>Finding out the version of Office Web Components being used with your Microsoft Dynamics GP home page

January 25, 2011

>Seriously, I wasn’t planning on doing any more articles on the home page – at least not for now. But you have to admit this one is compelling. To find the version of the Microsoft Office Web Components running on your system,

1. Right-click on any metric graph currently being displayed on your home page.

Office Web Components options

Choose the About… option to continue.

2. You will now see the version number of the Office Web Components installed and being used with Microsoft Dynamics GP.

Office Web Components version

If you have any questions on a specific version, please see my article Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010 and Office Web Components for more information.

Until next post!

MG.-
Mariano Gomez, MVP
IntellPartners, LLC
http://www.intellpartners.com/


>Changing the metrics properties on the Microsoft Dynamics GP home page – Part 2

January 24, 2011

>Part 2 of 2 – Changing the metrics properties on the Microsoft Dynamics GP home page.


In Part 1 of the series I showed a couple cool things that can be accomplished on the Microsoft Dynamics GP home page with metrics and changing graph properties and so on. Today, I will explore two more features that I think will make you fall in love — ok, let’s not get carried away — with the Microsoft Office Web Components, and in particular the Chart Control: the Toolbar and Command and Options selections.

Toolbar

The Toolbar option enables a graphical toolbar above the metrics being displayed.

Office Web Components – Toolbar option
Enabled Toolbar option

Now, with the toolbar enabled, you have access to some of the elements discussed in the previous article and more. You can change the graph layout and some of the Data properties as shown in the previous article.

Command and Options

Of all the options presented, the Command and Options is one of my favorites as it allows you to visually enhance your graph and even change the type of graph, similar to the Data options. Take a look at the following visual enhancements produced by changing some of the Border/Fill properties.

Command and Options – Border/Fill option

Finally, if you have worked with Microsoft Excel producing graphs in the past, then you now probably have a lot of experience in creating and modifying graphs, so I won’t delve into this. Nonetheless, know that they are a number of options that you can play with to bring some life to your charts and even copy/paste these from the home page onto some fancy report that you must deliver, so why not bring some life to those graphs?

Until next post!

MG.-
Mariano Gomez, MVP
IntellPartners, LLC
http://www.intellpartners.com/


Changing the metrics properties on the Microsoft Dynamics GP home page – Part 1

January 23, 2011

Part 1 of 2 – Changing the metrics properties on the Microsoft Dynamics GP home page.


In this series I wanted to surface a little known secret about the standard Microsoft Dynamics GP Home Page metrics: you can change the graph properties…no coding required! In fact, there are many graph properties that can be changed.

Gross Profit for the Past 12 Months sample metric

Microsoft Dynamics GP makes use of the Office Chart Control, a component of the Microsoft Office Web Components to display the metrics that you have become accustomed to see on the home page — see my article Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010 and Office Web Components for more information on the different versions supported.

When you right-click on the metric of your choice a menu becomes available that will allow you to choose from a number of options, as shown below.

Today we will be looking at the Data properties.
Data

Command and Options window – Data Source tab

The Data option presents the Commands and Options window with 3 tabs: Data Source, Data Sheet, Type… you have guessed correctly! You can make changes to what’s being displayed on the metric by creating a new data sheet or reading data from a query. However, this information will be lost as soon as you refresh the home page.

Perhaps, the option that’s most important at this point is the Data Sheet option. The Data Sheet option shows the numbers crunched by GP for each category and series of the metric being displayed.



Command and Options window – Data Sheet tab

 The good thing about the Data Sheet tab is, you can actually use the numbers displayed to reconcile against your subsidiary module, since that’s the source of the data for all metrics.

Finally, the Type tab allows you to change the type of graph being displayed. Most metrics are set to display bar graphs by default, but you can make a subtle change to the type of graph to enhance your reading of the data being presented.

Commands and Options window – Type tab

The series continues tomorrow exploring some of the other properties available to you as a user.
Until next post!

MG.-
Mariano Gomez, MVP
IntellPartners, LLC
http://www.intellpartners.com/


Changing and Copying a Home Page Role – Part 1

January 16, 2011

Part 1 of 2 – Changing and Copying a Home Page Role.


