SugarCRM: The open source customer relationship management software

Author: himanshu

SugarCRM is the world’s largest open source CRM (customer relationship management) software. Founded in 2004, over 7,000 customers and more than half a million users rely on SugarCRM to execute marketing programs, grow sales, retain customers, and create custom business applications. These custom business applications can be used in a multitude of ways, such as to power sales teams, run customer support organizations, and manage customer information databases.

One of the unique things about SugarCRM in the CRM space is that it’s fundamentally an open source application, meaning that the source code of the application is available to any user, developer, or customer of the product. Whether one opts for the AGPLv3 licensed or the commercially licensed version, the application comes with all of the source code, enabling developers to customize and build upon the product with ease. This puts the control of your application and your data in your hands, enabling the freedom to deploy SugarCRM wherever you wish. This ability has given SugarCRM partners and developers worldwide the ability to customize the out-of-the-box application to fit in many different organizations, vertical markets, and locales.

But before we dig in deeper to how you could take the SugarCRM platform and build upon it, let’s take a peek at the various editions of SugarCRM, how and where we can deploy SugarCRM, and some of the components that come with SugarCRM out of the box to enable you to build applications with ease.

A breakdown of the editions

The latest version of SugarCRM as of this writing is 6.2, released in June 2011. For this version we expanded the number of editions of the product from three to five, to better cover the various demographics of our customers and better streamline our product support offerings, as well as provide new add-on products to complement the base product.

Community Edition

Community Edition is released under the AGPLv3 license. The Community Edition and related extensions have been downloaded over 8 million times since 2004. This edition comes fully featured with all the basics for sales, marketing, support automation, and user and ACL management, as well as the developer tools Studio and Module Builder for customizing the application. It can be downloaded from

Professional Edition

Professional Edition is a commercial edition of the product that builds upon the feature set of the Community Edition. Of these numerous additional features added to Professional Edition, the most notable are: 1) Support for Teams, where users can be grouped together by their department or job function.
2) A reporting tool enabling you to run several different types of reports, many ofwhich have charts with them that can be added to the Home page.
3) A web-based mobile version, along with mobile clients specific for the iPhone and Android smart phones
4) Plug-ins for Microsoft Office, namely Outlook, Word, and Excel

Corporate Edition

This is a new edition of the product added with the Sugar 6.2 release, which adds additional features on top of the Sugar Professional feature set: 1) An enhanced mobile client with offline storage capabilities for the iPhone, iPad, and Blackberry platforms
2) A higher level of customer support

Enterprise Edition

Enterprise Edition is targeted at large organizations and builds upon the Professional and Corporate Editions with additional features: 1) A more robust reporting tool
2) An offline client for desktop use
3) Self-service portal, which enables you to deploy a portal that your customers can use to interact with your Sugar instance with ease
4) Sugar Plug-in for Lotus Notes
5) Support for the Oracle database
6) An even higher level of customer support

Ultimate Edition

This is the most feature-complete edition of SugarCRM, and is also a new offering with Sugar 6.2. In addition to all the features in the other editions, this edition adds: 1) Sugar Connector for Lotus Domino Server
2) Our highest level of customer support

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About the Author

Himanshu is a web service consultant and advises small & medium businesses in India for search engine optimization, internet marketing, social media marketing, web designing and web development.To know more about SugarCRM visit at

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