Upgrade from AX 2012 - Data upgrade in self-service environments

This Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 data upgrade process is for self-service environments. Complete the sections of this article in the following order:

  1. Prerequisites
  2. Data upgrade process – Run the DataMigrationTool.exe application to complete the upgrade process.
  3. Reporting section of the application – Review the reports of the replication validation, replication status, data upgrade status, and rollback data upgrade status.
  4. Tooling section of the application – This section will help you reset the process parameters and restart any of the processes.

Prerequisites

  1. A successful upgrade test has been completed in a cloud hosted (development) environment with customer data. This test should have been run against the same application version and customizations as the self-service environment.
  2. Download the Data Migration Toolkit for Dynamics365 Version 1.0.8 (or higher) from Microsoft Dynamics Lifecycle Services (LCS). In the Shared asset Library, select Model as the asset type, and then select the model file. Unblock the ZIP download via file properties before extracting.
  3. Create a self-service environment in LCS. The environment should be in a Deployed state. It must be a self-service environment. Cloud-hosted, development environments can be used only for the Upgrade from AX 2012 - Data upgrade in development environments procedure.

Important

It is recommended that before you run the upgrade, that you apply the latest Quality Update for the Dynamics 365 version you are using.

Note

Keep the following points in mind:

  • The Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 data upgrade process is for finance and operations self-service, sandbox (UAT) environments only. It can never be run against a production environment.
  • Make sure you download the latest version of the Data Migration Toolkit for Dynamics 365 from LCS.
  • Do not deploy or use the linked Power Platform environment for the AX 2012 data upgrade. The Power Platform environment can be deployed and used after the data upgrade is completed.
  1. Download and install the .NET Framework version 4.7.1 if it isn't already installed.

  2. Make sure that the replication feature is installed and enabled for the source SQL Server instance. To determine whether replication is enabled, run the following SQL script.

    -- If @installed is 0, replication must be added to the SQL Server installation.
    
    USE master;
    GO
    DECLARE @installed int;
    EXEC @installed = sys.sp_MS_replication_installed;
    SELECT @installed;
    

    If the replication components aren't installed, follow the steps in Install SQL Server replication to install them.

  3. SQL Server authentication must be set to SQL Server and Windows Authentication mode. (This change requires a restart of the SQL Server service.) The toolkit uses native SQL logins only.

  4. Enable and start the SQL Server Agent on the source database server.

    Note

    A user should have the DB_Owner privilege in the source database and should have access to the master database and the source database.

  5. Migration toolkit setup: If you don't want some of the source database tables to be replicated in the target database, you can specify them in the IgnoreTables.xml file. Likewise, if you don't want some of the functions to be replicated, you can specify them in the IgnoreFunctions.xml file. Additionally, if you would like to put some specific tables in publications outside of the main publications, you can use the SpecialTables.xml file.

    • Path of the IgnoreTables.xml file: Data\IgnoreTables.xml
    • Path of the IgnoreFunctions.xml file: Data\IgnoreFunctions.xml
    • Path of the SpecialTables.xml file: Data\SpecialTables.xml

    The following examples show how to specify tables and functions in the XML files.

    <?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
    <IgnoreTables>
        <Name>
            <Table>NON_AOT_TABLE1</Table>
            <Table>NON_AOT_TABLE2</Table>
            <Table>NON_AOT_TABLE3</Table>
        </Name>
    </IgnoreTables>
    

    Note

    The tables added to the ignore list should only be tables that do not exist in the Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 Application Object Tree (AOT). Including tables that exist in the AOT will result in an error during the data upgrade. These tables won't be replicated to the target database.

    <?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
    <IgnoreFunctions>
        <Name>
            <Function>if_WHSInventReserveUnionDelta</Function>
        </Name>
    </IgnoreFunctions>
    

    Important

    The functions that are specified in the XML file won't be replicated in the target database.

