Since Microsoft have now removed the standalone SDK download, instead offering it via NuGet packages, they have also released a handy PowerShell script that allows you to keep them updated on your machine. Very useful.
DevOps (a clipped compound of “development” and “operations”) is a software development and delivery process that emphasizes communication and collaboration between product management, software development, and operations professionals.
DevOps – The new buzzword.
Although I have never actually tried any of the following (but it is on my list of things to do), here are a collection of resources for applying the concept of Continuous Integration and Delivery for Microsoft Dynamics 365.
Most CRM Developers either use, or have at least heard of CrmSvcUtil for generating early bound classes for developing code and using the resulting classes to manipulate CRM data. I personally do not like working with early bound entities as the resulting class files are huge, and I personally prefer working with the standard Entity Framework for creating and updating entities, and for Linq queries.
Often, I use some helper class libraries that I can use to represent the custom entity names and attributes, so that they can be referenced in code and provide a degree of separation from the actual Schema names and to make code easier to write, and support Intelli-sense.
Something like the code sample below:
public static class Contact
public static const string EntityName = "contact";
public static const string Name = "fullname";
This would then allow you to do the following:
public void createContact()
Entity contact = new Entity(Contact.EntityName);
contact[Contact.Name] = "Joe Blogs";
I was offered a suggestion by a fellow developer that wouldn’t it be good if my CRM Utilities for Visual Studio allowed you to generate this kind of Class file automatically. Well, I thought it was a brilliant idea, and so thanks to the wonderful gentleman of XRTSoft, here it is.
Its split into two options, one to generate classes for your Custom Entities, and one to do the Standard CRM entities.
The resulting file will look something like this:
Notice that for each Entity, it will add the Logical Name, Primary ID Attribute, and the Primary Name Attribute as standard, and then all of the attributes as well. It will also add sub classes for any Option Sets to allow you to reference specific Option Set Values without having to look them up in CRM.
Microsoft Dynamics includes a nice Tablet experience UI right out of the box, and its possible to preview this using a desktop PC web browser.
To make it easy to do, I have developed a nice little Bookmarklet which you can drag to your bookmark bar within your browser. Now, if you browse to your CRM or D365 instance and are logged in, clicking it in your bookmark bar will launch a new window showing you the tablet interface.
So go ahead, just drag the below button to your browsers bookmark bar, and away you go.
When developing web resources for use in Microsoft Dynamics, I am a big fan of using Visual Studio with Visual Studio Team Services (VSTS), but for smaller organisations, or less experienced developers, sometimes this is overkill. I know a lot of people who just make do with Notepad++, and why not, as it’s perfectly capable of editing code, syntax highlighting and formatting.
In my journey to discover and use as many self hosted web-based systems as I can (stay tuned for an upcoming post for more information), I wondered if there was anything that might help Dynamics developers.
That’s when I happened upon CODIAD ( http://codiad.com/ ) which is an online IDE for developing JS, HTML, CSS, XML and many more file formats. It offers full syntax highlighting, project collections and an extensible plugin system.
I have decided to release a small utility that I developed and have been using for a long time when developing Web Resources for CRM within Visual Studio.
It allows you to publish Web Resources to CRM straight from within CRM, and if you attach it to a Keyboard Shortcut, means you can publish it with a press of a key as soon as you have finished editing it.
It allows you to edit JS, HTML, XML and images as part of a Visual Studio Solution. It saves your connection string locally within a project, and remembers which files relate to which CRM Web Resources. It also allows you to run FetchXML queries, and you can save your queries as part of your Project.
It can be downloaded from here, and full instructions on how to use it are also available.