Category Archives: Dynamics 365 Configuration

Microsoft Dynamics 365 and SSRS Reports: Dates and Time

In this article, we deep dive into the Microsoft Dynamics 365 Customer Engagement Date and Time field type, as well as explore the implications of this field type on SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS) reports depending on the behavior and format selected. We demonstrate how to make SSRS reports to display Date and Time fields in the user’s time zone. Also, we look at how the different behaviors and formats of the Date and Time field type are stored in the SQL database. The included use case provides a real world scenario of where the information in this article came in handy.

Use Case

Inspiration

Recently on a client engagement, a bug was raised on a couple of SSRS reports I had built a few months ago. A date field on the reports was displaying the next day i.e. if a record was approved yesterday, the report was showing that it was approved today in some cases. Looking at the records from the Dynamics 365 user interface, i.e. views, Advanced Find and forms, the field was displaying the correct date despite the SSRS reports were showing that same date as the next day. This behavior was only observed on some of the records created by the clients.

I thought of sharing the problem solving approach and tools I used to resolve this bug with the hope the it may help another Microsoft Dynamics 365 software developer in the future.

What was going on

The field in question it is a Date and Time field but the reports are configured to show the date part of the field only, as per the requirements. After investigations, it turned out that the SSRS reports were consuming a Date and Time field type (Behavior: User Local. Format: Date and Time), without translating it into the user’s time zone. Therefore, if a user approved a record between 8pm and Mid-night EST, the date of approval would show up on the SSRS report as the following day. This is because if a Date and Time field type’s behavior is set to User Local, the actual data is store in UTC time but translated to the user’s time zone when displayed to the user in the Dynamics 365 user interface. Unlike the Dynamics 365 user interface, SSRS reports do not automatically provide the translation to the user’s time zone but is can be implemented as shown in the SSRS Reports section below. Therefore, the source of the discrepancy between the date seen by users in Dynamics 365 user and what was being shown in the report lies in the fact that the Dynamics 365 user interface was translating the UTC date into the user’s local time while the report was showing the date as it was recorded in the SQL database. As the client is based in the EST, the bug could only be replicated, under the same conditions, between 8pm and Mid-night EST, when EST and UTC exist on two calendar dates.

Some of the client’s employees was creating the data between 8pm and Mid-night EST. As the field’s behavior is set to User Local, in the four hours time window (8pm to Mid-night EST), UTC and EST are on two different dates, and records approved in period will stored on the following day in UTC, which the database time for User Local behavior fields.

The Tools to Debug the Problem

View the Behavior and Format of Date and Time FIelds

Open the Date and Time field in the Dynamics 365 solution and see how it is saved:
Date and Time field's Behavior and Format

Date and Time Fields: Behavior and Format

The table below shows the different behaviors and formats of Date and Time fields in Dynamics 365, and well as their implications.

BehaviorFormatChanging field’s behavior
User Local Note: This is the behavior of all date and time fields in the previous releases.

– The field values are displayed in the current user’s local time.
– In Web services (SDK), these values are returned using a common UTC time zone format.
Date Only – or – Date and TimeIn the user interface (UI), you can change certain out-of-the-box entity field’s behavior from the User Local to Date Only. For a list of entities and fields, see Changing the field behavior to Date Only on upgrade. You can change the custom entity field’s behavior from the User Local to Date Only or to Time-Zone Independent.

Changing the field behavior affects the field values that are added or modified after the field behavior was changed. The existing field values remain in the database in the UTC time zone format. To change the behavior of the existing field values from UTC to Date Only, you may need a help of a developer to do it programmatically. More information: Convert behavior of existing date and time values in the database. Warning: Before changing the behavior of a date and time field, you should review all the dependencies of the field, such as business rules, workflows, calculated fields, or rollup fields, to ensure that there are no issues as a result of changing the behavior. After changing the behavior of a date and time field, you should open each business rule, workflow, calculated field, and rollup field dependent on the field that you changed, review the information, and save it, to ensure that the latest date and time field’s behavior and value are used. You can restrict modifying the field’s behavior, by setting the CanChangeDateTimeBehavior managed property to False. More information: Set managed property to change date and time behavior
Date Only

