My MVP Renewed for 2015 and David Musgrave Awarded

Microsoft MVPWell, I received the notification email yesterday afternoon that I had been awarded the Microsoft Most Valuable Professional award for the third year running. It’s really niec to receive the award as it shows I am still contributing in a meaningful way to the Dynamics GP community.

There was another new MVP for Dynamics GP added to the roster this month as well; David Musgrave. Previously David was ineligible for the award as he worked directly for Microsoft, but as of October last year he has been independent again and running Winthrop Development Consultants (the company responsible for GP Power Tools, formerly known as the Support Debugging Tool).

David has always been a great contributor to the Dynamics GP community and I’m delighted to see that this has been officially recognised by Microsoft with his MVP award.

Insert Inventory User Categories From CSV

Microsoft Dynamics GPI have had this script for quite a while and have used it a number of times for different clients when implementing the Inventory Control module in Microsoft Dynamics GP.

One client who was using Inventory was entering a lot of user categories, mistakenly entered the description into the Image field. In that case I did not know that they were populating the User Categories or I would have offered this script to them to save time.

To use the script you need a CSV file with four columns: User Category Value (the ID of the item you want to load), User Category Number (which of the user categories into which the row is to be loaded), Image URL and Description:

	,Image_URL VARCHAR(300)
	,UserCatLongDescr VARCHAR(300))


		,LEFT(UD.Image_URL, 254)
		,LEFT(UD.UserCatLongDescr, 254)
		#UploadData AS UD
			IV40600 AS IV

DROP TABLE #UploadData

You will need to change the highlighted line to the location of your CSV file. As always before running a script on live, test it in a test company first and have a good backup of your database.

hMailServer: Connecting Outlook

Microsoft Dynamics GPOver the last three posts, I have shown how to install and configure hMailServer for use so it can be used to send emails for Microsoft Dynamics GP’s Workflow 2.0 module. in this, the final post in the series I’m going to show how to configure one of the created email accounts in Microsoft Outlook.

To create the new account, click the File tab and then on the + Add Account button:

Account Information

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hMailServer: Database Configuration

Microsoft Dynamics GPIn the last post I showed the installation of hMailServer; in this one I’m going to cover the database setup.

If you followed the last post you should have the hMailServer password window on screen. If not start the hMailServer Database Setup utility from the start menu.

Enter the admin password configured during the installation and click OK:

hMailServer password

on the Welcome step, click Next:

hMailServer Database Setup - Step 1 of 7: Welcome

Choose the database server Owner; as I am installing this on a Dynamics GP test system which has a full SQL Server installation, I have selected the Use external database engine (MSSQL, MySQL or PostgreSQL) radion button. Click Next:

Setup - hMailServer: Select database server Owner

This is a new installation of hMailServer so leave the Create a new hMailServer database and click Next:

hMailServer Database Setup - Step 2 of 7: Select option

Leave the Microsoft SQL Server option selected and click Next:

hMailServer Database Setup - Step 3 of 7: Select database server Owner

Enter the Database server address (this can be either the Server Name or IP Adress), enter a Database name and choose your Authentication method.

During an installation, I typically select Use server authentication and enter the sa username and password. I do this to ensure the user I am using has all of the necessary permissions to create a database and all objects.

Click Next to proceed:

hMailServer Database Setup - Step 4 of 7: Enter sever connection information

You can then configure the hMailServer service dependency if the mail server is the same machine as the SQL Server (which in this example it is not).

Click NMext to proceed:

hMailServer Database Setup - Step 5 of 7: Set hMailServer service dependency

On the Finish stage, click Next to start the installation:

hMailServer Database Setup - Step 6 of 7: Finish

Once the installation is complete, click Close:

hMailServer Database Setup - Step 7 of 7: Completed

A final step allowing the hMailServer to be run will be displayed:

Setup - hMailServer Database Setup: Completing the hMailServer Setup Wizard

I’ll be covering the hMailServer Administrator in the next post in this series.

