Windows Server 2008 High Performance vs Balanced Setting


You can see in the Specification area below that the system contains a 2.70 GHz processor yet the Core Speed area shows that the system is actually running at 798.3 MHz. How can that be you may ask? Well that is what I continue to see repeatedly when logging in to systems when I am asked to review some performance issues.

I am not saying this is the only issue but fixing this issue alone has solved quite a few of the reported issues, especially when I hear that my system is fast for a while then it slows down after several days or so. The tool shown above is called CPU-Z from CPUID. There are other tools that you can use. I am just a fan of this one. It is free and very small.

So now let’s go look at where this is configured. I am doing the changes below in Windows Server 2008. This is in Windows Server Power Options.

Go to Control Panel-System and Security-Power Options

Make sure the setting has High Performance selected

If the above setting was balanced it will adjust the Core Speed down based on average use to save on power and energy. Once it settles in on a number for Balanced it will not speed up again to full speed until you do a reboot. This is true in a virtual server as well.

In addition to the Windows Server 2008 your physical systems also contain BIOS settings as well to allow you to configure the system to run balanced or optimized as well. Please consult your hardware documentation for more information on CPU Throttling.

These terms are a little misleading in my mind as I think this means efficiently in terms of power consumption. I understand why these settings are important to save energy but if the purpose of your system is to be a high performance system then this setting defeats the purpose.

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How do I verify that Sage ERP MAS 500 v7.3 is Compliant?


You can go to the https://www.pcisecuritystandards.org/approved_companies_providers/vpa_agreement.php web page and find that Sage ERP MAS 500 version 7.3 is PA-DSS compliant.  

You then need to prove to the auditors that Sage ERP MAS 500 was implemented in accordance with our PA-DSS Implementation Guide: http://community.sagemas.com/t5/Installation-and-Technical/PA-DSS-Implementation-Guide-for-v7-3-Credit-Card-Processing/td-p/16235

This is all the proof the auditors require as far as Sage ERP MAS 500 is concerned.

There is only one level of certification in PA-DSS, the application and implementation is either compliant or not. PCI-DSS has different levels of certification and Sage ERP MAS 500 is compliant with any of the different PCI-DSS compliance levels.

Once Sage ERP MAS 500 is at version 7.5 and utilizing Sage Exchange, MAS500 will no longer touch card holder information. The card holder data is gathered by Sage Exchange in a totally independent memory space and sent to the Sage Vault. Sage ERP MAS 500 then deals with an opaque pointer to the information stored in the vault. Sage Exchange is PA-DSS compliant. Sage ERP MAS 500 will no longer require PA-DSS certification because it no longer touches card holder data.

The customer will still be required to be PCI-DSS compliant, so it doesn’t change the customer’s procedures. It only moves the PA-DSS compliance requirement from Sage ERP MAS 500 to Sage Exchange. You can learn more about Sage Exchange at http://www.sagepayments.com/Products-Services.

I would like to thank Richard Sisk for input on this topic.

14 Days of Sage ERP X3 – Day 1 of 14 – My Attempt to Provide some Definitions


Well here goes…I am not sure why I am doing this other than I just needed a reason to dive deeper into a few areas of Sage ERP X3. This gives me reason to do so and goal to meet. So it may not be that useful for some of you that have been using this for longer than I have. I have picked 14 consecutive days since that is the window of time that I have on my calendar that I am able to commit to accomplishing this feat at this time. I am writing this blog based on Sage ERP X3 version 6.2.

In this initial blog in my sequence, I am will be providing just a base set of Definitions according to my interpretation related to Sage ERP X3. This is one of the areas that took me a while to become comfortable. It is mostly due to Semantics that took me a while to grasp. This is in no way an all-inclusive list nor is it an all-inclusive definition for these items. The definitions are to provide a basis for the follow-up blogs.