– The concept of a time zone isn’t applicable to this behavior. The field values are displayed without the time zone conversion.
– The time portion of the value is always 12:00AM.
– The date portion of the value is stored and retrieved as specified in the UI and Web services (SDK).
Date OnlyThe Date Only behavior can’t be changed to other behavior types, once it’s set.
Time-Zone Independent

– The concept of a time zone isn’t applicable to this behavior. The field values are displayed without the time zone conversion.
– The date and time values are stored and retrieved as specified in the UI and Web services (SDK).
Date Only – or – Date and TimeThe Time-Zone Independent behavior can’t be changed to other behavior types, once it’s set.
Source: Microsoft

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Date and Time fields in Dynamics 365 User Interface vs. SQL Database

Dynamics 365 User Interface: Date and Time fields

Here are the different possible combinations of storing simple dates and time data in Dynamics 365 (on a classic interface form for the Contact entity):
Date and Time fields on a Form

SQL Database: Date and Time fields

In this section, we will look at how the date and time fields in the previous section are stored in the database. The date and time fields are on the Contact entity (i.e. ContactBase table in my Dynamics 365 SQL database). Querying for the specified columns in the table where the full name is ‘Peter Parker’:

SELECT TOP (10)
       [FullName]    
      ,[hos_uselocal_dateonly]
      ,[hos_uselocal_dateandtime]
      ,[hos_dateonly_dateonly]
      ,[hos_timezoneindependent_dateonly]
      ,[hos_timezoneindependent_dateandtime]
  FROM [House_MSCRM].[dbo].[ContactBase]
  WHERE FullName = 'Peter Parker'

See the results below:
Viewing Date and Time fields in the datebase

From the database results above, it is worth noting:

  • Behavior of User Local and Format of Date Only: these fields are always stored as 4am in my database in EST, which is 12am UTC.
  • Behavior of User Local and Format of Date and Time: in my time zone, i.e. EST, these fields are always stored 4 hours ahead, i.e. UTC time, in the database. In contrast, in the user interface, this field always shows the data in my time zone.
  • Behavior of Time Zone Independent and Format of Date and Time: stores the data in the database as inputted in the user interface and does not respect time zones.

SSRS Reports: Display Dates and Time in the user’s time zone

There are two ways to create SSRS Reports for Dynamics 365. You can create a report in Dynamics 365 using the Report Wizard, export it and add to your Report Server Project in Microsoft Visual Studio IDE, with the built-in fields and parameters, from Dynamics 365. Alternatively, you can take the opposite path of creating a blank Report Server Project in Microsoft Visual Studio IDE, connecting to Dynamics 365, and adding the built-in fields and parameters as needed. If you take the former approach, you will get the built-in fields and parameters in Visual Studio, similar to the image below:
Visual Studio - built in fields and parameters

To translate UTC date and time data, for User Local behavior, in the SQL database into the user’s time zone, you have to use the SSRS Report formula below, where “CRM_UserTimeZoneName” is a parameter and <SSRSDateAndTimeField> is name of your Date and Time field in SSRS:

=Microsoft.Crm.Reporting.RdlHelper.DateTimeUtility.ConvertUtcToLocalTime(
<SSRSDateAndTimeField>, Parameters!CRM_UserTimeZoneName.Value)

“CRM_UserTimeZoneName” is a parameter passed in from Dynamics 365, containing the user’s time zone. The function “Microsoft.Crm.Reporting.RdlHelper.DateTimeUtility.ConvertUtcToLocalTime” iconverts UTC time to the user’s time zone. Therefore, when the user runs the report, they will see the date and time data in their time zone, despite it is stored as UTC by default in the SQL database.

Here are some application examples, where “Fields!hos_uselocal_dateandtimeValue.Value” is the SSRS date and time field in Visual Studio:

  • Display User Local Date and Time SSRS data field in the user’s time zone (showing both date and time data):
=Microsoft.Crm.Reporting.RdlHelper.DateTimeUtility.ConvertUtcToLocalTime(
Fields!hos_uselocal_dateandtimeValue.Value, Parameters!CRM_UserTimeZoneName.Value)
  • Display User Local Date and Time SSRS data field in the user’s time zone (showing the date component only without the time component of the date, in the format dd/MM/yyyy):
=Format(CDate(Microsoft.Crm.Reporting.RdlHelper.DateTimeUtility.ConvertUtcToLocalTime(Fields!hos_uselocal_dateandtimeValue.Value,
Parameters!CRM_UserTimeZoneName.Value)), "dd/MM/yyyy")

