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#reIMAGINE2015 – Day 2

David Meego - Click for blog homepagereIMAGINE2015_Logo

Tuesday started again with breakfast in the Grand Ballroom at t Hilton Garden Inn. Mariano had some things to deal with so I headed over to the Microsoft Campus for the day’s sessions.

The first session for me was an Expert 1-on-1 Workroom with Leslie Vail. We had about 10 people join us in the room, but there were not many developer related questions. So I let Leslie drive the session and discuss various application level topics.

Later, I sat in on Mariano’s Expert 1-on-1 Workroom with Windi Epperson and relaxed a little as the others discussed a variety of topics, including options for Web Client deployment and Azure clouds vs other cloud services vs hosted services.

Then it was time for lunch in the Microsoft Cafe and Chef Kevin looked after me as he always does when I am in town. He ensured that the food I selected had no Flavour Enhancers (like MSG and its buddies) which have nasty effects on me :-(.

We then left the Microsoft campus and headed back to the Hilton Garden Inn. I had a meeting and so was unable to attend the Rapid Fire Partner Solution session, but the meeting went well.

Then it was time to get on a coach and go “Downtown, things will be great when you’re Downtown” to the Fargo Theatre.

The evening of the Fargo Downtown Experience started with a networking reception at the “Art Deco” Fargo Theatre (built in 1926 and restored in 1999). While the reception was in progress, we had some drinks (& popcorn) and listened to the organist who rose up from below the stage and played a great range of show tunes.



Then, as the organist disappeared back into the ground, it was time for Keynote Speakers. The first speaker was Wayne Morris from Microsoft (who originally hails from Brisbane, Australia). He reiterated Microsofts commitment to Dynamics and the small and medium market.

The rest of the speakers were all from the Fargo region and were introduced by our MC for the night Greg Tehven. We heard from Clint Howitz, CEO of DogIDs, who explained how an idea with one employee working from home has grown into large business with many employees. We also heard from Max Kringen, CEO of TellWell. TellWell is an organisation which helps other businesses with guidance and planning for social media strategies and design.

The final speaker was Mark Lindquist, who is a former United States Air Force Sergeant who now works as an actor, entertainer and motivational speaker. Mark was incredibly dynamic (no pun intended) and challenged everyone to get out of their comfort zones and do something that makes you uncomfortable as once you have done it a few times it will become normal.


To demonstrate he asked the audience to clasp their hands and then open their arms and do “Jazz” hands and then clasp them again. We repeated this three times and then he asked us to notice which thumb was on top. The point is that people always clasp their hands the same way ever since they were babies. Changing the clasp to the other way just feels wrong. Try it right now….. See what I mean?

We then tried the same process with crossing the arms and again one way feels natural and the other feels uncomfortable. Go on try it now…. no one is watching. The moral of the story was to get out of the comfort zone and reIMAGINE what you can do, soon it what was hard or felt wrong will be normal and you can move on to the next challenge.

After the session was over, we noticed that the first challenge for the evening was spelling related. :-) 


After the keynote speakers, many of the attendees started with the “Downtown Experience” which was a sponsored pub crawl with each of the conference sponsors taking over one of the local drinking establishments.

I skipped the pub crawl and instead had dinner with the teams from NexTec and Mekoma as well as some friends. We had a lovely meal at Mezzaluna, which is situated behind the Fargo Theatre (number 14 on the map below).

Mezzaluna Clockwise: Angel Blum, Mark Wiley, David Musgrave, Leslie Vail, Jen Kuntz, Craig Klapman, Corey Clay, Sheila Jefferson-Ross, Mike Davis, Belinda Allen, Mike McDowell, & Elsa Williams.

Note: Mariano was at Mezzaluna, but ended up on another table as we had too many people… more than the original booking number.

After dinner some of the group went and joined the Downtown Experience, while a few of us caught a coach and headed back to the hotel to get some rest.


Stay tuned for Day 3 and the final day of the conference.


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Filed under: Conference, Dynamics, GP, Microsoft Tagged: Conference, reIMAGINE 2015

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#reIMAGINE2015 – Day 2

October 9, 2015 · WinthropDC · No Comments
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#reIMAGINE2015 – Day 1

David Meego - Click for blog homepagereIMAGINE2015_Logo

The conference officially starts today with a breakfast hosted at the Hilton Garden Inn. Mariano and I went down for breakfast and as fairly typical found ourselves chatting with many of the other attendees as well as catching up with the Microsoft people from the Fargo campus who had come over for the opening session.

The Opening Session started with a welcome from Joe Carrol and Pam Misialek. Joe discussed Association of Dynamics Professionals and new exams and certifications offered by the association. This is an important step for the community since Microsoft stopped offering certifications for Dynamics GP and NAV. This provides the entire community a way to measure a professional’s skillset so that you will know that they have reached a certain level of knowledge.

