Easily set up Dynamics 365 CE \ CRM replication (incremental) to Azure SQL / SQL On-Premise using Skyvia’s Data Integration services


In the earlier post, we saw how we can use Skyvia’s query feature to execute SQL command against our Dynamics 365 CE

https://nishantrana.me/2019/10/25/execute-sql-select-insert-update-and-delete-command-on-dynamics-365-customer-engagement-data-using-skyvia-query/

In this post, we will cover how we can use Skyvia’s replication feature to create a copy of our cloud data i.e. Dynamics 365 Online data in a relational database like SQL Server and most interestingly keep it up to date automatically with basic configuration steps.

Creating replication of cloud data can be useful in different data integration scenarios and most importantly for reporting and data analysis need as with online we are limited with the use of Fetch XML.

The Skyvia’s replication service takes care of syncing Create, Update and Delete operation performed on Dynamics 365 Entity records with the destination SQL Database.

For this we need to Skyvia expects an object’s key as well as modifiedon, createdon fields to be included for replication.

For delete to work it expects, audit history to be enabled on that Entity.

In this post, we will take a simple example of replicating Contact entity records from Dynamics 365 Online to SQL Azure.

Login to Skyvia

https://app.skyvia.com/#/packages

Create the connections

Source Dynamics CRM Connection:

Destination SQL Azure Connection:

We have a database named SampleDB already created in SQL Azure.

With connections created, now let us create a new package of type replication

For the replication, we have specified source connection as the CRM connection and destination as the SQL Azure.

We have selected the option of Incremental Updates along with Create Tables and Drop Tables option which will delete if there is an existing table of the same name as the entity and will create a new one.

In the Select Objects section, we have a specified Contact entity. We can also select multiple entities for replication.

Edit task option in the selected entity let us specify the fields and filter criteria on the source.

We also have the option of scheduling that we will look at in the end of the post.

Save the package and click on Run to see it in action.

While it is running, the Run History section shows the details

It auto refreshes with all the details.

We can see the 228 records of contact records replicated in SQL Azure.

Now let us create a new contact and run the package again.

Here we have created a contact record as shown below in CRM.

On running the package, we can see that it has added a new record in the Run History

Back in SQL Azure also our count has increased to 229.

Now let us update one of the records in the source and run the package. The run history shows one of the records being updated.

Finally, let us delete a couple of records (9) from the source and run the package. (We need to make sure we have enabled Audit on Contact entity for delete to work)

Back in SQL Azure, we can see total record count decreased

Here we were running the package manually, however, in real-world scenarios we would be scheduling it.

For this, we can edit our package and navigate to the Schedule section and click on Set Schedule.

For e.g. we have scheduled here it to run every hour starting from 6 p.m. till 10 a.m.

On save, we can check the run history

Thus, we saw how easy it is to replicate the data from Dynamics 365 CE to our SQL Database using Skyvia’s Integration service.

To achieve the same using Scribe Online Replication Service

https://nishantrana.me/2019/01/09/using-scribe-online-replication-services-rs-to-replicate-dynamics-ce-data/

and KingswaySoft 

http://www.kingswaysoft.com/blog/2017/04/04/How-to-Retrieve-Incremental-Changes-from-CRM-in-your-ETL-Process

Hope it helps..

Step by Step – Calling Flow from PowerApps (Dynamics 365 CE/CRM)


Let us take a simple example of creating lead to understand how we can call Flow from PowerApps.

Log in to PowerApps Studio and create the form as below.

  • TextInput for entering the Last Name, First Name and Email ID.
  • Button to call Flow.
  • The label named GUID which will display the GUID of the created lead record.

Now select the button, go to Action menu and click on Flows to create a new flow.

Click on create a new flow.

Select Instant – from blank option

Select PowerApps as the trigger.

Add a new Step – Create a new Record (Dynamics 365)

To create a new record step, specify the Dynamics 365 Organization Name, select Leads as the entity name.

For the Last Name field, click Ask in PowerApps that will generate the parameter to which we will pass the value from our PowerApps.

The generated parameter.

Repeat the above step for the First Name and Email field.

*for Topic field we have passed a hardcoded value.

Save the create step and add a new step “Respond to a PowerApp or flow

Here we have selected output of type Text

We have added the output parameter as varLeadId and selected leadid as the unique identifier.

Save the Flow and navigate back to PowerApp and select the flow created for our button.

After adding the Flow, the next step is to update the formula to send the field’s value to the flow and also to receive the output from it.

Below will be our formula to pass the text to the flow.

But as we are expecting the GUID in return, we need to update it.

We are using the Set function to set the variable varResponseFromFlow with varleadid output.