  • SAFE X3 – Sage Application Framework for Enterprise
  • Servers for X3 (this is an n-tier application that can run on Windows, Linx or Unix operating system)
    • Database – where the X3 database is deployed, Sage ERP X3 supports Microsoft SQL Server as well as ORACLE
    • Application – this manages connection and processing to the Database Server, this is where the X3V6 Folder is located, the X3V6 Folder is sometimes referred to as the Reference Folder
    • Connection – this is also referred to as the Process Server, this manages the user session connections, this can be optional depending on the size of your installation, you can deploy multiple Connection Servers to scale for additional users
    • Print – this is used to host up report requests from the client
    • Web – this is used to host Sage ERP X3 Web Services, Sage ERP X3 Automated Data Collection(ADC)
  • Folders – this is used to define, manage and process the following, this does not mean one Company
    • Rules – Access rights, signatures, accounting, etc
    • Parameters – Company/Site structures, workflow, general parameters, etc
    • Dictionaries – Tables, Screens, Windows, Objects, etc
    • Developments – Programs, specific screens, tables, etc
    • Data – Customers, Products, Sales Orders, Invoices, Journals, etc
  • Company – this represents each business entity you configure
    • You can have more than one Company in a Folder if you prefer
    • A company can have multiple Sites
  • Site – this represents a sub-entity within a company, this can relate to a location, a warehouse, etc
  • Entry Transaction – is more about the Form related to entry of a transaction type than the actual module transactions, it defines the UI settings and the Default Form
  • Legislation – this is much more than a Chart of Accounts, it refers to the ability to flag records and settings to specific legislations, this allows for unique regional processing (e.g. you can have UK terms codes that can only be used on UK transactions, etc)
  • Activity Code – this is very important, this can be used to track changes that are made to the Sage ERP X3 installation
    • You define the Activity Code then you assign these at any stage of changes you make to your system including tables, fields, screens, etc
    • You may decide to create your own Activity Code per Customer to keep track of them
    • The written, but not enforced naming convention for changes should start with X, Y or Z
      • X is used for US Created, vertical uses an X as well
      • Y is used for what you create for a customer as a Partner (they use one activity code per customer no matter how many mods)
      • Z is used for a customer to use for anything they make for themselves
      • Localization changes will begin with ‘K’
  • Screen – this is the visual portion of the user interface, you define the form size, text, fields, tab order, etc in this area

    Calling order of code on the screen (you have these on Object and Window as well)

    • Specific Processing (SPE)
    • Vertical Processing (SPV)
    • Standard Processing (SUB, TRT, CNS)
  • Object – this is where you describe the environment, this can contain tables, fields, order, relationships, etc
  • Window –this reminds me of a master container in that it can
    • You can attach an Object to a Window but it is not required
  • Parameters – the settings that define how Sage ERP X3 functions and is structured, it also establishes default settings for various transactions and usability, these can be defined by Folder, Company, Site and User
  • Validation – This is used a lot in the Development module. This is basically used to validate and compile the code

Thank you for your patience on this first blog. I hope you enjoyed this limited outline. I did not mean to make it this long but I needed to get some of this out for the remaining blogs. Check back as I will now begin to use these definitions as I outline additional functionality.

 

Sage ERP X3 – Global Announcement Introducing v6.2


Today was the official release of Sage ERP X3. With thousands of users attending the official kick-off, the Sage leaders went into detail related to this new product version. The

Announcing Sage ERP X3 v6.2 with its 300+ enhancements, some of the more important items that they covered during this session include:

  • Sage Webtop via the Dashboard Intelligence
  • X3 Standard Edition with 130+ pre-built Visual Processes
  • Connected Services: a few examples include Sage Payment Services, Avalara Sales Tax, and Worldship
  • Enhanced Web Services
  • Job Cost and Project Accounting module to provide a solution for Service industry solution
  • Follow the sun 24 x 5 support services available
  • Microsoft Office 2010 integration
  • Polish and Russian legislation added

ISV Partner announcements

  • Talend : providing an integrated ETL application (data exchange)
  • VersionOne : Providing a high end integrated EDM solution
  • Vertigo : Carbon footprint evaluations

Some Sage ERP X3 Standard Edition information

  • Streamlined implementation methodology
  • 60+ KPIs
  • 300 pre-built Queries
  • 130+ pre-built Visual Processes
  • 440+ reports to assist in best practices
  • Ability to upgrade to Premium Edition “in a flash”

Vertical Industry focus for Sage ERP X3 by creating bundled Edition solutions starting with the following…

  • Discrete Manufacturing Edition
  • Process Manufacturing Edition
  • Distribution Edition
  • Services Edition

To find out more about this product you can visit www.sageerpx3.us and www.oursageplace.com as well twitter #sageerp and #sageerpx3.