Pam Misialek discussed how Dynamics Partners need to be trusted advisor for Dynamics products as well as for other Microsoft products, or they should at least work with non-Dynamics Microsoft Partners. This way they can be part of the process for the implementation of all Microsoft products and not just Dynamics.

Wayne Morris is the Corporate Vice President for Microsoft Business Solutions (MBS) Marketing. He  discussed Microsoft’s direction and strategy and reaffirmed that Microsoft Dynamics both ERP and CRM are a large part of the overall Microsoft plan. He also highlighted that the midmarket solutions such as Dynamics GP and Dynamics NAV are still very important to meet the future goals of Microsoft, especially in making the mission statement a reality:

Empower every person and every organisation on the planet to achieve more.

He mentioned that it was important to continue building rich and deep relationships with customers and then bring in products that cater to the needs of small and medium businesses. In summary, Dynamics is core to Microsoft success. SMB (Small and Medium Businesses) is critical to where Microsoft is heading and they will continue investing.

The next speaker was Chad Sogge and he discussed where we are at this moment in time with “GP Now”. GP Now is the terminology for the current releases and what we can do with the system already.

He spoke about how the current system started as desktop client with a data server and how it is becoming more cloud and service based, including Office 365 and Dynamics CRM integration. As time goes on, more services and more Apps are coming, such as Business Analyser and self service apps.


Chad then discussed how the Web Client with Silverlight was introduced for Dynamics GP 2013 and how that empowered many companies to have a decentralised system that could be accessed from anywhere. Then we heard from Diamond Solutions on how there was minimal work required to take their local government solution and make it Web Client ready. We also heard from Martin and Andrew from eOne Solutions on their latest “Builder” offering. The Service Builder which can wrap any table from any product in Dynamics GP and make it accessible from a web service… without writing any code.

Then it was Jeff Trosen’s turn to discuss “GP Next” and the future plans. Jeff explained the roadmap and explained how the biggest technical advance for GP 2016 would be the HTML 5 based Web Client. Using objects coded in HTML 5 to reproduce the GP windows without a reliance on the now deprecated Silverlight, will open the Web Client up to work on all devices and browsers.

Below is the latest Microsoft Dynamics GP Roadmap (thanks Sheila JR for the photos):


Dynamics GP 2016 is planned for release in April 2016 and will have 30-35 new features as well as the HTML 5 Web Client. The cool thing is that there is nothing extra needed from developers to make their code ready for the HTML 5 version of the Web Client if they are already working on the Silverlight client. You can even have both Silverlight client for GP 2013 and GP 2015 installed on the same servers as the HTML 5 client for GP 2016.

We then were treated to some demonstrations of upcoming new features by Brian Meier and Jodi Christiansen. Followed by a demonstration of the HTML 5 Web Client by Jeff Trosen and Jennifer Ranz. After the demos, the opening session finished and the attendees split into groups based on their streams. The Developer and Consultant tracks headed or to the Microsoft campus for the breakout sessions.

I had planned to attend a couple of sessions, but after checking out the Microsoft Company Store, socialising and finally doing some preparation with Mariano for our first session, it did not happen.

So then Mariano and I presented our session: 25 Development Tricks and Hacks in 50 Minutes. This was a completely new session that was based on the 50 tips in 50 minutes format started by Mark Polino MVP. However as development is more technical and we did want to show and explain some code, we cut it down to 25 tips. The tips ranged from best practices and tricks for beginners to some seriously complex hacks to solve limitations in Dexterity. It was well received and I was happy as my friend Patrice Bremond-Gregoire said I taught him a thing or two. One of my aims when I present development sessions is to teach even the most experienced developers at least one thing they did not know.

It is very difficult to present when they is such a range of skill and experience levels in the attendees, and make everyone happy. But it helps when you give away yummy chocolates from Australia, like Caramello Koalas.


After our session Mariano and I relaxed for a while in the “Commons” area as the reIMAGINE 2015 Welcome Reception was being set up. The Welcome Reception was enjoyable with lots of socialising and catching up with my “conference” friends (people I only get to see at Microsoft Dynamics GP conferences).

It also had fun see how people reacted after eating some Cadbury Chocolate with “salted” caramel filling, only to find that the salted bit was Vegemite. While this might sound awful, it is surprisingly good and was liked by all who tried it.


We eventually got kicked out of the Microsoft office as the reception drew to a close and headed by coach back to the hotel. Time to get some sleep before day 2.


This article was originally posted on

Filed under: Conference, Dynamics, GP, Microsoft Tagged: Conference, reIMAGINE 2015

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#reIMAGINE2015 – Day 1

October 7, 2015 · WinthropDC · No Comments
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Microsoft Windows 10 Devices Briefing

Today, Microsoft continue to show why it is at the forefront of the computing and technology world. A company that was once joined by the hip to the personal computer (PC) is now able to move with the times with a vision centered on mobile computing – to think, a few years ago the company was scrambling to catch up with Apple and Google.