Also, we have updated the label field for GUID with the variable

Now let us save the changes and run the PowerApp.

On clicking the button, we can see the GUID updated on the label on the form.

Back in our Dynamics 365 CE, we can see the lead created.

Thus we saw how easy it is to write a PowerApp which interacts with Dynamic 365 CE using Flow. We took a very basic example to understand how things glue, but we can clearly see the potential here to implement complex real-world scenarios with ease.

Hope it helps..

Single Instance / Organization Considerations in Dynamics 365 Customer Engagement / Dynamics CRM


Let us start from the scenario that the enterprise has decided to use Microsoft Dynamics CRM /365 CE as a preferred customer relationship solution for their organization.

For a large enterprise and/or having multiple different departments, the first question that comes up is, do they need to have a single instance or organization or multiple instance or organization. Well, that decision is not that easy but one thing is for sure the decision should be made as early as possible in the project.

Well you could refer to these posts that could help us to make the decision

https://medium.com/capgemini-dynamics-365-team/does-enterprise-scale-dynamics-require-multiple-instances-f1931a443930

https://nishantrana.me/2019/07/23/single-organization-vs-multiple-organization-single-instance-vs-multiple-instance-key-points-to-consider-in-dynamics-365-ce-on-premise/

Now suppose we have made the decision to go with the single instance \ organization, so what are some of the key points we need to consider.

There could be multiple ways of implementing and defining the segregation layer as well as what needs to be shared from data and customization perspective among the different business units, the most important being the security model and the business unit structure being one of the key components of it.

Check out the below Webinar –

http://www.xrmcoaches.com/2017/07/free-webinar-friday-creating-your-dynamics-365-security-model/

also listen to the below podcast to get some guidance around the setting up the security model

http://crmmvppodcast.com/episode-19-setting-up-your-security-architecture-like-a-crm-mvp

In one of our projects, the way we segregated different departments, after defining the appropriate business unit structure, was by having the Business Unit lookup (custom field) in all the common entities that were being shared by the departments and populating that field accordingly, every time record is created either through User Interface or through code and to refer the same field in the customizations (plugin, workflow etc.) as and when applicable.

In the other project, we were referring to the Business Unit lookup field in the System User / Team Entity.

Well there could be multiple ways of doing the same with its own pros and cons.

But what if you have already implemented for one of the units and didn’t consider that the same instance would need to be extended to accommodate the different business unit(s).

Well, then it is time to modify a couple of things to make the Business Unit structure scalable (if it is not).

Let us go through the each of the main components one by one and how they can be segregated among different business units.

Wrong root business unit name?

Set Parent Business Unit lookup field as optional, open the Business Unit record and rename it.

Need to rename the organization?

For Online à

Navigate to Admin Portal, select the instance and click on edit and update the organization name and if required the URL as well as shown below.


For On-Premise à

  • Follow the below steps to update the Display Name

https://blogs.msdn.microsoft.com/darrenliu/2013/09/21/change-crm-organization-display-name/

  • Updating Organization Database Name

https://blogs.technet.microsoft.com/crmbipl/2008/01/14/how-to-change-crm-4-0-organizations-database-name/

Forms

Create separate new Main forms for different business units.

Enable appropriate security roles for the Form.

Views

Fields

Reuse the fields that are common instead of ending up creating a large number of fields.

Field security profiles can also be used if required when certain entity’s records are shared across the business unit and we want to hide the sensitive information.

Business Rules

Business rule can be configured to run on the scope of Form instead of the Entity.

Dashboards

For Dashboards, we can enable the security roles.

Workflows

  • Use scope fields to make sure the workflows fire appropriately.
  • Or put the first step to check for which business unit it is firing (depends on the segregation logic implemented)

Plugins

Have a field in the records to identify to which Business Unit it belongs to and check for this field as the first thing in the plugin or check for the Business Unit of the user under whose context the plugin is getting fired or use the secure \ unsecure configuration etc. it purely depends upon the way the segregation logic has been implemented.

SLAs

Use SLA lookup field to apply the SLA dynamically through plugin or workflow.

https://nishantrana.me/2019/07/24/apply-sla-choosing-the-sla-in-the-sla-lookup-field-for-the-sla-enabled-entities-in-dynamics-365-ce/

Business Process Flow

If there are multiple business process flow, make sure appropriate one is applied

Apply business process flow while creating an entity record.

https://www.powerobjects.com/blog/2019/04/24/business-process-flows-switch-bpf-dynamics-365-javascript/

There would be multiple other key points to be considered apart from the one listed above specific to each implementation; the above points are some of the things that can be taken as guidelines.

