{Quick Tip} Manage your Entity Forms when your CRM is exposed to Web and Mobile App

Spoiler alert! Unlike other blogs, I am not going to update you about any new feature. Rather I am going to share my project experience in handling multiple forms designed for your Web and Mobile layouts.

Scenario

You have exposed you CRM recently to Mobile Apps. When you expose your CRM to Mobile Application development, in most of the scenarios you would end up designing separate forms. Let’s take the example of Account entity. Say you have designed two forms

  • Account Web Form – This form is displayed to users while accessing CRM to Web
  • Account Mobile Form – Form displayed to users while browsing CRM on Mobile

And you have your users who will just access CRM through desktop and then some users accessing CRM through both Desktop and mobile.

 

So now the implementation

First of all, as I have been across client locations, I find that some consultants still assume that to expose a form in mobile, we need to create a form of type = ‘Mobile Express’. Mobile express forms were required for previous Dynamics app – Dynamics CRM Phone express. For the current version of Mobile App for Dynamics, Form Type = Main would work just fine

So what is the next step? We create a new form of type Main, this time specifically for mobile and put in only the fields required for Mobile as per the requirement. But wait, we have another form already exposed for the desktop. So how do we handle this.

  • Create a new security. Let us name it here – “Mobile User Security Role”. The privileges for this security role is optional and depends on your requirements.
  • Assign the security to users who need to access CRM on mobile.
  • In the Form order for Main Form set, set the Mobile form at the top of form order.

image

  • The next step is to leverage the role based forms. Expose the Account – Mobile form to only users with Mobile User Security Role.

image

Uncheck the “enabled for fallback” checkbox as well.

Save an publish your customizations.

All set and done. Now this works very well for users who does not use desktop and manages through mobile (hardly the case) and users not exposed to mobile platform. However the issue is for a user who has access to mobile and desktop version. They now see two forms and the mobile form starts showing up in the desktop as well as it is highest level in the form order as well.

The last step here is to switch the mobile if it loads on desktop. The simple piece of client side script would just work fine when put in form load of the mobile form.

function SwitchToDefaultFormForWebVersion(){

        var _defaultFormName = "account web form";

        var _isMobileClient = Xrm.Page.context.client.getClient() == "Mobile";

        if (!_isMobileClient) {

            var availableForms = Xrm.Page.ui.formSelector.items.get();

            var currentForm = Xrm.Page.ui.formSelector.getCurrentItem();

            if (currentForm != null) {

                var currentFormLabel = currentForm.getLabel();

                if (currentFormLabel.toLowerCase() == _defaultFormName)

                    return;

            }

            for (var i = 0; i < availableForms.length; i++) {

                if (availableForms[i].getLabel().toLowerCase() == _defaultFormName) {

availableForms[i].navigate();

                }

            }

        }

    }

Please remember that form navigation script is not supported on mobile. Hence first I am making the check if the client is Mobile.

Well there you go. Everything is up and running for you now.

 

Hope this helps!

 

Debajit Dutta

(Dynamics MVP)

For training/ consulting/ utilities – please visit our website – www.xrmforyou.com or write to us at info@xrmforyou.com

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Open Lookup Dialog Programmatically using Xrm.Utility–Dynamics V9.0

This one feature that I am going to pen down here, personally I have longing for it quite sometime now.

So before going into the HOW part of it, let’s understand the why part of it? When do I need show a Lookup dialog Programmatically? Well the answer is, numerous occasions. Like if you need to throw up a lookup dialog on change of field on the form OR you needed to throw the lookup dialog on click of a button on a web-resource.

All this time, we have achieved this but not in a supported way. Probably we may have ended up using Xrm.Internal.openDialog or some method of Mscrm.Internal namespace. But all these are unsupported and mere workaround to this perennial problem.

Well, no more messing around. Microsoft has finally brought in the Xrm.Utility.lookupObjects.

So let’s see how it works.

Let’s take a not so good example here. Let’s say whenever the account country is US, primary contact is mandatory and the user is thrown a lookup dialog of contacts from where he needs to select the Primary Contact. below if the function registered on change of country field

function changeOfCountry(e) {
    var formContext = e.getFormContext();

    if (formContext.getAttribute("address1_country").getValue() == "US") {
      
var lookupOptions = {};
        lookupOptions.allowMultiSelect = false;
        lookupOptions.defaultEntityType = "contact";
        lookupOptions.entityTypes = ["contact"];

        Xrm.Utility.lookupObjects(lookupOptions).then(


            function (result) {
                if (result != undefined && result.length > 0) {
                   var selectedItem = result[0];

                    formContext.getAttribute("primarycontactid").setValue({ entityType: selectedItem.entityType, id: selectedItem.id, name: selectedItem.name });
                }
            },
            function (error) { }
        );
    }
}

Focus on the highlighted lines starting from top. The first is the lookupOptions paramter. Since we are going to open a contact, I have specified defaultEntityType and entityTypes both to contact.