Dynamics 365 Online: Accessing the contents of your SQL database

In Dynamics 365 Online, you do not have access to the SQL database that hosts your Dynamics 365 organization. However, Microsoft allows you to access the data in your SQL database by duplicating and syncing to Microsoft Azure. From Azure, you can connect to duplicated SQL database and be able to run the SQL script in this article. For more details duplicating and syncing your Dynamics 365 online SQL database to Microsoft Azure, see: Microsoft Dynamic 365 Data Export Service: Duplicating and Syncing SQL database in Azure

Microsoft Dynamics 365: Hide and Show Buttons

In this article, we cover to how to hide buttons as well as how to show buttons that are hidden, in Microsoft Dynamics 365 Customer Engagement. To achieve this object, we will use an example with practical requirements. To implement what is in this article, the user must have a System Administrator security role in Dynamics 365.
Dynamics 365 Home Command Bar Buttons

Working with Ribbon Workbench for Dynamics 365

If you do not already have the Ribbon Workbench for Dynamics 365, go and download it: Ribbon Workbench for Dynamics 365. The Ribbon Workbench comes as a Microsoft Dynamics 365 managed solution. Therefore, after downloading it, you have to import it in your Dynamics 365 instance by going to: Settings >> Solutions >> Import. After successfully following the import dialogue to the end and successfully importing the solution, refresh the page and you will able to see the Ribbon Workbench button in the Solutions area of Dynamics 365:
Ribbon Workbench Button in Dynamics 365

Application Example: Hide Buttons

Below we will provide an example of practical client requirements and show step by step how the Ribbon Workbench for Dynamics can help us address these requirements.

Requirements

A national, provincial /state or city level education board that has a Microsoft Dynamics 365 Customer Engagement implementation that keeps track of all the schools and students in its jurisdiction. Each student in the system must be linked to a school and under no circumstance can a user of the system be able to create a student record that is not associated to a school record. This prevents the problem of creating of orphan student records in the system i.e. student records without an associated school record.

Implication of the Requirements

To implement these requirements, we will have to restrict the places where users can access the Student (logical name: contact ) entity’s New button and be able to create new student records. Student records should only be created in relation to a School (logical name: account) record i.e. from the School records’ Students sub-grids as shown in the image below.

  • The Student’s sub-grid on Schools’ form
    Create Student record via Form Sub-grid
  • The Student’s sub-grid on Schools’ related entities menu
    Related entities

    Create Student record via Form related entities

Therefore, after implementing the instructions provided under the sub-section “Implementation of the requirements” and section “Other Settings”, users will only be able to create student records from the from the Student entity’s sub-grids on the School records. Hence as a corollary, users will no longer be able to create Student records from:

  • Quick Create menu
    Create Student record via Quick Create
  • Advanced Find
    Create Student record via Advanced Find
  • Student entity’s Home Command Bar
    Create Student record via Home Command Bar
  • Student entity’s Form Command Bar
    Create Student record via Form Command Bar

Implementation of the requirements

  1. To Go to Settings >> Solutions, and create a new solution. Add the entities whose ribbons you wish to edit. In our example, we will be adding the Student (logical name: contact ) entity only to the new solution. Exclude all entity assets but include the entity’s metadata. Save and Publish All Customizations.Create Solution With Student Entity
  2. Under Settings >> Solutions, click on the Ribbon Workbench button to launch the Dynamics 365 Ribbon Workbench. Select the solution created in part 1 and click OK.
    Launch Ribbon Workbench
  3. After opening the solution in Ribbon Workbench, it will look like the image below. Ensure you are editing the intended entity (A in the image below). In our case, we intend to edit the ribbons for the Student (logical name: contact ) entity. On the Student (logical name: contact ) entity, we intend to hide all the New buttons except on the Student’s sub-grids (B in the image below).
    Ribbon Workbench - verify entity and identify except buttons
  4. To hide a button, right click on it and select “Hide”. After hiding all the Student (logical name: contact) entity New buttons, except on the Student’s sub-grid (highlighted in green in the image above), the solution in Ribbon Workbench will look like the image below:
    Hide New Button Except Sub-grid
  5. Click Publish. After the publishing process is done, the only place you will be able to see the New button, in your Dynamics instance, for the Student (logical name: contact) entity is on the sub-grids, as per the requirements above.