Lastly we must consider  creating different apps for different department \ teams\ users and add required solution components to it.

Design custom business apps by using the app designer

Please feel free to add comments and share your thoughts.

Hope it helps..

The workflow cannot be published or unpublished by someone who is not its owner error while importing solution in Dynamics 365 CE


Recently after upgrade of our Dynamics 365 CE from 8.2 to 9.1, when the System Administrator tried importing the solution (managed), he got the below error

The workflow cannot be published or unpublished by someone who is not its owner.

Error while importing workflow {ec05f40d-fd14-46ab-96b3-be1f5b108ef3} type Workflow name Marketing List – Update CT Relationship: The workflow cannot be published or unpublished by someone who is not its owner.

What the error says is that the user who is importing the solution needs to be the owner of the workflow that is there in that solution.

http://gonzaloruizcrm.blogspot.com/2011/05/processesworkflow-ownership-faqs.html

https://stackoverflow.com/questions/17159920/crm-2011-ru13-the-workflow-cannot-be-published-or-unpublished-by-someone-who-is

The thing was that we have never got this issue earlier for that System Admin user and we would have imported the solution at least 10 times earlier as well. This time the only thing different was that it was in the newer version 9.1

Changing the owner of the workflow and assigning it to the one who is importing will fix this issue. However interestingly and as expected when we tried importing the same solution using a different system administrator (again not the owner of the workflow in the target system), the import was successful with warning.

“The original workflow definition has been deactivated and replaced”

Read the below post to understand how workflows are managed internally

https://www.inogic.com/blog/2010/11/workflows-behind-the-scene/

Please share your thoughts, if someone has faced this issue recently and how they managed to fix this?

And what caused the issue to the first system admin and worked for the other.

Requesting the backup of Microsoft Dynamics 365 Online Database


In theory, requesting the backup of the online database seems very easy and straightforward. We basically need to raise a support ticket with Microsoft and provide the following details.

  • SQL Version – Standard or Enterprise
  • SQL Year of the version. In our case it was (Microsoft SQL Server 2016 (SP1) (KB3182545) – 13.0.4001.0 (X64) Oct 28 2016 18:17:30 Copyright (c) Microsoft Corporation Standard Edition (64-bit) on Windows Server 2016 Datacenter 6.3 <X64> (Build 14393)
  • Global Admin E-mail Address – to who the backup will be shared.

We had requested the same, some 3 weeks back. In our case, the Database size of our production was around 600 GB out of which 200 GB were occupied by Audit Data. For some business-specific reason, we wanted to have the backup of Audit Data with us before we delete it. Now, this Audit has a separate story with it, when we tried deleting it from UI we got the SQL Time Out issue and on raising the support ticket when Support Team tried the same through back end it, resulted in our Production Server being down briefly for few minutes. We also tried to take the back up through 3rd party tools using SSIS, however again we ran into some issue where the tool was not able to pull the Audit Data for few of the entities.

Well to cut the story short, it is around 21 days after we raised the request, and we are yet to receive the backup of our production database, we have been told that support team is actively working on it and it is because of the large size of the organization.

Will keep posting the update on the backup and the Audit deletion.

The purpose of this blog post was to share that certain things might seem straightforward and would have taken maximum few hours, could still run into issues and challenges causing delays. So, when we plan for it we need to aware of these factors as well.

Hope it helps..

HideCustomAction and Display \ Enable rule in Dynamics 365


Imagine a scenario where we have both the disable rule and HideCustomAction implemented for a ribbon button. Let us see with an example what will happen in this scenario.

First, let us implement the display rule to hide the Delete button from Contact form when it is in a disabled state.

For active record à

We can see the delete button in the command bar.

For disabled record à The delete button is not visible.

Now let us hide the button using HideCustomAction

Interestingly the Delete button is not available in case of the active contact record this time.

The reason for this is because the HideCustomAction button removes the specified node from the ribbon so that it is not rendered instead of hiding it. Therefore any other enable or display rules are not applied to that button.

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/dynamics365/customer-engagement/developer/customize-dev/define-custom-actions-modify-ribbon#hide-custom-actions

Hope it helps..

Plugin on Pre-Validation Stage in Dynamics 365 CE


Recently we had a requirement to delete the Account record without deleting the associated Contact records.

If we try deleting the account record we’d get the following message box

The relationship definition can’t be updated as well to achieve this

So, we wrote a plugin on the pre-validation stage of pre-delete event of Account, which will retrieve and loop through all the child contact records and set its parent customer field as null.

