Friday, November 19, 2010

CRM2011 New Terms Learnt Today

Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Online Beta has been out for a little while and I have applied an account for myself. So I have been playing around with the new features. And today I have learnt a few new CRM2011 terms and features.

1) Dynamic Marketing List: we can now save the selection query for a Marketing List and not required to evaluate the marketing list for next run. This is one of the most frequent asked "why"s in my 7 years consultancy life. Finally I can have 1 less "yeah, I agree with you. Now let's change the topic" moments. :)

2) Sticky view vs default view: CRM2011 allows user to set their own default view per entity. However during nevigation, CRM (or the browser) will save your last view in the cache (this is called sticky view) and use sticky view over default view when cached sticky view is found.

3) Tab has been removed from record forms! So far, I found this to be an annoying change as I think tab makes the form prettier. Otherwise, enjoying the rest.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 Outlook crashes when running lable mail merge

Recently, I have been helping a client to resolve Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 Outlook client mail merge crashing Outlook issue. Luckily, with the help of Microsoft, we were able to identify it is actually a bug and the hotfix will be bundled in Rollup 13, which is scheduled to be released late September 2010.

To replicate the issue or test if you are affected by the same bug, try the following steps:

1. Start Outlook 2007 with CRM Outlook loaded.
2. Go to CRM Contacts, click Word Mail Merge, select Letter and Organisational template, then all records on current page. (In our case, it was a Lable template).
3. Complete Word Mail Merge steps. From the last step, click "Edit Individual Letters"
4. Send error message to Microsoft pops up. Then another pop up saying the activities have been tracked in CRM, but if you refer back to CRM, no activities are tracked.

In the Event Log, you may find something similar to below:
Event Type: Error

Event Source: C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office12\OUTLOOK.EXE

Event Category: None

Event ID: 5000

Date: 3/22/2010

Time: 1:22:48 PM

User: N/A


The description for Event ID ( 5000 ) in Source ( C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office12\OUTLOOK.EXE ) cannot be found. The local computer may not have the necessary registry information or message DLL files to display messages from a remote computer. You may be able to use the /AUXSOURCE= flag to retrieve this description; see Help and Support for details. The following information is part of the event: crmunmanaged, 4.0.7333.2138, outlook.exe, 629, c__bt_13487_src_application_outlook_addin_mailmerge.cpp, NIL, NIL, NIL, NIL, NIL, NIL.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Microsoft CRM 4.0 OnChange Jscript to Proper Case Last Name

Copy and paste the following jscript to the OnChange event of Contact Last Name field.

///Conver Last Name to ProperCase///

function toProperCase(s)
return s.toLowerCase().replace( /\b((m)(a?c))?(\w)/g,
function($1, $2, $3, $4, $5) { if($2){return $3.toUpperCase()+$4+$5.toUpperCase();} return $1.toUpperCase(); });
var oldName = crmForm.all.lastname.DataValue;
crmForm.all.lastname.DataValue = toProperCase(oldName);

Knowledge from

Monday, March 15, 2010

CRM4 User Summary Report black background overtook entire report

Last week, I did a new CRM installation. After the installation and adding users, I usually run the User Summary Report just to double check if I got all users correctly setup with the appropriate security roles. When I ran the User Summary Report, I can only see a report with black background. I decided to export the report to excel and was hoping to work-around this viewing problem, the excel report showed up nicely. Digged around different forums and found it to be a known issue with IE8. If your environment is SSRS2008 being used with IE8 the user summary report is generated with a black background. However if you use IE7 or SSRS2005 then the issue does not occur. Since it is an known issue, we can expect a hotfix for IE 8 very soon. For the time being, use export to excel as a work-around.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Using service account as CRM4 Web Application Pool identity

I have been trying to resolve a low priority Microsoft Dynamic CRM 4.0 unpleasant user experience for a little while and not going anywhere until today. The user experience is related to Workflow Associated view not returning records. The user can see all Workflow jobs from system job list but not in the Workflow Associated View. There was no error anywhere.
Today, I had to change the CRMAppPool identify from a user account to Network Service temporarily as someone disabled the user account in CRM and no one can login. As soon as this is changed, all users can log into CRM and able to see records in the Workflow Associated view. This lead me to think the original odd behaviour of Workflow Associated view not returning records is related to this CRMAppPool identity user account. So I did a few tests and here are the testing outcomes.

