Archive for the ‘Enhancement’ Category

CRM Productivity Tip of the Day – Recently Viewed Records

June 22, 2012 2 comments

Before jumping into the CRM ‘tip of the day”, I wanted to share something non-CRM related with you that I found interesting.  When I first considered providing a ‘Tip of the Day’ series on my blog, not to be confused with writing a “tip a day” series”, I contemplated giving the series a different name.  Whenever I’m searching for word-type ideas, I generally begin with the thesaurus or online dictionary so off to I went.  I did a search on the word tip.  Wow, I was surprised by the number of meanings applied to the word .  Check it out, I think there are over 20 different possible meanings based on the context of how it is used.  I think it is one of those words in the English language that we take for granted.  It is no doubt a versatile word and I am sure presents a challenge for those trying to learn the language.  Anyway I’ve digressed enough so on to the tip.

In my Helping Users with Lookup Options article, I mentioned that CRM 2011 was designed to deliver relevant data to the end user in a faster, intuitive and more intelligent way.  Today I thought I would share another tip on how CRM allows you to quickly view records you’ve recently visited.

As most know, we can access Dynamics CRM through the Web browser or Outlook Client.  The tip I will share today shows you how to view recently visited records from both.

From the Outlook Client right-click an entity like Contacts and select the Recently Visited list option


From the Outlook Client Select File, CRM Recent


From the Web browser right click an entity like Contacts and you will see a list of recently visited records at the bottom of the list


From the Web browser select the Recently Visited Folder icon.  The favorite folder icon is available from any entity


Saving several clicks a day and waiting for views to open, a search to run, or other items to display adds up and directly affects the amount of time you have available to do other more important things.  So get some time back in your day by using the recently visited options in CRM.


A glimpse of R8, Q2 2012 Service Update, Update Rollup 9

June 1, 2012 4 comments

I was spending a little more time in the R8 beta release today (not to be confused with Update Rollup 8, UR 8), and thought I would list out some of the exciting features we can look forward to.  So here goes:

Business Intelligence

For CRM OnPremise installations (CRM Online coming later) we will be able to download PowerPivot workbooks from the Dynamics Marketplace.

  • This puts Business Intelligence directly into the hands of the end users
  • Ability to upload the workbook to SharePoint and build new workbooks on top of it
  • Leverage the SharePoint reporting capabilities to include animated reporting with some simple drag and drop technology
    • Yes, that’s correct, animated reported!
  • PowerView will also become more of a player in this release to include the ability to surface the SharePoint Reports in CRM leveraging a custom entity
  • Some features will require SQL 2012

Process Improvements

  • Custom Workflows in CRM Online
    • Requirements will be the same as those that exist today in relationship to CRM Online Plug-ins
  • Ability to call out to external web sites and back into the SDK
  • Use Plug-in registration tool to register custom workflows

Vertical Templates

  • Insurance & HealthCare
  • Use for demos, starter solutions for vertical markets, validate CRM for the vertical
  • Includes Vertical relevant sample data, dashboards, entities, demo scripts, demo videos and more

Performance Enhancements

  • Platform
    • Quick Find and Retrieve Multiple
    • Upgrade Performance
      • 2011 already had significant improvement in this area as compared to the 3.0 to 4.0 upgrade.
      • Additionally improvements to this area should make this impressive
    • Improved Performance for Published Metadata
  • Client
    • Network related enhancements
    • Scale or Large Data enhancements
    • Ability to disable caching per machine
    • Smarter meta data caching
    • Enhanced Outlook stability
    • Improved folder load times

Read Optimized Forms (RO Form)

  • Changes required for cross browser support
  • Visibility for Images
  • Activity Feeds
  • More intelligent script detection
  • Open Note attachments

Cross Browser Support

  • Does not mean all features and functions will work in all browsers
  • Browser functionality will be dependent on not only browser version but also the Operating System
    • In most cases, the Settings & Admin areas are only supported in IE browsers.

and in the event that was not enough..

