Roadmap for significant modifications - Modifications and Updates

First off I love ERPNext and what the developers and community have done with it. I have been experimenting and reviewing ERPNext as time has permitted over the past year. Our company needs an ERP and it needs to be custom tailored to our industry. I had thought about starting from scratch, but with ERPNext’s open source and very inexpensive pricing it would make more sense to modify ERPNext for our needs.

I am currently familiarizing myself with the technologies that ERPNext / Frappe uses to prepare myself for the modifications I intend on making. I have had previous programming and database experience. (SQL server / Access / VB) I also know, I will not be doing this alone. When we get closer to implementation I will be calling on the service providers listed on the site.

So on to my question, and please forgive me if this has been answered before. I did look through the discussions, and was able to find some similar topics, but not similar enough to be helpful.

I went through your “Creating an app” video series on youtube and found it very helpful, thanks for that by the way. For example, I want to add some fields to the item table. Very simple thing to do. Could I do that in a manner that would still allow updates or once I started modding those core tables would I be unable to update and keep my changes? Obviously for the new sections I could just create new apps, but I am concerned about the changes to those tables.

I just set up a clean centos 7 vm and have ERPNext 7 installed. I am now going to make some modification to try and convince management that the ERPNext / Modifications route is the way to go. I thought I would ask for some opinions on how to begin my development. I would like to hear anyone’s input or if anyone has some suggested reading to help with a project like this.


Hi @randynealpetersen You can use customize form to add your on fields in the existing ERPNext Doctypes for details visit

Ravindra Lakal
New Indictrans Technologies PVT LTD

Hi @randynealpetersen,

Here’s how I have approached it for my company. I created a new app that contains all the Custom Fields, Custom Scripts (using fixtures) and additional code (using hooks, new doctypes, etc) to implement our customizations. This is better than simply adding custom fields/scripts directly to ERPNext without any app, because you can do development work on a separate server and issue releases all in one go very easily (the same way ERPNext does). Also, as you move forward, you might find yourself needing to do server side scripts, so you’ll likely want a separate app anyways.

If you start making changes directly to the code for ERPNext, you will stop being part of the development path and won’t be able to update as the open source community comes out with new releases. However, using an app and hooks, you can achieve almost the exact same results without needing to make changes to the code.


Thanks Ravindra!

I will check it out, actually New Indictrans is on top of my list to contact when I can get some funding lined up. For now I have to get them excited about the change. My company, like most, fears changes and they just changed ERP packages 4 years ago. You guys got back to me back in Sep '14, when I first looked at ERPNext. Didn’t realize it’s been that long of a process.

I will check out the link, thanks for the info!

1 Like

Exactly what I wanted to know. Thanks Ben.

I am going to start a new app and see if I can make changes to the system. Going to follow the link Ravindra sent see how that works. Are there any resources that helped you?

I got changes to the system sorted out, just not sure how to make changes to a ERPNext doctype from another app. I definitely want to be a part of the development path and update.