Friday, September 11, 2015

Dynamics GP Server field is blank due to changes in Dex.ini file

By Steve Endow

A customer was having an issue with her "Server" field being blank when she launched Dynamics GP.

I previously wrote about a similar situation where a space at the beginning of the DSN name could cause this issue.  But in the case of this client, the DSN does not have any spaces at the beginning of the DSN name.

Yesterday I had a call with the customer and we resolved the issue by launching GP, selecting the Dynamics GP 2013 "Server" value, logging in to GP, and then closing GP.  The next time she launched GP, the Server field had a default value.  Problem solved.

But she emailed me again today, saying that the problem came back--the Server field was blank again.

I asked her to email me her Dex.ini file.  When I reviewed the file, I found this:

SQLLastDataSource=DYNAMICS GP 2013

There was a value for the last data source, but it was in all caps, which seemed odd.

I opened the Dex.ini on my GP server and changed the SQLLastDataSource to all caps and launched GP.  And here is what I saw.

Sure enough, that was the cause of the problem.

So it seems that in addition to the GP login window not liking spaces, the Server field value that is read from the Dex.ini is case sensitive.  If the window doesn't find an exact match in the list of DSNs, including capitalization, it will leave the Server field blank.

Okay, so I can understand that.

But what is weird is that the customer's Dex.ini file is having an all caps value being saved to the SQLLastDataSource setting.  That seems really strange.

There is only one DSN setup on that particular customer machine, and only "Dynamics GP 2013" shows up in the Server drop down list.  So that would seem to indicate that another machine is using the Dex.ini file and writing the all caps DSN name to the file.

So does that mean that some other machine is actually launching GP from a network share?  Or is there some other way that another GP machine can utilize a shared Dex.ini?  I wouldn't think so, but apparently it is happening somehow.  Very odd.

I've asked the customer and their partner to try and track down the problem.

UPDATE: The client informed me that rather than determine the cause of the Dex,ini changes, they have just changed the DSN on the machine to be all caps to match the mystery value that is being written to the Dex.ini.  So I guess I'll never know the cause...

Steve Endow is a Microsoft MVP for Dynamics GP and a Dynamics GP Certified IT Professional in Los Angeles.  He is the owner of Precipio Services, which provides Dynamics GP integrations, customizations, and automation solutions.

You can also find him on Google+ and Twitter

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