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Odoo vs ERPNext [Sept 2017]


#1

Hi

we have customers who talk like to know more about ERPNext in comparison to Odoo . The last thread is already 2 years ago and hopefully there has been a progress at ERPNext like it has been at ODOO which anounced just Odoo11 running on Python 3

On Agent had asked the same question also on the Odoo Mailinglist
https://www.odoo.com/groups/community-59/community-32878784

In another Thread on the Odoo Mailinglist also major odoo Developers seem to promote ERPNext in Favor of a NEWDOO or stronger ODOO CE in future. What are the reasons for that? What is so special on ERPNext? Perhaps here are some former Odoo Developers or some who do both already and who can bring some more light into that discussion either here or on the Odoo Mailinglist or both. Your input is very appreciated. Thanks.

Unfortunately all the links we could find are already quiet old
Here are some comparisons:
https://siftery.com/product-comparison/erpnext-vs-odoo
more links are on the Odoo Mailinglist thread as I can only post 2 links here unfortunately!

How does the current Free Open Source version of ERPNext compare to the Odoo Community CE Version 10 (Python 2.7) and 11 (Python 3.5).
Integrated Features, Coding, Extensibility, Website Builder, Accounting, … and last not least the Community itself! How does a Roadmap get created and how does communication work at ERPNext?

Kind regards
Andi


#2

Welcome @AndiBecker - you ask many good questions and dialogue is always good!

To orient you for starters, this should give you an idea of how ERPNext ‘communication and governance’ works https://discuss.erpnext.com/c/community/foundation

I found this reference
ERPNext Roadmap Document [Long Term Goal]


#3

Hi Andy

I used to be a user of Odoo. Great platform that it is certain decisions seemed odd sometimes. I left before I was too far in and didn’t like the direction they were going. I didn’t like complex import routines the non sensical email followers on every action and was always concerned how far behind the curve I would be with upgrades with all the huge number of add-ons required esp for an Odoo website.

I found ERPNext about a year back although I was aware if it further ago. It’s not as fully rounded, it doesn’t have the massive VP funding , it has less in a European basis but it has a heart. I think it’s similar to when I met Odoo in its OpenERP days about 7 years back but with a few differences. There is no friction between Frappe and the Community. It’s FLOSS through and thru. Most release decisions are for the greater good. Things are being done for the good if the project.

Upgrades are good (generally). The main difference is the lack of add-ons with a keenness to add many contribs to the core instead.

Installs and operating speed is so much better too. The ERPNEXT stack is great, well tuned and not the big mess that Odoo became in my opinion. The bench commands are great. Setting up let’s encrypt certs and multitenanted sites in a few simple commands that Frappe use themselves.

Python 3 support is ongoing and now not far off, the Foundation has done good things by paying for several Devs to improve stability and the massive writing of unit tests for everything. All this I remember that OpenERP did back in the day.

Rushabh really truly understands and breathes open source in a manner that Fabien never quite did.
I’m pleased I made the jump and it’s a great time to get on board in my opinion.

Odoo CE will struggle in my opinion there is too much to replace with Accountancy gone in v11. An Odoo fork may work but is likely to struggle too. It takes a lot of developer time to build a full ERP.

Get involved, test out ERPNEXT and be prepared to bug fix and you will succeed with it.

Julian


#4

@AndiBecker welcome to ERPNext!

Specifically - Py3 is on the way, no ETA but it should be ready by early 2018.

Roadmap - Roadmap is built collaboratively. We use GitHub Issues religiously and also map milestones.

I have also been tracking Odoo over the years and I think there are 2 major differences:

  1. In ERPNext, the primary focus is on the end-user and not the service provider.
  2. ERPNext will be built as a monolith (to stop fragmentation of the community with apps, improve end-user experience etc.) There will be apps, but they will not be first-class in this ecosystem.

Also we (I speak here as the founder/CEO of Frappé Technologies) intend to build ERPNext as a community not as a private company. We would like the ERPNext community to be made of small companies like ourselves and collaboratively. To formalise this, have the ERPNext Foundation (https://erpnext.org) - a registered not-for-profit with over 40 paying members now.

I undertand there are lots of Odoo developers who have years of experience in this industry and who believe in Open Source. I think there is a great opportunity to collaborate with this community on the principles of Free Software + Open Source. If you have specific concerns or queries, would love to take them here. (and anyone from the community is free to answer).

Edit: Most important, upgrades have always been free (and part of the core) in ERPNext since beginning.


