I was sent out to discuss a system that a certain company is currently using and what should be done with it.
The company manufactures various carton displays. This system was developed to keep track of clients, orders and prices. Lots have happened since the system was created and the system is now, as the manager described it, "locked up" and "problematic", which I translate as "not dynamic" and "unstable".
Some info about the system
- It was developed around the year 2000
- Fairly small system, 2-5 users, 6 forms, ~8 tables with average quantities of data
- Built on early Visual Basic, forms created with the drag and drop design. Interface is basically just a window with a menu and some forms
- Uses MSSQL database (SQL2005 server) to store data and ODBC driver to query, data was migrated from excel before this system, and before excel it was handled, calculated and written by hand and paper
- Users work in Microsoft XP environment (and up)
Their main problem is that they can't adjust and calculate prices, can't add new carton types etc, correctly anymore because they can't (or rather, they don't know how to) touch the data on the server.
I suggested 3 possible solutions
- Attempt to patch the current system
- Create a fresh new interface (preferably similar environment, VB.net or VB based)
- Bring it back to an Excel solution, considering it is such a small system
There might be more options, but these are the ones I could think of.
My questions are
- What should I recommend and why?
- What is or could be the pros and cons of these alternatives?
- Are there other (possibly better) alternatives?