Microsoft .net, eConnect, XML web services and MS Office stack integration to Microsoft Dynamics GP, however Dexterity core is still strong and end-user integration – Microsoft Dynamics GP Integration Manager
o Dexterity Fat Client as OLE Server. When you are launching Integration Manager- you need to close all Microsoft Great Plains forms, including menu pallets – the reason is simple – IM uses GP workstation as OLE server to validate IM manager integrations business logic enforcement directly through GP forms
o VBA Scripting. You can do some SQL manipulations in advanced ODBC query, such methods as sorting, grouping, aggregation, however the real power of integration manager lays in the manipulation of VBA scripting – you can replace portions of IM logics with your custom VBA scripts. The same technique was popular for Microsoft Excel several years ago, prior to introduction of Microsoft .Net strategy
o eConnect. As Microsoft plans – GP IM will be totally rewritten in eConnect – eConnect will allow to resolve IM performance issue and will so allow you huge real time integration (when you need to integrate thousand orders per hour for example).
o C#, VB and MS Visual Studio. Contrary to Great Plains Dexterity, which is proprietary platform and requires company licensing and training to do programming, Visual Studio requires individual licensing and could be available to broad masses of programmers. Visual Studio developers should concentrate on eConnect direction of Microsoft Dynamics GP customization and integration
o Axapta, Navision, Solomon directions. Microsoft Dynamics project as a successor of Microsoft Project Green is aiming to synchronize all Microsot ERp applications, however it is probably difficult to predict if it will be licensing/scaling/upgrade path or real modules cross-integration. Possible scenario is – when you are small business you use Microsoft Small Business Accounting, then you upgrade to Microsoft Dynamics GP and when you go public you upgrade to Microsoft Dynamics AX Axapta
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