Thursday, April 23, 2015

Reflections from eXtremeCRM Madrid 2015

A few days ago on the flight down to Madrid, I wrote about
   my Expectations for eXtremeCRM.

Now the conference is over, I am back in the flight seat heading home to Sweden.

Twitter The Social Buzz

If you want to follow a sort of backwards timeline from the conference, I did post a few tweets of things I found interesting. See here: @rappen.
The most popular of these was the hint from Bob Stutz that inline editing in grids might actually see the day of light in a not too far future:

Another quote that was delivered in the closing key note was this message:

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Expectations for eXtremeCRM Madrid 2015

eXtremeCRM 2015 will be hosted in Madrid, Spain, on April 21-22.

This is the fifth year the conference is held in Europe, of which I have personally taken part in Prague 2011, Rome 2013, Barcelona 2014, and now on the way to Madrid 2015. So by now I have some expectations.


eurekaWhat it is not

Attending the years until now have been rewarding in a quite a few ways.
But I will start with stating what it is not, at least not for me.

The conference has never given me epic revelations of new technology, implementations previously unheard of, or new killer features. There are lots of third party solutions, functions and products being displayed, but the general feeling I get is "nah, if we too went that way, we would have done the same thing, just a bit better".

The great reward it gives is by making connections, discussing topics and problems with fellow developers from around Europe and the world, and actually getting the feeling of

ok, perhaps we are not doing half bad after all…

Monday, April 13, 2015

XrmToolBox – the success story so far

XrmToolBox is a huge success in the Microsoft Dynamics CRM community.
What happened?


Of course, the man behind this success is Tanguy Touzard. Like many really good tools out there, the tools were developed for "personal use", to assist in the day to day development of customer solutions. And then, the tools were released to the public for The Greater Good of the platform, the community, and of course the customers.

In brief, this is the story so far:

And so it continues…

Integrating FetchXML Builder with other plugins

With the next release of FetchXML Builder for XrmToolBox it is possible for other tools to benefit from the UI FetchXML Builder offers to compose queries to be used for any purpose.

The MessageBus functionality introduced in pull request #101 of XrmToolBox makes it possible to communicate between plugins within the tool.
BDU-UseFXB1This is implemented in the Bulk Data Updater (currently available as beta in Cinteros' set of tools for XrmToolBox at to be able to use FetchXML Builder to get the query to use when retrieving records to update.
Using the MessageBus, it is really easy to get FXB to do the work for you when you need a FetchXML string or a QueryExpression object in your plugin. When communicating with FXB, the argument passed between the plugins shall be an instance of FXBMessageBusArgument, which is a public class in the FXB assembly.



To prepare your plugins for integration, implement the IMessageBusHost interface in both source and target plugins.

    public partial class DataUpdater : PluginBase, IGitHubPlugin, IPayPalPlugin, IMessageBusHost

Monday, April 6, 2015

To the eXtreme


This year I will be attending my fourth eXtremeCRM Europe conference.

After joining the eXtremeCRM conference in Prague (2011), Rome (2013) and Barcelona (2014) I will join this year's edition as well, which will be hosted in Madrid on April 20-23.

Besides tons of sessions on the cutting edge of Dynamics CRM development, there are a lot of coffee breaks to be filled with other things than just cookies and coffee.

So if you are interested in taking the opportunity to meet and discuss my plugin philosophy from the CRM Rocks podcast earlier this year, or if you have suggestions, questions or feedback for the FetchXML Builder for XrmToolBox, or perhaps you would like to know how you could join our awesome team at Cinteros

make sure you find my name tag in the crowd or
just tweet me
@rappen so we can have a chat!

And cookies.

See you in Madrid!

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Introduction to FetchXML Builder

FetchXML Builder for XrmToolBox is getting more and more attention and is now downloaded and used in most parts of the world. Current numbers indicate a total download count of about 1600, and top count for a single version is close to 400.

So I figured it was probably time to write an introduction to the tool, though I have actually received very few questions about how to use it (is it really that intuitive and self-explanatory??)

There is now a page on this blog dedicated to FetchXML Builder with brief information on how to use the tool and what features it offers.

It begins like this:

This project aims to combine the good parts from Advanced Find and the View Editor in Microsoft Dynamics CRM, the FetchXml Tester and View Layout Replicator in XrmToolBox, and the retired Stunnware Tools to create a tool that will let you do all those things that otherwise have to be done manually.

Navigate to the introduction page using the navigation bar above, or click here:

FetchXML Builder introduction

To skip the introduction and go straight to the download page, click here:

Enjoy Your FetchXML'ing!