Just saw this blog entry on “dynamics-ax.blogspot.com”. It is definitely worth sharing here:
Recently, in February of this year Microsoft released the Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 feature pack. You can access the latest Dynamics AX ISO, which includes the feature pack, from the following location on PartnerSource: Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 Feature Pack Release.
From the release notes: “Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 Feature Pack is the Microsoft ERP solution for enterprises that empowers your people to anticipate and embrace change so your business can thrive. It constitutes our biggest releases that target five key industries: Manufacturing, Distribution, Services Industries, Public Sector, and Retail. This release also incorporates Microsoft Dynamics ERP RapidStart Services.
All of the industry solutions, Process Industries, Public Sector, Retail, and Service Industries, are now incorporated into the product and are installed the same way as other Microsoft Dynamics AX modules. Customers can enable or disable features by using configuration keys and can use features from multiple industry solutions. For example, a Public Sector organization can use the Retail POS capabilities, a pharmaceutical company involved in drug discovery and trials can use Service Industries and Process Manufacturing capabilities, or a wholesale distributor can use the Retail merchandising features.”
Further, Microsoft just recently as of three days ago posted the following link on PartnerSourcestating: “We strongly recommend that all Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 implementations move to using the Feature Pack”
There are several reasons to make sure that the feature pack is the focus now and moving forward from all the updates to specific industry solutions adding retail, if desired, as well as having now support for 25 Countries. Further, Microsoft points out that: “When Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 R2 is released in H1 Calendar Year 2013 it will automatically install the remaining Microsoft provided country localizations (Asia, South America, Eastern Europe, etc.); so that we maintain the single consistent Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 code base.”
This then suggests, that in order to go to R2 – with the least time needed for deployment, having what resides in the feature pack for Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 is a critical step. Further, applying and using the feature pack as the target version for any and all current AX 2012 instances, gives you the same build as CU2. Bringing your Microsoft Dynamics AX investment to the latest and most stable build. Even if you have applied CU2, you should look towards the feature pack, as it’s clear through the message it’s a stepping stone towards R2 that will be release first half of 2013.