Click to show/hide the hMailServer Series Index

hMailServer: Installation

Microsoft Dynamics GPhMailServer is a small, lightweight mail server with POP3 and SMTP. I have been using it for a while on test or demo systems where I either don’t have access to the company Exchange server or don’t want to use it as the demo system may not be connected to the company network when I am out of the office.

To install hMailServer, download and run the installer.

On the Welcome step, click Next:

Setup - hMailServer: Welcome to the hMailServer Setup Wizard

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hMailServer: Series Index

Microsoft Dynamics GPWhen demoing Microsoft Dynamics GP it is often necessary to demonstrate a few functions which integrate with email. With the email document functionality introduced in Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010 R2, being able to have the email appear in an Outlook client without a mail server connected was sufficient because you could still open the email and show the attachment.

However, with the introduction of Workflow 2.0 in Microsoft Dynamics GP 2013 R2 it is actually necessary for Workflow 2.0 to be able to connect to an SMTP server to send an email and also for the logged in user to receive the email.

We typically do the demo using a virtual machine with everything required installed; because of Workflow 2.0 this now also includes a mail server. The VM already has SQL Server, Dynamics GP, Web Services, Web Client, Management Reporter and other services and applications installed so I don’t want to use something like Microsoft Exchange which is far larger and resource heavy than is needed.

Instead I have started using hMailServer which is a small and lightweight mail server with both POP3 and SMTP.

This is short series of posts where I’ll cover the installation, configuration and connection of an Outlook client, but please bear in mind this is for a self-contained test system and not a production one.

Click to show/hide the hMailServer Series Index

Hands On With Microsoft Dynamics GP 2015 R2: Install GP Add-in For Microsoft Word

Microsoft Dynamics GPMicrosoft Dynamics GP 2015 R2 was released at the end of May. As I mentioned at the time, I was away from home for work and rather busy otherwise so this series of posts has been somewhat delayed.

However, I am now getting my hands on GP 2015 R2 and thought I would do my usual set of posts on the installation of the various components and also the usage of the new functionality. This is going to be quite a long series of posts, so keep checking back regularly.

When using the Word Templates to replace the standard reports for printing reports such as invoices, remittances or purchase orders you can do changes to the format or layout using the standard functionality of Microsoft Word.

However, if you want to add additional fields then you need to install the Microsoft Dynamics GP Add-in for Microsoft Word. Do this by launching the Microsoft Dynamics GP setup utility from the downloaded installation media and, under Additional Products, click on Microsoft Dynamics GP Add-in for Microsoft Word:

Microsoft Dynamics GP 2015 setup utility

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Perfect Image Are Recruiting for a Dynamics GP Consultant (Grade 3)

Perfect ImagePerfect Image have an opening for a Dynamics GP Consultant (Grade 3).

The position is for a full time position based in Newcastle upon Tyne in the North East of England, working on a growing team of consultants which includes the UK’s only Microsoft Most Valuable Professional for Microsoft Dynamics GP (and one of only two in Europe).

The full job specification is below and you can email me your CV to (remove the nospam.).

The typically approach we have is that in the first instance I’ll review the CV and, if it shows the appropriate skills, I’ll conduct a quick phone call to confirm experience and system knowledge (no pressure), before we look to organise an in person interview with the relevant people at PI (HR Manager, the Director of Project Delivery and I) for anyone successful on the call.

Please only candidates who have not already applied via a recruiter and ABSOLUTELY NO RECRUITERS. If these rules aren’t abided by, I will immediately delete the CV.

Click to show/hide the full job specification

Job type
Full time
£30,000 to £45,000 p/a depending on skills and experience
25 days annual leave plus bank holidays, profit and performance related bonus, occupational sick scheme, company pension scheme, career progression plan, cycle to work scheme, childcare voucher scheme.
Job summary

Perfect Image works with clients to define, implement and support IT systems which will help to make them more successful.  Our range of offerings cover bespoke web and Windows-based systems, the integration of existing and new systems, intranet, CRM, business intelligence and ERP systems.

