With the release of Sage 100 Contractor 2016 (aka Version 20.2), Sage announced that this powerful software for the construction industry now runs on the industry-leading Microsoft SQL Server database. In this article, we’ll explain why this is probably one of the most important updates to Sage 100 Contractor in many years.
New Microsoft SQL Server Platform
Although Sage 100 Contractor 2016 has the same look, feel, and functionality that you’re already familiar with, it’s new SQL Database structure provides tighter security and an up-to-date technology platform upon which to build future software releases.
A technology stalwart for a very long time now, Microsoft SQL Server is known for industry-leading security, flexibility, and performance. One of the key strengths of SQL Server is that it can handle large amounts of data without a significant drop in performance. It also provides database administrators with a wide range of user and security options for protecting your data and preventing file corruption.
What Does It Mean for Sage 100 Contractor?
All technology jargon aside, what it means for Sage 100 Contractor is that the software is now faster, more secure, and “plays well” with others. Not only does SQL Server handle more data and transaction volume without losing speed or performance as your company grows, Sage 100 Contractor will also communicate more effectively with external applications and databases that also run on SQL.
In short now that Sage 100 Contractor is in the “SQL Server Club”, you’ll experience faster performance, stronger security, better reporting, and an expanded list of 3rd party integration options.
New Database Administration Tool
As part of the SQL Server rollout, Sage 100 Contractor now provides a new and separate database administration tool designed to help you take advantage of the database features without having to be a Microsoft SQL Server expert.
Sage has relocated many of the administrative utilities and functions from the main Sage 100 Contractor program and moved them into the new Database Administrative tool. If you’ve used earlier versions of Sage 100 Contractor, several of these tasks will already be familiar to you. For example, the process of creating and deleting a company, backing up and restoring files, and archiving company data are similar to what you’ve used in the past.
But in the process, Sage also boosted many of these capabilities considerably so that now you can schedule maintenance and backup functions to keep your company databases in good order. The new Database Administration tool also includes a migration utility that Sage designed and tested extensively to ensure a smooth and painless transition from older versions of Sage 100 Contractor (non-SQL) to the new SQL version.
Database and Administration Guide
The new Database Administration tool comes with its own help system and administration guide to acquaint you with its features and use. Click below to download this new guide.
What’s Required to Support SQL Server?
Sage 100 Contractor 2016 (aka 20.2) requires an instance/installation of Microsoft SQL Server. You can download and use Microsoft SQL Express at no charge, or you can purchase the full version of Microsoft SQL Server. Or, you can start with Microsoft SQL Express and then upgrade down the road to the full version of Microsoft SQL if needed.
When you first open the new Database Administration tool, the program tries to configure an instance of Microsoft SQL Server with optimal settings designed specifically for Sage 100 Contractor. If you do not already have Microsoft SQL Server installed, you can let the Database Administration tool download, install, and configure Microsoft SQL Express for you.
NOTE: Microsoft SQL Server may have minimum hardware, software, and system requirements that should be considered. Please check with a support technician at Accordant Company if you need guidance or specs.
Upgrading to Sage 100 Contractor 2016
Installing Sage 100 Contractor 2016 and upgrading your data involves a few more steps than in previous versions because you need to install 2 additional components including:
- Install the new Database Administration tool on the machine you will use as your server.
- Create a SQL Server instance for Sage 100 Contractor.
Need Help Upgrading?
At Accordant Company, we’re very excited about the possibilities and upside potential that Microsoft SQL Server brings to our customers running Sage 100 Contractor. But we recognize that new technology can sometimes be intimidating.
So if you need help upgrading or getting started with Sage 100 Contractor 2016, please be sure to get in touch. Our staff of construction and technology experts can help guide you through the process.