Developing for Dynamics GP

by David Musgrave (Perth, Australia) and Microsoft Dynamics GP Developer Support Team (Fargo, ND, USA)

GP Logos through the years

GP Logos through the years

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David MeegoI thought that I would have a little fun and be nostalgic for a bit.  I have been working with Great Plains Dynamics since version 2.00 in 1994.  The company I was with did look at version 1.00, but decided not to become a reseller at that time. Instead we watched the progress of the product closely and when version 2.00 was released, we became the reseller for Western Australia.

While I have been involved with Great Plains we have seen many changes in corporate image and ownership and I thought it would be interesting to see how the logos have changed over time. Maybe this will bring back some memories for the old timers among us.


Great Plains Accounting1985: The original Great Plains Software logo with the sun and wheat image.  This shows the heritage of the company being based in a wheat growing and farming region. This is from the first version of Great Plains Accounting (GPA).


Great Plains Software1991: The logo changed from the original orange sun to the red sun. According to my sources, this was because it was cheaper to print red rather than orange on the marketing materials.  


Great Plains Dynamics1993: The original Dynamics product branding. 



Globe1994: The Dynamics Globe logo used on version 2.0.

At the bottom of this post I have attached the "Welcome to Dynamics" wave sound file that used to play when launching Dynamics.

I can reveal that the voice behind this sound file is Deb Reynolds, the wife of Todd Reynolds. Deb no longer works with the company (having a family took priority), but Todd remains working in the Dynamics development group at Microsoft.

If you want the sound back in your system see the VBA - Welcome to Dynamics Example.

[Edit] See update in the following post, Revisiting: "Welcome to Dynamics".


Great Plains1995: Then it was time to drop the Software part as Great Plains was selling entire solutions and not just software.





Dynamics LAN1996: It was during this Great Plains era that we had Dynamics for the ISAM versions.


Dynamics C/S+And Dynamics C/S+ for the Client Server versions. Later when version 3.15 (& 3.17) was released we had Dynamcs C/S+ for SQL. 


Dynamic ToolsEven Dexterity along with the other customisation and integration tools had their own logo. 


Dexterity Exploding Head LogoDexterity itself had a great logo on its splash screen.  This was known as the "Exploding Head" logo.

The blank area underneath the Dexterity name was used to show the Dexterity version and build numbers. 



DexterityIf you load Dexterity and look at the Help >> About Dexterity window you will still see the original Dexterity logo included on this window.



Great Plains UniversitySo they would not feel left out, the training branch of Great Plains, the Great Plains University, also had a logo.


Great Plains1997: Then after a year of work and millions of dollars, the logo was modernised, but the sun and wheat is still visible.. well sort of.




GP DynamicsWe still had the Dynamics product for the ISAM database platforms. 




GP eEnterpriseBut Dynamics C/S+ for SQL was renamed to eEnterprise.





Microsoft Great Plains Business Solutions2001: The next stage in the evolution was with the Microsoft acquisition. It was a bit of a mouthful, but it showed where the Business Solutions division came from.


Microsoft Business SolutionsWhen Navision was acquired and the Business Solutions division grew to more than one product, the Great Plains logo and name were dropped.  Well... we knew it would happen. Now we had a new name but the designers had not done their bit. 


Microsoft Business Solutions

2003: There we go, that's better.

Make sure you use the correct pantone colours for the three shades of blue otherwise the logo police might visit you.



Microsoft Dynamics GP

The final step was to brand all of the Business Solutions products under a single brand name.  And guess what name Microsoft already owned the trademark for (inherited from Great Plains). The only problem is they did not have a logo.


Microsoft Dynamics GP2005: Eventually, the design guys worked out the three ski jumps/sails/ice scrapers logo and the current branding was complete.



2013: With the changes to the Microsoft Logo and Windows Logo, the Microsoft Dynamics Logo has been updated to the match the monochrome theme.


