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Crm-data-migration-steps-cloudCompanies moving from HP 3000s to cloud-based IT are reaching deeper into data migration. In some cases, the records that have never left a datacenter are becoming an asset managed in cloud computing. The process prompts lessons on tools and practices that can be new to IT administrators and ERP developers in 3000 shops.

Work at The Support Group is helping to lead manufacturer Disston Tools onto the cloud services, leaving the classic MANMAN ERP application behind. Disston is adopting the Kenandy cloud ERP solution as a MANMAN replacement.The tools to migrate Disston's data cover a wide scope of functionality, from the Minisoft IMAGE-savvy ODBC utility to the commonplace Microsoft SQL Server Information Services (SSIS).

The latter tool can be priced more effectively for a smaller enterprise if it can be licensed as a developer version for a one-time data move, said the Support Group's David Floyd. "I'm not running a production database with SSIS," Floyd said. He added that it took four days of training to become fluent in using SSIS. At the cloud service, a proprietary database takes the place of IMAGE to store company information that has sometimes never left the world of MPE/iX and the 3000.

Migrating a key enterprise asset like ERP can trigger expansion of data capabilities. The Support Group's Terry Floyd said that adding a data warehouse has been part of migration engagements like the Disston project. SQL Server-based warehouses have become a reliable facet of upgraded ERP. Data warehousing was a potential tool in the 3000-based ERP architectures. The services were often provided using non-3000 database repositories.

The pricing for these data mart and data warehouse concoctions were well outside the reach of small- to medium-sized enterprises, though. One offering from the late 1990s, SalesMAN, was a solution that ranged from $95,000 to $160,00, sold as a bundle. The mart database was priced separately.

On the other end of the software cost scale, that one-time SSIS license for a developer was under $100 for a year, Floyd said.

Migrations can also spark consolidations and normalizations of data. For example, the Support Group experts say a company with several product lines created by separate entities will hope to merge part number sequences. An 8-digit number and a 12-digit number for two lines becomes a single numbering scheme.