Upgrade Considerations For Sage MAS 500 Version 7.3

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Sage recently announced a new policy for the support of older versions, and a new structure for delivering product updates to customers. Additionally, with the release of Version 7.3, new platforms requirements are in effect for Sage MAS 500 ERP. With these changes, now is the time to consider migrating to a 64-bit platform. To assist you in planning your upgrade strategy, we will review the new support and product update policy as well as the benefits of the 64-bit platform and Microsoft SQL Server 2008.

New Structure For Support And Updates
Currently Sage is supporting up to five versions, which dilutes the effectiveness of support and development. Sage is moving to a policy of supporting just the current version and two versions back with the retirement of Versions 6.3 and 7.0 on September 30, 2010.

Sage also will schedule product updates every four to six months instead of the current monthly updates. The new product updates will provide value between major releases by including new features and usability improvements in addition to program corrections. Note that Sage will continue to fix any defects for customers as they occur, according to current escalation policies.

Supported Platforms
With the release of Version 7.3, Sage MAS 500 has been optimized to take full advantage of SQL Server 2008, and will still support SQL Server 2005. Microsoft Windows Server 2008 and Windows 2003 Server are the supported server operating systems, and client machines can run on Windows Vista SP1 or Windows XP SP3.

Note: SQL Server 2000 and Windows 2000 Server and Client are being retired and are no longer supported.

SQL Server 2008 Benefits
In SQL Server 2008, a new Resource Governor allows you to define resource priorities for different workloads to achieve consistent performance. Policy-Based Management allows you to define a common set of policies for database operations such as query optimizations, backup, and index management.

64-Bit Processing Benefits
To realize the full performance benefit of 64-bit processing, the platform and all the applications need to be designed for 64-bit. Sage MAS 500 7.3 takes full advantage of the 64-bit platform through Microsoft SQL Server 2008. The 64-bit version of SQL Server allows you to allocate more RAM to server processes. This improves performance because SQL Server can work primarily in memory rather than accessing the hard drive.

An important point to note here is that Windows 2008 R2 is 64-bit only. So by upgrading to this operating platform, but not upgrading to SQL Server 2008 at the same time, you might actually experience a performance degradation, because the 64-bit operating system has to do extra work to communicate with the 32-bit version of SQL Server.

The release of Version 7.3 is the ideal time to upgrade your platform for Sage MAS 500, especially if you are running any Windows 2000 products. The combination of 64-bit with the performance enhancements in Version 7.3 can result in a dramatic performance boost. Please call us for assistance.

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