How to upgrade Sage CRM to 7.2

Sage CRM 7.2 has now been released for a year, and the Sage CRM 7.2b version brings additional enhancements for improved productivity like the mobile solution, social media and business corporation integration, and flexibility in customization. Several previous blogs have introduced the new features for this version. Here, we will discuss how to upgrade Sage CRM to 7.2.

Preparation for upgrade
Sage CRM 7.2b could be upgraded from 7.1 / SP1 / SP2. For other early version, it has to be first upgraded to 7.1. It is recommended to upgrade from 7.1 to SP1, and then to SP2 before upgrading to 7.2.
Before upgrading make sure you’re prepared with the following items:

  • System requirements: The support matrix document included with the upgrade lists the platforms (server, client and integration), which Sage CRM 7.2 will support. There are some differences between 7.2 and earlier versions.
  • License key: The license key for 7.2 can be obtained from reseller or Sage. If current version is early than 7.1, the license key for 7.1 is also required. There is no additional license key for Sage 300 integration.
  • Software package: The 7.2b full version can be downloaded from the Sage portal. And the PU1 is required for Sage 300 integration.
  • Two stage upgrade: We recommend that the upgrade should have two parts including test upgrade and live upgrade. The test upgrade can be done on a separate server with a trial license key from Sage or reseller.
  • Server preparation for Sage CRM: If the production server does not meet the requirement of the new version, it is recommended to prepare a new server before the upgrade. The test server for test upgrade can be a temporary machine if there isn’t a dedicated one for testing purpose.
  • Upgrade guide: The Chapter 7 of the installation and upgrade guide gives a detail explanation of the process for upgrade.
  • Credentials for integration: For Sage 300 ERP integration, the domain user account for integration should be obtained from the System administrator. For Exchange server integration, the impersonation user account should be obtained as well.
  • Support: Sage CRM community centre is a useful resource for Sage CRM system with helpful tips for the update.

Once you’re prepared with all of the above, the test upgrade can be started:
Test for Upgrade
A test upgrade is recommended before the live upgrade. It’s a good practice for the upgrade as it may help in finding the problems during and after the upgrade.
The test upgrade needs the backup of the live database, current system file and current system software package. Here’s a checklist of items to cover for the test upgrade:

  • Backup the live database, register information and system files of the current CRM system
  • Install the current version of Sage CRM on the test server
  • Restore the backup of live database
  • Change the database to the restored database in the Sage CRM on the test server
  • Copy the backup system files (custompage folder etc.) to the relevant folders on the current CRM system
  • Change some parameters in the Custom_Sysparams table of the CRM database
  • Verify the data, functions, reports, integration and customizations in the new test CRM system
  • Resolve any issues if existing
  • Upgrade to 7.1 / SP1 / SP2 if the current CRM version is early than 7.1
    • Verify the upgrade
  • Upgrade to 7.2 from 7.1 SP2
    • Verify the upgrade
  • Exchange integration may be applied if the exchange integration was not setup before or the Exchange server is version 2013 or Office365.
  • Outlook plug-in may be applied at the client workstation if it’s required
  • Sage 300 / X3 integration may be applied if required
  • IPhone mobile app may be applied and tested if required
  • The Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Yammer may be applied if required
  • The e-marketing configuration may be applied if required.
  • Performance review for the new version of Sage CRM
  • The final step is to restore the current version of Sage CRM. It’s a good practice if the upgrade failed for some unknown reasons.

After the upgrade, it’s recommended to involve the users to verify the new CRM system on the test server. If there aren’t any issues to resolve after the upgrade, you are ready to implement the upgrade on the live server.
Live upgrade
The live upgrade procedure is similar to the test upgrade. If it will be upgraded on a new server, the process is the same as the test upgrade. If it will be done on the current CRM server, you will save some steps for installing the current version.
Before the live upgrade, plan for the downtime of the Sage CRM system. The downtime is dependent on the complexity of your customization and integration with other systems. The test upgrade should provide guidance in planning for your live upgrade.
After the live upgrade, you may have to test the internet access of your new Sage CRM from outside of your office.
Exchange integration
One of the major reasons for upgrading to Sage CRM 7.2 is that the new version will support outlook 2013 and Office365. The outlook plug-in will not be the classic one, but the lite plug-in. The contacts, tasks and appointments will be synchronized through Exchange server or Office365.
If the Exchange server is on the local domain network, it will be easy for the configuration. If it’s hosted outside, you have to work with the network engineer for the SMTP access. For Office365 integration, it’s a similar process as the exchange integration. The only thing is to use Windows PowerShell ISE to configure it remotely. The process for configuration is posted on the Sage CRM community center.
Integration with Sage 300 ERP / X3
Sage 300 ERP integration requires Sage 300 ERP .NET Remoting service to be setup and started. If the users need the quote and order function in Sage CRM, the Sage 300 ERP Portal has to be installed and configured. Note that the installation of Sage 300 ERP portal may conflict with Exchange server 2013 if they are on the same server. You might have to check the ISAPI filters for the order.
Sage ERP X3 integration is a powerful integration, which includes quotes, orders, invoices and payments. There are two ways for synchronisation of the integration including live data and BP contacts. We will discuss the Sage ERP integration in future blogs.
Third party Web service integration
Sage CRM provides the integration engine by using its Web service. Some third party system could use that integration method to get data synchronization and exchange. For example, Technisoft Employee Web service uses this idea for integration between CRM and employee self-services.  We will discuss this in a later blog.
IPhone mobile app
Sage CRM 7.2 not only supports mobile browsers to access it, but also provides the component for IPhone mobile app such as Sage CRM Sales Tracker and Sage CRM Sales Lite. After the upgrade, you can download the component from Sage CRM community center and install it at the component manager. Watch out for another blog post that will cover this in detail as well.
What’s next …
Sage CRM 7.2 has some nice features for development. What features would you like to see incorporated in future versions? Are there any features that you simply wouldn’t be able to work without? Mantralogix development team would like to work with you closely to understand your CRM needs and requirements and how we can help you make it live! Contact us today to discuss the details!

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