Also you can set the defaultViewId and the viewIds property to show the default view to use and views to be available in the view picker respectively

For a complete set of the properties of lookupOptions refer to Microsoft Documentation. https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/dynamics365/customer-engagement/developer/clientapi/reference/xrm-utility/lookupobjects

As soon as the method is executed, the below dialog opens up

image

Cool isn’t it? Now half of the job is done. But how about getting the selected record back. Well this method does not disappoint you here either.

The success callback function returns the selected item as you can see from the code above.

It has properties of entityType, id and the name which you can use to set the look up field of any other type. Here I have used the same to set the value of primarycontactid field of the account record.

Such a huge sigh of relief for me.

Hope this helps!

 

Debajit Dutta

(Dynamics MVP)

For training/ consulting/ utilities – please visit our website – www.xrmforyou.com or write to us at info@xrmforyou.com

{Dynamics V9.0}–Show alert/ confirm/ error in Modal style with new Client API in Dynamics Version 9.0

Working currently on a client engagement on the latest Dynamics version (v9.0) and hence got a chance to the new introduced Client API’s with version 9.0.

For starters, the Xrm.Page has been deprecated with version 9.0 and a completely new set of API’s have come up with version 9.0 along with host of new features.

For a list of deprecated API’s – https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/dynamics365/get-started/whats-new/customer-engagement/important-changes-coming#some-client-apis-are-deprecated

So coming back to the requirement here, if you have worked on Client API’s, chances are more that you have worked with Xrm.Utility namespace. Showing alerts/ confirmations/ opening entity forms/ webresources – what not can we do with the namespace.

However there was a problem. Xrm.Utility.alertDialog/ Xrm.Utility.confirmDialog still used to leverage the window.alert/ window.confirm for a web client. The result is – customer always complained about the look and feel of the pop-up. And also the ability to customize the contents of the same.

Well no-more. Now you have complete control on these. Excited? Let’s explore together.

1. Xrm.Navigation.openAlertDialog

The previous Xrm.Utility.alertDialog has been replaced with this new API. So let’s  see how to open an alert dialog using this function.

var message = { confirmButtonLabel: "Test Button", text: "New alert API Test" };
var alertOptions = { height: 150, width: 280 };
Xrm.Navigation.openAlertDialog(message, alertOptions).then(
    function success(result) {
        console.log("Alert dialog closed");
    },
    function (error) {
        console.log(error.message);
    }
);

Wonderful isn’t it? You get an option to even choose the button text. And even more is the flexibility to choose the height and width.

Now let’s see how it renders.

image

Such a relief to the eye from the previous versions. And what a relief to the customers!

 

2. Xrm.Navigation.openConfirmDialog

This is the new version of the previous API – Xrm.Utility.confirmDialog.

Let’s see how to invoke it

var confirmStrings = { text:"This is a confirmation.", title:"Confirmation Dialog", subtitle: "test subtitle", "cancelButtonLabel": "Test Cancel", confirmButtonLabel: "Test Confirm" };
var confirmOptions = { height: 200, width: 500};
Xrm.Navigation.openConfirmDialog(confirmStrings, confirmOptions).then(
function (success) {   
    if (success.confirmed)
        console.log("Dialog closed using OK button.");
    else
        console.log("Dialog closed using Cancel button or X.");
});

 

As you can see, you can put title/ subtitle/ text/ cancelButtonLabel/ confirmButtonLabel and also the height and width. The complete rendering of the pop-up is now in your hands.

And now let’s see how it looks.

image

 

3. Xrm.Navigation.openErrorDialog

Well this is something new here. Let’s see first the nomenclature of this function. As per Microsoft Documentation

Xrm.Navigation.openErrorDialog(errorOptions).then(successCallback,errorCallback);

 

The important thing here is errorOptions. So let’s first explore that.

What are the parameters here:

  • details: Any custom details you want to include in the error. If you specify this – “Download Log File” button would show up.
  • errorCode: Now this is wonderful. If you specify this, the message for the corresponding errorCode is retrieved from the server and shown.
  • message: this is the custom message that you want to display in the dialog.

var errorOptions = {message: "Custom Error Message", details: "Inner exception details"};
Xrm.Navigation.openErrorDialog(errorOptions).then(
    function (success) {
        console.log(success);       
    },
    function (error) {
        console.log(error);
    });

Below is the UI I get. strangely enough, the custom error message is not displayed. However if I download the log file, the details are in the log file.

image

 

Log file:

image

 

Hope this helps!