**CRMAppPool identity user account must be a CRM user or Internet Explorer will give user Server Erro in '/'Application - Login failed for user DOMAIN\username. To resolve this, set the CRMAppPool identity to use built-in Network Service account, recycle CRMAppPool and go back to CRM to add the user account. Then change the CRMAppPool identity from Network Service to the user account.

**CRMAppPool identity user account must be Enabled CRM user. If disabled, users will get "The system could not log you on. This could be because your user account or the Business Unit you belong to has been disabled in Microsoft Dynamic CRM." To resolve this issue, set the CRMAppPool identity to built-in Network Service, recycle the CRMAppPool. Re-enable the disabled user account and set the CRMAppPool back to the user.

**CRMAppPool identity user account must have at least 1 Security role assigned or user will get Licence Error in the Workflow Associated View.

**CRMAppPool identity user account should have System Administrator role assigned to work around the issue where Workflow Associated view not returning records.

If you are using the same user account to run the MSCRMAsynService, the same user account must be assigned a full license and system administrator role in CRM.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Interesting Statistics Tom Pisello,, 12/2008

Today I received a newsletter discussed about some interesting statistics around workplace...

Organisations lose around:

* $1,250 per user in annual productivity because of time spent dealing with spam

* $1,800 unnecessary emails from co-workers

* $2,100 - $4,100 due to poorly written communications.

What does this mean to you?

Monday, February 8, 2010

Microsoft Dynamic CRM 4 Event Accelerator Installation

Today, I have installed the Microsoft Dynamic CRM 4.0 Event Accelerator onto a brand new CRM4 deployment on Windows sever 2008 R2 64 bit server. During the installation process, I experienced 3 issues:

1. Unable to save changes to web.config file located in web virtual directory due to permission error. "You don't have permission to save in this location. Contact the administrator to obtain permission. Would you like to save in the username folder instead?" My login has domain administrator role and is the creator and owner of the folder. Resolved this issue by manually share the folder with myself! Some new Server 2008 feature!

2.When browsing the sample customer portal site, saw this error " attempt was made to load a program with an incorrect format". Found this blog "" and replaced the microsoft.crm.sdk.dll and microsoft.crm.sdktypeproxy.dll files in the Event Management Web Site with the files in the sdk\bin\64-bit folder.

3. done a iisreset and browse the Sample Portal again, found "Object Reference not set to an instance of an object" error. Updated the sample portal web site binding to use the actual server ip address and all working now!

Now I can demonstrate the Event Management Portal to the end users!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Microsoft Dynamic CRM 4.0 Marketing List Entity - Unused but useful attributes

The out of box CRM comes with many attributes. We can find most of them on the forms after successful installation. The remaining attributes maybe system fields or were created by the CRM team in the schema and waiting for us to use during customisation. Today I am going to talk about 3 attributes in the Marketing List entity that I have just realized their existence during an data migration of Marketing List and Marketing List members. They are:

1. Members Court: Courts total number of members in the marketing list including inactive members. The court happens each time the form is refreshed (by clicking "Save" button, open the form or simply hit "F5" on your keyboard). Adding or removing members will not trigger the court. You can also see the total member court on the "Marketing List Members" associated view (below the search box). Unlike the Members Court field, this information refreshes each time you add or remove members.

2. Exclude Members Who Opt Out: This is a bit field to capture information about whether to send marketing material to list members that prohibit sending of marketing material. For example: when this field is marked as "No", CRM will create activity for member(s) even if the member record (ie. Contact) has "Do Not Send Marketing Materials" marked as "Do Not Allow".

3. Ignore Inactive List Members: This is a bit field to tell CRM whether to ignore inactive marketing list members during propagation/execution. For example: when the field is marked as "No", CRM will create activity for any inactive member(s) during distribute campaign activities.

That's all for now.