All Posts by xrmcoaches

CRM 2011 Tip o’the day: Disabling the Install Outlook Notification

When the CRM 2011 web client is opened, it performs a check to see if you have the Outlook client installed. If not, then it will display a notification at the top of the screen that will allow you to install the Outlook client, should you wish:


This can be very annoying, should have not wish to install the Outlook client.

Luckily, you, as the CRM system administrator, can turn this feature off.

Perform these steps:

1) Select Settings, Administration, System Settings.

2) Click the Outlook tab.

3) At the bottom of the Outlook tab, you’ll find an option to turn off the “Get the Outlook Client” message:


4) Set that option to No.

5) Click OK to save your change.

6) Refresh your browser using Ctrl+F5.

7) You should no longer see the Outlook client invitation.

1 Categorize your CRM Contacts using Relationship Type

One of the most powerful fields on the Dynamics CRM Contact entity is something called the Relationship Type.

This field allows you to categorize your contacts by specifying who they are: customer, vendor, partner, etc.

Unfortunately, for some unknown reason, this field is missing from the default CRM 2011 data entry form.  Let’s walk through the process of adding this field to the form and customizing CRM to maximize it’s use.

Step 1: Add relationship types

In order to make maximum use of this field, we first need to make sure it contains relevant data, which we will do with these steps:

1) Select Settings, Customizations, Customize the system.

2) Expand Entities

3) Expand Contact

4) Click on Fields

5) Locate a the Relationship Type field

Note: the internal or schema name for this field is customertypecode.

6) Double-click the field to open up the field editor:


This field is of the type Option Set ( picklist in CRM 4.0 ), and as you can see, it contains only the default value so let’s add some values.

7) In the Options list, click on the Default Value item.

8) In the Label edit box, change this value to Customer.

9) Click the plus sign on the Options list to add a new item.

10) Change the Item text to something relevant to your organization, like Vendor.

11) Repeat steps 9 and 10 until you have entered all of your selections.  Mine looks like this:


12) Set the Searchable field to Yes:


This allows the field to be used for Advanced Find searches.

13) Click the Save and Close button.

14) From the toolbar, click the Publish All Customizations button to publish your changes.


Step 2: Modify the Main data entry form

1) In the Solution Explorer, under Contact, click Forms.

2) Double-click the Main form row to edit the form.

3) Locate Relationship Type in the Field explorer on the right-side of the form editor.

4) Drag and drop the Relationship Type onto the first section so that it looks like this:


5) Click the Save button to save your work.

6) Click the Publish button to publish the form.

7) Close the form editor.


Step 3: Creating Views

1) Once back to the Solution Explorer, under Contact, click Views.

2) Click the New button to create a new View

3) When the View Properties dialog displays, enter Active Customers in the Name field:


4) Click OK.

5) When the view designer displays, click the Add Columns button.

6) Select fields that you wish to display in your view:


7) Click OK.

8) Click the Edit Filter Criteria button.

9) We need to set our filter criteria to the following:


10) Click OK to save your filter criteria.

11) Click Save and Close to close the View Editor

12) Click the Publish All Customizations button to publish your changes.


Step 4: Verify your work

To verify your work, perform these steps:

1) Select the Workplace or Sales area

2) Open a Contact.

3) Set their Relationship Type to Customer.

4) Click the Save and Close button.

5) Select the Active Customers view:


6) Verify that the Contact you modified in step 2 is in the list.


Next Steps

Now that you have a view showing your Active Customers, you’ll need to create a view that corresponds to each of the new Relationship Types that you created.

This allows your users to quickly filter and navigate your Contacts which can be very helpful should you have a large number of Contacts.

CRM 2011 Tip o’the Day: Keyboard Shortcuts

It’s amazing what you can find browsing through the help file or manual sometimes.

Case in point: Did you know Dynamics CRM had hotkeys for certain operations?

Well it does.  Here they are, grouped by functional area:


General Keyboard Shortcuts



Copy text


Paste text


Undo previous text change


Save a record


Close a record


Cut text


Delete text


Delete selected text immediately without putting it on the Clipboard


Move to the first tab on the ribbon


Move to the last tab on the ribbon


Move the insertion point to the start of the next word

Ctrl+Right Arrow

Move the insertion point to the start of the previous word

Ctrl+Left Arrow

Select all text in the current field


Display the System menu for the active window


Display the shortcut menu for the selected item


Cancel the current task or command, or close a selected list or dialog box


Move up through a list of records

Up Arrow

Move down through a list of records

Down Arrow

Open the selected record


Select all records on the current page


Jump to the sitemap


Open the recently viewed pages and view menu


Select multiple rows in a list sequentially

Shift+Up Arrow or Shift+Down Arrow

Select multiple rows in a list non-sequentially

Tab to the check box and Spacebar

Publish Form Editor customization



Dialog Box Keyboard Shortcuts



Move to the next option or option group


Move to the previous option or option group


Complete the command for the active option or button


Move between options in an open list, or between options in a group of options

Arrow keys

Cancel a command, or close a selected list or dialog box



Form Keyboard Shortcuts




Ctrl+S or Shift+F12

Save and close


Cancel edits and close (Close)


