Dynamics AX Support Discontinued. What’s Next?

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Want to learn about Microsoft Dynamics AX support? If so, you're in the right place!

Keep reading this blog to understand this business solution and the need for support.

What is Microsoft Dynamics AX?

Microsoft developed Dynamics AX, also referred to as Microsoft Dynamics AX, which is an enterprise resource planning (ERP) application. It was created to support companies in managing their manufacturing, supply chain, human resources, financials, and various other business operations.

Here are some key points about Dynamics AX:

1. Functionality

Dynamics AX offered a wide range of functionalities, including:

  • Financial Management: Handling budgeting, accounting, and financial reporting.
  • Supply Chain Management: Managing procurement, inventory, and logistics.
  • Manufacturing: Supporting production planning, scheduling, and shop floor operations.
  • Human Resources: Managing employee data, payroll, and benefits.
  • Sales and Marketing: Handling customer relationship management (CRM) and sales processes.
  • Project Management: Tracking project costs, resources, and progress.

2. Customization and Integration

Organizations could customize Dynamics AX to meet their specific needs. Integration with other Microsoft products (such as Office 365) and third-party applications was also possible.

3. Versions and Evolution

  • Dynamics AX went through several versions, with the most recent being Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations.
  • Microsoft transitioned from an on-premises model to a cloud-based model with Dynamics 365.

4. Lifecycle and Support

  • Microsoft provided regular updates, bug fixes, and security patches for Dynamics AX during its lifecycle.
  • However, as of October 2021, mainstream support for Dynamics AX has ended. Organizations are encouraged to migrate to newer solutions like Dynamics 365.

5. Community and Resources

  • Users could find support through online forums, documentation, and community-driven content.
  • Developers could extend Dynamics AX using X++ programming language.

Some Key Facts About Dynamics AX

In 1998, Microsoft Dynamics AX—formerly known as IBM Axapta—was first released through a collaborative effort between IBM and Damgaard. Microsoft later purchased it in 2002.

Aligned with the modernization of business solutions, Microsoft rebranded Dynamics AX as Dynamics F&O to meet the needs of modern businesses with advanced tools.

Dynamics 365 Finance & Operations is further split into two ERP solutions: Dynamics 365 Finance and Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management.

However, it is noteworthy that the mainstream support for Dynamics AX 2012 R3 ended on October 12, 2021, while the security hotfixes were continued under the extended support period that further lasted until January 10, 2023.

In such a scenario, it is advisable for businesses to move to the latest version of Finance and Operations apps, such as Dynamics 365 Finance, Supply Chain Management, Commerce, and Project Operations.

Differences between Dynamics AX and Dynamics Finance & Operations

Before making any decision over an upgrade to Dynamics Finance & Operations, let’s explore the key differences between Dynamics AX and Dynamics 365 Finance & Operations (F&O) to understand why upgrading might be beneficial:

1. Software as a Service (SaaS)

  • Dynamics 365 F&O is delivered by Microsoft as software as a service. It’s hosted in Microsoft’s cloud, and Microsoft takes care of installation, maintenance, and administration.
  • In contrast, Dynamics AX requires on-premises infrastructure and infrastructure administration.

2. Version Upgrades

  • Dynamics 365 F&O receives continuous upgrades with improvements in functionalities and technological features, twice a year, called Wave Releases. This ensures that the system never becomes outdated or obsolete.
  • Dynamics AX, on the other hand, doesn’t receive any updates as the extended support is already over. Systems deployed on-premises make it challenging to accommodate even minor upgrades.

3. Improved Usability

  • Dynamics 365 F&O offers a friendlier experience and greater flexibility. Users can access it via a browser from any device with an internet connection.
  • In contrast, Dynamics AX requires launching the system on a desktop or using a remote desktop connection.

4. Ongoing Support

  • The mainstream support for various versions of Microsoft Dynamics AX has specific end dates. For Dynamics AX 2012 R3, the mainstream support ended in October 2021 and the extended support lasted till January 10, 2023.
  • Dynamics 365 F&O provides ongoing support without the need for expensive version upgrade projects.

In summary, Dynamics 365 F&O offers benefits such as cloud-based delivery, continuous upgrades, improved usability, and ongoing support. If you’re still using Dynamics AX, transitioning to Dynamics 365 F&O can significantly enhance your ERP experience.

Dynamics AX vs Dynamics 365 Finance & Operations 

Let’s understand the differences between Dynamics AX and Dynamics 365 F&O through this quick table:

Parameters 

Dynamics AX  Dynamics 365 F&O 

Infrastructure Costs

Server costs average $25,500/server + $13,950/server/year (As per Forrester)

No server costs

License Pricing

Customers that choose perpetual licensing can license both limited access with Team Member users and Device CALs and full access with named user CALs

Monthly licenses for users.

$210 USD/user/month for both Finance & Supply Chain license Full User.

 

Integrations

Difficult, needs customization

Office 365, Dynamics CRM apps, and more.

Updates

Requires separate updates for each machine

Your Microsoft Dynamics partner can manage and update your entire production environment remotely.

Reporting

 

Difficult & complex, especially in AX 2012

Faster & easier. Often powered with Power BI.

Support

The extended and mainstream support for all Dynamics AX has ended

Microsoft support and Dynamics partner support are both available.

 

Disaster Recovery

Not in-built

Built in with Microsoft Azure. Disaster recovery capabilities for all production environments.

Cybersecurity

Servers vulnerable

Fully protected by Microsoft’s $1b investment in Azure security. (According to Miocrosoft)

Usability Requires launching the system in a desktop or using a remote desktop connection

Users enjoy added flexibility with a friendly user experience, mobile-ready

After analyzing all the pros and cons of both solutions, it’s high time that you considered migrating to Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations. According to Microsoft & Forrester, Dynamics 365 Finance led to a 122% ROI and over USD 3.5M in legacy cost savings over three years. Upgrading to Dynamics 365 F&O from Dynamics AX is a cost-effective approach with customizable cloud infrastructure.

How Dynamics Square Can help you with Dynamics AX to Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations Upgrade?

Dynamics Square has earned its name as a prominent Dynamics 365 implementation partner. We have a team of top technical consultants who provide business-oriented innovative solutions to our clients.  

When a business contacts us for Dynamics 365 F&O implementation, our experts analyze their business needs, predict future demands, and accordingly provide an optimal solution to maximize their overall growth. For a smooth and successful F&O upgrade, contact us today at +1 281 899 0865 or simply write us an email at arish.siddiqui@dynamicssquare.com.

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