What is the best way to learn Dynamics NAV and C/SIDE (A general querry regarding navision)

Dear all,

I have around 5 years of programming experience in Visual basic, sql server, crystal report and .NET.

I want to learn C/SIDE. I am based in India.

I have gain functional knowledge Navision 4.0 SP1.

Now , I want to learn Technical also.

I am based in India.

One training institute is providing technical training in Navision, Its a 10 days course

I want to know, as I have programming experience, Can I learn it myself by going through PDF’s

or should I go for this training course.

Which option will be better ?


None of the options is bad. You can choose to attend to one, or both!!

personally, i prefer studying the training materils

Definitely the key is you, and your way of learning. everyone reacts differently to different ways of learning, and one of the biggest failing of most eduction systems, is the ridiculous belief that everyone can learn the same way. So each person needs to find their optimum learning methond.

The first biggest mistake you have already made though is assuming there are two ways to learn, there are many ways to learn NAV, not two. So be creative and check what other options are out there. For me the best learning method is teaching and doing. If you teach someone to do somethign, then you learn yourself how to do it very well. But doing is even better, I set my self a project and tackle it start to end.

When I first started in Navision, my job was to train users to use the system, so I got all the manuals and read them cover to cover. then I started using th esystem to do the jobs that they would do in their normal day, then I sat down and taught them. this was all done in Test Company (before the Cronus days) and I learnt what posted where, because during training the users would ask me.

Of course some people are not comfortable in front of an audience so teaching just makes them nervous and they don’t learn. Some people are ver impatient, and so don’t want to create a whole project from start to end. Some people don’t want to go at classroom pace, so they get distracted. Others don’t like reading and can’t remember that way.

My advise is to try a bit of everything, and see what works best for you. For example I don’t really like classroom training if it is rigidly following the book, i.e. the “teacher” at the front of the class is just reading form a book, others I know hate it when the teacher goes off track and does not folllow the book exactly. So even with in classroom training there are different styles. For me classroom works best if there is a specific issue I don’t underrstand and that is covered in a classroom.

An example, when I moved from DOS to Windows, I could get most concepts clearly, except menus, they just did not makes sense. Try as I might I could not get a new menu working, so I was running all my new code from the object designer. Well I went to the DOS/Windows crossover course, and the first topic on the class was Navision Financials Menus Form330. Ten minutes into the course I was able to create menues and I was happy. Such a stupid thing. (Actually the really great thing was being told that in codeunit 1 was a line that said Form330.RUN).

I really do suggest that you attend a class, but not yet! Learn a bit on your own, then once you have an idea of what you need to learn, THEN go to the class, this way you can decide what is YOUR best way to learn.

Oh what I will say though is no matter what the very very first step to learnign NAV, is to post items on a sales order to an invoice, and pay the invoice and track all the entries created in NAV. That is step one.

Good luck.

Dear Prakash, Interesting question. By the by, which institute is giving training in Navision in India ?? could u pls. help me in my PM regards,

Dear Prakash,

Since you already have experience in programming, learning Navision technical by yourself is not a problem. You can start with the Application Designer Guide from Navision Installation CD or get a Navision programming book.

I also an experienced .NET and SQL Server programmer before working on Navision. I start learning Navision with the Application Designer Guide. Is a very good source.


I am assuming that you have been teaching people Navision a lot longer than I have, so I will bow to your experience, but I stand by my belief that everyone is different.

Adding to that I would also like to say that previous programming experince in other languages is probably the LEAST important skill you need to learn Navision. Thats like saying you have experinence with Spark Plugs, so it will be easy to become a Formula One driver and win a world championship.

There really needs to be a comment here about developers understanding the base application to avoid designing solution that already exists, but I doubt that there is any history of this in the Navision world, and even if there was no one would be silly enough to comment on it [:D] Whatever next, consultants with no development experience developing solutions [:D]

In the spirit of Adam’s comment:

If you have a little bit of prior development experience, that will help you learn C/AL. If you have more than that, you will be confronted with a unique set of problems, some of which are very difficult to overcome.

If you have considerable prior experience, as Adam said: look before you develop! Standard NAV is frequently better even if you don’t understand it yet. In this way, those with little development experience but a lot of functional knowledge tend to make better decisions.

Do not expect the development enviorment or anything else to behave like other enviorments or languages you know. It’s different, and your time is better spent learning the NAV way.

I would recommened that you start by reading the application designer’s guide, and then try to pass the two development exams.

Afterwards, start studying the NAV base code. The more you understand why those desicions were made, the further along you will be to NAV mastery.

I’ve found that the class just helps a little bit with the two goals above. However, a little bit is better than nothing, and if it’s the little push you need to cement your knowledge, take the class.

No matter what, you should read the .pdfs.