    <?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
    <SpecialTables>
      <Name>
        <Table></Table>
      </Name>
    </SpecialTables>
    

    Important

    Tables specified in the SpecialTables file, will be added to a dedicated publisher. The number of special table publishers is based on the NumberOfPublishers parameter, see the step below. Special table handling can be useful for very large tables that you might need to manually start the replication on during downtime hours.

  6. To optimize the replication latency/performance, you can update the following distributor parameters in the App.config file:

    • MaxBcpThreads – By default, this parameter is set to 6. If the machine has fewer than six cores, update the value to the number of cores. The maximum value that you can specify is 8.
    • NumberOfPublishers – By default, this parameter is set to 4. The recommendation is to use this value. However, there might be situations where you want to increase the number of publishers, to distribute smaller numbers of tables to each publisher. This change, in conjunction with the manual snapshot start, lets you run smaller initial snapshots, which can be useful if you have limited maintenance windows and must split the startup of the replication over several.
    • snapshotPostPublication – This option will add in a 5-minute delay between automatic snapshot processes starting, that can assist with loads on the source server. The toolkit also allows for manual snapshot starts, if you choose that option, you don't need to set this.

Note

Don't set up or configure replication during peak times when the system resources/memory usage/IO operations are high. When resources are being used to the max (greater than 90% is already consumed) then the replication may be delayed as the system tries to find available resources. We recommend that you start the replication during off hours, when the system resources are at minimum usage (during off-peak time). Additionally, it is recommended for a go-live cutover that you start the replication the prior weekend.

Data upgrade process

Run the DataMigrationTool.exe application

Before you begin the replication process, note that the LCS environment will be in a Deployed state when it's created.

  1. Run the DataMigrationTool.exe application.

    A console window will open where you can provide the cloud environment type.
    - Public : [ lcs.dynamics.com ] - GCC : [ gov.lcs.microsoftdynamics.us ] - UAE : [ uae.lcs.dynamics.com ]
    After you enter the cloud environment, you will receive a prompt to sign in.

  2. Provide the credentials that are used to sign in to LCS.

  3. After you're successfully authenticated, in the console window, provide the Project-Id value and then the Environment-Id value.

    To validate the given values, you will need to sign in using the credentials that are used to sign in to LCS.

    Note

    You can find the Project-Id and Environment-Id values on the Manage environment page in LCS. You can also find the Environment-Id value on the Environment details page.

Complete the data replication and upgrade

After the validation is successful, the application presents a set of menu options that correspond to the steps in the data upgrade process. To complete the data replication and upgrade, you should perform the steps in the following order.

  1. Environment preparation: Environment setup activity

    This step prompts you for the following information:

    • Details of the source database:

      • Source server (in the format servername\serverinstance)
      • Source database name
      • User name
      • Password
    • IP address of the source database server (for the allowlist)

    • Distribution database path (for example, D:\SQLServer\Data)

    • Replication snapshot path (for example, D:\SQLServer\Snapshot)

    Important

    You must use SQL Server authentication. You can't use a domain sign-in.

    The specified distribution database and replication snapshot paths should have enough space. We recommend that the amount of space be at least the size of the source database. If you have used compression in your AX 2012 database, then the space needed will be larger as the snapshot is uncompressed. The paths should be in the local disk of the machine. Avoid using shared paths.

    We recommend that you have a static IP address for the virtual machine (VM) or machine (for the allowlist in step 1). In this way, you help prevent connection issues with the target database.

    This step performs the following actions:

    • It validates the connection to the source database.
    • It validates the version of the AX 2012 database.
    • It authorizes the source IP address.
    • It validates the target databases.
  2. Environment preparation: Prepare the target environment for the data upgrade

    This step changes the state of the LCS environment from Deployed to Ready for replication.

  3. Replication: Cleanup Target Database

    This step performs the following actions:

    1. Change the state of the LCS environment from Ready for replication to Replication in progress.
    2. Delete all AX product tables, views, stored procedures, and user-defined functions in the target database.
  4. Replication: Setup Distributor

    This step creates a distribution database under the System Databases folder on the source server. This distribution database is used for replication.

