January 2007 Entries

Microsoft Dynamics NAV 5.0 Beta available for Partners

Yes, the bits are finally here... As announced today, Microsoft Certified and Gold Certified Partners with a SPA agreement in place and access to PartnerSource can now download Microsoft Dynamics NAV 5.0 W1 Beta. You can choose to download the Marketing Beta VPC (includes Windows XP, 2007 Microsoft Office System) (2.8GB download) or just the install files. The test starts now... IMPORTANT UPDATE: the password given by Microsoft for the VPC machine is wrong. It's not "pass@word" but "pass@word1". Enjoy.

posted @ Wednesday, January 31, 2007 2:14 PM | Feedback (0)

Dynamics NAV and SQL Server 2005 rarely used indexes

In order to tune-up your Dynamics NAV database performances, I've always written that working on indexes is one of the first steps and using the correct index will permit you to speed up lots of operations. But what about rarely-used indexes? Dynamics NAV comes with lots of indexes on the standard tables, but many of them are not often used. Also on custom tables I often see that developers place lots of indexes that are unuseful. Because the cost of these indexes is incurred during maintenance (e.g. insert, update, and delete operations), the write costs of rarely-used indexes may outweigh...

posted @ Thursday, January 25, 2007 1:31 PM | Feedback (4)

SQL Server 2005 Query Execution Plan "distributable"

Today I was doing a tuning operation for a query on a customer's database and, when asking to the System Administrator if he can send me the query execution plan, I've received on my mailbox a nice JPG image, a screenshot of the customer's desktop where the query execution plan was displayed. Ok... better than nothing... :P It's not well documented, but SQL Server 2005 has a nice feature that permits you to save a query execution plan in a format that can re-loaded or can be sent to another person for example via email. How to do it? If you have a query...

posted @ Thursday, January 25, 2007 1:17 PM | Feedback (0)

Microsoft Dynamics NAV 5.0 testing phase: what to expect

As many of you already know, Microsoft in these days is starting a first "public" testing phase of its upcoming Dynamics NAV 5.0. Lots of interesting news are coming out and, as I've said in the past, don't be worried: Dynamics NAV 5.0 will not be a real revolution on our actual implementations. However, in the past I've always said that, in order to have their partners prepared for the innovation, Microsoft should release at least a beta version to every partners for testing purposes. Can we test our solutions before the official NAV release, in order to say our...

posted @ Thursday, January 25, 2007 7:42 AM | Feedback (0)

SQL Server 2005 Objects: T-SQL or SQL CLR?

One of the powerful features of SQL Server 2005 is the ability to write SQL Server objects (stored procedures, triggers, user-defined functions, user-defined aggregates, user-defined types) with managed code. One of the question I see that comes so "natural" is: "I've to implement this object. What should I use? T-SQL or SQL CLR?". To answer this question it's not so simple and it depends a lot on what you want to implement and the result that you want to obtain. However, a preface must be clear to all: SQL CLR is not a replacement for T-SQL, but it complements T-SQL! The...

posted @ Sunday, January 21, 2007 11:35 AM | Feedback (0)

Releasing SQL Server as open source?

I've just finished reading this post on Mary Jo Foley's blog, where she signals an idea that comes from Stephen Walli: releasing SQL Server as an open source project. Walli was a Microsoft employee, so I think he can well understand what type of product SQL Server is for the company. When I see that he thinks that Microsoft needs to rethink its open-source posturing in order to stay competitive and then that one steps on this direction could be releasing SQL Server as an open source project, I'm shocked. SQL Server is a database server for the enterprise business,...

posted @ Friday, January 19, 2007 6:30 AM | Feedback (0)

Dynamics NAV 5.0: a revolution?

