Tip #463: Tipster guide to Immersive Excel

It’s Friday and it feels like Excel week so far. Firstly, watch Derik walking you though Dynamics CRM’s immersive Excel feature that was released as part of the Spring 2015 update.

Then listen to the Dynamics CRM Podcast where Matthew Anderson joins us to tell us some things we didn’t know about the 2015 update 1 immersive Excel functionality.

Give us your feedback, all of it: good, bad, and ugly, I’m sure we can take it. Suggest new topics either in comments or by sending your ideas to jar@crmtipoftheday.com.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on Google+

Tip #462: Waiting for developer toolkit

CRM developers have been patiently waiting for Godo CRM Developer Toolkit that works with something better than Visual Studio 2012. Now being two version behind, it does not look like it’s coming any time soon.

The good news is that, acknowledging both the demand and the delay, the team has been releasing the most important part of the toolkit, the templates, as a separate download from Visual Studio Extension Gallery for quite some time. The even gooder news is that the templates are being regularly updated, with the latest drop less than a fortnight ago including support for Visual Studio 2015 and freshly minted Plugin Class template.

Spießrutenlaufen was not forgotten either – all templates are now using Nuget to manage the references.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 4.0/5 (1 vote cast)
Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on Google+

Tip #461: Getting started with that mysterious USD development

Kamaji - the perfect call center employeeNot United States Dollars, I’m afraid. Unified Service Desk, the quite achiever in the Dynamics family, and the secret sauce to any successful call center implementation.

In addition to having CRM (any version from 2013 SP1 up to CRM Online 2015 Update 1 will do), USD initial setup even for the development is very trivial:

Still feeling uneasy and would like to have some guidance? If you’re a Microsoft partner with access to the Dynamics Learning Portal, register and attend virtual USD course, this one or that one, depending on your location and sleeping patterns. It won’t turn you into a USD ninja but it will surely get you started.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on Google+

Tip #459: Don’t touch that file. Or that one. Or this one.

From time to time people complain that, after applying the update rollup X, their CRM deployment suddenly starts spitting out errors. One of the most popular ones is “Parser Error Message: Could not load type ‘Microsoft.Crm.MapOrgEngine’”.

They complain here. And here. And here, here, here, and there. And then they give bad advice here.

Why the advice is bad? Because it just follows the path that led that deployment into this situation in the first place. That’s right, modifications of the web.config file.

Do not touch the thermostatFrom time to time CRM team needs to update some of the installation files that may seem innocuous enough to modify, web.config in particular. However, during the update rollup installation the files are updated only if they have not been modified since the last installation. If you opened web.config in notepad, added a single space and then saved it, installer will NOT touch that file no matter how much it wants to overwrite it. People report that full reinstallation of CRM followed by update rollups helps. Of course it does, it restores web.config file. Simpler solution is to get the file from the original CRM installation and then reapply update rollup allowing it to overwrite that file.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 5.0/5 (1 vote cast)
Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on Google+

Tip #458: Tipster guide to Dynamics CRM App for Outlook

It’s Friday and CRM for Outlook is making its way into OWA. OWA, Karl!

This video walks you through the new CRM App for Outlook that was released as a preview feature as part of the Dynamics CRM 2015 Spring Update 1. Derik shows you how to configure Exchange online to use the feature, how to enable the feature in your CRM organization, and then how to use the functionality both in OWA and Outlook.

Give us your feedback, all of it: good, bad, and ugly, I’m sure we can take it. Suggest new topics either in comments or by sending your ideas to jar@crmtipoftheday.com.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on Google+

Tip #457: Get your icons here

When adding custom entities to Microsoft Dynamics CRM, adding icons for you entities is an important fit and finish detail. However, finding the right icon in the right size can sometimes be a challenge.

Here are two of my favorite resources for finding flat icons that generally look good in CRM 2015.

www.flaticons.net Includes 2,500 free flat icons available in the size and color of your choice, as well as an icon maker.

https://icons8.com 15,400 free flat icons in any format, size, and color

Between these two sites, you can find just about any icon you want. Got any others to recommend? Post them in the comments.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 5.0/5 (1 vote cast)
Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on Google+

Tip #456: Smart contact filtering

One of the challenges of using Dynamics CRM in small businesses is that business owner tends to own everything. What did it mean for one of our customers who had Microsoft Dynamics CRM for Outlook installed? The default filter, as you know, is “My Contacts”, i.e. contacts “owned by me”, and she owned all CRM contacts, all 15,000 of them. Long story short, we had to kill the initial sync and clean up her contact list by hand.

It is possible to select the records to synchronize, of course. But what would be the filter for the owner of thousands of contacts?

On this occasion, it was the business owner who came to the rescue.

In my Outlook I want to see only the contacts I’m dealing with right now.

Solution? Add a new field “Last contact date” to the contact entity, populate this field using the workflow, when relevant activity in CRM is created (e.g. email, task, appointment, etc) and then use that field in the synchronization filter to only synchronize contacts that had any activity, in the past, say, 90 days.

Since Outlook never deletes the contacts “on behalf” of CRM, the challenge still remains, of course, is how to “clean up” the contact list in Outlook to get rid of stale contacts that no longer satisfy the filter condition. Luckily, in this case, “drop out” rate was negligible enough for the business owner not to worry about it.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 5.0/5 (1 vote cast)
Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on Google+

Tip #455: Upgrading CRM? Use server side Sharepoint

In case you missed it, with CRM 2015 update 1 (and later), server side SharePoint integration is supported for CRM online customers with SharePoint on premises. One additional detail you should not miss is that the grid control is now deprecated. This does not mean that it won’t work, but that it will be taken away in the near future. This means that if you are upgrading you are encouraged to move to server-side integration if you currently use the grid control.

If you use SharePoint 2010 and cannot use server side SharePoint integration, there is an updated version of the grid control available here: http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=45018

 

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on Google+

Tip #454: Windows 10 Support for CRM

Support of Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2015 on Edge browser will be available for CRM 2015 with Update 0.2 (7.0.2) and Update 1.1 (7.1.1) in September.  And the support of Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 will be introduced in Update Rollup 4 for Service Pack 1 (6.1.4).

There is a known issue with Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 and CRM 2013 for Outlook on Windows 10 with Office 15 on IE 11.  It is actively being addressed and a fix will be available soon.

This blog post covers the plans for full support across Microsoft Edge and Office 2016 in each version of Dynamics CRM and CRM Online.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on Google+