I was working with a client a few days aback and they have been on Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010 for quite a few weeks now. One of their users was moved from the accounts payable department to the accounts receivable department.

The IT staff wanted to change the configuration of her home page to look just like that of an existing user in this department, so of course, came the question…“How do we change her home page, and have her get the same links we have setup for all the other users in the group?”.

Out of the box, Microsoft Dynamics GP allows you to change a user’s role by clicking the Change Role… button under the Customize Home Page window.

Customize Home Page

Once you click on the Change Role button, you will receive a warning on effecting the changes, since all customizations and previous layout changes would be lost in the process of changing the user’s role.

Change Role Warning

Since our goal was to move the user from role, this was the first task at hand. The company enjoyed standard links and settings for their users overall, so worring about loosing the previous links and settings was not an issue. Once we clicked the Ok button, we were at the Select Home Page window where we could move the user to the Accounts Payable role.

Select Home Page

Good so far! Now, how could we make a copy of all the settings established by the IT department for all users to this user profile? Tomorrow, I will show you a script that we wrote to achieve this.

Until next post!

MG.-
Mariano Gomez, MVP
Maximum Global Business, LLC
http://www.maximumglobalbusiness.com/


Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010 Connect feature and IE popups

August 9, 2010

Since the days of beta testing Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010, I had been researching an issue with the Connect feature where, each time the content banner rotates, an Internet Explorer window would pop up showing the same content displayed by the Connect web part. One night, I left my laptop on with Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010 opened and woke up the next morning to the tune of 100+ individual Internet Explorer windows and a very slow, almost crawling, machine.


The pop-ups seemed to intensify when the GP 2010 main desktop becomes unfocused. The following is a sample of the URL that would show in IE address bar for a pop-up window (my voice account has been crossed out for security purposes).

https://online.dynamics.com/lus/?se=popup&product=GPRoleCenter&version=11.00.0218.000&roleid=4050&voiceaccount=XXXXXX&country=US&locale=EN-US&company=Fabrikam%2c+Inc.&role=IT+Operations+Manager

Interestingly enough, the URL contains a parameter (se) which value happens to be interestingly enough popup. A few days aback, the Connect content changed on the Microsoft side to a static content and there were no rotating banners anymore which in turn ceased the IE pop ups.

Initially, I never thought of associating this issue with something very familiar to all of us: pop-up adds. Pop-up adds are mostly generated with JavaScript which is how the Connect feature on the home page was programmed. Below, a sample from the home page code:

  //These are needed to control the interface
  var ConnectsourceURLs;
  var ConnectsourceURLParams;
  var ConnenctCompanyParam;
  var ConnenctRoleParam;

  ConnectsourceURLs = "https://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?linkid=152456";
  ConnectsourceURLParams = "&product=GPRoleCenter&version=11.00.0218.000&roleid=4050&voiceaccount=XXXXXXX&country=US&locale=EN-US";
  ConnenctCompanyParam = encodeURIComponent("Fabrikam, Inc.");
  ConnenctRoleParam = encodeURIComponent("IT Operations Manager");

  ConnectsourceURLs = ConnectsourceURLs + ConnectsourceURLParams + "&company=" + ConnenctCompanyParam + "&role=" + ConnenctRoleParam;
  ConnectsourceURLs = ConnectsourceURLs.replace(/ /g, "%20");

  // Initialize the iframe
  if (ConnectsourceURLs.length > 0)
  {
    setConnectFrameSource("connectIFrame");
  }

With this understanding, I checked Internet Explorer’s configuration and realized that the Pop-up Blocker was disabled. By enabling IE’s Pop-up Blocker feature and restarting Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010, the Internet Explorer pop-ups immediately ceased. Nonetheless, the question remains: Why is Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010 Connect feature raising popups to begin with?

If you have had to deal with this, just enable your browser’s Pop-up Blocker.

Until next post!

MG.-
Mariano Gomez, MVP
Maximum Global Business, LLC
http://www.maximumglobalbusiness.com/


Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010 and Office Web Components

July 2, 2010

A recurring question throughout these days of upgrades to Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010 is what version of Microsoft Office Web Components (OWC) is compatible with Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010. In this article, I will address this question by explaining what is OWC and how it is used.