In case of pre-operation the child records were not available.


public void Execute(IServiceProvider serviceProvider)
{
ITracingService tracingService = (ITracingService)serviceProvider.GetService(typeof(ITracingService));
IPluginExecutionContext pluginContext = (IPluginExecutionContext)serviceProvider.GetService(typeof(IPluginExecutionContext));
IOrganizationServiceFactory serviceFactory = (IOrganizationServiceFactory)serviceProvider.GetService(typeof(IOrganizationServiceFactory));
IOrganizationService organizationService = serviceFactory.CreateOrganizationService(pluginContext.UserId);
EntityReference targetEntity = (EntityReference)pluginContext.InputParameters["Target"];
QueryExpression getContacts = new QueryExpression("contact");
getContacts.Criteria.AddCondition(new ConditionExpression("parentcustomerid", ConditionOperator.Equal, targetEntity.Id));EntityCollection allContacts = organizationService.RetrieveMultiple(getContacts);foreach (Entity contact in allContacts.Entities)
{
Entity contactToBeUpdated = new Entity("contact");
contactToBeUpdated.Id = contact.Id;
contactToBeUpdated.Attributes["parentcustomerid"] = null;
organizationService.Update(contactToBeUpdated);
}}

 

Another practical scenario

https://www.inogic.com/blog/2017/03/plugin-pre-validation-operation-to-show-an-error-message-as-well-as-log-the-error/

Hope it helps..

Power BI with Dynamics 365 CE – Dynamics 365 Content Pack


In previous posts we covered

Creating a Power BI Report using Dynamics 365 Online Service.

Publishing it and Showing it inside Dynamics 365 and scheduling its Refresh.

Apart from creating our own Power BI Report another way of quickly be up and running is to use the Content Packs provided by Third Party Service, for e.g. here we will be using Sales Analytics for Dynamics 365 content pack provided by Microsoft.

Login to the Power BI service, click on Get Data, select Services.

Select Apps and choose the Sales Analytics for Dynamics 365 from the AppSource.

If we search for Dynamics 365, we can see around 15 Apps provided by Microsoft.

Back into our Sales Analytics for Dynamics 365 App, when we click on Get in now we are presented with the option where we need to Specify the URL of our Dynamics CRM Online Service and Fiscal Year End Month Number for that organization.

In the next screen, we need to select OAuth2 as the authentication method and followed by signing in.

This installs the app which would be available in the Apps section.

Clicking on the installed Sales Analytics App opens the Dashboard

Clicking on Ask a question about your data inside Dashboard allows us to analyze the data by allowing us to choose the criteria

Here we have filtered the accounts by created on by month along with the owner

Also, we can see around 10 different reports created inside that app.

  • Sales Performance
  • Sales Leaderboard
  • Win/Loss Analysis
  • Top Won/Lost Details
  • Sales Pipeline
  • Sales Pipeline Dashboard
  • Sales Activity
  • Open Activities
  • Lead Analysis
  • Account Analysis

Similarly, we can create our own Content Packs to be shared with either specific group or with the entire organization.

Click on settings gear inside Power BI Service and select Create Content Pack

Here we are creating a content pack choosing the Dashboard, Reports and the Dataset that we created earlier in the previous posts.

Once published, the user 2 can click on Get Data and search for and can see the content pack.

Clicking on Connect adds the Dashboard, Report, and the corresponding Dataset to the My Workspace of the user. Only the user who had created the content pack can edit the artifacts that are part of Content Pack, however, the other user of the organization can save a copy of it and can work on it.

More on it

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/power-bi/service-organizational-content-pack-manage-update-delete

Hope it helps..

Power BI with Dynamics 365 CE – Refreshing the Dataset


In the previous post, we used Dynamics 365 Dashboard and Power BI Tile to show Power BI Dashboard and report inside Dynamics 365.

https://nishantrana.me/2018/08/20/power-bi-with-dynamics-365-ce-showing-power-bi-dashboard-tile-inside-dynamics-365-ce/

Now as a next step, we want to make sure that the users are looking at the latest data possible inside the Dashboard\Reports.

In case of Online Services like Dynamics 365 (Online), we have the option to manually Refresh the data.

To see it in action, let us create a lead record in Dynamics 365.

This is how our Dashboard looks like for now à

Now back in Power BI Service right, click on ellipsis for the Dataset and select Refresh Now.

We can see the newly created lead in our Power BI Report inside Power BI Service and Dynamics 365 CE.

The other option we have is to Schedule the refresh.

Navigate to the Dataset and select Schedule Refresh

We can select the Refresh Frequency as Daily or Weekly.

And we can set it to refresh up to 8 times per day as shown below.