Application Example: Show Hidden Buttons

Months or years later, the requirements may change and the client may want to us to reverse the work done in the previous section and show the the hidden New buttons. To accomplish that:

  1. To Go to Settings >> Solutions, and create a new solution. Add the entities whose ribbons you wish to edit. In our example, we will be adding the Student (logical name: contact ) only to the new solution. Exclude all entity assets but include the entity’s metadata. Save and Publish All Customizations.Create Solution With Student Entity
  2. Under Settings >> Solutions, click on the Ribbon Workbench button to launch the Dynamics 365 Ribbon Workbench. Select the solution created in part 1 and click OK.
    Launch Ribbon Workbench
  3. After opening the solution in Workbench, it will look like the image below. Ensure you are editing the intended entity (A in the image below). In our case, we intend to edit the ribbons for the Student (logical name: contact ) entity. On the Student (logical name: contact ) entity, we intend to make visible the hidden buttons. In contrast to the “Application Example: Hide Button” section, the next time we load an entity in Ribbon Workbench, the hidden buttons are no longer shown command bars section (B in the image below) but are shown under the Hidden Actions section (C in the image below). To make visible these hidden buttons, right click on each button (C in the image below) and select “Un-hide”.
    Make hidden buttons visible
  4. Click Publish. After the publishing process is done, the “New” buttons that were previously hidden will become visible in your Dynamics 365 instance.

Other Settings

  • To fully ensure that there no orphan Student records are created, make sure the Student entity’s School field is set to Required and the field is added to all Student entity’s forms.
  • Quick Create: To stop users from creating the Student records from the Quick Create menu, remove the Quick Create option from the entity:
    1. Go to Settings >> Solutions
    2. Open the solution containing the entity
    3. In the solution, click on the entity. Remove the “Allow quick create” option.
      Remove the Quick Create option
    4. Save and publish the solution

How to Integrate Microsoft Dynamics 365 Online with SharePoint and OneNote

In this post, we cover how to integrate Microsoft Dynamics 365 Online with SharePoint and OneNote. We start off with why you should consider integrating Dynamics 365 with SharePoint and OneNote. Secondly, a full step-by-step guide is provided on how to create a SharePoint Site for Dynamics 365 document management. Thirdly, a detailed guide on how to integrate Microsoft Dynamics 365 Online with SharePoint Online is provided. We conclude with an elaborate guide of how to integrate Microsoft Dynamics 365 Online with OneNote.

Why Consider Integrating Dynamics 365 with SharePoint and OneNote?

  • Cost: It is cheaper to store documents in Microsoft SharePoint than in Microsoft Dynamics 365 online.
  • Enhanced document Management functionality: SharePoint online is a Microsoft platform that specializes in document management and hence has more enhanced features focused on document management e.g. creating sub-sites, information rights management, SharePoint business intelligence, etc.
  • Enhance collaboration: teams can retain the great Dynamics 365 collaboration tools while also utilizing the advance document management features of SharePoint.
  • Enhanced productivity: by allowing users to access documents in multiple places. If someone is working in SharePoint, they do not need to go back to Dynamics 365 to access documents uploaded in Dynamics 365.
  • Seamless user experience: Despite the documents are stored in SharePoint after the integration, to a Dynamics 365 Online user, it feels like the documents still reside in Dynamics 365. The user experience is not compromised by this integration.

How To Create a SharePoint Site for Dynamics 365 Document Management

Step 1: Login in to https://admin.microsoft.com as a global or SharePoint administrator. If you see a notification that you have no permission to access the page, you do not have SharePoint administrator rights or Office 365 global administrator permissions in your organization.

Step 2: In the left pane, under Admin centers, select SharePoint. You might need to select Show all to see the full list of admin centers. This will take take you to the SharePoint home page.