Now here is the fun bit. When the old red sun and wheat logo was going to be replaced by the new blue and yellow logo, there was a lot of secrecy about the new corporate image.  Then the day before the new logo was going to be unveiled a picture swept through the partner channel explaining how the new logo concept was designed.

Homer Logo 

I found out that it was Todd Lefor who created this joke image for an internal newsletter. Below is the original image that started the whole joke.

Homer's Head



The actual “Homer's head” logo takes the GP logo and places it on Homer's head. What struck me as interesting is that I made NO modifications to the GP logo in order to make it fit into Homer's head. The skull lines of Homer fit perfectly with the angle of the sun.


Say no more.


Just to show how sad I am, here is my Great Plains baseball cap collection: 

David's Great Plains Baseball caps 

Please feel free to add your comments about how many of these logos you remember. 


PS: Thanks to John, Leslie, Jon, Tom, Andrew and Todd for sending me some of the additional logos.

12-Aug-2008: Updated posting to name the people behind the welcome wave and Homer's head.

26-Aug-2008: Added Dexterity Exploding Head Logo.

28-Aug-2008: Added Dexterity About window logo.

09-Sep-2008: Added Link for "Welcome to Dynamics" VBA example.

01-Oct-2008: For a bit of fun, go have a look Mariano Gomez's posting GP splash bitmap files over the years.

14-Oct-2008: Added Baseball Caps picture.

31-Mar-2010: Add link to Revisiting: "Welcome to Dynamics" post.

28-May-2013: Added new 2013 Microsoft Dynamics Logo.

  • Nice post here, David.  I still think you were the one who created Homer's head.  

    I have a few others you would remember.  Great Plains University, DynamicTools, and of course the short-lived, Great Plains eEnterprise.  

    Talk about blowing the marketing budget!

  • How fun! In addition to JohnR's. I'll add Small Business Manager (Dynamics Lite - Project Blue) and CS+ to the mix.

  • I love this kind of stuff, does anyone have any more?  I'd love it if you would make all of the logo images available for download. Great for my jeopardy game!


  • Exceptionally done David. I have been working in GP from v5.5, and you threw the light on the history of GP, which is an amazing fact to know, being in that business . Hats off to you David. You are THE guy... :-)

  • This is great, David.  We all got a big kick out of this post, thanks!  I remember the 'Homer Simpson' era, Dynamics, eEnterprise.

    That logo will always remind me of the sunflower seeds, we miss those little packages of sunflower seeds!

  • Posted for Mariano Gomez:


    Once again, thanks for bring in back exceptional memories from a (not so) distant past. GPU? For you newbies, that's Great Plains University and yes, it was a vibrant training center of former Great Plains Software. I had to cross half the hemisphere to get there for training from Bogota, Colombia... not the place you want to be in winter.

    On a side note, not sure I really liked the coffee at GPU, ugh!

  • This is great!  

    Wasn't there a separate eEnterprise logo?  A blue/grey e or something?  I looked around, but  could not find it.  And what about SBM/SBF?  Or do we not even count that?  :-)

  • Wow. Nice work David. I think, I have seen Gp only from version 7.0 onwards. Its a wonderful thing to actually see the history of the product, that you are working on, over the years.

    Great Job.

  • David, I just e-mailed you the e-Enterprise 'e' I think Victoria was talking about.

  • Maybe next we could see a "where are they now" video segment on all the people from the various login/splash screens and training manuals. A "Behind the Application" if you will.

    3 ski jumps? I always thought they looked like sails. Not that either one makes much sense in the context of Fargo.


  • Man, that's just stinking funny. Thanks for the laugh!

  • Comment from Mark Polino's Blog

    Hi Mark,

    I looked at the blog for the GP Logo's. It was interesting to see how the earlier logo evolved to the Blue/Yellow logo. That's probably the one logo that I was familiar with and always wondered what two sticks on a setting sun had to do with the software. Now I see the earlier logo's had the image of wheat stalks blowing accross the plains. That make more sense.

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