I have had a excellent week working on my toolkit. I feel like I’m really starting to make progress on my main application. This week I have been working hard on the foundations again but things are really starting to take shape. Features are becoming easier to reuse and the development is starting to speed up because of it. The best part about the development is that because its following the MVVM design pattern theres a nice separation between UI and Logic. For the developers reading I have no code behind in my views, and my views contain little XAML! Happy Days! For you none developers that means when the new version of MSCRM comes out it will be easier for me to adapt the toolkit to interface with it!
Since I have been a CRM developer I have used a whole host of tools to aid me in customising CRM. A lot of these tools you guys will more than likely have used yourselves! Now I’m never going to complain about free tools that other developers have kindly poured a lot of time and effort in to developing. But, when using them I can always see improvements and want to implement those changes. Now some of these tools come with source code, so you could say why not just extend what’s there. Well the truth is I don’t really like working with other people’s code. I’m not saying their code is bad but I like my style and want to stick with it for the time being! So inspired by all of these wonderful tools I have started to develop the CRM Codex Toolkit as a hobby. Well that’s what I am calling it at the moment
This caused me some headaches today, so to save you the cost of a box of paracetamols i thought I’d shout it out! If you ever find yourself writing code to perform your own mail merges based on CRM mail merge tags watch out for how CRM shortens mail merge tags when involving related entities. What do I mean by this? Well let’s say we create a mail merge that is based on case. In this merge we include the primary contacts name and address. In doing this we basically add a related field in to our mail merge.
If you are new to MSCRM and you are finding it all a bit overwhelming, take heart, persevere with it and you will be rewarded! You might be thinking well its easy for you to say that when you’re a software engineer that understands the fundamentals of MSCRM. However the idea of perseverance is the same with any topic. I’d like to share an experience of mine with you that demonstrates perseverance and where it can get you.
While working with MSCRM you may find that on occasions you need to redeploy an organisation’s database. The reason for doing so could be many. For me the chances are I am restoring a corrupt CRM System or maybe I am transferring an organisation between CRM system, but ultimately you are looking to deploy customisations and data. Luckily it is quite easy to restore an organisation! In this blog I will show you how I typically restore an organisation.