Just 10 weeks ago, Microsoft begun rolling out Windows 10 and now boasts 110 million users and 8 million business PCs. Once more, Microsoft surprises the computing world with a host of new computing devices designed specifically for Windows 10.

Windows 10 Devices Briefing

Microsoft Devices: Do Great Things.

The New Microsoft Band

The New Microsoft Band: Live Healthier and Achieve More

The New Microsoft Surface Book

The New Microsoft Surface Pro 4

The New Microsoft Lumia 950 and 950 XL

Tell you the truth, I moved from a Windows phone (Samsung ATIV S Neo) on the Sprint network to a Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge on the same network, which runs Android. While I have been able to adapt to the Android platform, I still don’t quite get the fuzzy feeling I did with my Windows phone. Maybe if Sprint decides to take on the new Lumia phones, I will switch back in a heartbeat, but that’s wishfull thinking. At this point, I will sign up for a new Microsoft Band as today I have the first iteration of that device which has been quite surprising so far (less the barometer feature now available in the second iteration). I will also be looking to upgrade my Xbox One to Windows 10 as soon as release becomes available. And speaking of Xbox One, here’s one of the coolest commercials they have.

My son has been enjoying Forza 6, which I got when I went to Fargo for reIMAGINE 2015. This game has been awesome to play so far, but I find it challenging without a driving wheel. Maybe it’s time to consider that Logitech G920 Driving Force.

I will also be looking forward to jump on a Surface Pro 4 as soon as I can, but for now it’s all a matter of enjoying Windows 10 all around on my laptops.

Until next post!

Mariano Gomez, MVP

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Microsoft Windows 10 Devices Briefing

October 7, 2015 · Mariano Gomez · No Comments
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#Windows10Devices Microsoft Windows 10 Devices Briefing

David Meego - Click for blog homepageToday, 6th October 2015 at 10:00am US Eastern time in New York City, the Microsoft Windows 10 Devices Briefing took place and it was an extremely polished presentation that introduced the world to the new Microsoft Devices for Windows 10.

The briefing announced some awesome new devices and games. Below are some of the videos from the event including the new Microsoft Band, new Microsoft Lumias, and the new Microsoft Surface 4 and Surface Book.

Microsoft Devices: Do Great Things (direct link)


Xbox One: Greatest Games TV Commercial (direct link)


The New Microsoft Band (direct link)


The New Microsoft Lumia 950 and 950 XL (direct link)


The New Microsoft Surface Pro 4 (direct link)


The New Microsoft Surface Book (direct link)


I know what is now on my wish list. Hopefully we won’t have to wait too long for the Australian releases.

If you want to watch the full presentation (which is definitely worth the time), click the link below:

The Hololens demonstration of the Project X-Ray game was amazing.



This article was originally posted on

Filed under: Band, HoloLens, Microsoft, News, Surface, Windows, Windows Phone, Xbox Tagged: Band, General, HoloLens, News, Surface, Windows 10, Windows Phone

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#Windows10Devices Microsoft Windows 10 Devices Briefing

October 6, 2015 · WinthropDC · No Comments
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#reIMAGINE2015 – Pre Conference

David Meego - Click for blog homepagereIMAGINE2015_Logo

So, now you know that I don’t have any photos of my own. But I do have some from friends at the conference, if you have any photos that include me or from the sessions that Mariano and I presented, please send them over.

Sunday was the day before the conference and I started with a good sleep in. I was still getting adjusted to the 13 hour time zone shift from Perth and my sleep was very restless.

After my late start, I felt a bit more alive and caught up with my friend Leslie Vail as she was going to provide a sample audience and feedback for the two sessions planned for reIMAGINE 2015. However, as typical, this did not go to plan and we ended up chatting most of the time. I also showed Leslie through the new features added to GP Power Tools that did not exist in the now discontinued Support Debugging Tool.

While I had a late start, my buddy and usual co-presenter, Mariano Gomez, was instructing a Microsoft Dynamics GP installation and configuration class. This class was to help prepare for the new certification exams organised by the Association of Dynamics Professionals. Unfortunately, Mariano, felt unwell and was unable to complete the class. However, fellow MVPs Belinda Allen and John Lowther quickly took over and swapped to a workshop format.

I took advantage of the opportunity and took the Installation and Configuration exam during this first sitting. While I have not actually installed Microsoft Dynamics GP for a live cutomer system for many years, I thought I would test my knowledge. As a developer I do install GP, but only what I need for my test systems. We shall see in due course whether I passed, I think I did well enough. I also provided feedback on the exam as this was both a test of my knowledge and a test of the exam and its ability to test my knowledge.