With Power BI Pro License, we can complete the scheduled refresh 8 times a day whereas the Power BI Premium allows the refresh up to 48 times per day.

https://powerbi.microsoft.com/en-us/power-bi-premium/

Some helpful links

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/power-bi/refresh-scheduled-refresh

https://www.powerobjects.com/2018/01/11/power-bi-data-refresh-performance/

https://crmtipoftheday.com/category/power-bi/

Hope it helps..

Power BI with Dynamics 365 CE – Publishing Power BI Report to the web


In the previous post, we learned how to create a simple Power BI Report using Power BI Desktop

https://nishantrana.me/2018/08/20/power-bi-with-dynamics-365-ce-creating-report/

Now let us publish the report to Power BI Service from within the Power BI Desktop.

To do so, select the Publish button

Publish window will ask us to save the report file (if not saved) before we could publish it.

Here we are publishing it to the default “My Workspace” app workspace within Power BI Service.

Publishing the report from Power BI Desktop publishes both the report and dataset associated to it in the Power BI Service. We can think of DataSet as the Database.

After successful publish we can see the Report and Dataset being added inside the Power BI Service (https://app.powerbi.com)

From with Power BI Service, we have the option of Publishing the report on Web so that it could be accessed by anyone having that URL.

To do so,

Select File
à
Publish to Web to publish it.

The Embed dialog box pops up as shown below with all the information.

Clicking on Create Embed Code will open the confirmation dialog box, that shows the potential risk associated with sharing the information over the internet.

Here, clicking on Publish generates the link for the report and also the HTML code which can be used for embedding it within an IFrame.

Within Dynamics 365 CE, we can use this public URL to show it inside the IFrame component of the Dashboard.

The report within Dynamics 365 CE’s Dashboard.

Next, we will see how to create Dashboard from the reports created and how to share them with other users and how to use the Power BI Dashboard and Power BI Tiles feature of Dynamics 365.

Hope it helps.

Power BI with Dynamics 365 CE – Creating Power BI Report


To begin with, let us first create a Dynamics 365 Trial.

https://trials.dynamics.com/

After our CRM trial is setup up successfully, we will install the OOB Sample Data which we would be using for creating the Power BI report.

Next, we need to create a free trial for the above user to use Power BI Service.

Go to Power BI site, and click on Start Free to get started.

Use the same user account (trial) that was used to set up the Dynamics 365 trial.

https://powerbi.microsoft.com/en-us

Note: If we already have an organization account with Power BI License we can use it to log in to Power BI else can associate a free trial to the same organization account instead of creating a new one. The gmail, hotmail, yahoo etc personal account are not allowed. https://app.powerbi.com/.

Download the Power BI Desktop as well as click on Try Free.

Power BI Desktop is basically a feature rich windows application that allows us to get data from various services online or on-premise and develop Dashboard and Reports efficiently.

The alternate way to download is through Microsoft Downloads siteà

https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=45331

After installing it and signing in and click on Get Data ribbon button to connect to the Dynamics CRM Online.

Select Dynamics 365 Online as the Online Services to connect to.

Specify the Web API URL of the instance.

Copy it from Customization à Developer Resources

Select the Organization Account and Sign in to the CRM Instance.

In the Navigator window, we have searched Lead entity and clicked on Edit to select the columns that we need for our sample report.

In the Query Editor window, click on “Choose Columns“, we have selected the Revenue, Created On, Subject and Owning
User field to be used for the report.

Now to get the Full Name of the system user for Owning User, expand that column, and select Full Name as the value to be displayed as shown below.

Click on Close and Apply to apply the changes to the query and to go back to the main editor.

Back in the main editor, we can see the fields added.

Now from the Visualizations section pick any of chart type.

Here we have picked a Stacked Bar Chart to start with. We can drag the fields and specify Area, Legend, and Value and also use the Filters section to generate the report as shown below.

The report after adding the fields à

Similarly, we can add our filter in the FILTER section to filter the records further as shown below

We can also add multiple charts in the report by selecting it from the Visualizations section.

For e.g. here we have used a Clustered Column chart to see all the leads based on Owner and Created On Date.

This completes the creation of simple reports which uses Dynamics 365 Online as Data Source.

In the next post, we’d publish this report to Power BI Service and display it within Dynamics 365 CE.

https://nishantrana.me/2018/08/20/power-bi-with-dynamics-365-ce-publishing-power-bi-report-to-the-web/

Hope it helps..

User Security Manager – My first XrmToolBox Plugin


Being one of the biggest fan and the most frequent daily user of XrmToolBox, always had this wish to write a plugin for it.

Thanks to Prashant Maurya  (a dear friend and ex-Microsoft Employee) for making this wish come true. (Who played the major role in developing it).

