Hi Everyone,

The purpose of this post is to help you Pack Out your Pack Out details in iDempiere Open Source ERP.

It is very convenient to have an option to include the actual Pack Out Details in the pack out results. This option helps prevent you from re-creating future versions of Pack Outs as you test your application in different environments.

How to Pack Out your Pack Out Details

Step #1: create your Pack Out header and details like you normally would.

Step #2: create an additional Pack Out Detail record with the following information. This will pack out the Pack Out header.

  • Type = “Data”
  • Table = “AD_Package_Exp”
  • SQLStatement = “SELECT * FROM AD_Package_Exp WHERE AD_Package_Exp_UU=’YOUR_PACK_OUT_HEADER_UUID_HERE’;AD_Package_Exp_Detail”


  • HEADER_NAME_HERE is the Name of Package of your Pack Out.
  • You can use the records UUID as well (instead of the record’s name). The UUID is probably safer.
  • I did not refer to the AD_Package_Exp_ID because that can change from environment to environment.
  • Note the SQLStatement includes the AD_Package_Exp_Detail sub table as well.

That is it. The next time you Pack In your application, your Pack Out will already be drafted for you. Below is a scenario that I face frequently where the above instructions come in very handy.

Here is a Team Development Example that Illustrates the Value of This Option

First, you work in an environment where Developer A creates a plugin for some new functionality. Developer A creates a 2Pack.zip (via Pack Out window) to accompany the plugin export that will be tested in multiple environments (Team Leader Development environment, a QA environment, and eventually a Production environment).

Second, Developer B installs the plugin (along with the 2Pack.zip) in a different environment for testing. Issues are found. Changes are made. Developer B must now recreate the pack out. Often times the Pack Out can include 10+ lines. This process of manually re-creating the Pack Out is cumbersome and error prone.

This scenario is where the above solution proves handy. Instead of needing to re-creating the original Pack Out to capture the minor changes, Developer B simply uses the existing Pack Out that got created during the Pack In process.

Third, repeat testing process for each environment until your plugin reaches production.

Useful for Plugin Developers as Well

This concept is beneficial for me as well. I create and destroy environments all the time. I used to find myself keeping entire servers around because I did not want to re-create the pack out for a given plugin.

Now, the Pack Out definition gets included in the plugin’s 2Pack.zip file. The 2Pack.zip file get checked into source code control (mercurial). At any time in the future, I can create a brand new development environment, import the plugin project, execute the plugin, make changes, re-Pack Out, re-export the plugin with minimal work, check in source code (with 2Pack.zip), and destroy the environment as needed.

I hope this helps! Special thanks goes to Carlos Ruiz and hieplq for helping me find this answer.

What is the best way to Learn iDempiere and ADempiere?

teach an on-line class that covers how to learn, configure and audit open source ERP. It uses iDempiere as the reference ERP.  Here are the course frequently asked questions. I have learned much over the last ten years, and I have much to share. I look forward to seeing you there!!

Why consider Open Source ERP

Open source ERP gives you every opportunity to prove or disprove its ability to support your company’s ERP needs on a timeline that satisfies your organizational needs. With open source ERP, you do not face the same financial constraints nor do you face the same conflicts of interest as with commercial ERP. Instead, you invest in the appropriate skills and knowledge for your people and processes. Best of all – if open source ERP cannot solve your company’s needs, you can safely justify spending the additional $2K to $5K per person per year for life of your commercial ERP to help drive your organization’s success.

Open Source ERP Round Rug Effect

Open Source ERP has what I call a “Round Rug Effect”. If you were to liken the ERP evaluation process to a 10′ x 10′ room, the story would go something like this:

  • Oracle, SAP, and Microsoft are a 10′ x 10′ ERP rug in a ten by ten foot room. They cover the room nicely. You will be hard pressed to find a feature or a use case that they do not cover.
  • Open Source ERP is like a 10′ round rug in a ten by ten foot room. It will cover the vast majority of the room; however, it will leave the corners bare. The questions are: “Do you live and operate in the corners?” or “Is open source ERP good enough?”. For most, the answers are “sometimes” and “yes”.