Open search

Spacebar or Enter

Delete text from search field


Delete the record


Save and then open a new form (Save and New)


Move forward through the form’s fields


Move backward through the form’s fields


Open the lookup menu with the most recently used items in alphabetical order

Alt+Down Arrow

Open the list menu


Navigate to the next item on the list


Navigate to the previous item on the list



Accessibility Keyboard Shortcuts



Switch Sticky Keys on and off

Shift five times

Switch Filter Keys on and off

Right Shift for eight seconds

Switch Toggle Keys on and off

Num Lock for five seconds

Switch High Contrast on and off

Left Alt+Left Shift+Print Screen

Switch Mouse Keys on and off

Left Alt+Left Shift+Num Lock

CRM 2011 Tip o’the Day: Moving to the next and previous records

By any odd chance have you ever noticed this new piece of chrome in the upper right corner of the CRM data entry forms:


Those arrows allow you to move to the previous and next record in the current view without closing the form.

Here’s a summary:


Moves to the Previous Record.

You may also use the hotkey: Ctrl+<


Moves to the Next Record.

You may also use the hotkey: Ctrl+>

2 Using CRM workflow to detect company email addresses within contacts


In case you didn’t know, it is a very bad practice to allow users to create contacts for employees of your company, using their company email address.

It causes resolution issues when CRM attempts to automatically associate an inbound email with a person within CRM.

If you have a CRM User with and a contact with, which one should it assign email ownership to?

The answer is: neither.

It also doesn’t inform you that an issue exists unless you happen to open, where you will find something that looks like this:


The “big red question mark” as I call it, indicates that CRM can’t determine what record to associate the email with.

So, to prevent this process, we’re going to create a workflow within CRM to notify the owner of the Contact as well as the system administrator that such a record has been created.

Here’s how:


Step by Step

1) Select Settings, Processes.

2) Click the New button.

3) Enter the Process name, Entity, and Category, as shown below:


Tip: I always preface the names of my workflows with the subject or process area that the workflows fit into. When the process list is sorted by Process Name, it groups similar processes together.

4) Click the OK button.

5) Change your Scope to Organization.

6) Set the Start when to Record is created and Record fields change.

7) Click the Select button to select the fields you wish to monitor for changes.

8) Select the E-mail field:


9) Click the Add Step button, then select Check Condition


10) Click the link: <condition> (click to configure)

11) Enter the following criteria:


In the edit box, enter the domain name you wish to check against.

12) Click the Save and Close button to return to the main workflow dialog.

13) Click the rows that states: select this row and click Add Step.

14) Click the Add Step button.

15) Click the Send Email step

16) Click the Set Properties button

17) Complete the email properties so that the email looks something like this:


Note: The fields in yellow are dynamic values which will be replaced with values from the Contact entity when the workflow is actually executed.

18) Press the Save and Close button.

19) Assuming no further changes need to be made, we can now activate our workflow process by clicking the Activate button.

Note: CRM 4.0 uses the term Publish for exactly the same procedure.

20)  Click OK when prompted with the following dialog:


Your workflow is now active.


Test the Workflow

To test the workflow, you will need to do the following:


1) Create a new Contact and insert a real or fake email address that ends with your company’s domain name.  Like this:


2) You may monitor the progress of your workflow by clicking the Workflows navigation link:


3) Wait for the workflow displays a status of completed:


Tip: If you didn’t know, at the top-right-corner of every CRM view is a small icon with two green arrows:


Clicking this icon will cause the view to refresh.


4) Once the Status Reason field changes to Succeeded, we can go and check our work.

5) Click on the Closed Activities navigation link and you should see our email:


6) Open the email and you will see our Dynamic Data fields have been replaced by values associated with the Contact in question:




So that is about it. Today I’ve shown you one method that can be implemented to prevent company email addresses from being entered as contacts.

Ideally, you would want a process that would prompt the user when they are creating or updating the record, but that would require creating a “plugin” that is installed to watch the Contact email addresses. That is really a lot of work and something that requires a developer.

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