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Tuesday, December 2, 2014

New XrmToolBox release : control your plugins list easily

Today, I released a new version of XrmToolBox. No new tool in this release but you now have the possibility to select the plugins to display and the ones to hide (without removing them from the XrmToolBox folder).

Here is the option dialog

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This version includes also improvements for some tool.

Check the download page on CodePlex to view a list of improvements

Next release will probably support Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2015 (even if this version should be able to connect to this version, not tested yet)

Friday, November 21, 2014

New XrmToolBox plugins : FetchXmlBuilder and Solution History

This is a great time for XrmToolBox! A lot of external plugins for XrmToolBox are coming from everywhere!!

Well, they are two new plugins but they are amazing:

Just click on the link to go to their CodePlex projects and download them

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Such a great family!

I’m currently in Seattle for a dedicated CRM MVP Summit, and look who’s there? All the CRM MVP family!

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Wednesday, October 15, 2014

What’s new in XrmToolBox world

If you are using the latest version of XrmToolBox, then you should see this popup when launching it
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This was the super cool hidden feature of the previous version! It works (I’m relieved…)
In this new release of XrmToolBox, there is three new features, as described below
Optimization in plugin development
Thanks to Daryl LaBar, one of the developer of other XrmToolBox plugins, the way to develop plugins for XrmToolBox has never been so easy. All you have to do is to create a user control that inherits from PluginBase class. All the connectivity is handle by the base class and you just have to focus on what your tool should do.
Daryl added also helper classes to handle asynchronous call in a really easy way. Read his blog article on this topic.
The documentation on CodePlex project page explains how to use the new development model.
A new tool : Metadata Browser
Even if Microsoft delivers a metadata browser solution in the CRM SDK package, it is just a pain to install this solution in each organization I am working on. So I developed a XrmToolBox plugin that does the same job : allows you to browse metadata from your organization. It’s a first version and I may have forgotten some features but I think it’s quite complete.
How does it work?
The first action of the tool is to retrieve the list of entities
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By double clicking on an item, you can then see the metadata for the selected entity
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You can browse all set of metadata included attributes, relationships and privileges. You can also see these items in lists for better reading
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Again, when double clicking on an item, its properties are displayed in a property grid
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To come back to previous screen, just click on button “Hide Panel”
You will have the possibility to select columns you want to display in lists and their order. This configuration will be saved to avoid to reconfigure the layout you want each time.
As usual, this tool is included in XrmToolBox package available on CodePlex
Another new tool : User Settings Utility
This one was asked by my fellow MVP Scott Sewell. It allows to update user personal settings in bulk like this solution does.
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Again, this tool is included in XrmToolBox package available on CodePlex

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

New XrmToolBox plugin : Bulk Form Attribute Manager

And now a new version of XrmToolBox!

This release includes a new plugin that will help you to apply some actions on attributes displayed in mutliples forms. The need for this tool came from a XrmToolBox user that has an entity with 180 forms. Imagine how long it takes to change one attribute property on each of these forms…. Nightmare!

So, the tool will help you to change the following properties for an attribute on multiple forms:

  • Label
  • Visibility
  • Read Only
  • Lock

The tool can also help you to add/remove an attribute on multiple forms. When adding an attribute, you need to specify next to which existing attribute this new field will be added. If available space, the attribute is just added. If no space available, a new row in the section is added before adding the new attribute.

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Some other tools in the toolbox have been fixed as some lists had a size problem (due to Visual Studio 2013 Update 3, as far as I can tell). That should now be fixed.

Another great feature of the new version of XrmToolBox is the Check Version feature: when the toolbox starts, it calls CodePlex download page to see if there is a new version available. If so, a popup warns you and you can open the download page. That should help you to keep the toolbox up to date (you can also follow the project on CodePlex to receive new version notification).

As usual, the new version can be downloaded on CodePlex

Friday, August 15, 2014

New XrmToolBox plugin from Andy Popkin: Bulk Workflow Tool

It’s a long time since I’m in touch with Andy Popkin from ZeroToTen. We were talking about the possibility to add multiple plugins to my XrmToolBox tool. I already announced this in a previous blog post without mentionning the exact purpose of the upcoming tools.

So today, Andy released the first XrmToolBox plugin of (I hope) a long list : The Bulk Workflow Tool.

You can find all information about this tool on this blog post, and you can download the plugin here.

