Optimize your global search by enabling full text search in Dynamics CRM

Are you using CRM 2015 and you have complaints regarding the global search 2015 performance? Well then you are right place.

with CRM 2015 Update 1, Microsoft provides a feature to enable full text search for your organization. Once you download and install Update Rollup 1 for Dynamics 2015, this option would be available to you.

Go to Settings –> System Settings.

In the Setup Quick Find Settings, you would see a new option to enable full-text search

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You would need to enable it.

Don’t expect to see magic immediately. It may take up to 24 hours for full text search since maintenance job has to be run on the server and make adjustments in the specified CRM Organization. Let’s get a bit under the hood here.

When you enable full text search from your CRM, internally CRM uses the full text catalog. If you open SQL server and navigate to your CRM Organization database –> Storage –> Full text catalogs, you would find the entities mapped for full search. Please note that as I said before, this takes considerable amount of time, hence if you immediately move to your database after enabling the setting in CRM, you might not find the table mappings.

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All this about technical stuff but what about end-user experience?

Well the following are the changes

  • The first change that the user would notice is that they do not need to use wildcards anymore. For example – when before full text search is enable, if you search for the word test and if I take account entity, it would return all account whose any quick find column value begins with Test. However after you enable full text search, users no need to use wild card search. Search by any word and it would evaluate with contains operator.
  • Full Text search enables some data science on your data. It actually returns forms of a word.
    • Incorporates Pluralization (“child”, “children”, etc)
    • Incorporates Tense (“drive”, “drove”, “Driven” etc)
  • Now coming to performance – When I tested this in one of my customer environments, I was simply amazed and impressed by the performance. Previously when the search phrase – *Test returned results in 15 seconds. After enabling Full Text search, the query returns records in less than 2 seconds.

 

Before I close this out, this works only on string field. Optionset fields and likewise would not be incorporated in full-text search.

 

Hope this helps!

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Author: Debajit

I am a Dynamics CRM Most Valuable Professional (MVP) with 10 years of experience in Microsoft .NET Technologies and 7 years of dedicated experience in Microsoft Dynamics CRM. I have worked with companies like Microsoft, SanDisk, PwC, TMF Group and have extensive experience of implementing complex CRM solutions from both offshore and client side. Currently the face of XrmForYou.com with significant experience in delivering corporate training on Dynamics CRM and have already delivered multiple projects to client through XrmForYou.com Author of multiple tools on codeplex including the 'Role Based Views' and 'CRM-Sharepoint Metadata manager & Attachment Extractor' which are available for commercial use under XrmForYou.com For consulting/ training, drop me a note at info@xrmforyou.com or visit our website www.xrmforyou.com

6 thoughts on “Optimize your global search by enabling full text search in Dynamics CRM”

    1. Hi,
      Your version seems to be perfect and same as mine.
      It’s strange that you are not able to view the option in System Settings -> Set up Quick Find Section.
      Let me just check if this is a known issue. If this is, I will get back to you.

      Regards
      Debajit

  1. Would the search done from CRM side also bring the results for the documents stored in SharePoint (in a server-to-server integration scenario), not just file names but searching the content in documents stored in SharePoint?

    1. Hi Brian,

      Server to Server integration means you must be in CRM online. I am not sure whether full text search works for document contents in that case. Even for the CRM entities, I do not find full text search working in online. Probably I need to check and get back to you on this.

      We did one list based integration of Sharepoint with Dynamics CRM 2015 on-prem and customer had exactly the same requirement. Good news is that once you enable full text search in CRM, it happens OOB. It does a search not only the filename but the contents as well.

      This search feature is however limited to the documents associated with the record from where we searched for the document like if you are searching from the account, the search would be restricted to documents associated to that record only.

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