 

Debajit Dutta

(Dynamics MVP)

For training/ consulting/ utilities – please visit our website – www.xrmforyou.com or write to us at info@xrmforyou.com

{Thank You Note} It’s 50 not out and counting for our SharePoint Attachment Uploader and Metadata Manager tool

A big thanks to all our customers who has helped us in our journey so far. Without your support, we would not have been able to reach this far.

A new version of the tool awaits with new feature and UI and is going to be released soon.

Thanks a lot for your support

image

 

Video Link – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BIhsOD0gbew

 

To know how we can help you, write to us at info@xrmforyou.com or visit our website – www.xrmforyou.com

{Quick Tip} Pass a custom single/ collection of objects with Custom Properties as Output parameter from Actions in Dynamics 365

One of the great features that got introduced with Dynamics 2013 was Actions. With time more & more improvement came in with Actions and today Actions are one of the most powerful extending features in Dynamics.

And here I was designing actions for a client. Coming quickly to the requirement, the client had an action where they were determining complex business logic in the action with some input parameters and then based on the calculation, they need to pass back multiple values back to the invoker of the action.

There can be multiple ways to do this and one can be pass each of these values of Output Parameters. But that did not go well with the customer as around 15 properties needed to be returned from the action.

So the client developer came up with a DataModel class something similar to this.

 

internal class OutputClass

{

public string Property1{get;set;}

:

:

:

public decimal Property15{get;set;}

}

 

Nothing fancy. all the developer was doing was mapping the properties of this class and then the object back to the invoker of the action. But how to do it? Does Action allow custom object types to be passed as return parameters. Well,direct answer is No. But there are ways.

  • serialize the object into JSON and put the output JSON string through a string Output parameter – Didn’t go well with the customer. Has to abandon
  • serialize the object into XML and put the output XML string through a string Output parameter – Didn’t go well with the customer. Has to abandon again.

 

What I am left with then? We all know that it supports entity and entitycollection as output parameter types. But how do I use them to accomplish my goal here. The customer is not willing to create any Entity specifically for this.

Well a bit of trial and finally I achieved the below as workaround.

1. Passing a single Object back.

Well for this I used the entity parameter and just selected the Account Entity as Entity Type. You can use any Entity here. Does not matter.

image

 

In the plugin registered on the Action step, after calculating all the properties, I am setting the Output parameter like this.

var ent = new Entity("account");
ent["mytestproperty"] = "Test Name";
ent["mytestproperty2"] = 1;

ent["myentityreference"] = new EntityReference("contact", Guid.NewGuid());

context.OutputParameters["EntityParam"] = ent;

Observe carefully the code above. I am just creating an entity at runtime of type “account”. I don’t need to even specify the Guid. And then I can just put my custom property names for the entity and assign values of entity type – string/ int/ decimal/ entityreference etc.

None of these properties are present in the account entity. The trick is CRM framework does not validate the fields of the entity. So you can just return the entity object back with your own parameters. Cool trick. Isn’t it.

And below is the output received by the invoker of the action.

image

 

2. Passing Multiple Objects of Different type

For this, I used the entity collection as Output parameter

image

 

And below is the code to set the values.

var ent = new Entity("account");
           ent["mytestproperty"] = "Test Name";
           ent["mytestproperty2"] = 1;
           ent["myentityreference"] = new EntityReference("contact", Guid.Empty);

           var ent2 = new Entity("contact");
           ent2["mytestproperty"] = "Test Name";
           ent2["mytestproperty2"] = 1;
           ent2["myentityreference"] = new EntityReference("contact", Guid.Empty);

           collection.Entities.Add(ent);
           collection.Entities.Add(ent2);

           context.OutputParameters["CollectionParam"] = collection;

First we have to understand that entitycollection is a collection of entities. It does not necessarily imply collection of entities of the same type. This is a common misconception I find among so many people in spite of working on CRM for quite sometime.

As you can see, both the entities are of different types and can have completely different properties. Cool isn’t it?

And Below is the result the invoker of the action receives.

image

 

Personally if you ask me, I would still prefer serializing the object into JSON or XML. However if your customer prefers Entity or EntityCollection, this workaround I hope helps you.

 

Debajit Dutta

(Dynamics MVP)

For corporate training/ consulting/ tools, please visit our website www.xrmforyou.com or write to us at info@xrmforyou.com

Place custom button on Registration Page in Dynamics 365 Portals

Recently I had a requirement where my customer wanted to put a Cancel button in the registration screen of Dynamics 365 Portal. To explain the requirement, the OOB screen looks like below.

image

What my customer wanted was to place the Cancel button beside the Register button. So that when he clicks on the Cancel button, it should throw the user back to the login page.