The tool is called – User Security Manager.

The Plugin make it easy for the administrators to manage all the security related aspects of the system users. The tool also gives 360-degree information of the user in correspondence to business unit, security roles and teams.

In our current project we had around 180 users using the system divided into more than 50 business units, which involved frequent update of their business unit, changes in the security roles assigned, update in team assignment and also during testing we had to assign the same BU and roles to the test users in the org, which wasn’t that easy to do from the user interface.

So, the idea was to come up with a tool that will let an administrator to

  • View all the security roles that assigned to the user either directly or through the team that the user is member of.
  • View all the Teams the selected user is part of.
  • With just a single click, remove all the security roles assigned to the user.
  • With just a single click, remove user from all the teams that he is part of.
  • Easily assign and unassign single or multiple security role to the user.
  • Easily add or remove user from a single or multiple team.
  • Change the Business Unit of the user.

User Guide: –

Load all the users

After connecting to the organization, we can click on Load Users to load all the system users of the organization.

List details of the user selected

  • For the selected user, in User Detail Tab’s General section, we can get the general information of the user like First Name, Last Name, Title, Primary Email and Access Mode.
  • Next to the General section, we can see all the security roles assigned to the user either directly or through the teams the user is member of.
  • The Roles tab shows all the Roles assigned to the user and also the roles that are available in the business unit to which user belongs in Assigned and Available section along with their counts.
  • The Teams tab shows all the teams user is member of and also the teams that are available in the organization in Assigned and Available section along with their counts.

Remove all security roles of the user.

To remove all the security roles of the user, click on Remove All Roles button.

Remove user from all teams.

To remove the user from all the teams, click on Remove All Teams button.

Assign Security role to the user.

To assign security role to the user, check the security roles from the available security roles section and click on “<<” button.

To remove security role from the user.

To remove security roles from the user, select the roles from the Assigned section and click on “>>” button.

Assign User to Team(s).

To assign user to team(s), select the teams from the available section and click on “<<” button.

Remove user from Team(s)

To remove user from Team(s), select the team from the Assigned Section and click on “>>” button.

Change the business unit of the user.

To change the business unit of the user, select the Business Unit from the Business Unit drop down in General Section of User Details.

Please install it, use it and share your feedback which would help us to improve it

https://www.xrmtoolbox.com/releases/

Hope it helps..


	

Fixed – Invalid Export Business Process Not Activated error while exporting solution in Dynamics 365


While exporting a solution from our DEV, we got the below exception.

As the messages suggests to fix it we need to activate the process (which will create the corresponding entity for the BPF and add the entity in the solution). Or if already created simply add that entity if missing in the solution.

So we Activated the BPF.

Added the BPF specific entity.

Which then allowed us to export the solution.

Hope it helps..

PLAN PROPERLY before using Back and restore and Copy instances in Dynamics 365


Update – 25 June 2018 – Took nearly 20 days to get both the instances up.

Update – 12 June 2018Support Engineer has been not been able to resolve either of the support ticket which were raised last Thursday 7th June. One instance is not opening and the other instance is not restored with the backup we had requested. They are unable to find the backup till now.

Recently we tried copying our DEV to one of the TEST instances. The idea was we were upgrading the click dimensions solution in our DEV so we wanted to make sure everything works fine after the upgrade and in case it didn’t we could then again copy it back from the TEST.

We had faced back and restore issues (instance failed) in the past so decided to go the Copy instance way this time.

However, we got the Instance Failed error on the TEST instance to which we were copying DEV to.

Interestingly the Edit, Reset, Delete etc option were still available and we could open the TEST instance (the original, as the copy of DEV had failed) without any issues.

Then we thought of giving a try again and started copy from DEV to TEST again. This time again it failed. And with no option of Edit, Reset, delete etc. and the Instance was also not opening.

The error à

Along with that we also tried Restoring the Backup in one of the other TEST instances, that also expectedly failed.

So basically, we ended up with 2 unusable instances.

A few weeks back also we faced the same with our Dev environment and the only way out was to raise the support ticket with Microsoft. That time it took 5 days for DEV to be restored. Imagine the development activity that came to halt.

Last year also we had faced this issue in Production and had to work with the support team for 16 – 20 hours continuously to get it restored.

So, if we have some critical activity planned like Production Deployment and we are counting on Back and Restore or Copy an instance to rescue us in case anything goes wrong after production deployment, we need to plan for this Instance Failure as well while restoring or copying.

Basically, be ready to raise a support ticket with the highest severity to restore things back, which could take hours or in worst case days and do all the production deployment over the weekend or have enough downtime allocated.

