Tag Archives: CRM

eXtremeCRM 2012 Berlin

eXtremeCRM is the premier event focused exclusively on Microsoft Dynamics CRM and dedicated to advancing best practices and strategies for Microsoft Dynamics CRM organizations. There are two separate eXtremeCRM events held each year, one in Europe and the other in the United States.

After the successful eXtreme Prague in 2011 the next venue is Berlin coming up in February 2012. The event is held over a number of days and covers a wide range of subjects all related to CRM. There are 4 tracks including Sell. Deploy, Extend and the highly anticipated eXtreme Practice Leader Summit. There is something for everyone at eXtreme, if you’re a customer or partner, user or developer, sales or management, check out the agenda and see what best suits you.

There are some great speakers presenting in Berlin at eXtreme including 2 of my colleagues Ramon Tebar and Wael Hamze. These guys know their stuff and if you look at the speakers list you will see just how much experience is going to be there including Microsofties, MVP’s and other industry experts, the Ask the Experts session should be awesome!

The next eXtreme after Berlin is in Las Vegas during September-October 2012, if you can’t get there for that, then you should get to Berlin in Feb, learn something new and network with an exciting bunch of people.

Berlin ist Wunderbar!

CRM 2011 SDK version 5.0.9 available

The MS CRM Team have released an updated CRM 2011 SDK version 5.0.9 which can be downloaded here http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=24004 or viewed on MSDN here http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/gg309408.aspx Check out the release notes here http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/hh547453.aspx#bkmk_ReleaseHistory

In Summary the update contains

  • Updated assemblies for Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Update Rollup 6 and the Microsoft Portal developer toolkit and developer extensions.
  • Information about creating localized dialog processes.
  • New samples that authenticate the user with the web services without using the helper code
  • New topic to help developers find information about using JavaScript with various features that support it.

Dynamics CRM 2011 Rollup 6 now available

The Microsoft Dynamics CRM Sustained Engineering (SE) team have been hard at work to get the UR6 release to us all.  

You can find the related Rollup 6 items here

Rollup 6 Build Number: 05.00.9690.1992

You can find Complete CRM download links here https://bingsoft.wordpress.com/2011/11/18/updated-crm-2011-download-links/

Important

  • Update Rollup 6 cannot be removed. Specific database updates are applied in Update Rollup 6 that will not allow for uninstall.
  • Future Update Rollups will require Update Rollup 6 to be applied before they can be installed.  This is so future Update Rollups can support uninstall.
  • Full product installations on the download center will be replaced with new packages that include Update Rollup 6.  If CRM is installed from those packages, UR6 does not need to be installed.

CRM 2011 SDK version 5.0.8 available

The MS CRM Team have released an updated CRM 2011 SDK version 5.0.8 which can be downloaded here http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=24004 or viewed on MSDN here http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/gg309408.aspx

Check out the release notes here http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/hh547453.aspx#bkmk_ReleaseHistory

Updated CRM 2011 Download Links

Here is an updated list of available CRM 2011 RTM downloads. It is good practice to have these files on a portable drive but it’s also recommended to have an updated list of download links.

Component URL
Server http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=27822
Outlook Client http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=27821
Language Pack http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=27819
Email Router http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=27818
Report Extension http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=27823
SharePoint List http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=5283
Software Development Kit http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=24004
Implementation Guide along with additiional Planning Tools http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=3621

Silverlight + XRM Book by David Yack MVP

Building the next generation of business applications using Microsoft Silverlight and Dynamics CRM 2011

Fellow MVP David Yack has produced the perfect guide to Silverlight with Dynamics CRM 2011. I highly recommend this book for people new to Silverlight or Dynamics CRM but I also think  those already working with either Silverlight or Dynamics CRM should check it out. I’ve been reading through it this past week and have been learning key things that will help during the design and implementation of my latest projects. I wish I had this book earlier, as my CRM tools on Codeplex could have really benefited from the details in this book too. It shows the knowledge and understanding David has of Microsoft’s latest incarnation of CRM along with Silverlight and how to integrate them.

David Yack MVP is the CTO of Colorado Technology Consultants based in Colorado. He is a Microsoft Regional Director and a Microsoft MVP for Silverlight. This guys knows his stuff…

For an overview of the book’s chapters check it out here, and here is a quick summary of chapter titles.

Chapter 1 – Using Silverlight with CRM 2011 
Chapter 2 – Getting Started
Chapter 3 – XAML 101 and Basic Layout
Chapter 4 – Silverlight Controls
Chapter 5 –Data Binding Basics
Chapter 6 – Application Navigation
Chapter 7 – Out of Browser Support
Chapter 8 – Application Composition with MEF
Chapter 9 – Other Silverlight Business Application Features
Chapter 10 – Enhancing the User Experience
Chapter 11 – Discovering SketchFlow
Chapter 12 –Interacting with CRM Form
Chapter 13 –OData Basics
Chapter 14 –OData Beyond the Basics
Chapter 15 – Using the WCF Service
Chapter 16 – Application Architectures
Chapter 17 –Silverlight Debugging

There is now no excuse for not producing high quality Silverlight apps when developing for Dynamics CRM.

CRM 2011 Client Diagnostics Tool for On Premise

Previously only available for CRM Online, the CRM Diagnostics tool is now released with CRM 2011 Update Rollup 4 for On Premise installations.

It runs a couple of tests, measuring latency to the datacenter/server, bandwidth, and performs a few Javascript performance tests to measure the CPU/browser performance of the machine.

