Saturday, October 19, 2019

Planning the Plan - my D365 Upgrade Journey!

Just back from 2019 User Group Summit North America!  What a great event - so much information and networking packed into 4 days!!!  For me it started with Leadership training and the Welcome Expo Reception and ended with buying the recorded sessions.  There were so many learning sessions, partner showcases, and medic discussions in between.  Oh yes, and a bit of presenting as well.

Back home now, reflecting on everything I heard and learned.  My head is swimming with all the D365 products, applications, and services ... Azure Logic Apps, Flow, PowerApps, Regression Suite Automation Tool (RSAT), Lifecycle Services (LCS), Common Data Store (CDS) just to name a few.  It's a whole new world out there and so many decisions to make.

Many terms the pre-D365 users (including me!) that we know and use are now going away.  They are being replaced by new tools.
  • Coding layers are becoming extensions
  • AIF will be gone
  • Any custom reports will need to be rewritten
  • On-premise is now taking a side show to Azure
  • Licensing changes...too many to put it in a single bullet point!
  • Deprecated features will be GONE(!!!) in D365
So much to think about.  My co-chapter leader, Shelby Wright, put it all in a scary perspective.  She said, "You've got to rethink everything!"  At first I didn't understand, but after a bit more conversation I realized going to D365 introduces Azure components to the product regardless if you stay on-premise or go totally cloud.  Will your ISVs still work, your current tools and other applications will they be able to live side by side with D365?  I hadn't really realized the totality of what this upgrade meant.  I'm not ready for this - are you???

Mainline support has already ended for most versions of Dynamics AX, and the last version 2012 R3 ends in just over 2 years.  Below are some of the support dates from the Microsoft site:

I'm on the last remaining supported version - Dynamics 2012 R3.  I made upgrading to 2012 R3 my company's goal shortly after the 2016 AXUG Summit.  I went live in November of 2017 shortly after the 2017 AXUG Summit.

My current goal is to build a D365 Upgrade proposal and present it to my company's executive management.  I hope to compete the proposal by the end of the 2019 calendar year.  A lot of decisions to be made and develop an overarching applications road map for the company.  A lot to think about!  But in a little over 2 years - 733 days to be exact, mainline support for the version I am on will fall off mainline support.

From the Microsoft Docs site:
Mainstream support for Dynamics AX 2012 R3 continues through October 12, 2021. Microsoft will continue making security hotfixes, non-security hotfixes, and regulatory updates for Dynamics AX 2012 R3 throughout that mainstream support period. The source code for these non-binary, non-security hotfixes and regulatory updates will continue to be available for customers, and their partners, active on the Enhancement Plan or Software Assurance.

There is however extended support available for an additional 15 months.  With extended support, support incidents can still be reported but only security related updates will be released.  Extended hotfix support program will be available with a premier support agreement.  More details of this support program will be available several months before the extended support date.

Join me in my journey!  I hope you are on your way as well!!!