Hope it helps..

Using Lookup Transformation and Cache Transformation in SSIS for Dynamics 365 (using Kingswaysoft)


Recently while working in data migration project, we had a requirement to insert a record in CRM from SQL Database and assign it to the team insert.

For e.g.

We had a Transaction Record that had a Brand lookup in it i.e. n – 1 relationship.

And the Brand record had a lookup of Team in it again n – 1. So basically, while inserting the transaction record we wanted to assign the record to the team of the corresponding brand in it.

So, for this, we had to set the owner id and owner id type field while inserting the record.

And for owner id i.e. team GUID we had to do a lookup on the Brand entity.

To achieve so, we did the following step

Added 2 Data flow task in the Control Flow, one for Caching the Brand entity’s detail and other for using the fetching data from SQL DB, Lookup Transformation task and inserting the data into CRM.

For the first data flow task,

We added the Dynamics CRM Source and fetched the Brand Name and Team Lookup’ GUID field.

name field which will be used for mapping and teamid field whose value we need from it.

Then we added a Cache Transform task with following details,

Now for our second data task flow,

First, we added the OLE DB Source to fetch data from the source SQL View, having Brand (string) column in it.

Then we added the Lookup Transformation task with following properties,

Setting Connection to Cache Connection Manager defined earlier.

Now the most important part, the columns properties. Here we defined the mapping between the Brand field of the SQL View and name field of the Brand Entity of CRM and selected the teamid field as the lookup column whose value we would like to fetch as shown below.

Then we added Derived Column task to add one more column for specifying ownerid type field to be used in CRM Destination Component while mapping. We defined the field type as string and hardcoded the value as “team”.

And as the final step mapped the above fields to the corresponding ownerid and owneridtype field in CRM Destination Component for Create operation.

For ownerid, we selected the below option as we were setting the GUID of the team.

On running the package, we can see the transaction records getting created and properly assigned to the corresponding team of the brand.

The transaction record with Team set as Owner.

Brand record with Team lookup in it.

Hope it helps..

Operation on clone solution failed error during solution import in Dynamics 365


We’d get this error if we are trying to import a solution whose upgrade solution is already there in the target system.

So, either we need to Clone the Solution to remove the upgraded solution or we need to delete the Upgrade Solution. Deleting the Upgrade solution will only delete the solution it will not delete the components as it will already be there in the main solution whose upgrade has been imported.


Hope it helps..

The import of the solution failed – The specified role cannot be updated error in Dynamics 365


We got this error while trying to import managed solution to our TEST environment.

The detail of the error message clearly tells the reason for the error.

The error was because that we had a similar a role with same name in our TEST environment, and in DEV we had renamed that existing role and had created a new role with similar name.

So, while trying to import the solution, CRM was getting confused as it was able to find the role with same name but different id.

To fix this either rename the Role in DEV and export and import it back or rename the role in TEST to and them import the same solution.

Hope it helps..

The record could not be deleted because of an association exception in Dynamics 365


Recenlty while trying to delete product records, we got the below error.

The quick way to figure out which associated entity’s record could have restricted the deletion of the record, open the 1:N relationship for the entity.

Search for any Parental, Referential Restrict Delete or any System relationship that has Restrict set for Delete action.

In our case it was the System relationship of Product with Opportunity Product

With Restrict Behavior set for Delete action.

Deleting all the opportunity product record allowed us to delete the Product records.

Hope it helps..

Insufficient Permissions error while updating records using Excel Online in Dynamics 365


Recently one of our users reported the below while trying to bulk update the records using Excel Online feature.

The user had the Update rights for those records.

Basically, the Excel Online update features creates a data import job in the background.

https://debajmecrm.com/2015/11/14/dynamics-crm-excel-online-field-changes-save/

So the user had to be given the import data rights.

We resolved the issue by giving the following rights to the user at organization level.

  • Data Import
  • Data Map
  • Import Source File
  • Web Wizard
  • Web Wizard Access Privilege
  • Wizard Page

https://community.dynamics.com/crm/b/crmpowerobjects/archive/2015/08/18/data-import-privileges

Hope it helps..

The unit schedule id is missing error while trying to migrating product in Dynamics 365


Recently while trying import products from our Dev to Test environment using the Configuration Migration tool we got the below error

The reason being we were using default unit as a unit group in out DEV and the same wasn’t there in the TEST environment. Interestingly if we set the correct GUID in the data.xml generated by Configuration Migration tool and try importing, still the products do not get imported.

So basically, if we try importing the products entity alone we might run into issues. To migrate it properly we need to add the related entities along with it as mentioned in the Microsoft documentation.