So let’s see how to do it.

Step 1: Create a content snippet

Go to settings –> portals –> content snippets

Create a content snippet with Name = Account/Register/PageCopy and Type = HTML. Check for the below screenshot

image

Save the record.

 

Step 2: Write the content of the HTML to render the Cancel button

Copy and paste the below in the Value (HTML) field

$(document).ready(function () {

$submitButton = $(“#ContentContainer_MainContent_MainContent_SecureRegister”).find(“#SubmitButton”);

$submitButton.parent().append(“<input type=’button’ id=’btn_cancel’ class=’btn btn-primary’ value=’Cancel’ />”);

$(“#btn_cancel”).click(function () {

window.location.href = “https://xrmforyou.microsoftcrmportals.com&#8221;;

});

});

 

There is one trick here. If you just Copy/ Paste the above code in the HTML field, it will render as text on the Registration Page.

image

So the trick is to follow the below steps before copy/ pasting the above code.

Click on the Source Icon as highlighted below. Once you click, it becomes a HTML editor.

image

Now copy and past the above code.

Save and refresh your portal.

image

 

Hope this helps!

 

Debajit Dutta

(Dynamics MVP)

For corporate training/ consulting, please write to us at info@xrmforyou.com

Security Nuances with Manager Based Hierarchy in Dynamics 365

Manager Hierarchy was introduced way back with 2015 Online Update 1. And you might be wondering why this blog after years this feature has been introduced?

Well I can assure you, you won’t be disappointed after reading this blog. In this blog I will explain in detail the manager security nuances from my personal experience with project implementations and training. I am not going to explain how Manager security works. I am just going to explain the security nuances and how it works in multiple scenarios.

To explain my point, I have the below data set-up in my environment.

1. Business Unit Set-up

  • Americas –> Child BU of Root BU
  • North America –> Child BU of Americas

2. User Set-up

  • User A belonging to Americas BU
  • User B belonging to North America and reporting to User A
  • User C belonging to North America

3. Created Custom Entity named – Manager Hierarchy Test

4. Security Roles

  • Manager Role – having User level access on all privileges on the entity Manager Hierarchy Test
  • Reportee Role – having BU level access on all privileges on the entity Manager Hierarchy Test

5. User A is assigned Manager role and User B and User C having Reportee Role

So Manager Hierarchy affects which record? To put in my words

  • Owned by Reportee
  • Shared to Reportee
  • Owned by a team to which Reportee is a team member
  • Shared by a team to which Reportee is a team member

Which records are not affected by Manager Hierarchy ?

To put in simple terms, any of the records which does not meet the above four conditions is not affected by Manager Hierarchy. So the records which the reportee gains access due to his security prvileges (Business Unit/ Parent child/ organization) are not affected by this. Confused? Don’t worry. We will come back to this.

 

So let’s take these scenarios one by one.

Scenario 1:

Record owner = Reportee

User B creates a record – ‘Record for User B’. So this record is being owned by User B.  As per Manager Hierarchy, user A is able to read/ write this record since User B is direct reportee of User A. No surprises here right. After all everyone knows that.

First of all, to have write access to the reportee record, User A should be having at-least user level write privilege on the entity through his security role. Otherwise he won’t be able to write the reportee’s record even through Manager Hierarchy.

Also another point –Delete” privilege is not part of Manage security. Hence Manager won’t be able delete the reportee’s record.

 

Scenario 2:

Record shared to Reportee

Another user shares a record with User B with all the privileges – Read/ write/ append/ append to/ share. User A will now see this record because of Manager Hierarchy. However although the reportee have all the privileges on this record by virtue of sharing, through Manager Hierarchy, User A will only have read-only access to this record.

 

Scenario 3:

Record owned by a team which the reportee is member of

this behavior is same as Scenario1

 

Scenario 4:

Record Shared to a team which the reportee is member of

This behavior is same as Scenario 2

 

Now say for example User C goes ahead and creates record. Since User B and User C are both in the same business Unit (North America in example here), by virtue of their business unit read privilege on security role, User B would be able to see the record. However since User B is not the owner/ not shared to him/ not owned by the team to which he belongs/ not shared to the team to which he belongs, this record is not affected by Manager hierarchy and hence User A is not able to view this record.

 

Hope this clears out any doubt with Manager Hierarchy.

Debajit Dutta

(Dynamics MVP)

For corporate training/ consulting, please reach out to us at info@xrmforyou.com or visit our website – xrmforyou.com