Step 3: On the SharePoint home page, click Create site to start the process of creating a SharePoint site.
SharePoint Home Page

Step 4: You will get pop up window, asking you to choose the type of SharePoint site you would like to create. Choose Team site:
Choosing type of SharePoint site to create

Step 5: Enter details about your team site. Take note of Site Address, we will need it later when integrating Microsoft Dynamics 365 with this SharePoint team site. Afterwards click Next.
3.2. Enter details about the SharePoint Site

Step 6: You can add members and/or additional owners of the site. This is not a required step, you can come and add site owners and additional members later after you have created the site. Click Finish to complete the process of creating your SharePoint site.
Add site members and additional owners

Step 7: After Step 6, your new site will be created and it will look similar to:
New SharePoint team site

Integrating Dynamics 365 Online With SharePoint

For this demonstration, we are using version 9.1.0000.9825 of Dynamics 365 (2019 release wave 2 enabled) online. However, the integration process is the same or very similar in other versions of Dynamics 365/CRM online.

Step 1: In your Dynamics 365/CRM instance, login with the System Administrator and/or System Customizer security role. Then navigate to Settings >> Document Management. On this page, click on Configure Server-Based SharePoint Integration.
D365 Document Management Page

Step 2: You will get the following pop up, asking you where your SharePoint sites are located. In this demonstration, we are working with Dynamics 365 online and SharePoint online, so the Online option is selected. Afterwards, click Next.
Choose location of SharePoint site

Step 3: Enter the URL of the SharePoint Site (see Step 5 of section How To Create a SharePoint Site for Dynamics 365 Document Management above). A check will be conducted on whether the URL you have provided is a valid SharePoint online site and if it exists in the same Office 365 tenant as your Dynamics 365 organization. After enabling server-based SharePoint integration, you cannot go back to the client-side integration, the default setting prior to this integration.  If you would like to proceed, click Next.
Enter SharePoint Site URL

Step 4: After your SharePoint site has been validated by Dynamics 365, click Finish.
Validation of SharePoint site by Dynamics 365

Step 5: In Dynamics 365, go to Settings >> Document Management. You will notice that the Configure Server-Based SharePoint Integration option, mentioned in Step 1, is no longer available. This is because we have correctly configured Dynamics 365 with SharePoint. On this page, now click on Document Management Settings to complete the process of integrating Dynamics 365 with SharePoint.
Document Management Settings

Step 6: After executing the previous step, the window below will pop up, where you can select the Dynamics 365 entities you would like to enable for document management in SharePoint. Afterwards click Next to continue the integration process.
Configure Dynamics 365 entities for document management

Step 7: Select the SharePoint folder structure for the entities selected in the previous step. In the example below, I have selected a folder structure based on entities. Afterwards, click Next.
Choose SharePoint folder structure

Step 8: The following window will pop up. Click OK, if you would like to proceed with the creation of document libraries in the provided SharePoint site.
SharePoint Document Libraries Creation

Step 9: Wait until the document libraries have been created. After the document libraries have been created you will get a window similar to the one below, notifying you that the process has been completed. Click Finish.
Document Library Creation Process Complete

You have successfully enabled Dynamics 365 for document management in SharePoint. For the entities enabled, files uploaded for their records will be stored in SharePoint and you can make utilize the full range of document management capabilities offered by SharePoint. Your documents will be accessible in both Dynamics 365 and SharePoint.

To view the SharePoint sites enabled for document management in your Dynamics 365 organization, go to Settings >> Document Management. Click on SharePoint Sites. You will get a window similar to the one below:
Active SharePoint Sites for Dynamics 365 Organization

To view the Dynamics 365 entities’ folders created in SharePoint, navigate to the SharePoint team site you provided above. In the left navigation panel, click on Site Contents. You will get a window similar to:
Dynamics 365 entities' folders in SharePoint

Integrating Dynamics 365 Online With OneNote

Step 1: In Dynamics 365, go to Settings >> Document Management. On this page, click on OneNote Integration.
OneNote Integration

Step 2: After executing the previous step, the window below will pop up, where you can select Dynamics 365 entities you would like to enable for OneNote Integration. Click Finish to complete the process.
Choose the entities to enable for OneNote Integration

You have successfully integrated Dynamics 365 with OneNote. For records of the enabled entities, notes made in Dynamics 365 will be synced with OneNote in SharePoint Online. Also, you can access these notes on your desktop (i.e. OneNote Desktop) and mobile devices (i.e. OneNote Mobile).