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/dynamics365/customer-engagement/admin/manage-product-catalog-configuration

We created a new schema file with Product and its related entities, and this time migration worked properly.

Hope this helps.

Sample code to hide out of the box reports using ReportVisibility class in Dynamics 365


Recently we wanted to hide OOB reports for our users.

One way of doing it is either change those report from Organization owned to personal

or change the Display in Area for those reports (this will hide those reports from all other views except the “All Reports, Including Sub Reports” view), as all other OOB Views for the reports uses the Reports Area filter. Another option of course is to update the filter criteria for those views or deactivate those views.

In our case, we simply updated the Display In property for all the OOB reports. Below is the sample code that we used. Basically, every report can have 0 or more (max 3) related Report Visibility records associated to it. (i.e. for forms, lists or reports area). In the below code we have looped through all the OOB reports and deleted all the associated ReportVisibility records for that report.

Hope it helps..

“Cannot delete an active workflow definition” error while importing solution in Dynamics 365


Recently while trying to import a solution (managed) to one of our test environments we got the below error.

import

The reason being one of the SLA(s) that was part of the solution was in Active stage in the test environment to which solution was getting imported.

Deactivating the SLA and then importing the solution again worked properly.

Hope it helps..

Solved – System.ArgumentNullException: Value cannot be null.Parameter name: SandboxAppDomainHelper.Execute: The plug-in type could not be found in the plug-in assembly in Dynamics 365


We got the below error while in one of our plugin assemblies. 

As it turned out we were referencing the latest, version 9 Dynamics 365 assemblies in our plugin project, against our Dynamics 365 Environment which was still in version 8.2.

Adding the appropriate NuGet Package (i.e. 8.2.0.0) fixed the issue for us.

The helpful post

http://blogs.it.ox.ac.uk/benwalker/2017/09/12/system-io-fileloadexception-error-in-plugin-deployed-by-crm-developer-toolkit-to-dynamics-2015/

Hope it helps..

Microsoft.Crm.CrmException: GetAssemblyMetadata: expected mdtAssemblyRef or mdtAssembly while registering plugin assembly in Dynamics 365


While registering a plugin assembly through plugin registration tool we got the below error

The reason being we were using MSBuild.ILMerge.Task Nuget package and there were few assemblies being referenced in the plugin project that had copy local set as true.

https://nishantrana.me/2017/05/17/using-ilmerge-for-plugin-in-crm/

So eventually the single plugin assembly that was getting build had these assemblies also being merged in it, which led to the above error.

Setting Copy Local as False for those assemblies fixed the issue.

Hope it helps.

Empty or Disable cache while working with Web resources in Dynamics 365 (Chrome)


Most of the time while developing Web Resource we need to frequently update and publish it. We need to make sure that it is not cached and our changes are reflected instantly on publish.

For Chrome,

Open the Developer Tools (F12)

Press and hold the reload button and select “Empty Cache and Hard Reload” to have changes reflected.

https://stackoverflow.com/questions/14969315/whats-the-difference-between-normal-reload-hard-reload-and-empty-cache-a/14969509#14969509

The other option à Developer tools – Settings – Preferences

Hope it helps..

Hide “Sign in with an external account” from Dynamics 365 Portal


To hide the Sign in with an external account section from the Sign In and Register page of the portal.

Set the following site settings value to false à

Followed by Restart of the portal.

To add any additional JavaScript or HTML, for e.g. we wanted to disable the Email text box on the Register page,

Go to Portals à Content Snippets and create a new code snippet record

The output:-

code

The helpful post –

http://benitezhere.blogspot.ae/2018/01/hiding-sign-in-with-external-account.html

http://arpitmscrmhunt.blogspot.ae/2017/12/customise-registration-page-in-crm.html

Hope it helps..

Insufficient Security – You do not have the security priviges necessary to perform this task error while using Merge in Dynamics 365


Hi,

Recently one of our users got the below error while trying to merge Lead record.

The user was having the Merge rights. However, the user was missing Share rights on the Lead entity. He already had create, write, delete, append and append to rights.

More details here

https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/gg334602.aspx?f=255&MSPPError=-2147217396

Giving Share rights fixed the issue.

Hope it helps..

Server Is Busy. The record was saved. However, the data could not be displayed because the server is busy error in Dynamics 365.


Recently one of our users got the below error

The error message is bit incorrect here. The error was because the user had User Level Read Access to the record or (Entity to be specific) and on saving the record, we had one of our real-time workflow being triggered which was assigning this record to another user. And on assignment, the record being getting assigned to another user, the user who had created\saved the record was losing the access to it.

Hope it helps..