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Microsoft Great Plains – licensing & product versions
by: Andrew Karasev
Current Microsoft Business Solutions Great Plains has more that 10 years of history. Former Great Plains Software had two lines of Great Plains: Dynamics & Dynamics C/S+, later on renamed into eEnterprise. In this small article we would like to give you first directions when you look into Great Plains purchase and implementation or upgrade your existing product. Also we’ll clarify on annual enhancement program reenrollment and getting technical support from Microsoft Business Solutions or third party. We will talk about customization, because it would be outside of the tiny article format. You need to know that Great Plains is written in Great Plains Dexterity and customization is possible in Dexterity, SQL, Extender, Modifier/VBA, Continuum, eConnect.
• Great Plains Professional. This is high-end product, which should be capable to automate midsize and large business, it will not have limitation on number of user, payroll employees, modules selection. Database platform is Microsoft SQL Server 2000/2005. Current supported versions: 9.0 (since September 2005), 8.0, 7.5 and 7.0. If you need Service Advantage Suite, Customer/Vendor Consolidation, Lockbox Processing and other modules, targeted for midsize and corporate clientele – you should purchase Great Plains Professional
• Great Plains Standard. This is scaled down version of GP – it is limited to 10 users, 500 employees (this was very large issue when MBS introduced GPS with version 8.0 – version 7.5 of Dynamics on SQL Server didn’t have this employees limit and multiple payroll outsourcing companies used it), also selection of additional modules is restricted. If you are midsize business – please first analyze your needs, more likely you will need GP Professional. In some cases, if you have advanced developers – you can use eConnect to provide simple user interface to GP Standard over the web and resolve licensing. Great Plains Standard is available on MSDE (MS SQL 2005 Express) or MS SQL Server. In case if you would like to use MS SQL Server – ask your MBS Partner to get new reg key from MBS – you will need to prove your MS SQL Server license.
• Historical DB Platforms. Since version 8.0 Great Plains is available on MS SQL Server/MSDE. Version 7.5, 7.0, 6.0, 5.5, 5.0 and earlier were available on MS SQL Server, Pervasive SQL 2000/Btrieve and Ctree/Faircom. If you are on Ctree or Pervasive SQL – you will need to be reenrolled into annual enhancement program, which is 35% (this includes 16% enhancement for the next year, and 19% reenrollment fee). Then, migration tool is $2k and your MBS VAR can migrate you to Great Plains Professional or Great Plains Standard.
• Great Plains Accounting. We are experiencing a lot of problems with this “pre-historical” application. This product is not supported by MBS and you can hardly find consultant on the market who knows this application. What we can do for you is – if something happens – looks technical support database and see if your issue and fix are posted there. We strongly recommend you to migrate to Great Plains Standard. We’ll provide this migration service.
• Switch MBS VAR form. In order to help you with migration, upgrade, integration, reenrollment – we need to see your records in Microsoft Business Solutions customer database. We’ll email you switch VAR form to sign so you can become our official client.

Good luck and you can always seek our help in customization, implementation, integration and support. Call us: 1-866-528-0577 or 1-630-961-5918, help@albaspectrum.com


About the author:
Andrew Karasev is Chief Technology Officer in Alba Spectrum Technologies – USA nationwide Great Plains, Microsoft CRM customization company, serving Chicago, California, Arizona, Texas, Florida, Georgia, New York, Australia, UK, Canada, Germany, Continental Europe, Russia and having locations in multiple states and internationally ( http://www.albaspectrum.com), he is Dexterity, SQL, C##.Net, Crystal Reports and Microsoft CRM SDK developer


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