Dynamics AX 2009: Preparing Role Center Deployment


BACKGROUND

Dynamics AX 2009 is a huge project and when I describe the value it delivers I always make sure I mention that to achieve that full value, a customer should be using Role Centers.

And just for reference here is one of the Role Centers – the CEO Role Center.

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You can learn more about Role Centers in this post: Compelling Analytics: SQL Server Reporting Services in Dynamics AX 2009

We are so passionate about the place Role Centers have in AX that I take great pains in my writing and speech to never even imply that that they are optional components – in others words, I want you to think about them as pieces critical to the value of the product. And let me assure you their importance only grows in future releases.

 

WHAT YOU ARE TELLING US

Feedback from customers and partners has been clear

  • They like the idea and the vision
  • Wow, it is hard to deploy.

WE ARE LISTENING AND RESPONDING

So, in our zeal to drive customers to adopt Role Centers, we haven’t been crisp in the guidance on how to deploy Role Centers or how to plan for them.

We are addressing that now, and this blog post is the first component of the things we are doing to help you.

 

HERE’S WHAT WE WANT YOU TO KNOW

  • A successful deployment of Role Centers takes planning and preparation – a methodical step-by-step approach – it is not a “flip a switch” and Role Centers do exactly what you want.
  • Although role centers are critical to deliver the product’s full value, please do realize that you can upgrade to AX 2009  and take advantage of all other benefits and delay role center deployment until you have fully planned and prepared for it.
  • We are working on making this overall process clear

A SKELETON OF AN OVERALL PROCESS

  • First, get a basic AX 2009 installation working without role centers
    • While you have AX 2009 running, plan in parallel for the role centers: Which roles are needed? what do you need in each role center?
  • Second, roll out the technologies Role Centers need
    • SQL Reporting Services (SSRS)
    • SQL Analysis Services (SSAS)
    • IIS
    • SharePoint
  • Third, deploy and configure the Role Centers
    • Deploy the AX Enterprise Portal
    • Configure the all the technologies needed for role centers: SSAS and SSRS
      • For AX2009 the most complex part will be the SSAS work (we will be creating materials to help guide you through this)
      • The key things that you’ll need to think about and configure appropriately here
        • 1 – handling multi-box topologies (for example: if SSRS and SSAS are on different boxes)
        • 2 – securing the AX OLAP Cubes
        • 3 – configuring the AX OLAP Cubes and Role Center web parts to correspond to your specific set of License Keys and Config Keys
  • Fourth, production deployment
    • Finally roll out the AX 2009 Role Centers in production
    • At this point all the core pieces are in place and role center deployment will be much more straightforward than if you had tried to deploy role centers at the very beginning of AX 2009 deployment

 

MORE HELP IS COMING

This post is just an intro into the materials we are developing to help you. We are creating those materials now, and as they are released I will make sure to announce their availability in this blog.


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