CRM 2011 – Book Review – Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Scripting Cookbook

Posted on June 14, 2013

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Apologies for readers of the blog, I have been slack at blogging but very busy at work.

 

I got sent a very interesting CRM 2011 book and I thought I would review it.

it’s a packt book, who are doing a good job of releasing CRM 2011 books

Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Scripting Cookbook

if you want to try a sample chapter you can, it’s chapter 2

Chapter 2, Scripting Form Fields, covers the most common scripting customizations
used when working with various basic form elements. We look at the various field types
and how to work with these values.

and you can find it here - http://www.packtpub.com/microsoft-dynamics-crm-2011-scripting-cookbook/book#sample

first I will give you a list of the chapters so you can get a good feel to what is included in the book

Chapter 1, Overview of Dynamics CRM 2011 Customization, introduces the concept
of solution packages, and presents the scripting model used for Dynamics CRM 2011.
In addition, basic system configuration and settings that work in conjunction with your
customizations are presented

Chapter 2, Scripting Form Fields, covers the most common scripting customizations used
when working with various basic form elements. We look at the various field types and how
to work with these values.
Chapter 3, Field Validation, includes various validation approaches to enhance the out-of thebox
validation rules. In addition, this chapter presents various approaches to presenting and
collecting user input to minimize errors.
Chapter 4, Rules and Events, introduces the reader to the various events presented by
Dynamics CRM 2011, as well as working with other form elements available for customization.
Chapter 5, Error Handling, introduces the concept of handling user errors, processing errors,
and explains how to prevent the default system behaviors. The advanced topic shows ways to
override the default system behavior with custom processing and capturing of user input.
Chapter 6, Debugging, delves into details of working with the scripts and using the available
tools to handle various situations where your script misbehaves.
Chapter 7, Extended UI Manipulation, demonstrates ways to introduce visual elements to
your forms to highlight form elements and also demonstrates how to handle presenting only
the relevant information to a system user.
Chapter 8, Working with Ribbon Elements, is focused on working exclusively with the Ribbon.
From adding and removing Ribbon elements, working with events attached to Ribbon
elements, and presenting additional information on the Ribbon, most aspect of client-side
Ribbon customizations are presented in an easy-to-follow way.
Chapter 9, Extending CRM Using Community JavaScript Libraries, tackles the use of external
prebuilt libraries in conjunction with Dynamics CRM 2011. Some of the most popular
JavaScript libraries are presented in the context on Dynamics CRM. They will either help
you in writing shorter, more efficient scripts, or handle specific form actions.
Chapter 10, Light Social Media Integration, presents a few approaches to bringing information
from various social media resources into your Dynamics CRM 2011 environment, with no
additional load to server resources. The ways presented here are exclusively client

 

The book is 268 pages long but if you take out the introduction and the first chapter (which is about using solutions and other starting stuff) then you probably have about 200 pages of scripting goodies

The book is very through at showing you step by step what you need to do and has lots of screenshots, this probably makes the book very good for someone who is starting out developing CRM 2011 because you will be able to easily follow the instructions.  I found myself scrolling down through all the pictures to get to the scripting part on some of the earlier chapters.

 

Chapter 5 focused on Error Handling, this was quite interesting because I have never really done much error handling in javascript and considering CRM allows you to format the fields I’m not sure I will but this chapter has some really useful sections like blocking forms from being saved, handling unexpected errors (because users will be stupid values in if they can).

Chapter 6 focusing on debugging and goes through the main methods of debugging CRM from alerts in Javascript, using IE debug, using visual studio and if you are really struggling using fiddler.   Most people will just use IE for debugging javascript but knowing how to use fiddler can be very useful.

 

Chapter 7 has some good stuff, hiding form elements, formatting fields, showing pictures, adding a logo (by saving it in a note).  This chapter is full of things you will be asked to add into CRM at some point, very practical and very useful

Chapter 8 is about the Ribbon but there are some great tools to do this so I didn’t spend too much time on this chapter.

chapter 9 is all about JQuery which I found useful because I hadn’t really used much Jquery.

Finally chapter 10 is about integrating social media with CRM which is request which pops up from customers now and again.

 

Overall the book was written well and walks you step by step through the examples.  There is a lot of useful parts to the book and it’s good to have in your tool bag, so if a customers asks for something you can pick it up and see if this book has the answers.

I’m not sure what the new Orion update will do to the amount of Javascript people will be writing but I would recommend buying this book

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Posted in: books, CRM 2011