by March 1, 2008 0 comments



Deploying ERP and CRM systems is the most time consuming and difficult
process for a business. However, our PCQLinux ERP and CRM Appliance is able to
reduce the deployment time remarkably. To have your own ERP and CRM solution,
simply copy the PCQL08_ERP_CRM_Appliance.vdi.bz2 file from the PCQLinux
Appliance DVD and unzip it. Time taken would depend on the speed of your
network. The zipped file is around 1.4 GB in size and when you extract it will
expand to around 4.3 GB. So before you start the extraction process, please make
sure that you at least have 5 GB of free space in the machine.

Once you have extracted the file, create a new virtual machine using
VirtualBox which has at least 512 MB of dedicated RAM, with a tapped network
adapter. You would require a tapped network adapter as the ERP application in
the appliance runs on a client-server model and once you have started the server
from the appliance, you can connect and access it from anywhere in the network.
How to configure a tapped network will be discussed later in this story.

Background info
PCQLinux ERP and CRM appliance uses TinyERP as the core ERP engine, which is a
complete Open Source ERP and CRM application with more than 200 modules. The
best part of a TinyERP is its elaborate documentation, which makes it easy to
deploy and use. You can access and use the documentation from http://tinyerp.com/documentations.html.
Once you’ve started TinyERP, you can either connect it using its client
(available for both Linux and Windows) or you can connect and use it through a
Web based interface.

Though in beta, with the instant messaging
feature in Zimbra, you can chat with your company contacts in real time-as
they login to their Web mail

Starting the appliance
Once you’ve extracted and attached the .vdi file to the virtual machine, let
the machine get booted on to the appliance. Once the machine boots, run the
commands:
#service postgresql start
#service tinyerp-server start

The first command starts the Postgres SQL server while the second activates
the TinyERP server. You can also configure the appliance to start up both the
services at boot time. For this, run the setup command and select the System
Service option and hit Enter. This will show you a list of all the services
available in the appliance. Scroll down till you find PostgreSQL and TinyERP.
Once you locate them, select them and hit enter to make them active on boot.
Once done, click on OK.

Once the services are activated, check if you have got an IP address from
your DHCP server or not. For this, run ‘#ifconfig. ‘ Check the IP you’ve
received. If you are not running this appliance in a DHCP environment, provide
the IP address manually by running ‘#system-config-network.’

Add as many search criteria (from, to, name,
domain, attachment etc.) you want to hit the content you are looking for.
You can even save your search criteria

Connecting to the service
Connecting to the service is very simple. Either run the TinyERP client from
the appliance or from the system where you installed the TinyERP client
software. You can download the TinyERP Client for Windows from http://
tinyerp.com/component/option,com_joomlaxplorer/Itemid,132/. Next, click on the
File ? Connect option. This will open up a dialog box. Here, click on the Change
button and provide the IP address of the appliance. If you are running the
client from inside the appliance, then the IP address will be 127.0.0.1.

As a standard, each user can setup his/her
preferences for email, calendar, filters etc. Besides these, a user can even
setup to POP mails from other email accounts to their Zimbra Inbox

Check whether the port it is connecting to is 8069. We have created an empty
database for you in the appliance, called ‘te.’ This database will automatically
get selected when you provide the IP address and the port number. To log on to
the system, you need to authenticate yourself.

Watch out for this
IP address

If you get ‘10.0.0.1’ as the IP
address, it means you’re running the appliance with a NATed network card
instead of a tapped network card. Such a card would not let you access
services running on the appliance from any other system connected to the
network.

To rectify this problem change
the network card type in your Virtual Machine configuration to ‘Tap’ or
‘Host interface’ mode. To know how to do it, read the section ‘Set up
appliances to network’ In the PCQLinux 2008: Installation & Implementation
article.

The default username and password for administrator is ‘admin.’ Provide all
the details and click on OK. You will be see presented with the dashboard of
TinyERP.

You can now start configuring and customizing an ERP solution, which is
unique for each organization and in this short space, it’s impossible to explain
how to customize it for your specific needs. But you will get ample help from
TinyERP’s website to customize it. The website has a very elaborate user manual
that tells how you can use different components of TinyERP for your business.
You can find the complete documentation at: http://tinyerp.org/wiki/index.php/UserManual/HomePage.

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