#5

I’m an Odoo freelancer who thinks about switching to ERPNext. I currently test the solution and the Frappé framework but I haven’t finished yet. So my analysis may be partial and not scientific… Please correct me if I’m wrong. To me, there a many little differences between these two open source ERP :

  1. Release model

    • ERPNext has a rolling-release model and includes migration scripts. Therefore you always benefit from latest enhancements and features but you need to ensure that your customizations stays in line with master and features can change from one day to another.
    • Odoo has a more classical release plan : each version is supported for three years and only bugfixes seems to be allowed in a stable versions. That said, no migration script is provided (OCA OpenUpgrade project tries to handle this) and each major version needs an huge migration to be planned.
  2. Architecture : as already said, ERPNext goes to include many features, verticals too (already healthcare and education ones), that may be hidden after by customization. Goods points : coherence, quality and maintenance. On Odoo side, everything is very modular and you may only install contact management or project management on your database. But this can lead to fragmentation and testing complexities.

  3. Community and manpower : Odoo SA employs dozens of people on Odoo. OCA and community is composed by hundreds of contributors. There are many (thousands) of modules existing. Frappé / ERPNext community is smaller, but growing.

  4. Features

    • ERPNext seems to offer more out-of-the-box than Odoo, especially in comparison to recent Odoo CE versions : contract / subscriptions, Gantt views, file management…
    • Odoo, with OCA repositories and other community modules, has a very large feature coverage and many of missing parts are filled that way. Out of the box, Odoo has more community oriented modules : surveys, forums, alternative to slack, mailing lists, slides (alternative to slideshare and youtube)…
  5. Framework

    • The Odoo framework needs a lot of Python and XML and a few JavaScript. The templating engine is QWeb, using XML attributes. It’s a productive business framework with includes many useful things, like good research and regroupments abilities, pivot table, charts, many views per model… Graphical customization is very limited and technical in CE version (in EE /closed source version, you have Odoo Studio…). Odoo v10 CE has no responsive backend theme nor mobile application by default (only frontend / website is responsive). The API is XML or JSON-RPC.
    • Frappé framework is more balanced between Python and JavaScript. It uses JSON massively but you don’t write it directly. Frappé is the popular Jinja templating engine on Python side. Frappé includes many graphical customizations. It can finished technical but less than Odoo CE offering. Frappé has good options for own reporting and PDF drag&drop personalization. It also offer Web Forms, realtime, universal command bar… Frappé is mobile focused with responsive backend and have open source mobile applications. The API is REST + optional RPC.
  6. Governance (last but not least)

    • Odoo is leaded by a company. Roadmap is not public and you can have surprises a few days before each new version. Odoo SA sells SaaS and services like implementation / development. It provides a partner program. Since 2015 and Odoo v9, there is an open source edition, Odoo CE and an enterprise proprietary edition, Odoo EE (that is Odoo CE + extra closed source modules). Migration code between major version is not open source, for many tears. OCA, Odoo Community Association, is a swiss non-profit foundation which coordinates open source community development, events… and manages quality software that enhances Odoo CE, add new features etc.

    • ERPNext is now driven by a non profit Indian Foundation. Roadmap is public and openly debated. All the code is open source, migration scripts included. The foundation handles events, promotion… and has its own developers. Frappé Tech still dominates ERPNext work, as the foundation is young and the number of contributors still low (but growing). Frappé Tech mainly offer SaaS hosting and is not a direct competitor for service providers.

Hope this is useful and quite objective. Feel free to amend / debate.


#6

Thanks Yakulu this sounds very promising actually.
Especially the Upgrade Path and the Community itself seems to interest and welcome also our customers.
Upgrading in Odoo is always a huge headache and with the upcoming Odoo 11 where modules and core will be Python 3.5 the number of Modules OCA and others actually can provide will shrink to near zero. It already takes often very long time until modules get ported to the next version in Odoo.

As our customers are mainly NGOs, Schools and Doctor Stations as well as SME ERPNext is an interesting choice, but what I saw concerning the integration of the Website like Odoo does it, I can’t see anything at ERPNext which comes near to it. It was actually the Website Builder and the easy way how to build multilingual websites and its integration with the Odoo apps like Leads, Sales, E-Commerce, Slides and the POS System which brought us the customers for Odoo years ago. So we can’t switch to ERPNext if there isn’t something similar as easy to create and modify stunning websites.

Currently we wait also for the release of FlectraHQ, which is a Fork of Odoo but cleaned up a lot released like Odoo itself as LGPLv.3 - but not sure if they are already Python 3.5. Let’s see!

Thanks for your great comparison of Odoo and ERPNext.

Kind regsrda
Andi


#7

Thank you @Yakulu for your very detailed, precise and clear comparison. After using both over the years I think you have your comparison exactly right, I could find nothing I would disagree with.

Perhaps the one other point that no-one has mentioned - IMHO ERPNext is much more a FUN and inclusive community ! With people very keen to help each other out in the truest Open Source ideology.