I would like to finish this post with a special thank you to Andy for participating to the XrmToolBox adventure!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

New XrmToolBox plugin : User Roles Manager

Again, this tool is an application for Robert Boyer, my suggestion box for XrmToolBox tools currently Sourire

So, the tool allows you to select multiple roles and multiple users or teams to:

  • Add the selected roles to selected users or teams
  • Remove the selected roles to selected users or teams
  • Remove all existing roles from selected users or teams and add them roles selected

There is some limitations:

  • You cannot use remove roles action on your own profile
  • Business unit roles, that are not inherited from root business unit can only be added to users/teams in the same business unit

I hope this tool will improve your productivity when the need to add or remove multiple roles on multiples users or teams comes.

Here is a screenshot of the plugin:

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As usual, this tool is available as part of the XrmToolBox on CodePlex

NB: There is also a bunch of updates for other tools, check them on the download page

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

New XrmToolBox plugin : Import/Export NN relationships

Two plugins in one day! wow!

This one was, in fact, developed a couple of months ago.

One of my colleague was using a solution from my fellow MVP Andrii Butenko which allows to import/export NN relationships in a silverlight web resource. This was nice but my colleague was using other attributes than primary key to do the mapping and Andrii’s solution does not support this.

So he asked me to develop a XrmToolBox’s plugin that could do this.

And, here it is! You can select entities and relationships and moreover, choose mapping attributes on both enitities. I only let text and number attributes selectable as other does not really make sense for mapping purposes.

Then you can import or export NN relationships!

Here is a preview

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As usual, this plugin, among other, is available with XrmToolBox on CodePlex

New XrmToolbox Plugin : Solution Components Mover

Hey guys,

Here is another tool for the XrmToolBox! This one, like the previous one, was asked by a member of the community (by the way, he is the same guy than for Synchronous event order editor).

It allows you to move all or defined components from a solution to another one. What’s the point? Well, when working on a specific feature, you might want to isolate the corresponding items in a specific solution. When the feature is completed, you want to transfer components from your specific solution to the deliverable solution.

Instead of adding each type of components, one by one, this tool helps you add them in a bulk.!

Here’s a preview

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As usual, this plugin, among other, is available with XrmToolBox on CodePlex

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

New XrmToolBox plugin : Synchronous events execution order editor

Last week, I receive a request from Rob Boyers that was asking for a tool that can help him to order execution order of synchronous events, plugin steps and workflows.

Indeed, in Dynamics CRM 2013, you can set the “rank” property of a plugin step to define its execution order among other steps in the same message and stage, using the PluginRegistrationTool. Unfortunately, there is no such way to edit the “rank” property of a synchronous workflow in a UI.

So, here is the “Synchronous events execution order editor”, a new XrmToolBox plugin

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It works only with CRM 2013 and loads all synchronous plugin steps and workflows and group them by Entity, Message and Stage. When selecting a stage, you can see all events registered and you can update the rank value.

Then, just click on the button “Apply update(s)” to update events on the organization. Just a note: for synchronous workflows that are activated, they will be deactivated, updated then activated back.

As usual, the XrmToolBox and its plugins are available on CodePlex

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

XrmToolBox : Donate and get rid of the sponsor screen

You may have noticed that latest releases of XrmToolBox embed a sponsor screen that is displayed once a week. This sponsor screen is here to remind you to support my work, by rating the tool on CodePlex or by making a donation.

As a reminder, the screen looks like this:

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If you want to get rid of this screen, you must make a donation. When I get a donation, I send the donor a license file that removes the screen and adds a message of thanks on the start screen, see below. The message may include your name and your company name if you want.

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You can also be listed as a XrmToolBox sponsor on the Donators list on this blog.

If you're wondering what to serve me money from your donations, my goal is to buy a Surface 2 Pro for a true mobile computer and to continue to develop XrmToolBox anywhere! So you know what you have to do Sourire

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

XrmToolBox continues to grow

I just released a new version of my toolbox with two new “features”:

  • A new tool developed by my colleague Damien (DamSim) that will allow you to copy a view from one organization to an other. This is the View Transfer Tool.

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  • A new way to manage your connections. Some users reported that it was difficult to find where to manage connections. You have now the possibility to display connections list by clicking the button “Manage connections” in the toolbar of the toolbox. This will display the list of connections and let you create, update or delete connections.

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  • You can also notice that this list exposes the version of the organization. it will help you determine which rollup is installed on your organizations. This number is updated each time you connect to the organization.

This updates is obviously available on CodePlex

Moreover, I’m pretty excited because I have been in touch with a developer from a well known Microsoft Dynamics CRM partner that should release a bunch of plugins for the XrmToolBox in the coming weeks. I can’t wait to see them in action, and see the XrmToolBox project growing up

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Storing custom configuration settings in Microsoft Dynamics CRM

Since some years, I’m using two custom entities to store some parameters used in JavaScript, Plugins and Custom Workflow Activities. As I have been asked to share them with the community, I’m doing it today?

