Leo Came in with a Roar!

Microsoft called it the Spring Wave but I think Spring Tidal Wave is more appropriate.  Since I’ve been working with Dynamics CRM, I can honestly say I’ve never seen a Service Release this significant.  The feature set and services delivered are both deep and wide.  If this is any indication as to what we can expect going forward, I don’t know about you, but I’m all In!

So where does one begin?  We’ve already seen blog articles popping up that provide an overview of the new features and products, deep dives into specific features and everything in between.  The nice thing is that there is so much fodder in this release that it could and most likely will take several months for the community to digest it.

I thought the best initial contribution I could make is to build out a Curah with links to helpful resources for Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 SP1 so that is exactly what I did.  Check it out when you have some time and let me know if you have a favorite link you would like added.  I’ll be sure to give you a mention for your contribution.

Now its back to work finding more resources and learning about all the new features and services.

Cheers

Microsoft Dynamics CRM for Outlook Client Troubleshooting Wizard

Although the Dynamics CRM Outlook Client is highly intuitive and easy to use, it is a complex application.  Given that complexity and the endless possible machine configurations (Office version, Operating System (OS) version, Office, CRM & OS Updates), it is easy to understand how things might not always work as expected.

When troubleshooting a CRM Outlook Client issue I rely heavily on the log files found in <C:\Users\<loggedOnUser>\AppData\Local\Microsoft\MSCRM\Logs>.  I search the log file for errors and the remedy I apply is determined by issue found.  Following are a few of the solutions I’ve discovered over time:

Odd or Unexpected Data Related Behavior

  • Open the Diagnostics (Start, All Programs, Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011, Diagnostics, select the Advanced Troubleshooting tab and select the button to Delete Temporary Microsoft Dynamics CRM Client Files.
    • My good friend Richard Knudson gave me the tip to ensure that Outlook is completely closed before taking this action.

MapiStore Related Error in Log files

  • Rename the Mapi32.dll file – direct to you from my good friend and coworker Chris Cognetta
    • This file is generally found in <C:\Program Files (x86)\Common Files\System\MSMAPI\1033>
    • Run the fixmapi command from the command prompt after renaming the file and try again.
  • Closely check the site map to ensure there are not two references to the same entity.
    • Example: Account and Account(1)
  • Open IIS Manager, path out to the CRM web site, double click on the windows authentication settings, right click on advanced settings and uncheck ‘Enable Kernel-mode authentication’
  • If there is a proxy in place, bypass it
    • From IE select tools, internet options, Connections, LAN settings, and uncheck proxy setup.

Installation Issue or as Indicated

  • Check the installation log file found in the application data folder for the logged on user.
    • If no issues found that I can resolve then I will completely uninstall the CRM Outlook Client, download the latest package from the Microsoft site and reinstall.
    • A complete uninstall means that I also delete the MSCRM folders found under the Local and Roaming profile after uninstalling the CRM Outlook Client application.

Until recently, when a complete uninstall and reinstall didn’t work, I would give homage to my higher powers by opening support ticket with Microsoft.  Today, I have one additional tool in my kit to leverage before taking that step.  I can run the Dynamics CRM Outlook Configuration Troubleshooting Wizard.

Microsoft introduced this new solution to the Dynamics CRM Resource Center.  The wizard currently covers some of the more frequently encountered issues.  Here is a quick walkthrough:

First you select your deployment type: Online or On-Premise.  You will then be presented with a list of possible error messages.  Those error messages include:

  • Cannot connect to Microsoft Dynamics CRM server because we cannot authenticate your credentials. Check your connection or contact your administrator for more help.
  • There is a problem communicating with the Microsoft Dynamics CRM server. The server might be unavailable. Try again later. If the problem persists, contact your system administrator.
  • Cannot configure the organization for Microsoft Dynamics CRM for Outlook. Try to configure the organization again. If the problem persists, contact your system administrator.
  • The signed-in user does not have the appropriate security permissions to view these records or perform the specific action. Contact your organization’s Microsoft Dynamics CRM administrator to review the security permissions for this user.
  • The specified Microsoft Dynamics CRM server address (URL) is not responding.

Once you’ve made your selection, the wizard will continue guiding you by providing options to select from, links to additional reference resources, etc..  Here are a couple of things to keep in mind when using the wizard:

  • Think of it as version 1.0.
  • It is going to get better
    • Feedback is monitored and taken into consideration for future updates so please give lots of feedback.

Hopefully you will never encounter the need to troubleshoot a Dynamics CRM Outlook Client issue but if you do, don’t forget about the wizard when searching for a solution.

Cheers