FRx 6.7 installation and configuration on Dynamics AX 2009

FRx is a very good tool for financial reporting. Now obsolete perhaps, since MR ->Management Reporter for DAX 2009 and above has taken its place. A casual installation checklist is as follows;
  • Install FRx 6.7
  • Run scripts in the correct order [file names suggestible]
  • Install the latest service packs [see the links section below]
  • Import the 2 jobs
    • frx.xpo [gives AOT -> Jobs -> DumpVirtualCompanyMap]
    • frxmetadata.xpo [gives  AOT -> Jobs -> FRxMetaData]
  • Execute the jobs
    • AOT -> Jobs -> DumpVirtualCompanyMap - save the xml file
    • AOT -> Jobs -> FRxMetaData - save the xml file
  • Run the Financial Dimension wizard
    • In the FRx installation directory, run the file named 'Microsoft.FRx.Integrations.DimensionWizard.
  • Create a new system DNS and connec it to your AX db [you can set both Windows Auth or SQL Server Auth]
  • Start FRx report designer
  • Provide keys for your company and register the software. Without this step, FRx wont work fully.
  • Set Company information - Provide the newly created system DSN in the 'Data Source Name' field.
  • Set the company as default
NOTE: The order of the checklist might not be absolutely perfect, however this order would surely end you with a working FRx application :)

Common issues and resolutions

In the last 2 points above, you may get some errors while setting your company as default or just selecting your company to start working. You may get one of the following errors;
  • Direct Link error: Login Failed. Make sure the Login ID and password are correct and verify the settings on the system specific information page in company. FRX32.OFSIMain.CheckOFSIConnection 8900: A Direct Link error has occurred attempting to connect to the DB for this company. [src: FRx DirectLink error]
  • The specified company could not be found: FRX32.OFSIMain.CheckOFSI Connection 8900: The specified company could not be found. 
Both of these issues alternatively have been messing my FRx experience for quite some time. And then I realised to go for the SQL Profiler in order to dig deep. This revealed very critical information that was quite helpful in resolving the issues. 

Their are two key tables identified in the resolution of these issues;

  • frl_sys_options: Holds each company configured in Dynamics AX
  • frl_entity: Holsd the company specific information provided from FRx client 
These are created and filled by the scripts that are ran during installation. Both of these tables are queried when saving company information at FRx or setting the company as default. Setting your company as default is necessary for FRx to work on your company. 

If the scripts are not executed at all, or missed due to negligence or any other reason, the table would either not be created or not filled. In both cases, this would cause errors. This table should have a record for each company configured in AX. The dimension wizard is also dependant on this table and would not load entities [companies] correctly. See the image below;

Financial Dimension wizard
FRx installation: Dimension wizard not showing any company due to data missing in the system table

Similarly an empty 'frl_sys_options' table would give the DirectLink error. DirectLink is also given for other issues like wrong password etc. Verify the scripts are perfectly executed. If not, execute them in the correct order. 

The other table, 'frl_entity' holds the company data that you set from the FRx configuration window. However if while setting the company information and system specific information, you do not provide the dimension structure field, it would cause the Specified company could not be found error.
FRx - System specific information
FRx -> System specific Information. Note the Dimension structure field is mandatory hence bordered.

From the investigation, I came to know that each company is queried based on its dimension structure. So consider this field as MANDATORY and DO provide this field while setting the company information.

Where is this Dimension Structure configured in AX ? or What to write in the Dimension structure field?

This is not configured by you or anyone else from the AX client. The scripts fill the table with Company code [DAT for instance] and the string part '-Default'. So you can provide 'YourCompanyCode-Default' [DAT-Default for instance] or you can simple query the table to see what is it expecting you to write.

Unfortunately I could not found any detailed investigative blog when I was facing these issues and I was misdirected a lot towards issues at the ODBC datasource and authentication level. Now after these investigations, FRx installation remains no issue for me at all. Links are at your service below :)

Some useful FRx 6.7 Links


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