The role of the Dynamics GP Consultant is pivotal to the success of our clients’ ERP projects and therefore to Perfect Image.  You will need to be a motivated, enthusiastic and have experience in supporting and implementing Dynamics GP. Ideally this will include upgrading Dynamics GP implementations to recent releases. This should also include experience of the financial and distribution modules.

The ideal candidate will also be able to demonstrate experience which includes initial pre-sales consultation with the clients, assisting with the creation of sales proposals, presentation and demonstration skills and the management of the resultant project through to a successful implementation.

The Dynamics GP consultant needs to be willing to learn, or have previous experience in, solutions that are complimentary to Dynamics GP, including SharePoint and Dynamics CRM. A proven track record in delivering customer care to diverse clients is a must.

Key responsibilities and accountabilities
  • To work with clients at all levels helping to shape business priorities and to determine the resultant requirements for an ERP solution.
  • Document business and systems requirements to the required level of detail and in an appropriate format.
  • To take on principal responsibility for pre-sales consulting in significant opportunities.
  • Support all elements of Dynamics GP implementations, including server and client installations, data migration exercises, system upgrades, trouble shooting issues as they arise, fixing data issues within a SQL environment, and report writing.
  • Providing a 3rd line support function, assisting our support department in resolving more complex customer enquiries.
  • Keep abreast of changes and opportunities in the technology marketing.

This is not exhaustive.

Job requirements
  • Experience in all aspects of ERP Consultancy, with existing Dynamics GP consultancy experience.
  • Good level of knowledge and experience with accountancy principals and practices.
  • Ability to support all elements of Dynamics GP implementations including server and client installs, data migration exercises, system upgrades, trouble shooting issues as they arise, fixing data issues within a SQL environment and report writing.
  • Experience in or hunger to learn new skills and technologies that compliment Dynamics GP and our clients, such as Dynamics CRM, SharePoint, Visual Basic, Job Costing / Construction Accounting.
  • A good level of IT and accounting knowledge and an ability to express this knowledge in terms appropriate to the audience which includes client senior executives, IT managers and end-users.
  • Ability to building strong relationships with clients, supporting income generation and securing repeat business.
  • Experience in managing implementation projects would be beneficial.
  • Ability to think clearly, and to write clear documentation which is sufficiently detailed, unambiguous and complete.
  • Ability to work under pressure and to tight deadlines.
  • Strong presentation skills.
  • Experience of the ERP core modules including Financials and ideally Distribution.
  • Strong skills in spoken and written English.
  • Proven ability to deliver results.

Education to degree level (or equivalent).

Personal profile
  • Is able to deal positively about ambiguity and complexity. Is positive in seeing a way through client problems and challenges.
  • Work well under pressure and will go the extra mile to provide excellent client service.
  • Understand that asking for help and input from others is a strength, not a weakness, so actively involves others.
  • Concern yourself principally with the development of the business of our clients and our firm.
  • Look to develop our consulting capability through recruitment, training, mentoring of our people and the development of our methods.
  • Facilitate cooperation within the consulting team and across the firm.
  • Start to develop a personal and social relationship with clients.

Update Setup Mistake On Inventory User Categories

Microsoft Dynamics GPWe implemented Microsoft Dynamics GP for a client a while ago; they are quite heavy users of the Inventory Control module.

Unfortunately, when they configured the User Categories in Inventory Control Setup (Inventory >> Setup >> Inventory Control) the description for the category was entered in the Image field instead of the Description field.

Rather than making them go through and manually change all of the categories that had been defined, I put together a small script to do the job.

The script checks if the length of the entry in the Image field is greater than zero and that the Description has not been set before doing the update.

	UserCatLongDescr = Image_URL
	,Image_URL = ''
	LEN(RTRIM(Image_URL)) > 0
	LEN(RTRIM(UserCatLongDescr)) = 0

As I was writing this script we encountered the same setup issue on a client installation we took over from another partner so this looks like it may be more common that I thought it would be; caused I think be the fact the window has the Image field visible by default and not the Description which people expect.