You can access the tool using the following URL after you install UR4 or later.
http://<serverUrl>/tools/diagnostics/diag.aspx

The latency and bandwidth test the download speed across the wire from the CRM web site to the client browser. A low latency and high bandwidth is ideal. If your values show a high latency and low bandwidth then your CRM experience may be slow depending on the extremity of the range. For some performance reading you can take a look here.

Optimizing and Maintaining Client Performance for Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 and CRM Online
http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=23261

Optimizing Performance for CRM Online 2011
http://community.dynamics.com/product/crm/crmnontechnical/b/crmonlineteam/archive/2011/04/08/optimizing-performance-for-crm-online-2011.aspx – even though this is for Online there are some important points

Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Performance and Scalability with Intel
http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=16673

Improving Microsoft Dynamics CRM Performance and Securing Data with Microsoft SQL Server 2008
http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=8438

Optimizing and Maintaining the Performance of a Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Server Infrastructure
http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=27139

The above documents should give you a solid understanding of performance related improvements you can apply to your Dynamics CRM deployment.

The JavaScript test items are testing your CPU/browser performance of your machine. Ideally you want low values here and upgrading your IE browser to the latest version should give you the best results.

Happy tuning.

Cheers,

Rhett Clinton

Dynamics CRM 2011 Rollup 4 now available

The Microsoft Dynamics CRM Sustained Engineering (SE) team have been hard at work to get the UR4 release to us all so please take alook at the CRM Team blog for further details. http://blogs.msdn.com/b/crm/archive/2011/09/22/update-rollup-4-for-microsoft-dynamics-crm-2011.aspx

Important

You cannot remove Update Rollup 4.
Specific database updates are applied in Update Rollup 4 that will not let you uninstall Update Rollup 4. You should back up your databases before you install this update. 

Microsoft Connect – Your Feedback Improving Microsoft Dynamics CRM

Microsoft Connect is the place to contribute your ideas and feedback for Microsoft products, including Dynamics CRM. If you feel you have a suggestion to make or feel you have found a bug, this is the place to inform Microsoft. This is not a replacement for MS Support and the support site is still a major part of Microsoft’s support stack.

You can begin to contribute by selecting a program from the Program Directory. The Program Directory lists products/programs that are accepting or will be accepting requests for participation. You can sign in with your Windows Live ID , locate a program, and then click Join to request to participate. You can choose to stop participating by selecting the Quit option.

You also have the opportunity to become a beta tester for a product if it’s shown in the list. If a product is not in the list or no Join link is shown then the program is not currently accepting new partcipants.

Once you have signed up you can view your dashboard, which displays products you’re watching and feedback you’ve submitted or are participating on. 

This gives you a great overview of feedback/suggestions along with total votes, comments, workarounds and the author. Votes are potentially the most exciting item in the list as you can see how many other people support your ideas. When Microsoft reply to your items they will add a comment and change the Status. Don’t forget that you can also vote on suggestions by other people, which helps Microsoft see the demand more clearly for suggested features and can influence the priority of future development.

You can then go to the home of Microsoft Dynamics CRM to search existing feedback, create new suggestions and even participate in the occasional survey. An important note shown on the home page states the following.

Important note:  Your suggestions are much more likely to be implemented when they contain a single idea with a detailed description. This allows the community to find and vote for suggestions. It also makes it easier for the product team to track each suggestion. Submitting a list of suggestions in a single form may cause your suggestion to be rejected.  Thank you.

From the home page you can select to search existing or create new product suggestions. Once you select the Search Existing option you will be taken to the Feedback Centre for Dynamics CRM where you can then view the submitted suggestions currently open, the most voted for, the items you’re watching, your current feedback and all items resolved. By clicking on an author’s name in the list you will be taken to the collection of suggestions by that author.

Once you have searched through the existing suggestions, checked out the most voted for, voted for you favourite suggestions and thought about all the great ideas you have, you can then select the Submit Feedback option. You can also select to Create New suggestions from the Microsoft Dynamics CRM home page as shown earlier. When you have selected to submit feedback you input the details including title, description, visibility, product version, industry along with other items that help Microsoft obtain a more informed picture of what is being submitted.

Now that you have seen how easy it is to provide your feedback, suggestions and ideas to Microsoft, you should have MS Connect bookmarked in your browser and be checking up there regularly. Here is the list of suggestions I have made so far on MS Connect for Dynamics CRM, check them out and see if you support them. Maybe you have even better ideas, if so then share them, the community and Microsoft want to hear them.

Cheers,
Rhett

Custom Workflow Activities by Alberto Gemin

Many of you may know of and used the custom workflow plugins developed by Alberto which he had on Codeplex for CRM 4. The great news is that he has updated these custom workflows for CRM 2011 and you can find them from the following links.

CRM 2011 Distribute Workflow Activity
This custom workflow plugin allows you to execute a workflow for each entity that has a 1:N or N:N relationship to a given entity. For example, execute a workflow for each case related to an account (1:N), or for each competitor related to an opportunity (N:N), etc.

CRM 2011 Share Record Code Activity
This custom workflow plugin allows tyou to share any record that can be shared or remove sharing to any record in CRM 2011.

Alberto has an interesting addition to his codeplex gallery titled the CRM 2011 Duplicate Detection Toolkit which you can read about here.

Let’s thank Alberto for his hard work and for sharing these great tools with the CRM community.

You can also find these tools along with more development resources for Dynamics CRM on the Microsoft Dynamics CRM TechNet Wiki here http://social.technet.microsoft.com/wiki/contents/articles/microsoft-dynamics-crm-2011-development-resources.aspx