It's a common question that comes from many customer in these days: all are worried about the coming of Dynamics NAV 5.0 and the impact that it can give to their actual applications. Is maybe the time to say something about this "myth"? As I've said many months ago, Microsoft has decided to "split" the Dynamics NAV 5 platform under two releases: 5.0 (it's available for testing in these days) and 5.1 (end of 2007). Dynamics NAV 5.0 will introduce some new features (links to record, new C/AL functions, new business functions, improved integration with Office tools etc.)...

posted @ Monday, January 15, 2007 7:04 PM | Feedback (2)

Optimizing the Performance of Microsoft Dynamics CRM 3.0

How many times in the past I've written posts about how to optimize the database performance on Dynamics NAV? I've lost the count... Optimizing performances on Dynamics products is a cool topic, expecially because these products are many times the hearth of an enterprise architecture. Regarding this topic, in these days Microsoft has released a white paper titled Optimizing the Performance of Microsoft Dynamics CRM 3.0, a cool document that discusses lots of tips and informations on how to optimize a CRM 3.0 system (SQL Server optimizations, index management, IIS and .NET optimizations etc.). It's absolutely a must to have for...

posted @ Friday, January 12, 2007 6:35 PM | Feedback (0)

Dynamics CRM 4.0 under testing

Finally Microsoft has decided to release to a small number of partners the first bits of Microsoft Dynamics CRM code-name "Tytan", the next generation of its CRM suite. This is the news that we was waiting. MS Dynamics products are always too much secret under their beta stages and this is not always a great choice... as Windows Vista and Visual Studio can teach us, working closely with the communities in order to receive feedbacks and suggestions is the key to have a product that rocks! I hope that this will be the right direction not only for CRM, but...

posted @ Wednesday, January 10, 2007 7:41 PM | Feedback (0)

WOW, I'm a Million Dollar Man... :)

I've just received an email from the PROMOTIONS DEPARTMENT OF MICROSOFT with this communication: Your email address emerged as one of two winners in the gold stakes category "A" as email addresses were soughted, from a total number of 1,000,000 addresses drawn from all over the globe. After an automated computer ballot of our International Promotions Program, only two winners emerged in this category and therefore each are to receive payouts of $1,000,000.00(One million United States Dollars)only from the total of $2,000,000.00 usd ( Two million united states Dollar ).However, every email address selected was accompanied by a reference...

posted @ Monday, January 08, 2007 8:53 AM | Feedback (6)

Dynamics NAV Database Installation tuning

Performing a Dynamics NAV Database setup could appear as an easy step solvable in few minutes, but what is extremely important to remember is that this task will affect the database performance in the future and an aspect must always be taken into consideration: scalability. The standard database installation process could be ok for installations with few concurrent users, but how can you handle a situation with many concurrent users and an heavy load database with a frequent size growth every day? In this case the right installation must be carefully evaluated. I've recently received a question from a reader that...

posted @ Monday, January 08, 2007 8:30 AM | Feedback (4)

Windows Workflow: is it useful?

I'm doing some big projects that are starting to introduce workflow concepts inside the business architecture (maybe I'll talk about some of them in the future because I think they can open interesting scenarios for some Microsoft Dynamics products) and many times I advice customers that a powerful Workflow platform "made in Microsoft" will be ready soon. When I talk about Windows Workflow at meetings, many times I notice that people have doubts: is Windows Workflow useful? Is Windows Workflow powerful? What could be its application scenario? I think that on a Service Oriented architecture (SOA), Workflows are foundamental. I've...

posted @ Friday, January 05, 2007 12:49 PM | Feedback (0)

The new year is here...

This 2007 is started and this will be surely an year full of interesting news for my work. If I try to to classify what will be the major revolutions for my everyday work, this is the podium:  Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 The new version of Microsoft Dynamics CRM is announced with lots of interesting features, such as multi-company, multi-tenancy and expecially with Workflow based on the new WF platform (and customizable by the end-user). Will Microsoft be ready to dominate also on the CRM sector?   Visual Studio Orcas and WPF, WF, WCF A big step on the future...

posted @ Tuesday, January 02, 2007 8:41 PM | Feedback (3)