Convergence 2015 US | Recap

It’s only wednesday afternoon, the event goes on for another day but it’s my last day at the event so time to wrap up and recap.

Honestly I had forgotten how big this event was. Last Convergence I attended was in 2008 I think. 12.000 people is huge and makes Directions EMEA look like a gathering of friends (which it is).

So it’s an experience being here even though I skipped monday because of my oldest daughters birthday.

I’ve done two presentations for NAVUG. One about upgrades and one about word reporting. Both sessions will be repeated as a NAVUG webinar so if you missed it you should register.


Goal was to squeeze almost two decades of real life upgrade experience into an hour session. I had 46 slides. I managed to do it in exactly 60 minutes with only skipping one slide.

The session was devided into a part about getting from Classic to RTC and a part about upgrades after finishing this journey. The majority of the audience was still on classic.

I hope I inspired people to get the upgrade going and enjoy the better upgrade experience after that.

You can find the slides here.

Word Reporting

I was honestly tempted to ask the audence to leave the presentation if they had ever done  a mailmerge in word, but I did not. I actually managed to spend 45 minutes on the topic with Claus Lundstrom in the audience.

Mark Word reporting

I spent most time of the presentation explaining different datasetconsiderations comparing different versions of the Sales Invoice Report. Once the dataset is easy to understand the word reporting gets easier too.

Nested Iterations

During convergence I also learned that NAV 2015 CU4 fixed the problem of having nested iterations in your word report. That is excelent news.

Glossy Mark

Couple of weeks ago I was asked some interview questions that would be published in the NAVUG magazine. Well that happened and I was quite surprised how cool the result looks in a glossy magazine.


Directions USA 2013 | Real World Upgrades

Real world upgrades


For those of you who don’t know him, Tom Wickstrom is THE upgrade specialist. He has done over 600 upgrades since 1999.

I’ve personally worked with Tom on more than 30 projects.


Tom recommends quoting upgrades fixed price. However this requires to compile a list up front with objects that cannot be merged but need redesigned.

For comparing reports Tom has a tool that removes RDLC code to be able to see real changes to the report.

Another thing that needs to be considered are changes that cannot be brought forward or features that are now available in the standard solutions.

If programming is needed for redesign this needs to be included in the price, either fixed price or on hourly bases.

Customers also have to reconsider their hardware. Is the hardware still adequate for the new version.

Another advice is to add enough time for training and emotional support since end users will have to get used to new ways of working.


Look at your customer organisation and try to estimate if there will be resistance. Resistance is a big risk in the project.

Make sure to schedule time for testing.

The customers license needs to be refreshed and tested. It happens sometimes that refreshed licenses are not good.

If it is necessary to replace hardware make sure it is there in time and test on this hardware.

Test with end user access rights, not with super. Make sure the real endusers do testing.

Make sure no one is on vacation or unavailable when you need them for the project.

During the final cutover the database will be down. This takes time and need to be calculated.


Make sure to have test script.

If you cannot test on the golive machine, make sure to test on hardware that is equivalent.

Track the test results and maintain software incidents. (SIR).

Just because a document got posted does not mean the posted document is ok. Test, test test and look at the results.

Testing is the most important part of an upgrade.

If something went wrong, why did it go wrong. Is it programming or setup? Or is the user using the system wrong. Or is the new version behaving differently and is the result good but no what the customer expects.

Go Live

Before go-live use a testing complete sheet where the customer signs that the upgrade has been tested and no more errors exist.

After this is signed new errors are no longer within fixed price. This is not to make more money but to encourage people to test.

Everyone within the team needs to be available.

Be sure to be onsite for the first 1-3 days. Help endusers and do emotional support.

Recipes for disasters

By far the biggest risk is programming in live databases after the upgrade has been started.

Little less complicated is programming in the testing database, but that needs to be synchronised with the upgrade objects.


Compressed item ledger entries in older versions cannot be upgraded, the costing will be messed off.

This feature does not exist anymore.

If someone of the team is unavailable and needed for something.