xTuple 3.3 open source ERP debuts

xTuple 3.3 open source ERP debuts

Summary: xTuple is making its open source ERP platform more sophisticated and easier to use.The xTuple 3.

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xTuple is making its open source ERP platform more sophisticated and easier to use.

The xTuple 3.3 release, which was announced today at the start of OpenSource World, offers support for international taxation and distribution requirements planning as well as numerous usability improvements.

"We're stretching in both directions," said Ned Lilly, President and CEO of the Norfolk, Va company, who says xTuple 3.3 offers advanced features like those in Oracle and SAP while also providing ease-of-use like that of a Microsoft Dynamics.

xTuple is deployed most often in North America but the company is aggressively working to expand internationally.

The first and most significant addition in version 3.3 is international tax capabilities, which offer support for the European VAT, for example, as well as the complicted tax scenarios in India. Developers from five continents contributed to the open source framework, which allows customers to implement tax features pertinent to their respective nations, Lilly said.

"We're ERP and database snobs, but taxation and cash flow is the lifeblood of the company," he added.

In 2007, the eight year old company -- formerly known as OpenMFG and manufacturing focused, open sourced its core technology, named it PostBooks, which contains all of the core functionality of xTuple. In order to upgrade to the commercially supported editions, customers simply have to run  a script against PostBooks.

xTuple also competes against top open source ERP applications such as OpenBravo and Compiere. Ned claims xTuple is more of an out-of-the-box "working" solution while its open source rivals require more customization.

"You run the installer and you got ERP," Lilly said about xTuple in a phone intervioew last week. "OpenBravo and Compiere are a little bit more toolkittish ... if you are a developer inside a mid-sized or larger organization and you want to stitch together a bunch of things and write your own you might be more drawn to those."

"We're more competing against [Microsoft] Dynamics and more of the small to midsized companies," he added.

A press release distributed this morning expands on the new features of version 3.3.

"In addition to improved tax management, version 3.3 also boasts a new distribution requirements planning (DRP) feature, a powerful function allowing users to generate planned transfer orders (to move inventory, anticipated order blocks or indirect materials between warehouses, as an example) either manually or by using logic contained in xTuple’s existing Material Requirements Planning (MRP) algorithms," the company stated in the release today.

That's not all.

"Version 3.3 also offers improved support for email integration and electronic document interchange (EDI), consolidation of all customer information on one “workbench” screen, several usability requests in Accounting, such as the ability to reverse and void Cash Receipts, and optional automatic forwarding of trial balances," the company stated.

Version 3.3 also allows customers to export to OpenOffice from any screen and the ability to copy one item, row or entire table to the clipbopard. One can export all displays to OpenOffice document formats, as well as HTML and comma-separated text Support for Qt version 4.5, now available under the Lesser GNU Public License (LGPL)," according to the release.

Topics: Software, Banking, Enterprise Software, Government, Government US, Open Source

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