  • A new browser agnostic Mobile CRM (CWR feature set)
  • Activity Feed Enhancements
    • Ability to Like and Unlike posts and create filters
  • SQL Server 2012 Support
  • CRM Online Data Center Certifications
  • Portal Framework Enhancements

Hopefully this is enough to get you excited about the feature set included in the upcoming release.  I’m sure we will all be quite busy in the very near future taking it all in.


CRM 2011 Update Rollup 5

October 25, 2011 4 comments

Update Rollup 5 is available.  Update Rollup 5 is the first release for Microsoft where additional capabilities and features for Dynamics CRM (both Online and On-premises) will be delivered.  This Update Release is a part of a new program where Microsoft plans to deliver new functionality in two releases a year.   See what Brad Wilson, General Manager of Microsoft CRM has to say about this release.  The next release of this type is targeted for the the Spring (Q2) of 2012 with another to follow in the Fall (Q4) 2012. 

There are some good fixes and terrific features included in UR 5 that you might want or need.  However, before applying UR 5 to your production environment, you will want to note that once installed, you can not uninstall

As with all Updates, you should first apply this Update to a test environment, after backing up your database, and fully testing it before installing to production.  Also, before applying to production, ensure that  you create a restore point for your production environment to include database, reporting server, and all application or other servers that are part of  your production environment.  This is even more important for Update Rollup 5 as once installed it can not be uninstalled.  The only remedy for removing Update Rollup 5 is to restore to a point in time prior to when the Update was installed. 

As always, Update Rollup 5 is a cumulative update which means it includes Update Rollup 1, 2, 3 and 4.  Here are a few highlights of the release:

New Features

  • New Business Intelligence Capabilities
    • multi-series charts
    • multiple category charts
    • new chart types
  • Dialogs & Workflow Enhancements
    • lookup and date field types supported for Dialogs
    • dynamic record hyperlinks for Workflows & Dialogs
  • Enhanced Data Management
    • Audit User Access
    • Ignore null values in duplicate detection
    • Exclude inactive records in duplicate detection
  • CRM Outlook Client Enhancements
    • reading pane improvements to include hyperlinks to CRM records, compose e-mail and Lync presence
    • Performance Enhancements to E-mail Tracking
  • Activity Feeds
    • enable a user to follow important activities related to people, accounts, contacts, leads, sales deals (opportunities) and more
    • new CRM Online Organizations will come with the Activity Feeds installed.  New CRM OnPremise installations that have Update Rollup 5 included in the server download package will also come with Activity Feeds installed.  Existing CRM Online and OnPremise installations need to download the Activity Feed solution from the Dynamics Marketplace and import it.

Included Fixes

  • The CRM Server downloads will be updated to include Update Rollup 5.  If you are downloading the package, from this point forward, you do not have to apply Update Rollup 5 after the installation. 
  • CRM Online customers will have Update Rollup 5 applied to their environment by no later than October 25, 2011.
  • Update Rollup 5 will be available on Windows Update service on November 8, 2011.  You should be able to use the Windows Update service to find and install the update on or after that date.
  • You must have Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 build 5.0.9688.583 before installing UR 5
  • CRM Outlook Client view fields display date and time even though only date is configured to display
  • Selecting F5 to refresh a record view creates a new record rather than displaying the current record with updated data
  • Custom Option Sets do not display as expected when creating dialogs and attempting to assign values from the Option Set
  • Workflows do not behave as expected when upgrading from CRM 4 to CRM 2011
  • Some navigation changes cause IE 9 to crash or fail to perform as expected
  • Time stamps on reports are one-hour behind the expected time
  • Time zones and daylight savings time are incorrect for multiple countries

Visit the November 2011 Service Update site to learn more about the features included in Update Rollup 5.  You can also register and attend the Dynamics CRM 2011 Online “Ask the Experts – New features in Update Rollup 5” session planned for November 1st. 



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