Dynamic Code Blocks

Microsoft Dynamics GP & .NET technical Blog by Tim Wappat

Visual Studio 2015 & Dynamics GP Addin Project Templates “install”

Lets face it, Visual Studio 2015 (VS2015) is here and it is awesome, thus drop what you are doing and start developing with it, right now! I’ve been enjoying the experience with all the new light bulb helpers etc. More than ever before, it feels like Visual Studio has my back. The other day I got around to getting the Dynamics GP project templates installed and blog it here for benefit of others.
My GP Dev hero and MVP, Mariano Gomez posted on his blog a how to do this for previous versions of VS, which worked a treat for me in the past, so time to apply the principle to the new version of visual studio, 2015. I found that I had to use a different command to get the templates to install after they were moved, so see below for the steps I performed.

Steps to follow for VS2015

This is my variation on Mariano’s work, please visit Mariano’s blog  and praise him there at this blog post:
Thus for VS2015 follow those instructions, but for moving the templates, use the folder root:
C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Visual Studio 14.0\Common7\IDE
where he uses:
C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Visual Studio 12.0\Common7\IDE
Below are the C# templates moved to where they need to be (remember C# & VB.NET):
Now to install those templates into Visual Studio (i.e. make them available)
Use an elevated visual studio command prompt, to run the command (Shift right click):
Refer to this stack overflow comment and run the command shown, note this is a departure from Mariano’s post. Using the “devenv.exe /setup” simply didn’t work for me, however you may find different.
Command to use is:
devenv /installvstemplates
Change into the IDE directory as shown in the screen shot below, then run the command.
Leave this command to execute, it took a 20 seconds on my fast machine. This refreshes the Visual Studio project template cache
Now opening VS2015 should show these templates under the new project option.


Out of interest, investigate these folders to see if the folders and files have moved into the ProjectTemplatesCache folders where they should now be (Project templates & Item templates).



Hopefully that should help those who need it. One thought from me is that there is now an “online” option when opening new project, that downloads templates from “online”, surely the GP templates could be hosted in there, thus avoid this hassle?


Mystery of Qty Allocated & field name ATYALLOC

In Dynamics GP the inventory quantity allocated has a field name of “ATYALLOC”. You can see it lurking in IV00102 table, as a decimal (19,5).

Why is is named ATYALLOC?

imageA field typed day in and day out, I ponder each time it is why it was named so. After all, would we not expect it to be named “QTYALLOC”, so tell me where did that “A” come from?

My horrific assumption is that this was a typo, the Q and A key on a keyboard being so close together, please let me be wrong. Did such an error get through QA back in the dark days of software development?
I have the feeling there may be a back story to this naming that someone on the inside may be able to tell us about. Perhaps there was a conflict with another field, or some obscure reason it was named so?

Please comment if you can add anything to this mystery…or simply that I’m stupid for not seeing some obvious reason!

Dynamics GP User Group for the UK, or not?

imageToday at m-hance customer day there was a session titled “Joining Information,New Microsoft GP User Group”, hosted by Andy Brown of m-hance.

This session was short, at half hour with an open questions to the audience.

The questions were on purpose seeing formative views along the lines:

  • Do the people present think that a GP user group is a good idea?
  • If so what should that User Group look like?
  • Who should run it?
  • Should  it be independent of partners
  • What would it offer to members?

At this time September 2015, I am unaware of any UK user groups for Dynamics GP. In the US, there is GPUG (GP User Group) a user group that is strong enough to hold a conference each year in the US. It is supported by Dynamic Communities an organisation from that describes itself as…

Dynamic Communities Inc. is the administrative organization behind professional associations and software user groups such as the Dynamics AX User Group (AXUG), the Dynamics GP User Group (GPUG), the Dynamics CRM User Group (CRMUG), and the Dynamics NAV User Group (NAVUG).

Should Dynamic Communities be approached to help?
m-hance would consider helping with seeding a new user group, supporting it to get it going, after all it is in their benefit to grow a strong user community that shines and evangelises the product. It could  be just a user group affiliated with that single partner, but an independent user group seems like a much better proposition, one in a position to encompass all the users of GP across all partners in the UK. Any sponsors would find an partner agnostic group spanning all users a more tempting proposition, I would imagine.

Data protection prevents partners passing on customer details, but they can promote such a user group’s existence in say email communications with their customers, thus drive users to such a group.

A show of hands showed half the audience to be interested, however my personal view is that each of those who were interested had a different idea of what a user group should look like to them. There was no firm conclusion.

