Is your SAGE 50 Accounting too slow? Virtualization and Terminal Server

Technologies

  • Sage 50 Accounting 2017 & 2018
  • Windows 2016 Hyper-V
  • Windows 2016 Remote Desktop Server (Terminal Server)
  • Dell Poweredge T330 Server

Sage 50 Performance

Sage has performance issues going back to its Peachtree roots. It is inefficient on a network and has poor utilities for purging and compressing data.

My client was at their wits end – experiencing:

  • Application screens took 10-20 seconds to open or change.
  • Invoices took 5 minutes to up to 20 minutes to print. Larger reports, even longer.

It made working in their accounting package painful and expensive.

Some things we learned

They had not purged their data going back several years. We came in on a weekend to go through the process. Sage doesn’t provide a “purge readiness” tool. We backed up the data and attempted to run a purge. After several hours if failed and provided a purge log. The log showed that a number of transactions were not properly closed.

Note to Sage: prior to running a purge, a purge check utility could inform people of the errors prior to them becoming errors.

The Immediate Fix

The client also has an outdated server – furthermore it’s an SBS server, running unnecessary/unused apps from that setup.

I copied the database to a local, reasonably-sized desktop, to test performance on a local system – no network i/o. It performed significantly better. I recommended a terminal server solution, which removes network i/o and allows us to continue to utilize their existing desktops – some that were 5 years old – as terminals.

My conclusion or suspicion, born of experience, is that even with purged transactions, given the current outdated server & desktops, performance post purging would still be problematic. Again, it is my experience with Sage 50. Additionally, it is the experience universally across the SAGE community.

The server

  • Dell Poweredge T330
  • 32gb RAM
  • SSD drive 1.6TB
  • Windows 2016 – base install with Hyper-V as host
  • Two Virtual machines
  • VM #1: Windows 2016 Active Directory Domain Controller
  • VM #2: Windows 2016 Remote Desktop Services (Terminal Server)
  • Sage 50 install in the Terminal Server with data residing on Terminal Server
  • CrashPlan Pro for backup
  • VEEAM to backup Virtual-machines
    Thanks Dave! 😉

Results

With all 5 users in production data in their terminal server sessions.

  • Application screens open/change immediately
  • Invoice print immediately – up to 1 minute for large/complex invoices
  • Larger reports might take 1 minute 20 seconds to queue up

Conclusion

My client still needs to close those transactions but can now do a few every day – allowing us to Purge in a month or so. But they are operationally faster than they have been in many years. This could mitigate the need for a new hire or make the environment far less stressful for the employees who work there.

 

Posted in Consulting and tagged , , , .

4 Comments

    • Michael,

      I apologize for failing to get back to you. I’m working from memory now but this is what I recall.

      When you run the archive process that fails it creates an error log. That error log lists the items by a system number. However, I contacted Sage and they pointed me at a report that you can modify to show which invoices, payments, etc. are listed as open. Usually, there is are two items in the error log that are related.

      In any case, I don’t have specific notes on this. However, I can tell you that without purging the data, putting Sage on a Terminal Server resulted in a HUGE performance gain!

  1. This is an excellent article, thank you for sharing your strategy and insight. Very helpful! My firm is dealing with serious productivity issues when we have more than 3+ users in Sage 50. With 200 + clients, this is unacceptable. We have adopted QuickBooks in response to degraded performance and poor technical support.

    Also, is it wise to just move the old or nonexistent companies folders off the Peachtree server onto an external source for safekeeping, or does it require archiving the company from within Sage 50, etc?

    • Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

      You can typically recover/copy company data directly from a folder – though there are specific steps to do so. So, basically, you can backup the unused company files without doing a true Sage archive/backup by copying the folders to an external harddrive.

      Removing unused company files has little to no impact on performance as the files sitting in a directory are not opened in memory. The persuasive engine isn’t doing anything with them. However, we removed the files/folders that were not used just for maintaining a cleaner folder.

      Hope that helps.

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