Dynamics NAV Next Generation Enhancements

For the past year Microsoft has been developing and testing a new development model for Dynamics NAV and Dynamics 365 Business Central. This new format (having made its debut in NAV 2018) has several key advantages when compared to “classic” enhancements that you may already have in your system.

I’ve explored some of the key benefits of this format, and how it can help your system thrive.

Microsoft has been developing and testing a new development model for Dynamics NAV and Dynamics 365 Business Central which has several key advantages when compared to “classic” enhancements.

Faster Upgrades

By untangling enhancements from standard code, it becomes significantly easier to upgrade the underlying system and apply more regular updates. This means you can get access to the newer features of your system without the expensive and lengthy upgrade process. A fully decoupled design could result in an upgrade as quick as 30 seconds.

AppSource

The new “app store” for NAV & Business Central, AppSource, showcases many ISV solutions from various partners. It brings the concept of Apps, prevalent in the mobile world, into business applications. These solutions are developed in a modular fashion so they can be applied to your system without expensive merges or installation costs.

The AppSource marketplace

Smarter Enhancements

Events help developers decouple code from the standard product.

While events may not cater for every enhancement scenario, Microsoft is regularly adding new integration points based on Partner suggestions. The number of events have increased dramatically in the recent versions of NAV, giving developers more flexibility. This illustrates Microsoft’s commitment to the event design pattern.

The number of Event Subscriptions in Dynamics NAV and Dynamics 365 Business Central.

More Active Developers

The C/AL language that is used to develop classic enhancements has been in use since the earliest versions of Navision, but has had limitations for compatibility reasons. Rather than retrofit features from modern languages into an aging language, Microsoft has developed a new language “AL” that has been designed from the ground up to suit modern development and make it more accessible to developers. This results in simpler and cheaper modifications.

The new AL development environment

The above is just a glimpse into the future of Dynamics NAV and Dynamics 365 Business Central. It’s a pivotal moment for NAV.

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Written By Jake Edwards

After a five-month Industry Based Learning placement at Fenwick Software Jake was offered a position with the company in 2011. Jake designs solutions for Microsoft Dynamics NAV based systems and directs Fenwick Gold development. The Fenwick Cloud platform is his pride and joy, with a strong interest in Azure and SaaS. He has a background in programming and web development. Jake built Fenwick’s website.

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