I would be interested in any comments against this post from people who have touched GP user groups in other territories and how they work there, and what they get out of them. 

GP2016, looking sweet in HTML5

Release date for GP2016

As of today, September 2016, the release month for GP2016 is targeted at May 2016 –subject to change.

The future is delivered in HTML5

Dynamics GP product strategy and roadmap
GP2016 Webclient multi browser

imageWe had a sneaky peep demo of the fully HTML5 web client in GP2016 – I have to say publicly Gary didn’t show us, its above his pay grade, the right showed us –honest... So out goes Silverlight (-what was that Silverlight thing years ago?), we have in its place, GP forms rendering as HTML5 web pages. It looked very finished and very smart. Rendering to HTML5 is very important as it means we can fully use GP client in any device that supports HTML5 browser! Yes, that means your Android tablet, OSX, Linux and weird device I don’t know exists, will all allow full use of GP through a web browser. Not only that, but any browser, Firefox, Chrome etc! This is the completion of a staged process through previous versions to this end goal, dev team well done! Sorry but I didn’t take any photos of the new client, partly as I respect the peek preview, partly as I was too amazed to remember –anyway, all you REIMAGINE 2015 delegates don’t want spoilers do you!

I got the opportunity to have a good talk, some technical with Gary Tronson, Engineering Manager at Microsoft, where we covered a lot of subjects. apparently much of the pain in getting the rendering to look right in HTML5 turned out to be things like one pixel misalignments that pre-existed in GP, but when rendered to HTML5 showed up as jagged layouts, never previously noticed or bothering anyone. Correcting the pixel alignment of objects relative to each other sorted it out.

imageThe name for the “hamburger icon” I learnt from Scott Hanselman,it being the Microsoft name for the three horizontal lines icon, often found in apps. It has now gotten into GP web client for this demo build of GP2016, being used to collapse the GP navigation that is now on the left hand side gutter of the GP UI for the web client.  

Gary Tronson Principle Engineer Manager MicrosoftThe GP2016 web client has been tested with some ISV custom products and in testing they perceptually look better than in standard GP client (maybe its just placebo?). This is also true for  Visual Studio Addins which are supported as long as the developer sticks to standard supported visual controls. Apparently it will also cope with rendering my Winforms within add ins, again love to proof this (sceptical me), then again most inherit from dex form so I guess it will work.

Macros continue to work in the HTML5 world, as it is merely the very top presentation layer of GP that is skimmed off for rendering in the web browser, so the server still runs the form (and the macro) at the server. This sounds great, but would love to see it for real to fully believe it!

Printing is much the same as with the existing web client, as again nothing really has changed as this sat below the Silverlight presentation layer in the previous versions.

Performance (keyboard responsiveness) is very good, we are almost at that as good as a native windows application now.

Gary was at pains to point out that it is not worth holding out for the new web client as nothing will change other than HTML5 is pushed to the browser, so this is a seamless upgrade for the consumers of the application. No point waiting folks, get into web client now.

I mentioned the Security Scramble an issue Mark Polino has been championing, Gary sited the GP2016 Simplification of Analytical Accounting User Access Settings as an example of where they are starting to tackle this. See below for information on other goodness arriving next spring.


GP roadmap to 2017

So what's happening for GP2016, obviously with the caveat that this is subject to review and change:


HTML 5 browser support
Control for managing HTML clients (– think multi tenant management)

Core Enhancements

Purchasing Requisitions – Project Integration
HTTPS Support for Management Reporter Viewer
Multiple Page Scan
Default EFT File Formats For Scotia Bank (!!!! why not generic format editor?)
Change Workflow Approval Conditions
Enable Credit card Payment  Type for Check Run Processing (yay!)
Increase Distribution Reference Field Size
Named User Licensing Support for Self Service User Type
Document Attach for Project Expenses

Business Intelligence

All-In-One Document  Viewer for Inventory (wonderful!)
All-In-One Document Viewer for Sales (Can’t wait!)
Export SmartList Numbers
Export/Import SmartLists
Creating a SmartList from an Existing Favourite
PowerBI charts on GP Role Center (nice)

Ease of Use

Remove Inactive Payroll Pay Codes (US centric thingy)
Simplify Payroll Posting Setup
Create Exception Report on Budget Import
Simplify Analytical Accounting User Access Settings (more please)


Wrap up

Although Errol's anecdotes were obviously greatly missed this year, Gary filled his shoes really well, he presented a great session and another useful contact at MS to harass now… (joking)