Prophecy - the Technical Bit...
- Prophecy is a Windows application that runs on any release of Windows from Windows Vista forward (i.e. Vista, 7, 10 and corresponding Windows Server releases via Remote Desktops / RemoteApp).
- A Prophecy database is disconnected (separate) from and has no dependencies on your ERP / business systems, other than being refreshed with actuals, material costs etc. via SQL queries (or simple delimited text files).
- A Prophecy database consists of:
- A shared network folder, containing database definition files, Prophecy import and maintenance script files etc..
- A Microsoft SQL Server (2008R2 or later) database, containing all the history and forecasts.
Once a Prophecy database has been implemented it should require minimal IT involvement or resource to maintain, other than standard network and SQL Server backups. The ideal Prophecy database manager is a business person with some numeracy / IT skills. Routine database management should consume no more than half a day a month at most.
- Prophecy data is stored in a Microsoft SQL Server database. SQL Server 2008R2 or later is required.
- Most Prophecy databases don’t grow much bigger than a few gigabytes.
- Users can run the Prophecy Client application directly from their (Windows Vista or later) computers or through a Remote Desktop or RemoteApp session. (Remote Desktop means they are presented with the screen of a Windows session which is running under the user’s identity on a server. The user runs Prophecy within that Windows session on the remote desktop provided. RemoteApp is effectively the same underlying technology, except the Prophecy application appears to the user like any other application they are running from their local computer – i.e. it appears like a normal application window on their own Windows desktop.)
- The Prophecy Client applications connect to a Prophecy database using a shared network folder containing the database access and configuration files. They use standard SQL Server ODBC / OLEDB database drivers to connect to the SQL Server hosting the Prophecy database. The user is not exposed to the connectivity complexity as a Prophecy client access file contains all the necessary connection data.
Populating Prophecy from Your ERP Systems
Prophecy Database Manager application uses stored database connections and SQL queries to extract data from any data source that supports standard ODBC database connectivity.
- Some customers create and populate a ‘staging database’ for Prophecy which is refreshed with the latest data each night. This removes daytime load on the source ERP system. Alternatively, as the queries required to populate Prophecy are generally low impact, the data can be pulled into Prophecy directly from the ERP database host tables.
- Typically, IT expertise is required during the implementation phase to identify and supply the source data tables, views and queries required to populate Prophecy.
Additional IT Involvement Required for a Prophecy Implementation
- Software installation (via industry standard installers).
- Provision of a Remote Desktop / RemoteApp environment to support Prophecy.
- Provisioning of a SQL Server instance, with necessary Windows Authentication for the Prophecy users.
- Creation and ongoing maintenance of a standard server backup / SQL Server backup process to comply with your organisation’s standards. (N.b. Prophecy maintenance scripts can take complete snapshot backups of a Prophecy database, including the SQL Server elements, and can also fully restore a Prophecy database. Therefore, the database manager is normally completely independent of IT in the event that a backup or restore is required.)