If you are in the ERP evaluation mode, you should ask yourself “Should I include open source ERP in my evaluation process?” If you are less than $300M USD revenue, your answer should probably be yes! This answer comes from these concepts:

  1. Pillars of Cost – Since open source ERP is free, that means that all the cost of proprietary ERP should be allocated to the corners. If you use height to illustrate this allocated cost, the corners turn into tall pillers of cost.
  2. Cost of Innovation – At first look, the price tag of free open source ERP is the most appealing benefit; however, this benefit soon becomes overshadowed by the flexibility of open source ERP. If organizational leaders take just some of the cost that would otherwise be spent on Oracle or SAP, and they invest it back into the organization’s skills and knowledge of how ERP works, operational efficiency will never look the same again. If you know how to change the system for the better, and you know it will work. Why would you not?
  3. Monday to Monday Cycle – Business leaders drive innovation in a company. This innovation is no more apparent than in the traditional Monday morning business meeting where a CEO comes in and paints a picture of the next greatest thing. His or her next comments are “Will it work?” and “Make it happen!”. Open source ERP helps your business and IT teams say yes more often. You are no longer completely dependent on a high-priced Oracle Integrators. You are no longer dependent on spending 18% every year to Oracle for software that you have little control over. Your team applies its knowledge of the system and the knowledge of its world-wide resources to create a proof of concept that paints the real picture the following Monday.
  4. Right Pay Grade – Open source ERP puts the right tools in the right person’s hands at the right pay-grade. there is little more wasteful that paying a $150/hr integrator for something a Jr IT professional should be doing. Open Source ERP removes the artificial barriers that exist in proprietary ERP.
  5. ERP for Everyone – User licenses/seats are no longer a consideration. This point cannot be stated strongly enough. At first look, you might think this point is about saving money. It is much more than that. You now have the freedom and flexibility of allowing everyone in your company to interact the system that drives your operations. You simply assign the right roles to the right people to give them access to the appropriate information.

ADempiere vs iDempiere vs Openbravo vs Compiere

The ADempiere, iDempiere, Openbravo and Compiere environments are amazingly similar. iDempiere came from ADempiere. ADempiere and Openbravo came from Compiere. Compiere came from Jorg Janke. Jorg came from Oracle. As a result, iDempiere and ADempiere have much in common with Oracle’s ERP in terms of the financial feature set.

This is both good and bad. Good because iDempiere and ADempiere are quite capable to help a company grow beyond $500M USD. Bad because they tend to be more complex in that they account for multiple languages, accounting schemas, currencies, calendars, costing types, costing methods, etc…. If you are a growing organization, and you need a system that will grow with you, and you have the right internal talent/resources, iDempiere or ADempiere will be a big asset for you.

The biggest difference between these products is that ADempiere and iDempiere are pure open source. ADempiere and iDempiere make all feature available for free. Compiere and Openbravo hold back features behind a commercial or paid license.

Here is an article that discusses the differences between iDempiere and ADempiere.

iDempiere and ADempiere vs OpenERP

iDempiere/ADempiere (iD/AD) and OpenERP approach ERP from two very different directions. OpenERP comes out of the box with very simple options. If you are coming from QuickBooks, and you need a simple ERP system help you manage your business, OpenERP will look and feel comfortable.

iD/AD comes out of the box with every feature installed and configured to run a $200M+ USD business. If your business is growing rapidly, and you are willing to invest the time to learn an enterprise accounting system, then iD/AD will give you confidence.

Which one is best for you depends on your internal talent, growth and business complexity. Here is a post to help you learn more.

About Chuck Boecking: I am an ERP educator. I believe that open source ERP have achieved mainstream capabilities, and as a result, more companies can create greater efficiency across their organization. I started using the iDempiere code base in 2003. Back then, it was called Compiere. In 2006, I started my first multi-million dollar installation. Since then, ADempiere has helped me create great success with distribution and manufacturing companies all over the world. My vision of success is to find companies that can best use open source ERP to help them achieve a single, global instance that drives a discontinuous increase in profitability. I believe that organizations win when they own their technology.

If you have questions, comments or concerns, let me know. I definitely want your feedback.

You can contact me by phone using 512.850.6068.

My email is chuck@chuboe.com.

You can complete the form on this page.

Thank you for taking the time. I look forward to speaking with you.

Chuck Boecking




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