How To: Preparing for a Microsoft Dynamics GP Upgrade

Written By: Perry Kountouriotis

from September 25, 2012

Before conquering a Microsoft Dynamics GP upgrade, there are a few very important items to consider. The first thing to determine is whether or not the organization is truly ready for an upgrade. This naturally requires a great deal of research and due diligence. Organizations should then explore the decision and implementation options with a reputable Microsoft Dynamics Partner. As a Microsoft Dynamics Partner, we work in collaboration with all of our clients to complete a Pre-Upgrade Worksheet as part of this planning and analysis process.

Here are the top ten considerations in preparing a Pre-Upgrade Worksheet:

Capture the number of companies and the name(s) of the database(s). On an upgrade worksheet, list the companies, their database sizes and the folder where the database files are stored.

Ensure Server and Hardware requirements are met. Make sure that the new Microsoft Dynamics system requirements are met including the Microsoft Windows Server Version,  Microsoft SQL Server version, the version of Windows each desktop is running, and that the computers meet the RAM requirements.

Determine what version of Microsoft Dynamics GP is currently run to help define the upgrade path. On an upgrade worksheet, list the Server name, and note what modules of Microsoft Dynamics GP are installed and need to be upgraded to the latest version.

Remember to list all of the modified and customized reports on an upgrade worksheet for inclusion in the upgrade as well.

Identify 3rd party applications. NOTE: Microsoft Dynamics GP cannot be upgraded until all 3rd party (ISV) programs are available and tested before Microsoft Dynamics GP is installed.

Consider Financial Reporting Changes. The version of FRx (Financial Reporting) or Management Reporter in use should be noted on the worksheet. And if running FRx, now is the time to decide if the organization is ready for the latest replacement of FRx – Management Reporter.

Consider Business Portal Applications. Please note what components are utilized and the version.

8  If there are any customizations, custom programs, custom integrations from external systems and  custom SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS) reports, these need to be noted and tested as part of an upgrade.

Consider Security. If upgrading from Microsoft Dynamics GP 9.0 or earlier, the security module in Microsoft Dynamics GP has changed in later versions. Security will convert from older versions to the new Microsoft Dynamics GP security, but it is highly recommended to review this immediately after the upgrade. For those clients that are SOX compliant, a review prior to the upgrade is highly recommended.

10  Conduct a Test Upgrade. If any of the following conditions exist, a test upgrade is strongly recommended.

  • Custom program code from any source
  • Custom reports/applications integrated to Microsoft Dynamics GP
  • Business Portal applications
  • Extensive security setup and SOX requirements

 

Once the pre-upgrade worksheet list has been completed, double-checked by the Partner’s team, and upgraded to the latest version, Microsoft Dynamics GP is ready to move forward. Use the following is a list of tasks to complete along with your Partner before the upgrade:

Post all single use batches.

Make a backup of all GP company databases, DYNAMICS database, and the master database.

Print to file:

  • GL Trial Balance
  • AP Trial Balance
  • AR Trial Balance
  • Stock Status report
  • Employee Pay History

Print out the Dynamics.set file from each workstation. (Be sure to label user/workstation being printed – note if all workstations the same). Print out basic P/L and Balance Sheet from financial reportingfor verification. If using Integration Manager, print out the Integration Properties for each integration.

Most Microsoft Dynamics GP Upgrades are relatively easy with proper planning. By keeping systems on a current version, it makes support easier as well as allowing users to utilize the latest features and functions to streamline business processes.