  5. Replication: Setup Publication for Primary Key (PK) Tables

    This step creates publications for primary key tables under the Replication folder on the source server and replicates them in the target database. If any ignore-table entries were specified, the specified tables are exempted from replication. Any special-table entries were added, these will be added to additional special tables publications.

    Note

    Snapshots must be manually started in SQL Management Studio. Open the replication monitor, and select your SQL Server instance. Then, on the Agents tab, select and hold (or right-click) the publisher that you want to start, and select Start.

    Start one snapshot at a time, and wait for the replication of that snapshot to be completed. In the replication monitor, check the Distributor to subscriber history until you receive a message that resembles the following example: "Delivered snapshot from the \unc\server\folder."

    For more information about how to monitor the replication, see Monitor replication for the Data migration toolkit.

    You must manually start the publisher snapshots for steps 6 and 7.

    Older versions of the Data Migration Toolkit have automatic and manual starts. We recommend that you migrate to the latest version of the toolkit.

    Created publishers: AX_PUB_PkTable_[*]

    Note

    After this replication configuration step is completed, actual data replication will occur as a SQL job that runs in the background. This job will take some time to complete. You can view the status of the replication by providing the 'rs' option. To learn more about the 'rs' option, see the Reporting section of the application section later in this article.

  6. Replication: Setup Publication for Other Objects (functions)

    This step creates a publication for other objects (functions) and replicates them in the target database. If you don't want some of the functions to be replicated, you can specify them in the IgnoreFunctions.xml file.

    Created publisher: AX_PUB_OtherObjects

    Note

    The replication will take some time to be completed. You can view the replication status by providing the 'rs' option.

    If there are no functions to replicate, the publication won't be created.

    Don't move on to the next step until the DataReplicationStatus property for this step is shown as completed.

  7. Cutover: Setup Publication for Non PK Tables

    This step creates two publications: one used to replicate non-primary key tables, and the other one used to replicate locked tables.

    Note

    If there are no locked tables, then publication will not be created.

    Publication names: AX_PUB_NoPKTable, AX_PUB_TABLE_LockedTable

    If AX Service acquires a schema lock during creation of the primary key publication, those tables will be ignored and omitted from the publication. They will be added to temporary tables and marked for replication during creation of the cutover publication.

    [IMPORTANT] Don't move on to the next step until the DataReplicationStatus property for this step is shown as completed.

    Note

    You can validate the replicated data by using the 'dv' option. If there are mismatched tables, this step lets you create publications for them. If you want to exclude any mismatched tables for replication, close the app, and add those tables in Data/IgnoreTables.xml. Then rerun the app, and use the 'dv' option.

    To learn more about the 'dv' option, see the Reporting section of the application section later in this article.

  8. Cutover: Remove replication setup

    This step deletes all the publications that were created in the source database, the distribution database, and the replication snapshot.

    Note

    To remove the Snapshot folder without causing an exception, run the following script in the source database. Even if you don't run this script, you can ignore the exception message that you receive.

    EXEC master.dbo.sp_configure 'show advanced options', 1
    
    RECONFIGURE WITH OVERRIDE
    
    EXEC master.dbo.sp_configure 'xp_cmdshell', 1
    
    RECONFIGURE WITH OVERRIDE
    
  9. Post-replication: Update environment state to Replicated

    This step changes the state of the LCS environment from Replication in progress to Replication completed.

  10. Data Synchronise: Trigger Transformation

    This step triggers the data upgrade. When the action is successful, the state of the LCS environment changes from Replication completed to Data upgrade in progress.

    At this point, only the data upgrade trigger occurs. The actual data upgrade occurs in the self-service environment. To learn the status of the data upgrade, use the 'ds' option. To learn more about this option, see the Reporting section of the application section later in this article.