The Microsoft Dynamics 365 Custom Control Framework

In version 9 of Dynamics 365 / CRM, Microsoft introduced the Custom Control Framework, which gives Dynamics 365 customizers and developers more options on how to display fields and data-sets, such as views. The Custom Control Framework offers a wide range of aesthetically appealing displays, enabling you to transform regular fields and data-sets into more appealing visualizations that are likely to increase user engagement and enhance user experience.

Examples

The default display for a numeric input field, i.e. Whole Number, Decimal, Currency, Floating Point Number, is:

Numeric Field - Default Display

Using the Custom Control Framework, you can transform this regular numeric input field into other displays such as Number Input, Arc Knob, Radial Knob, Linear Gauge, Linear Slide, Star Rating, among others.

Numeric Field - Other Display Options

Depending on the type of input field, different Custom Control Framework displays are available. For an Option Set field, the regular display is:

OptionSet - Default Display

Using the Custom Control Framework’s Option Set, it can also be displayed as tiles:

OptionSet - Tiles Display

How to Implement the Custom Control Framework

Step 1: Go to the edit mode of the entity’s form that you wish to apply the Custom Control Framework to. In the example below, I will be editing the Account entity’s Account form.

Account form in edit mode

Step 2: Click on the field you would like to apply the Custom Control Framework to. In the ribbon, click on ‘Change Properties’.

Step 3: In the Field Properties window that pops up, select the ‘Controls’ tab.

Field's Controls tab

Step 4: Click on “Add Control…”. Then select the control you would like to apply (1 – image below). Having selected the control you would like to apply, click ‘Add’ (2 – image below).

Note: In the example below, I am applying the Custom Control Framework to a numeric field.

Add a Custom Control

Step 5: Set the properties of the control. Select the devices you want your control to be displayed on i.e. Web Browser, Phone, Tablet (1 – image below). Enter the control’s properties i.e. Min, Max and Step values (2 – image below). Click ‘OK’ (3 – image below).

Set the control's properties

In (2 – image above), you can bind the Min, Max and Step values to a static value (A – image below) or to another field (B – image below).

Binding min, max and step values to a static value or field.

Step 6: Save and publish the entity’s form. You can now go and view the published version of the form to see your custom control in action.

Depending on the type of input field selected, different Custom Control Framework displays are available in Step 4 above. Also, the properties available in Step 5 are dependent on the type of input field selected . That is, the Custom Control Framework displays available for a numeric field are different from those available for an option set field.

Conclusion

As shown above, the Custom Control Framework offers organizations more options for displaying fields and has a nice aesthetic touch. However, like all tools, Dynamics 365 customizers and developers, have to assess their client’s needs and determine whether to use the default displays or the Custom Control Framework displays.

Microsoft Dynamics 365: How to Set Up a Free Online Trial Version

For organizations seeking a comprehensive, robust and extendable customer relationship management platform, it is worth considering the Microsoft Dynamics 365 platform. In this post, we will cover a quick case for considering Microsoft Dynamics 365 for your customer relationship management and provide a guide on how set up a free Dynamics 365 Online 30 day Trial Version.

A Quick Case for Microsoft Dynamics 365

Why should you choose Microsoft Dynamics 365 over other customer relationship management platforms? Here are 6 reasons to choose Microsoft Dynamics 365 over its competitors:

  • Familiar, intuitive and easy to adopt user interface: If an organization is familiar with the Microsoft Office suite, it is easy to adopt the Microsoft Dynamics 365 user interface, as they are designed by the same organization. You can spend less on change management.
  • Integration with the Microsoft ecosystem: You can easily integrate Microsoft Dynamics 365 with the rest of the Microsoft ecosystem like Outlook, Office 365 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, etc), Windows Server, Exchange Server, Skype for Business, SharePoint, Power BI, and PowerApps.
  • Powerful analytics, social sales and embedded intelligence features like LinkedIn Sales Navigator Application Platform and Relationship Assistant, to enhance productivity, efficiency and effectiveness.
  • Flexible and extendable architecture, deployment options, and pricing, making it easy for an organization to customize Dynamics 365 to its specific requirements and only pay for its unique needs.
  • Detailed, flexible and seamless security model: Dynamics allows you to control who can access general sections and specific areas like fields. Users only see areas they have been granted access to.
  • Microsoft’s commitment to the product quality and innovation as well as partner support: Microsoft is committed to quality and regularly releases updates, continuously innovating and improving the product. Also, Microsoft has a global network of partners to support clients across the world.