After I had taken the exam, I spent some time socialising with other attendees who had come down to complete their registration and pick up their reIMAGINE 2015 bags with lots of goodies, including a nice Microsoft branded polo shirt. While it was not planned, it turned into an unofficial reception party as partners socialised and caught up with friends.

The day finished with a dinner across the road from the Home2 Suites at Johnny Carino’s with Leslie Vail, Shelia Jefferson-Ross, Kim Peterson and Mariano Gomez (who was feeling better).

Imagine fantastic photo here.

The conference proper starts tomorrow….


This article was originally posted on

Filed under: Conference, Dynamics, GP, Microsoft Tagged: Conference, reIMAGINE 2015

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#reIMAGINE2015 – Pre Conference

October 6, 2015 · WinthropDC · No Comments
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Changing SQL Server Collation After Installation

I had a necessity to change the collation of newly created SQL server instance from CI_AS to CP1_CI_AS.

To brief you about why this was needed, I wanted to test upgrade GP from version 2010 RTM to 2010 SP3. In order to that, I created a new SQL server instance with collation SQL_Latin1_General_CI_AS. I restored GP 2010 RTM backups on to this newly created server. But later realised that GP databases that I got for 2010 RTM was of collation SQL_Latin1_General_CP1_CI_AS.

There were two options. Either I must change the collation of databases to CI_AS or I must change the server collation itself to CP1_CI_AS. Later seemed to be a better option (for some reason, I wanted to retain the collation on the databases). I was left with changing the collation of server instance.

That’s when I got this link: Changing SQL Server Collation After Installation

I was worried about the whole process but this post saved me loads of time and sweat. Changing the collation was a breeze.

Anybody out there who is looking for the best possible method to change server collation, above is the post you would want to read.


Filed under: #MSDYNGP, Dynamics GP, SQL Server

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Changing SQL Server Collation After Installation

October 6, 2015 · Vaidyanathan Mohan · No Comments
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#reIMAGINE2015 – Post Conference

David Meego - Click for blog homepagereIMAGINE2015_Logo

I know reIMAGINE finished over a week ago, but today is the first day since the end of the conference that I have had a change to sit down and start writing about it. Before you ask, there is a reason I am start with the Post Conference article…..

I have to start with an apology. I did something very stupid, even ignoring the advice of an expert. On the day after the conference was over, my Panasonic Lumix compact camera broke, the lens would not longer open, the zoom system had failed. After trying to see if anyone stocked a similar camera (so I could use the same batteries, cables, charger, etc.), I ended up buying a new Sony compact camera with similar (but slightly better) features.


When I bought the camera, the assistant at the camera shop said “make sure you copy the photos from the old camera off the memory card before using it in the new camera.”. I agreed as this was good advice. Then while waiting to get picked up from the store by a friend, I decided to do the initial setup of the new camera and try to learn its features. Then I did the stupid thing and put the memory card in the new camera. It came up with a couple of dialogs which seemed innocent enough. Then it mentioned something about NTSC video format and when I clicked OK, it formatted the card. Boom, no warning that it was going to erase data, no confirmation. I tried numerous programs to attempt to recover the photos, but no data was found anywhere on the card.

I normally back up photos from the camera to my computer each night when I travel (just in case), but had been so busy that I had not done a back up since the day before the conference. So the end result is that I have no photos from the reIMAGINE 2015 conference at all. Before you ask, the card was cleared before my US trip so I have not lost any other photos or videos, just the conference. So if you were in a photo taken by me and were hoping to be made famous by being featured on my blog… I am sorry… It won’t be happening this time around.

After getting very angry and grumpy with myself and berating myself for not backing up daily and for not being patient enough to wait until I had got back to the hotel to copy the files off the memory card, I realised that the photos were gone and were not coming back.

I spoke with my “sagely” wife and she reminded me that the only person who really knew what photos were lost was me and the consequences of this moment of stupidity were really quite minor and harmless.

I will also mention that the new camera is really impressive and has taken some great shots which you will see soon in the blog posts for what I have been up to since reIMAGINE.

So the points to take away from this post are:

  • Sorry, I have no photos from the conference, I might use ones from other people if I can.
  • Don’t ignore advice from people who know, especially after you agreed with it.
  • Backup your photos, both the ones on memory cards and the ones already saved to hard drives.
  • I am human and I can make mistakes along with everyone else.
  • Finally, listen to your spouse/partner, etc.

I will shortly write and post my recollections from the reIMAGINE 2015 conference.


This article was originally posted on

Filed under: Conference, Dynamics, GP, Microsoft Tagged: Conference, reIMAGINE 2015

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#reIMAGINE2015 – Post Conference

October 5, 2015 · WinthropDC · No Comments
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,  · Posted in: Blogs I Follow Total Views: 12