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Product Roadmap

Updated Oct 4, 2018

While we work tirelessly on continual small enhancements, fixes, and improvements, this page indicates our current direction for major functional and architectural improvements in the xTuple ERP software. To see where we've been, read the Release Notes on GitHub and SourceForge for our ERP software, OpenRPT report writer, CSVImp data import utility, and database Updater utility. We also encourage everyone to take advantage of new features and fixes and keep moving forward with increasingly more modern releases of our software: refer to xTuple's End of Life Policy.

xTupleCommerce 1.0.10 — October 2018
xTupleCommerce 1.1.0 — target Q4 2018

We have been responding to bug reports from the field while we continue to expand the basic feature set. Bug counts have been fairly low, thankfully. Features under consideration include online bill pay, a support/helpdesk interface, and subscriptions for physical and digital products.

xTuple ERP 4.11.4 — Under consideration for Q4 2018

xTuple ERP 4.11.3 has been in use now for several months. Overall it has been a good release, although one or two customers needed patches for critical bugs that only they seemed to find. We added the ability to catch a number of issues in extension scripts that will need to be fixed before they can be used with version 5.0 (see below).

The decision on whether to build 4.11.4 depends on the feedback we get from the alpha and beta testing of 4.12.0. If 4.12.0 is fairly stable then there will be no need for 4.11.4.

xTuple ERP 4.12.0 — alpha target October 2018, final in Q4

The upcoming 4.12 release will contain significant features that do not require the major database reorganization that the 5.0 features need.

  • Subscriptions in the desktop client (commercial extension)
  • Support address validation services (possibly commercial extension)
  • Expand integrated Document Management (25092)
  • Improve translation handling
    • Simplify distribution of translations for core product and extensions
    • Update translations for completeness (goal, will require community assistance)
    • Use OS-standard storage locations
  • Configurable export delimiter
  • Continue performance improvements

xTuple ERP 5.0 — alpha target October 2018, final in Q4

The two main drivers for version 5.0 are CRM changes and integration with Avalara tax services. These require significant changes to the underlying tables, which merits a major version number change. Many customizations will have to be adjusted to work with the new tables.

CRM

  • Clarify, expand, and simplify relationships among CRM accounts, customers, vendors, contacts, and other application concepts (WIP)
    • Multiple contacts per CRM account
    • Multiple CRM accounts associated with a single contact
    • Improve data validation at time of entry
    • Improve the data audit trail
    • Better support for recursive CRM accounts
  • Clarify relationships among incidents, to-dos, projects, project tasks, and other application concepts
  • Add concept of a "Lead", integrated with xTupleCommerce
  • Simplify generating lists for email marketing campaigns
  • Improve functionality of CRM merge utilities
  • Expanded web API features
  • Export templates

Tax Service

The Avalara integration requires significant overhaul of the internal tax handling code and database structure. There is no requirement that you subscribe to a tax service. If you do, the user interface is slightly different in several places and you must use that tax service for all tax-related calculations. If you choose not to subscribe, the desktop client will behave as before but you will probably need to update any tax-related customizations.

In Other Areas

The xTuple ERP database and desktop client were first designed in 1999 and have continued to grow ever since. Along the way, we have worked hard to reduce disruptions during upgrades. Changes to report definitions and application scripts have been minimized. User retraining between versions has generally not been required.

However, over the past several years, the needs and expectations of users, administrators, and programmers have changed. Multiple applications share the same database. More people are customizing their xTuple ERP environment. xTuple must change to keep up.

We started updating application internals in the 4.1x code line to simplify future growth. We will continue to do so. Our goal is to add enough internal scaffolding to allow refreshing the xTuple user experience in a few extremely broad areas in a short period of time:

  • Simpler, more consistent and modern user interface
  • Database renormalization
  • Simplified desktop client scripting interface
  • Expanding the 4.12.x subscriptions and digital downloads, particularly to support xTupleCommerce (commercial extension)

Don't worry — many of these internal changes fix existing bugs as they prepare us for the future. The changes are worth making now, regardless of the timing of the user interface update. Whenever possible we will give developers, partners, and power users tools to prepare for the changes to come.

xTuple Connect 3.9.0  — late 2018

The 3.9.0 beta was released in October, 2017, but focus on other projects has prevented fixing the remaining critical bugs. This release will address about a dozen issues, including some of the problems starting the email synchronization client and using appropriate as-of dates for recurring jobs.

2019 and Beyond

Yes, we are thinking much further down the road. Some of the things we see doing next year, and the year after that [and... ] shape decisions we make today. Here are some of the features and architectural issues under consideration:

  • Finishing the xTuple Admin Utility
  • Enhanded capacity scheduling features (goal)
  • Integration with third-party email services such as Constant Contact and MailChimp
  • Online banking interface (20112, goal)
  • Update web infrastructure in desktop client (20131, goal)
  • Improved credit card handling for urchasing (20283, goal)
  • Regular Expression wizard (20753, goal)
  • ERP-wide Search in the desktop client (goal)
  • Sales Order window improvements and rationalization (goal)
  • Multitenant support — whether you want to keep your subsidiaries separate or you want to reduce the costs of cloud hosting your ERP system, multitenancy is the answer
  • One API to rule them all
    • All xTuple database clients should use the same interface to the database and business logic
    • This will allow more ERPlets — small applications that do one piece of ERP and do that well
    • This will open up xTuple to more third party extensions and integrations
  • Simplified user interface on the desktop
  • Expanded xTupleCommerce
    • Online bill pay
    • Expanded customer communications in both directions, inbound and outbound

That's just a few of the features we have in mind. Our sales, support, professional services, and development staff have been listening to you all. We're taking your input to heart and trying to find the best way to give you the features you need to run your business smoothly, efficiently, and effectively.

Note to partners and power users: The scripting interface to the desktop client will change. We will document these changes to the best of our ability as the design solidifies. Full backwards compatibility will not be possible because of naming conflicts. We will provide tools to help find common problems. Here are a few examples of what will change: The underlying WebKit JavaScript engine will be replaced by Qt WebEngine (Qt has deprecated Qt WebKit), most of the script toolbox object will be removed (there are better ways to do things), and we expect to expand the use of Qt Properties instead of method calls (var _id = widget.id(); might become var _id = widget.id;).


Timeline of xTuple ERP Features

 

* Denotes functionality only available in commercially-licensed Editions

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