Customization to track developer changes


(Calvin Krusen) #1

I’m looking to implement a system to document changes to things like RDD, Report Styles, etc…

Customizations has built in “Notes” system that launches a pop up containing notes for that customization, like:

image

When a user clicks OK, it adds their user ID and time stamps it.

I assume this is saved with the customization, and if the customization was deleted, this info would be deleted as well. I’d prefer that not happen.

Anyway… I’m thinking about implementing a system like this for DDR’s, Print Styles, DD’s and BPM’s. Here’s a quick wish list of features:

  • Updating the primary table or a support table (via an action by the “developer”) pops up a window (BPM Form?) to let the user enter comments about the changes. Comments are date and timestamped. Preferably that prior entries are read only (i.e. you can only add to it, no deleting or modifying)

  • Depending on the table or BO, log the changes. Basically, the “Change Log” for things that don’t have a change log. For example,

    • changing the Print Program of a Report Style would log:
      • RptID: POForm
      • StyleNum: 1001
      • Action: CHANGED
      • Print Program: reports/PurchaseOrderForm/POForm -> reports/PurchaseOrderForm/POForm_20180410a
      • by: manager
      • Timestamp: 2018-04-10 01:23
    • deleting a report style logs:
      • RptID: POForm
      • StyleNum: 1002
      • Action: DELETED
      • Description: PO FORM (TESTING)
      • Type: SSRS
      • DDR: POForm_001
      • Print Program: reports/PurchaseOrderForm/POForm_1234
      • by: manager
      • Timestamp: 2018-04-10 01:23
  • This log persists even after the record is deleted

  • Logs the user, date and time of the action

Anyone one implement anything like this for logging developer based changes?


(Pierre Hogue) #2

We use SmartSheet. Web based tool for collaboration where we have a page for BPMs, a page for customizations and a page for the reports. In there we have basic info (name, version and a link to the service desk number (we use a helpdesk for all our changes requested by users)

But I would have like this being a more intuitive way within Epicor amongts all possible modifications. Maybe in 10.3… :wink:

Pierre


(Chris Conn) #3

Uggg, that sounds like one hell of a project.


(Calvin Krusen) #4

I was hoping someone else already had something like that and was willing to share.

We’re a small company and I’m the only person that does development work. So keeping track of my changes is all on me. I have a spreadsheet with tables to document things like UD Extended table fields. I’ve started some tabs for changes to the Report Styles BAQ’s and Dashboards, as these are the things I change the most.

But to be honest, it’s hard to go into the worksheet every time I make a change, and determine how detailed to document the change. If it was form based right in E10, it would be easier (and securely stored in E10).

If I have a meeting with the proverbial bus, I doubt anyone would know where to look for the documentation of the customizations. Not that anyone in the company would know what to do with them, but at least the next guy or consultant wouldn’t be dropped in cold.


(Monty Wilson) #5

Calvin, here are a few BAQ designs I created to document custom features. First, BAQs:

Here menu customization finder…

…and the calculated field to find the customizations…

…a similar one for finding BAQ Reports in the menu… (note: only installed ones show here)

…and its calculated field as well…

…and finally for dashboards…

…and that calculated field as well.

Here’s the one I made for UI customizations, although Customization Workbench might have been a more straightforward approach.


(Calvin Krusen) #6

That’s all great info. Will help me out in finding all the changes I’ve done, but failed to document.

What I’m looking for is a way to document the changes on the fly. Basically every time a “developer” type table (BAQ, RptStyle, Menu, etc…) changes. It doesn’t have to automatically capture the details of the change (although that would be sweet). I just want it to prompt me to enter some notes about the changes that were made.


(Chris Conn) #7

Can you place BPMs on system tables like normal ones? I think you could. I wonder if then you can trigger to prompt for changes dialog, then save to a text file (or UD table)


(Monty Wilson) #8

No problem Calvin! Here’s one last one, that finds custom report styles.

Can ya tell we’re upgrading?

Best,

…Monty.


(Erik deJonge) #9

As much as you’re probably not going to like this answer the best solution is going to be to get some development tracking tools and start to log things before it makes it’s way to production.

I’d definitely recommend Jira. If you’re less than 10 users it’s only $10 and it makes it easy to track your changes as well as what you’ve got in the pipeline.

You’re not going to get the level of automation that you’re looking for but when it comes to being able to see what you updated and more importantly why it was updated it’s invaluable.

We’re also starting to version control all our exported items but I don’t if that’s overkill for what you’re doing on not.