    If data upgrade is successful, the 'ds' option is shown as AX 2012 upgrade topology (LCS) status: Deployed, and all the upgrade steps will be in a Completed state.

    If data upgrade fails, the 'ds' option is shown as AX 2012 upgrade topology (LCS) status: Failed, and one or more upgrade steps will be in a Failed state. The Menu option (10) tool will show a status of Resume.

    After you address and fix the reasons for the failure, you can perform the Resume operation. When the action is successful, the state of the LCS environment will change from Failed to Data upgrade in progress.

    Note

    Repeat this step until the data upgrade is successful.

  11. Rollback data upgrade: Trigger rollback

    This step triggers the rollback of data upgrade. This rolls back the data to the point before the upgrade is triggered and sets the LCS environment state to Replicated. This will change the environment from Failed to the Replicated state.

    At this point, you have only triggered the rollback. To see the rollback status, use the 'rbs' option. To learn more about this option, see the Reporting section of the application later in this article.

    If rollback is successful, the 'rbs' option is shown as AX 2012 upgrade topology (LCS) status: Replicated.

    If rollback fails, the 'rbs' option is shown as AX 2012 upgrade topology (LCS) status: Failed.

For more information about the data upgrade process, see Upgrade from AX 2012 – Data upgrade FAQ. This article answers some frequently asked questions about data upgrade during an upgrade from Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012.

Reporting section of the application

You can use the following options to review the reports of the replication validation, replication status, data upgrade status, and rollback data upgrade status.

  • dv) Report: Validate the replication.

    This option compares the number of tables and records in the source server database and the target server database, and then shows the report. You should use this option only after step 7 is completed.

    If there are mismatched tables, this step lets you create a publication for them. If you want to exclude any mismatched tables for replication, close the app, and add those tables in Data/IgnoreTables.xml. Then rerun the app and use the 'dv' option.

    You can find the report data at output/PostValidationInfo.csv.

  • rs) Report: Get the replication status.

    This option shows the report of the replication process for the publications that were created. You should use this option only after step 5 is started (that is, during the replication process for any publication).

  • ds) Report: Get the data upgrade status.

    This option shows the report of the data upgrade process. You should use this option only after step 10 is started.

  • rbs) Report: Get the rollback status.

    This option shows the report of the rollback process. You should use this option only after step 11 has started.

Tooling section of the application

  • Reset-rep: Reset the replication setup by removing all the replication configurations. Publications and the distribution database are deleted. The status of all Replication and Cutover menu options is reset from Completed mode to Reset mode to help you redo the replication from the beginning.
  • Reset-all: Reset all the menu options, and remove the replication configurations. The status of all the options is changed to Reset.
  • Clear: Clear the environment setup activity. All information is cleared from the cache, such as the project-Id value, Environment-Id value, and source database details.
  • Help: Show the data upgrade migration options with the updated status.
  • Exit: Close the application.
  • Set-failed: If you want to delete the environment—and if the environment is in the PreparingForReplication, ReadyForReplication, or Replicating & Replicated) state—use this option to set the environment state to Failed, and then the environment can be deleted from LCS.

Troubleshooting

For troubleshooting information, see Troubleshoot upgrades to Dynamics 365 Finance + Operations self-service environments.

Learn about the replication configuration and status via SQL Server Management Studio

In SSMS, if Object Explorer includes a Replication folder, the replication feature is installed on the server and available.

After step 3 of the data upgrade process is completed, you should find the publisher configured under the Replication folder. To learn the replication status, select and hold (or right-click) the Replication folder, and then select Launch Replication Monitor.

  • In the replication monitor, you can view all the publishers that have been created for replication.
  • On the Snapshot tab, you can view the status of the snapshot.
  • To view the detail log/transaction, double-tap (or double-click) a grid item.
  • To view the data replication to the target, on the All Subscription tab, double-tap (or double-click) the subscription from the grid item.