What’s next they are working Emerald and Jade. These are the next 2 version’s already in design and development mode. Stay tuned…

Sage ERP X3 System Administration training


We, RKL eSolutions have added Sage ERP X3 to our product offering. We have many emotions related to adding another product to our portfolio, some of those are related to the fact that we are adding this Sage ERP X3 product, more on that later.

As a Partner of a Publisher you are at their mercy for the most part to the product(s) they offer to the market. Yes, this includes Sage. We have been a Partner with Sage for a long time and I can say we hope to keep it that way. Whenever we have conversations about other ERP Publishers we always come back to the old saying, “The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence.”

As I said before, we recently added Sage ERP X3 product to our arsenal. So this requires us as an organization to “Drink the Kool-Aid” so to speak, which brings me to writing this information. I will add my disclaimer no that these are just my opinions and thoughts.

As most of you may know Sage has quite a plethora of products in their portfolio. Attempting to select one is somewhat of a crap shoot, but I consider selecting the product of the month, just a part of the chess match between Partner and Publisher.

I just completed the scheduled 3 day training of the System Administration in 2 days. This of course has nothing to do with my ability to absorb the data faster, but more to do with Sage working through the process of creating the training curriculum for this newly added product to their portfolio. I will say that I was happy to be in attendance though. WOW, what timing for me, I was able to participate in the session today, where Rich from Sage, did a presentation on the Sage ERP X3 Web Services. This alone was worth the trip! Thank you Rich, this was much appreciated.

Since we already distracted and had time, since we already covered all he material in the current cirriculum, we also covered a few other random questions the group had. Here is a sampling of some of these items…

1. Can you run Sage ERP X3 on a MAC? Let me provide a little background as I answer this question. First X3 natively provides you with the ability to run as a thick client and a thin client (browser based). So you say to yourself, of course it can. We can just use the thin client on the MAC and the problem is solved. Well the documentation states that the current shipping version of X3, which is v6.x, only supports Internet Explorer. The X3 thin client requires an Active-X component. It will not work with Safari, FireFox or Chrome. So the answer is no, you can’t natively run X3 on a MAC.

There are basically only a few ways to address this.
• RDP from the MAC to a Windows Terminal Server – http://www.microsoft.com/mac/remote-desktop-client
• Parallels virtual desktop – http://www.parallels.com/products/desktop/
• Create a VM on the MAC, inside the VM run Windows 7 with IE – http://www.vmware.com/products/fusion/overview.html

2. If you more than X3 Process Server does it support automatic load balancing? Basically on the surface you would think this to be another fairly obvious yes. Well not so fast. There is load balancing. It is however all manual. You configure the clients to access a certain Process Server. So the load balance is simply a load splitting exercise. I only mention this as a point of clarification, as there was more than one surprised expression in the room during this explanation.

Back to those emotions I mentioned earlier…
I am enjoying getting to know this new product we now have in our portfolio of offerings for our clients. I do have a lot of other areas I will be doing some deep dives on as we embark on this exciting opportunity. I will say that I am impressed with the product, at least what I have seen so far. To date I have had many emotions about X3. They vary based on many attributes. In its simplist form I have begun to categorize these emotions in the following manner.

• Impressive – one code base for both clients
• Confusion – I feel some of this comes down to semantics
• Disappointment – lack of basic data structure best practices and functionality (at least in my opinion)
• Excitement – Workflow and Thumbnails, oh my!
• Fear – there is a lot of moving parts

Well that’s all for now.

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