Odoo started off this way, but even 7 or 8 years ago, the community were not always fully involved with Odoo. Fabien (Odoo SA’s Founder/Leader) would change things suddenly to suit him and and his company, without warning. There was a lot of friction between Odoo SA and the community even when all the code was fully open many years ago.

Frappe still make the majority of ERPNext decisions and need to make money from their offering (which is fine) but from my point of view they engage the community as far and as widely as possible. It’s still early days in many ways, but Rushabh and his team are really enthused by Open Source and do not just see it as a means to get bug reports and their testing done by the community as perhaps Odoo SA have partly considered on occasion.


#8

Interesting what you say about FlectraHQ. I had heard about a possible fork from Odoo but I’m not sure how much traction they will get with some devs staying with Odoo EE, some with Odoo OCA, and some now with FlectraHQ. I guess in a year or so we will know.
I think it will just fracture the Odoo community more, but wish them well


#9

Thanks for your kind words :slight_smile:

I don’t agree its early days though! ERPNext has been open sourced since 2010 :smile:

We are actively working to fix this. Foundation was step 1. Next step would be to include a lot more developers as maintainers. For that we need people with more reputation. I guess outside of frappe, @revant_one is taking a good lead to be more involved with starting with sending regular fixes and code reviews.

Over the last few months, I think economically, ERPNext service providers are getting lots of work and as this grows, it will be great if some devs can spend a few days a month to help out with reviews and maintenance. Not only will this be more fun but also it will help you when you build out custom requirements for your customers!


#10

What is interesting for you is that school vertical is already included into ERPNext. Healthcare has been recently merged and NGO vertical project has been launched a few days ago.

ERPNext has website features with customer portal. Portal already includes things like issues, orders etc. You have the Web Form capacity, that is graphical composition of new form based on existing doctype. What seems to miss is multilingual and blocks drag & drop interface. It may be good additions to Frappé/ERPNext and if people are interested, bounties can be launched (the foundation has launched recently a bounty system).

FlectraHQ is branched over Odoo master and so Odoo v11, so it will be Python 3.5. Py3 will arrive on ERPNext too, but it is a little less urgent because of rolling release model (no need to support major version for multiple years, as Python 2 support will end on 2020). Flectra alpha will be released in October. We’ll see what is included and, even more, which governance and community will lead.

About ERPNext community : I’m very new but I also feel it very friendly and helpful. Frappé Tech seems to really follow open source spirit and that a major point on my view.


#11

This March 2016 post offers clear insight why end users may have good reason to be wary of ‘open source’

edit: well not just end users, the same applies for service providers

"
We need a sustainable business
With Odoo, we have seen at least one disruptive major change at each release:
"

“Since Odoo 9, it’s more valuable for us to financially support the OCA association than the Odoo company. And it’s better for our customers.”

https://anybox.fr/blog/odoo-professional-service-provider


#12

https://anybox.fr/blog/a-la-decouverte-d-erpnext


#13

mais oui!

por supuesto!


#14

I found Odoo before I found ERPNext. Was using it for about 2 months and found it confusing, incomplete and difficult to learn, maintain, manage and customize. I liked it well enough, but it was just TOUGH.

What stopped me using it was a seemingly innocuous error that wiped out all access to my instance. Despite having a FULL backup of the entire VM, I could not get back in. Even after restoring the VM to days previous, that were also full VM backups and were working when taken, failed to restore my access. After trying in vain to restore my access / rebuild, nothing that the community or developers offered helped.

I could access the back-end database and see certain elements, but could not get full access back. :frowning:

From that moment on I looked for a solution that wouldn’t break seemingly on a whim. Or at least, one that would be fix-able IF it broke. I landed on ERPNext and while it’s not perfect, I’ve found it more logically laid out, easier to learn and easier to customize. I’m a convertee to ERPNext and I’ll never go back to Odoo.


#15

well said - this mirrors my experiences with Odoo too. Very powerful but very complicated on the backend.


#16

I just stumbled upon Odoo from a thread here. Reading the wikipedia article and some comments here and on the web the software seems to be “stuck in the middle”. Either you are true open source and live it. Or you have a closed and commercial business model (SAP, Salesforce). Odoo sounds to be somewhat Open Source. That’s a very difficult place to be in:

From inception, Odoo S.A / OpenERP S.A have released software as open source but starting with the V9.0 release, the company has transitioned to an open core model which provides subscription-based proprietary enterprise software and cloud-hosted software as a service, and a cut-down community version.
Source: Wikipedia


#17

For education domain, what is your choice?
odoo or ERP next !


#19

I’ve not used neither one or the other product for this domain. You should test options by yourself :

  • Included (and so supported) education domain into ERPNext ;
  • Verticals based on Odoo :

Good luck.