The future of AppSource

With Dynamics 365, AppSource was introduced as platform for Apps exchange. This was a place where you could find apps based on product type and industrial solution. Now we can find more and more Apps there.

But now, AppSource got a new additional reason of existing. This is not only place where you can find App. Now, you can also find a good consulting service there (and not only for D365, but also for PowerBI). You just need to choose Consulting Services and you can find a list of them:

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Or if you are located on Apps, you will also see that you can choose some of existing consulting services, related with your product.

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With these possibilities, now you can be nore close to your partners, and not only as ISV, but also as consulting implementator. With this, the way of how this kind of business works will be dramatically changed, and for all partners it will be good idea to accept this new approach as soon as possible.

If you want to publish your services, you can go to the List on AppSource and choose “Grow your business – offer your implementation services” and you can find a manual how to do it as Microsoft system integrator, because you still need to meet some conditions. But if you succeed, you can offer different consulting services in fixed scope and with a fixed duration and become well known globally with your services.

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Image Analyzer in NAV as Cognitive Service

It really sounds amazing. But if you were been at Microsoft Ignite and attended NAV/D365FOBE sessions, you already seen this service as something what we will have in the future. When I say future, I think on the future NAV version, but if we speak about D365 for Financials, you can test in now.

Now, just small introduction how it works. I’ll show this feature on Items and you will see it works fine. When you run Item Card page, you will see Analyze Picture on a Actions tab as on the following picture.

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When you start this action for the first time, you will get similar notifications as on the following screen and you just need to enable it (of course) if you want to use:

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Then, system will lead through enabling wizard. First you will see a small description about how system uses the Computer Vision API from Microsoft Cognitive Service, where you can find links with more information bout API and services… You just need to click on Next, then confirm that you understand terms of conditions and on the end – Finish (if you want to analyze this current picture, you need to check one field).

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And if you check this checkmark field, system will start with analyzing this picture. This is how it works for the first time. But you can click this Analyze Picture on each Item Card where you already have a picture.

But what if you don’t have picture? As soon as you finish with inserting picture, system will by default run this feature, and system will automatically analyze new picture. When system finish with analyzing of this picture, you will find what system recognize with confidence better then 80%.

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But you can find all detected attributes if you click on a View All Attributes. All attributes with not so good confidence will be painted in red.

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From this point, you can do a few things. First, you will see that system sometimes offer some specific option in Action to Perform. By default, system will mostly offer Ignore as option, but sometimes it is “Use as category” or “Use as attribute”. I think I don’t need to describe what it means :). Of course, you can change this option as you wish and it probably depends of what system recognized. You can also use “Add to the Item Description” for each of attributes and to create specific Item Description based on discovered attributes.

When you finish with everything you can confirm and than you need to finish with attributes. System will add as attributes and as category all attributes you decided.

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Now, I’ve showed how you can start with this feature and how to test it. But I wanted to test it little bit more. OK, it worked mostly nice with images we have in Cronus database (not with all, because you need to have clear enough pictures).

But what we will get in some production environment? I made a few tests taking the pictures for the same items from catalogue (ideal pictures) and made from my own (natural pictures). You can find 5 tests in the following charts:

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Now, you can compare these results. First, I didn’t expect good results from realistic photos, but I was really surprised. Sometimes, ideal pictures got better percentage on the most important attributes (but not so big difference), but system very often recognized better attributes on realistic photos and that means system can understand context of photos. And I got more attributes from natural photos, but of course I got a more noses in attributes list, and this is something I could expect because in real picture you don’t have only one thing on the photo.

But I can conclude that this feature is really powerful. Of course this is just first edition of this feature and this is not unmistakable tool, but it can be very helpful in the future.

Project Madeira – Configuration

When you open “Project Madeira” for the first time, you will get access to the Cronus demo company with a Business Manager role center. Of course, you can this change role center, but you have not all role centers as you can find in standard Dynamics NAV solution. There are “only” five role centers:ProMadeiraRCs.jpg

But for this kind of software, it is more then enough. It is really everything what you actually need. Of course, you can create your really company. When you open My Setting, you can find how to change companies. You can choose Cronus as you actually use and “My Company”. When you choose “My Company”, you need to log-out and log-in, and you will get the wizard for company configuration. When you click “Next”, you will see the standard configuration questions. These questions are very simply and everybody can finish this questionnaire (the basic company data, bank data, accounting period… and that’s it):

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You will get your production environment for your company. This wizard is simply and excellent and the most important, on this way you’ve just got your company in SaaS. You can continue your work.

This is just small intro about configuration. You can expect more soon.

Posting Groups in Service Management with Warranty

I’ve already show how looks like using of posting groups in Service Management in NAV, but when you use Service Item with currently active Warranty, there are some differences. Generally, system will use Line Discounts configured on Service Item as Warranty % for “parts” and “labor”. If you have 100% warranty, posting will be as the following:

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System posted inventory cost for all item line based on costing type. But for each line (Item, Resource…) system posts sales line amount and the discount with the same value.

But, when you have warranty with the less percentage than 100%, it will be a bit difference. System will post item cost again, but for each line, system posts sales line amount, discount and value as difference between sales amount and discount:

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Posting Groups in Service Management in NAV

I’ve already wrote 27 articles about using of Posting Groups in NAV. Now, I’ll continue this series with the new topic – Service. When we use Service Order, all posting will be based on the following flow-chart:

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You can notice, this is very similar with postings in Sales, but we have some specifics about using of additional fees. But if you look at the part based on Service Lines, everything is the same. I want to accent that this part is drawn for items ()because of usage Inventory Posting Group and Location); if you use G/L Account or Resource, there will not be inventory postings.

Now, let look at the posting results. First, if we decide to post “Ship and Consume” from Service Line, that means these lines have been used for servicing but cannot be included in the invoice to the customer and we will have only inventory postings if we used items (in other cases, we will not have anything for posting):

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But if we decide to post “Ship and Invoice” from Service Line, the result will be different. In this case, we have some additional entries except inventory posting:

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And on the end, we need to finish posting from Service Order. If we have not some additional fees for invoicing, it will not be anything for posting, but if we have additional fees, it looks the same (for “Ship and Consume” and “Ship and Invoice” examples):

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NAV on Azure SQL on NAVTechDays

Last week we finished one of the best NAV conferences this year. NAV Tech Days this year had about 950 NAV passionate attendees from all around the world. Everything in organization was the amazing; Luc did a great job.

This NAV Tech Days was very special for me, because I was the speaker on this conference for the first time. My topic on NAV Tech Days was “Deploying and Managing Dynamics NAV 2016 with Azure SQL Database”. This is something new in Microsoft Dynamics NAV 2016. I know, a lot of partners still not use NAV on Azure, but by my opinion this feature can move all of us forward. Azure SQL can save a money and we finally have a good tool for managing our multitenant environment – Management Service Portal.

I gave a word to people on my session that I’ll publish my presentation and PowerShell scripts on my blog. You can find them here:

In few following scripts, I’ll describe all details about using NAV 2016 on Azure SQL Server and give you some answers on additional questions I already got.

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Directions NA 2015 has opened

Direction NA 2015 has opened yesterday in Orlando (Florida). This is one of the most important NAV conferences in America. There are about 600 attendees. Key note session by Microsoft was a bit different as on Directions EMEA. In the forefront, it was Microsoft Dynamics NAV Managed Service, a really amazing tool for managing your clients on the cloud.

Today we are starting with new sessions. You can find more (agenda, speakers, sponsors…) about this event on this link.

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