Thinkcrm

A Matt Yates blog about all things CRM!

Monthly Archives: April 2011

Create a simple file share in Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0

I came across this post on a Dynamics CRM in the field blog post about how to create a simple network file share in Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0. I have never experienced a need for it but there is a lot of potential and very minimal code for those who do not wish to pursue the SharePoint root.

The following scenario uses a network share for each of the CRM accounts. The network share is integrated through the use of an Iframe on a tab of the Account form and uses the Account name to dynamically point the Iframe to the correct network location. The solution assumes that the folder has already been created in the share and that the name exactly matches the Account name – obviously you could use a plugin to automate the creation of the network share.

Obviously this will not work over Internet Facing Deployments.

Here is how to set it up.

1. Create a network share and populate it with some folders that match your account names. Permissions can be set on the share per company requirements.

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2. Open the Account customizations and then the main account form within CRM.

3. Create a Documents Tab on the Account Form and add a section to that tab.

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4. Create an Iframe on the Documents tab with the following properties and Click OK.

NAME: IFRAME_documents
URL: \_static\blank.htm
ROW LAYOUT (Formatting Tab): Automatically expand to use available space

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5. Add JavaScript on the Form Load event to dynamically set the Iframe URL. The network share path needs to be updated to match your environment.

var CRM_FORM_TYPE_UPDATE = 2;

//Only Run code after record has been created.
    switch (crmForm.FormType)
{
    case CRM_FORM_TYPE_UPDATE:

    //Extract Account Name and add it to network path.
    var acctName = crmForm.all.name.DataValue;
    crmForm.all.IFRAME_document.src = ‘file://crmsrv/customerdocuments/’ + acctName;
}

6. Publish the Account form so the customizations take effect.

7. Now test to make sure the documents are displaying correctly. When you open the account form you will be able to see the related documents.

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‘Spell Checking’ in Microsoft Dynamics CRM

I have been looking for a decent free ‘spell checker’ for use with CRM for a while now. IESpell has always been the default choice in a limited ‘freebie’ market of spell checking software but i never felt completely satisfied with it.

So you can all imagine my delight when i stumbled across two blog posts from Daniel Cai (here) and Ben Hosk (here) talking about a new Internet Explorer add on called ‘Speckie’ which also works with Microsoft Dynamics CRM fields!! I have been testing it over the weekend and it seems to work really well. It also uses the Google Chrome language dictionaries to navigate the obvious UK/US spelling floors!

Extract of Daniel Cai’s post below:

Add Spell Checker to Microsoft Dynamics CRM Application

 In CRM projects, I often hear the complaints about the lack of spell checking feature in CRM application. Most business users tend to believe it’s the application’s fault for not having such important feature. In fact, spell checking should be something offered by browser. If you have ever tried any other browsers in the market, you may have noticed that most browsers (Chrome, Opera, Firefox, Safari) nowadays are offering spell checking feature out-of-the-box. IE has been pretty much the only exception among those modern browsers in this perspective.

I was previously aware of an IE addon called ieSpell which offers spell checking solution in IE. But it is far from being an ideal solution because it doesn’t instantly highlight any wrong spellings, which in my opinion makes it almost useless.

I happened to come across another free IE addon called Speckie this week which I believe provides a much better spell checking solution in IE. So I thought I should share with everyone here.

After you have installed Speckie, you may notice that Speckie doesn’t perform spell check for single line textbox field by default. If you want to enable this option, you can go to IE Tools menu, and click “Speckie Options“.

Speckie Options

Then you can check “Enable spell check in single line edit fields” option, and click “Apply” button.

Configure Speckie

After you have done so, you should restart your browser in order for the option to take effect.

The following are a few screenshots in action.

  • Speckie spell checking for MSCRM4 textbox field

Spell Check for CRM4 Textbox Field

  • Speckie spell checking for MSCRM4 notes field

Spell Check for CRM4 Notes Field

  • Speckie spell checking for MSCRM4 textbox field

Spell Check for CRM2011 Textbox Field

I have only been using this addon for a couple of days, I cannot endorse the quality and reliability of this addon. But I am so far very happy with it.

Hope this helps.

Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Training Materials

I don’t know if Microsoft made a ‘big song and dance’ about this release, or they did and i just missed it, but they appear to have now released the Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 training materials.

I stumbled across these entirely by accident whilst trawling the developer training materials on PartnerSource. I think there were already a couple of materials on there from January but Microsoft have really ramped up the releases since the beginning of April ’11.

I have attached the links to some of the various training materials below (requires a PartnerSource login):

  • Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Installation and Deployment Course Number 80296 (added: 4/15/2011 3:30:07 PM)
    This training covers the installation and configuration of Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011. The training describes the components used within a Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 deployment, installation instructions for the Microsoft Dynamics CRM Server, the E-mail Router, Microsoft Dynamics CRM for Office Outlook, how to configure Claims-based authentication and how to implement an Internet-facing deployment.
  • Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Customization and Configuration Course Number 80294 (added: 4/15/2011 3:30:07 PM)
    This training describes the techniques required to customize Microsoft Dynamics CRM to meet the specialized needs of businesses. The topics covered include Security; creation and configuration of entities; design of forms views and charts; auditing and Solutions. The training describes each topic and how each topic relates to the other topics to produce a full configured, effective solution.
  • Service Management in Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Course Number 80292 (added: 4/5/2011 3:30:29 PM)
    This training introduces Microsoft Dynamics CRM service management functionality and explains how it helps organizations track information about cases, customer complaints or requests, and small projects. You will learn how to use the knowledge base and discusses how organizations can browse, locate, and share information in the repository. It also discusses how to create, manage and use teams and queues in Microsoft Dynamics CRM.
  • Service Scheduling in Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Course Number 80293 (added: 4/5/2011 3:30:29 PM)
    This training discusses the scheduling process, scheduling engine, and scheduling service activities in detail since they are key entry points in the scheduling process. It also discusses how to use service scheduling in situations that have complex scheduling requirements.
  • Sales Management in Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Course Number 80291 (added: 4/5/2011 3:30:29 PM)
    This training introduces the capabilities of Sales Management in Microsoft Dynamics CRM that allow you to track and manage the sales process from potential to close. It provides insight on using the Product Catalog and process sales information. It also introduces some of the tools used to analyze and report on sales information.
  • Marketing Automation in Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Course Number 80290 (added: 4/5/2011 2:30:08 PM)
    This training introduces you on how to use Microsoft Dynamics CRM to extend the effectiveness of your marketing department and provides context of how to use things such as marketing campaigns, marketing lists, and campaign templates in Microsoft Dynamics CRM. It also discusses the role of campaign activities and marketing lists in campaigns and discusses how to associate sales literature, target products and price lists with marketing campaign.
I haven’t been through all of the materials yet (obviously!) but at first glance they seem pretty good! Also, i suspect that the ‘Applications’ training has been replaced by individual materials outlining each sector; marketing, sales, service scheduling and service management.
Enjoy!