Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Pre and Post Entity Images

Very Often I found during code reviews the most common mistakes new programmers commit during plugin development in CRM is usage of images at wrong places. so I thought of writing the same here, may be it helps someone.

first we should understand what are Pre and Post entity images:

PreEntityImages and PostEntityImages contain snapshots of the primary entity's attributes before and after the core platform operation. Microsoft Dynamics CRM populates the pre-entity and post-entity images based on the security privileges of the impersonated system user. You can specify to have the platform populate these properties when you register your plug-in. The entity alias value you specify during plug-in registration is used as the key into the image collection.

before using the images we should know when they are available. For example, only synchronous post-event and asynchronous registered plug-ins have PostEntityImages populated. In addition, the create operation does not support a pre-image and a delete operation does not support a post-image.

Hope it is helpful.

Happy Coding. Smile

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 – Visual Studio Plugin / Workflow Activity Templates

Just downloaded and checked the great artwork of pogo69. really helpful and saved a lot of time as you don’t have to write everything from scratch now.

checkout the awesome Visual Studio 2010 templates for Plugin and Workflow activity development for CRM 2011 created by him.



check these out at his blog:

Friday, April 8, 2011

List of changes in plugin development in CRM 4.0 and CRM 2011

There are not much changes in terms of plugins. there are few changes like instead of using DynamicEntity class we have to use the Entity class. the five major changes are :

1. The IPlugin now resides in Microsoft.Xrm.Sdk namespace instead of Microsoft.Crm.Sdk

public class ClassName : Microsoft.Crm.Sdk.IPlugin
public class ClassName : Microsoft.Xrm.Sdk.IPlugin

2. The Execute method signature of the IPlugin interface has changed, it now expects an IServiceProvider instead of the IPluginExecutionContext.

public void Execute(IPluginExecutionContext context)
public void Execute(IServiceProvider serviceProvider)

3. To get a reference to the IPluginExecutionContext you now need to call the GetService method of the IServiceProvider interface.

public void Execute(IPluginExecutionContext context)
Microsoft.Xrm.Sdk.IPluginExecutionContext context =(Microsoft.Xrm.Sdk.IPluginExecutionContext)

4. ICrmService has been changed to IOrganizationService.

ICrmService sdk = context.CreateCrmService(true);
IOrganizationServiceFactory factory = (IOrganizationServiceFactory)serviceProvider.GetService(typeof(IOrganizationServiceFactory));
IOrganizationService sdk = factory.CreateOrganizationService(context.UserId);

5. DynamicEntity has been changed to Entity.

  • Properties property of DynamicEntity no longer exists

  • Getting and Setting values no longer use *Property classes,

eg: no more KeyProperty, StringProperty…etc, simply do int value = (int)entity[“schema_name”];

if (context.InputParameters.Properties.Contains("Target") &&
context.InputParameters.Properties["Target"] is DynamicEntity)
if (context.InputParameters.Contains("Target") &&
context.InputParameters["Target"] is Entity)

hats off to the original contribution by Gayan Perera

Happy Coding Smile

List of changes : Type mapping between CRM 4.0 and CRM 2011

In Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 and Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online, the programming model has been changed to use native .NET types whenever possible. A beautiful post from Resultondemand explains it all, with all credit to their great job the excerpts of the post is :

Type Mapping Between Versions
The following table shows the mapping between the defined type for an entity attribute, the type that is used in a record, and the type that was used in Microsoft DynamicsCRM4.0.

Attribute Type Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Type Microsoft DynamicsCRM4.0 Type
AttributeTypeCode.Boolean bool or System.Boolean CrmBoolean
AttributeType.CalendarRules EntityCollection DynamicEntity[] or calendarrule[]
AttributeType.Customer EntityReference Customer
AttributeType.DateTime System.DateTime CrmDateTime
AttributeType.Decimal decimal or System.Decimal CrmDecimal
AttributeType.Double double or System.Double CrmFloat
AttributeType.Integer int or System.Integer CrmNumber
Not used in records.
Not used in records.
AttributeType.Lookup EntityReference Lookup
AttributeType.Memo string or System.String System.String
AttributeType.Money Money CrmMoney
AttributeType.Owner EntityReference Owner
AttributeType.PartyList EntityCollection or ActivityParty[] activityparty[] or DynamicEntity []
AttributeType.Picklist OptionSetValue Picklist
AttributeType.PrimaryKey System.Guid Key
AttributeType.String System.String System.String
AttributeType.State OptionSetValue or enumeration generated for the entity state EntityNameStateInfo
AttributeType.Status OptionSetValue orint Status
AttributeType.Uniqueidentifier System.Guid UniqueIdentifier
AttributeType.Virtual System.Object
Not used in records.
Not used in records.
Other Type Changes
Old Type New Type
CrmAttributeType Class (MetadataService) Microsoft.Xrm.Sdk.Metadata.AttributeTypeCode
Moniker Class (CrmService) Microsoft.Xrm.Sdk.EntityReference
SecurityPrincipal Class (CrmService) Microsoft.Xrm.Sdk.EntityReference
Happy Coding Smile