OWC are a collection of Component Object Model (COM) controls for publishing spreadsheets, charts, and databases to the Web and are required to support the display of metrics on a Microsoft Dynamics GP home page. These components have been released with various versions of Microsoft Office, as shown below.

Source: OfficeBlogs.net

The latter is important to understand, because the Microsoft Dynamics GP home page is an HTML rendering done from Dexterity code with the aid of some XSL and cascading stylesheets. The HTML code embeds calls to OWC functions via JScript to display the metrics.

The current supported version of OWC is Microsoft Office 2003 Web Components for versions 9, 10, and 2010.

So now that we have gotten past this point, Office Web Components have been discontinued in Office 2007 (so don’t expect to see them in Office 2010 either), and are not included, except as a part of Microsoft Office Project Server 2007. However, they will still be available for download from Microsoft’s website. Microsoft has not yet offered a complete replacement for the Office Web Components. However, developers can use a combination of third party products, Excel Services or Visual Studio Tools for Office to provide similar functionality.

My guess is that Fargo will continue to use OWC until there is a new roadmap in place for the product. We may have started to see some of this with the use of the Dundas Chart Controls, featured in Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010 if using SSRS metrics.

Please let me know what you think.

Related Articles

Microsoft Office 2003 Web Components – download

KB Article 916673 – Error message when you view the home page in Microsoft Dynamics GP: “Metrics are not available because Microsoft Office Chart…”

Until next post!

MG.-
Mariano Gomez, MVP
Maximum Global Business, LLC
http://www.maximumglobalbusiness.com


Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010 – Navigation Enhancements

January 22, 2010

After the Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010 Security Enhancements mentioned in my previous article, I wanted touch base on some of the enhancements to the overall navigation experience.

One of the first things that jump out right at you when you get to the desktop is the new Microsoft Dynamics Online Connect feature. Think of this feature as your window to the Dynamics Community. That’s correct! Behind that window there are hundreds of thousands of other Dynamics GP users just like you. The problem? The Connect link seems to be down since sometimes yesterday, as of the date and time of publishing of this article. By the way, you can find the Connect site link (also known as the GP Role Center site) in the HomePage.xml file stored in your temp folder (%temp%).

You also have the ability to now view reminders as visual cues and multiple metrics on the page. I have to play more around with this feature as I was not quite sure I was able to get all metrics to be displayed at once.

The Navigation Pane will now only show the series buttons and associate lists for modules that are marked in the Registration window. Phew! This will certainly clean up the amount of options you have to sift through when working with your navigation lists.

You can now define and save a default lookup view for your master records by selecting the Set as Default View option from the View menu or using the right-click menu in the lookup window. The default view you select will be the view displayed when you open the lookup window the next time. You can set a default view for the following lookup windows:

  • Items lookup window

  • Accounts lookup window
  • Employees lookup window
  • Customers and Prospects lookup window
  • Salespeople lookup window
  • Vendors lookup window

The default view is saved on a per user, per company basis. The truth is, this functionality is not working as intended at this time. After I changed the sorting options and attempted to set these changes as the default value for my lookup window, the option appeared grayed out. I discussed this with MVP Mohammad R. Daoud who confirmed it in his new article titled Inside Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010 – Issues found so far.

All and all, in the above images you saw the right-click context menu, which leads me into the next navigation enhancement.

You can right-click in a text or numeric field to see a shortcut menu. The shortcut menu contains options from the Edit menu” — this, per the What’s New help file, but I believe Microsoft felt short in the definition as, right-click enables more of a context sensitive menu, rather than just shortcuts and operates in a number of places. For example, in SOP, you are able to display not only the standard copy/paste options, but also the scrolling window insert and delete options.

There are a few more enhancements in this area that I would like to discuss, but they will be part of a future article as I will need Microsoft SQL Server Reporting Services to demonstrate a few of them.

Until next post!

MG.-
Mariano Gomez, MVP
Maximum Global Business, LLC
http://www.maximumglobalbusiness.com/