Nobody likes a slow computer – having to wait forever for responses to load and for reports to run is a common hassle amongst businesses. Add to that those pesky random incomprehensible error messages and you might just get a spurt of office rage (like road rage, but with staplers).
So how can you avoid this? The answer is simple: A health check for your Microsoft Dynamics AX, just to make sure it is running optimally and are being used appropriately. It could be that your data is not processed correctly or that the system set-up is no longer in sync with your business logic.
Here are the top 10 problem areas you should check:
When users are set up in the system admin security group, they gain full access to the system – not only can they access any data, they can also view and modify objects such as tables and code, which is why less than 5% of your users should fall in this group.
People need to be aware of and respond to critical events as they occur, which is why alerts are so important. Yet these alerts should be managed carefully, as overuse or improper set-up of alerts could degrade the system. Ideally you need a process in place to ensure that alerts are monitored.
Code management and deployment
You should have systems and procedures in place to control the development, management and deployment of any customisations. This ensures that members of the implementation team are aware of which customisations exist in the system and why code changes were made. Such a system can also avoid the occurrence of different code between environments.
Oversized logging tables
Some of the tables holding data and transaction history becomes redundant after a certain time. You need a strategy in place to purge this unneeded data to maintain optimal performance around batch jobs and service calls, as well as better use of disk space to avoid wasting precious data on useless batch jobs.
Speaking of batches, it can be quite challenging to configure your system to use batches effectively. It takes experience to know when to create different batch groups, add a dedicated application object server (AOS), determine how many threads to dedicate to the AOS batch work and then to manage the batches. You must ensure that your system is set up optimally to avoid issues with batch jobs not completing within the designated timeframe or taking longer than necessary to finish.
AOS event logs
Dynamics AX AOS writes a lot of records to the application event log and with the volume of messages – informational, warning and error – it can become difficult to know which action to take. There should be a differentiation between which event logs need to be addressed and what the action is that needs to be taken.
This is the bedrock of your system that manages the Dynamics AX data and model store, and subsequently its configuration can have a significant impact on your system. Wrong configuration than can decrease efficiency and performance can include having the maximum degree of parallelism set incorrectly for Dynamics AX, the set-up of tempdb files, not enabling certain trace flags and not separating your data, log and tempdb storage.
Set-up of number sequence
A number sequence system which is set up as continuous has to query SQL with every new record to find out what the next number is. If this set-up option is not selected, the AOS can cache a range of numbers to be used next. This all affects the number of reads produced in the SQL server.
It is important that client crashes are monitored and that a resolution for each crash is sought out, otherwise it can cause usage data and cache file corruption – affecting performance and frustrating end users.
Considering the fact that your ERP system is of the utmost importance to your business, you should have a reliable and efficient disaster recovery plan in place. Make sure that you have regular backups in place as well as on off-site recovery site in case of fires and floods.
Regular health checks for your Dynamics AX will ensure better performance, optimal use of the system and improved efficiency all round. Dynamics AX is a valuable ERP tool and forms a big part of your business solution, because it doesn’t matter what size your business, little things become big issues without the right business management software.