List of changes in JavaScript usage in CRM 4.0 and CRM 2011

When working with CRM2011 Java script you will found many difference about syntax/methods between CRM2011 and CRM4.0 Please check some of the comparisons as listed. Please click on the Image below to enlarge view. hats off to the original post contributor.


Happy Coding Smile

List of changes in Custom Workflow Assembly in CRM 4.0 and CRM 2011

here is a a quick list of changes you need to remember while creating workflow assemblies in CRM 4.0 or CRM 2011, as found here.

1. References

CRM 4.0

using System.Workflow.Activities;

using System.Workflow.ComponentModel;

using System.Workflow.ComponentModel.Compiler;

using Microsoft.Crm.Sdk;

using Microsoft.Crm.Sdk.Query;

using Microsoft.Crm.SdkTypeProxy;

using Microsoft.Crm.Workflow;

CRM 2011

using System.Activities;

using Microsoft.Crm.Sdk.Messages;

using Microsoft.Xrm.Sdk;

using Microsoft.Xrm.Sdk.Workflow;

2. Base Class

Base class definition has been changed from  SequenceActivity to CodeActivity.

CRM 4.0: In CRM 4.0 we have to specify both Workflow name and Workflowactivitygroupname in the code as written in the following code.

[CrmWorkflowActivity("My Custom Workflow", "CRM Workflow")]

public class MyCustomWF: SequenceActivity

CRM 2011: In CRM 2011 that is done in different way.

public class MyCustomWF: CodeActivity

Both Workflow name and Workflowactivitygroupname can be specified at the time of registering the assembly

3. Execute Method

The overridden Execute method remains the same except parameter and return type.

CRM 4.0

protected override ActivityExecutionStatus Execute(ActivityExecutionContext executionContext)

CRM 2011

protected override void Execute(CodeActivityContext executionContext)

4. Create service

CRM 4.0

IContextService contextService = (IContextService)executionContext.GetService(typeof(IContextService));

IWorkflowContext context = contextService.Context;

ICrmService crmService = context.CreateCrmService();

CRM 2011

IWorkflowContext context = executionContext.GetExtension<IWorkflowContext>();

IOrganizationServiceFactory serviceFactory = executionContext.GetExtension<IOrganizationServiceFactory>();

IOrganizationService service = serviceFactory.CreateOrganizationService(context.UserId);

5. INPUT Parameters

CRM 4.0

Declaration: how to initialize the input parameter

         // specified dependency property

         public static DependencyProperty CaseIDProperty = DependencyProperty.Register("CaseID", typeof(Lookup), typeof(TotalTaskRetrieval));

        // Specified Input property

        [CrmInput("Enter Case ")]

        // Set the reference Target for Property created


        // Property Defined for caseId

        public Lookup CaseID




                return (Lookup)base.GetValue(CaseIDProperty);




                base.SetValue(CaseIDProperty, value);



Use: Access the input parameter declared above as,

Guid caseid=CaseID.Value

CRM 2011

Declaration: how to initialize the input parameter

       [Input("Enter Case ")]

       [ReferenceTarget("incident ")]

       [Default("3B036E3E-94F9-DE11-B508-00155DBA2902", " incident ")]

       public InArgument<EntityReference> CaseID { get; set; }

Use: Access the input parameter declared above as,

Guid caseid = CaseID.Get<EntityReference>(executionContext).Id

6. OUTPUT  Parameters

CRM 4.0


        public CrmMoney Sum




                return (CrmMoney)base.GetValue(SumProperty);




                base.SetValue(SumProperty , value);



CRM 2011



public OutArgument<Money> Sum { get; set; }

happy Coding Smile