I have created a managed solution that contains these two entities:

  • Parameters Category : Used to define parameters groups
  • Category : This is the main entity that stores the parameter with the following attributes:
    • Name : This is a display name that can be changed anytime
    • Logical name : This is a name editable only during creation
    • Category : To indicate in which group of parameters the parameter belongs
    • Description : no need of explanation here
    • Value type : define the type of value
    • Value : depending of the type, the appropriate control is displayed. When saving the value is also copied to a global text attribute named “global value”

This way, I can store typed parameters for multiple usages:

  • Storing counter current value
  • Storing url of an external application
  • Storing a date of a last execution of any process
  • Setting a debug flag to display additionnal information in some process
  • etc.

Here is a screenshot of the form

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The solution supports French and English languages and is compatible with Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 and 2013.

As usual here, the solution is available on CodePlex

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Change the default dashboard in Dynamics CRM 2013 with XrmToolBox SiteMap Editor plugin

I updated the SiteMapEditor to allows you to change the default dashboard that is displayed when navigating to a Dashboard SubArea in Dynamics CRM 2013.

SiteMapDashboardCapability

To do so, follow this procedure:

  1. Connect the XrmToolBox to your organization
  2. Open SiteMapEditor plugin
  3. Load the SiteMap
  4. Navigate to an area that is a dashboard page
  5. Click on the “Browse” (…) button in the details panel (Default Dashboard Id)
  6. Select the dashboard that should be displayed when navigating to this SubArea
  7. Save the SubArea item
  8. Update the SiteMap

Please note that this feature is only available in Dynamics CRM 2013 and Dynamics CRM Online Fall '13 Service Update. If you try to use this feature in CRM 2011, you will get the following error:

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New XrmToolBox plugin! Assembly Recovery Tool

This XrmToolBox is really a small one that is just an update of one of my CRM 4.0 tools. It allows to export .Net assemblies stored in CRM database (plugins and custom workflow activities).

It eases the extraction of these assemblies instead of creating a solution to export them.

AssemblyRecoveryTool

New XrmToolBox plugin! Form Libraries Manager

Last month, I had to work on some JavaScript web resources cleaning and I wanted to rename all my web resources. This is not so complicated when using the Web Resources Manager plugin to drag and drop JavaScript files to some new folders.

The difficult part was to update all forms that used some shared web resources like JSON2, jQuery and XrmServiceToolkit. So, I decided to write… a plugin for the XrmToolBox.

So, let me introduce the Form Libraries Manager

FormLibraryManager

This plugin can list all JavaScript web resources and all forms (only active forms for CRM 2013). You can select web resources to add and forms where to add them. If multiple web resources are selected, you can order them and choose where to display them : at the beginning of the scripts list for forms or at the end. I’m sure this will help people to initialize all their forms with required web resources.

It can also remove in bulk selected libraries. For each selected library, if it is used by a form event, a warning is display to ask you if the library and the event(s) should be removed.

As usual, the tool is available as part of the XrmToolBox project, on CodePlex

Thursday, January 16, 2014

XrmToolBox : Use the Nuget package to develop your own plugins

It has been an old request, it is now available!

I just published a nuget package that includes the latest version of XrmToolBox executable and the connection libraries. When you want to develop your own plugin, you can use the Visual Studio Template available in the XrmToolBox donwload page. But there is still missing references.

To resolve this problem, I published a nuget package that will import these missing reference to your Visual Studio project.

To install the package in Visual Studio, right click on the references folder and “Manage nuget packages”.

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Then search for “XrmToolBox”, you will find the package. Install it!

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New XrmToolBox plugin : Form Parameter Manager

Today, I’m releasing a new plugin for my XrmToolBox application! This plugin has been asked by one of my fellow MVP, Dave Berry.

This plugin helps you to create and delete form parameters in bulk. Without this tool, you should open each form properties panel to create the parameter required. The same operation apply when you need to delete them.

So, again, it’s a productivity tool. Here is what it looks like:

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You can load all forms. They are listed with a boolean that indicates if custom parameters already exist for selected forms. You can create parameters in bulk. The panel on the right side list parameters included in selected forms from the panel on the left side.

As usual, the XrmToolBox with all its plugins (currently 17!) can be downloaded from CodePlex

If this plugin (and the other ones) improve your productivity, you should consider rating the tool on CodePlex or making a small donation