Setting up a Microsoft Dynamics 365 Free Online Trial Version

Are you convinced about Microsoft Dynamics 365? If you are, and ready to take it to the next level, here are the steps you need to set up a Microsoft Dynamics 365 online trial version:

Step 1: Go to the Microsoft Dynamics 365 product home page.
Dynamics 365 product home page

Step 2: Click on “Schedule a demo”.
Click on "Schedule a demo"

Step 3: Click on “Sign up for a free trial”.
Sign up for a free trial

Step 4: Click on “Sign up here”.
Click on "Sign up here"

Step 5: On the pop-up, if you are not a Microsoft employee or partner organization, click on “No, continue signing up”.
If you are not a Microsoft employee or partner organization, click on "No, continue signing up"

Step 6: Enter the required information and click “Next”.
Enter the required information and click on "Next"

Step 7: Enter the required information about the Microsoft Dynamics 365 trial organization you are about to create and click on “Create my account”. Also, if you would like to hear from Microsoft or its partner in your geographical location to provide support on your Dynamics 365 journey, select the options provided below.
Click "Create my account"

Step 8: Enter your phone number for Microsoft to verify that you are not a robot. You will receive an automated text or phone call, depending on the option you select.
Enter your phone number to verify that you are not a robot

Step 9: Hooray!!! You have created your Office 365 and Dynamics 365 organizations, you will get the page below. Take note of the “Sign-in page’ and “Your user ID”, you will need this information to sign into your new organization.
You have created a D365 organization

Step 10: Go to the Microsoft Office 365 home page. If you are requested to sign in, click on “Sign in” and login using the user ID from step 9 and the password you created earlier, in step 7.
Go to Microsoft Office 365 home page and sign into the organization you created in Step 9.

Step 11: After logging in, click on the “Admin” app, to access your Office 365 organization’s administration options and configurations.
Office 365 home - select Admin app

Step 12: Adding other users to your new Office organization and Dynamics 365 organization: In the Admin app, navigate to Users >>> Active Users. You will get a page similar to the one below. Click on ‘Add a user’ to start the process of adding a new user to the Office 365 organization.
Add other users

Step 13: Enter the user’s basic information and click Next:
User's basic info

Step 14: You can add a user to your Office 365 organization without giving them access to the Dynamics 365 organization. However, if you if you want the user to be both a member of the Office 365 organization and Dynamics 365 organization, you have to grant the user a Dynamics 365 license (see the image below). You can also assign the user other product licenses from this section. Click Next.

The creator of the organization has a Global Administrator role, in Office 365, as well as System Administrator and System Customizer security roles, in Dynamics 365, giving them the rights to add users to both Office 365 and Dynamics 365.
Assign licenses

Step 15: You can also assign administration roles to the user if you wish. These settings are optional. Click Next.
Optional settings

Step 16: Review the user details. If you have happy with the setup details, click on ‘Finish adding’ to add the user to the organization.
Finish adding user

Step 17: After successfully adding the user, you will get a page similar to image below. You can add more users from this window. After you finish add users, click ‘Close’.
Successfully added user

Step 18: Back in the Admin page, in the left navigation, navigate to ‘All admin centers ‘. If you cannot see ‘All admin centers ‘ in your left navigation panel, click on ‘Show all’. In the main window, click on ‘Dynamics 365’ to access the Dynamics 365 administration center, in order to complete the set up of your Dynamics 365 organization.
All Admin Centers

Step 19: To complete your Dynamics 365 setup, select the apps you are interested in. If you are not interested in the provided apps, you can select “None of these. Don’t customize my organization” for a vanilla Dynamics of 365 organization. Click on ‘Complete Setup’.
Select the Dynamics 365 apps you are interested in.

Step 20: Depending on the app(s) you selected in the previous step, you will get a launch pad similar to this:
D365 Published Apps

Step 21: Select the Dynamics 365 app you would like to launch by clicking on it and you will get the app’s home page. Here is an example of the Dynamics 365 Customer Service app home.
D365 -Customer Service

Your brand new Dynamics 365 instance has been set up and is ready for your adventures. Feel to explore and play around with the environment. You just have entered the fascinating world of Dynamics 365. Welcome!!!