Last week, we reviewed the Windward Learning Academy, outlining what it is, how it works, and more. If you missed it, just click here to get caught up on the Windward Software Blog.
And we promised to fill you in on everything you need to know about Windward Software Updates, so let’s get started.
What are Windward System Five Updates and New Releases?
System Five is constantly being improved through custom development, feedback and requests from clients, as well as general changes that keep us current.
We have a top-of-the-line team of eight Microsoft Gold Certified programmers.
And, at any given time, at least two of them are dedicated to continually upgrading System Five.
Approximately every two weeks, updates are released to our clients. Updates fix bugs and any problems that our clients report, and include the multiple minor tweaks that are necessary when maintaining software.
Each update, also called a “New Release,” has a number that increases incrementally as we do bug fixes or enhancements, so that our Quality Assurance Team knows what to test.
For example, 6.2.2 is our current Windward System Five main release, while the latest release version number is 126.96.36.199, where a specific change is associated to the final number. This is how the update information is presented:
Version 188.8.131.52 - January 25, 2018
1.  Corrected the EFT Detail and EFT Header tables conversion issue.
1. Internal build.
Every year or two, a major upgrade for System Five comes out. For example, Version 6.2.2 becomes Version 6.3, and so on.
Major upgrades need to be discussed with your Account Manager prior to getting access to make sure that your system is sufficiently up to date to run the latest version. For instance, a complementary program may also need to be upgraded, such as the version of Pervasive (a database management system) you are running.
Once you have cleared it with your Account Manager, our Technical Support team will walk you through the process as part of your annual Maintenance Plan.
How do I get the updates and upgrades? What is the process?
Every Windward System Five customer has a set of training data as well as a LIVE production data set, so their data remains secure. A release form is available for customers to sign if they want to go straight to live and skip the training version.
The process for updates as well as major upgrades is to upgrade the training data set first and have your staff try it to see if there is anything glaring that would prevent the company from optimal operation using a live data set.
About a week later, if everything seems like it is working fine, simply call Technical Support to schedule the Live upgrade.
This is advantageous for each client because their training data will provide a risk-free testing environment. Also, it gives our Technical Support Team the opportunity to find anything that may have slipped through Quality Assurance (QA) Testing.
Why do I need updates and upgrades?
The fact is, we have a few Windward clients who have been running their System Five program for over a decade without ever downloading a new release.
But, we certainly don’t recommend this.
The new releases and upgrades allow our clients to run the latest and most supported versions of Windward System Five at all times.
It’s also very important for those running our Payroll module to update toward the end of the year, otherwise your entire database could have problems.
Updates and upgrades don’t take long and are included under your Windward Maintenance Plan. It’s just a matter of setting an appointment with the Windward Technical Support Team.
And, if your business is running with System Five On Cloud, it’s even easier to stay up to date. More on that later.
How do I learn about New Releases and upgrades?
When an update or upgrade is released, the important details are put into the Windward Learning Academy as a Learning Plan.
Your company Academy Administrator can grant access to this information for as few or as many of your staff as you wish.
It’s recommended to check your Windward Learning Academy portal every month to see the notifications for specific updates and upgrades.
Please don’t forget that if you have any trouble accessing The Windward Learning Academy, just send a note to: email@example.com.
How does Windward System Five On Cloud impact updates?
Windward Software is here to help you you run your business, not just report on it.
Ongoing training is one of the keys to how we do this.
If you are not yet a Windward client, please call us and ask to speak with someone from our Business Development Team: +1 (800) 663-5750.
They will discuss your business software challenges and offer you a free demonstration of our flagship software, Windward System Five. Click here to book a personal appointment.
Please let us know if you still have questions about System Five updates, upgrades and how to access them through The Windward Learning Academy. Contact your Account Manager, or simply reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org.