CRM 2013 – Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 support options

A customer asked me what support there was for CRM 2013 online, in some ways this is a tricky question because I know there is so much free online resources of information on CRM 2013 and if you just type do an internet search for any question you have you will get lots of answers but what are the offical support offerings from Microsoft.

Not to mention the CRM forums which I have answered lots of questions on recently and often the people answering questions on the CRM forums are either CRM MVP’s, Experience CRM users or Microsoft Technical staff.  This is a very good free resource available to users.

I also new about opening support tickets with Microsoft, they are often not very quick but they do usually resolve the issue once they get to work on it (and you have proven it’s not your customizations causing the problem)

Whilst search for support options I found this handy section on the url below

Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 Online support offerings

Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online support provides flexible, industry-leading support, services, and resources that enable users to quickly address technical issues, deepen their professional expertise, and maximise ROI. CRM Online support lets you choose a plan that best meets your business needs, and gets you back to work faster whenever issues arise.

Flexible options
Industry-leading support
Unlimited technical support
Service delivery manager
Self-help tools & community forums
Service dashboard

Note This capability is available only to Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online customers that subscribe through the Microsoft online services environment. Professional Direct Support for CRM Online is available in limited geographies of the United States, United Kingdom, and Canada.

Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 support options

CRM 2013 online support options

CRM 2011 – Javascript to wait for a grid to load and then check for rows

I needed to write some Javascript to check if a subgrid had any values in, if it did have some rows then I expanded the tab and if it didn’t I collapsed the tab

The problem with subgrids is they can take quite a while to appear and then some more time whilst they load the rows and during that time you cannot do anything with them.

I had previously written some  a blog about subgrids but the code wouldn’t work for any more

the line below was always returning null.

var gridControl = document.getElementById('subgrid_id')

So you can see the code below checks to see if the subgrid is null, if so it calls the same function in one second and then does the same until the control is loaded. In the end this code took too long so I did an oData call instead but I thought I would blog it here in case I needed it because it took me a while to work out how to get the subgrid control

function SubGridOnload() {
 /// waits for the new Claimant expenses grid to load before checking for records.
 var grid = Xrm.Page.ui.controls.get('CrmGrid')._control;

if (grid.get_innerControl() == null) {
setTimeout(SubGridOnload, 1000);
 else if (grid.get_innerControl()"Loading") != -1) {
setTimeout(SubGridOnload, 1000);

var ids = grid.get_innerControl().get_allRecordIds();
 if (ids.length > 0) {
 } else {

CRM MVP Question and Answer – Jason Lattimer

It’s MVP Question and Answer O’Clock and this week we have Jason Lattimer.  Firstly I will say thanks for Jason for answering the questions even though he is busy answering forum questions, doing his job and getting ready for convergence 2014.

I like to start with seeing what their description is on Dynamic CRM Community profile –

Jason Lattimer has been working with Dynamics CRM since v1.2 and has performed the full spectrum of technical duties from installation to custom development. In his current role he primarily focuses on extending Dynamics CRM to meet the unique needs of his customers. Jason is a Dynamics CRM MVP and you can often find him answering questions in the MSDN and Dynamics Community CRM forums, blogging, and occasionally putting out some helpful tools on CodePlex.

Any one who has used CRM 3 and below deserves respect and pity.

Jason can be found on the Dynamic Community Leader board with a very impressive 40 badges.

If you ever ask any questions on the CRM forum there is a good chance Jason will post an answer

Jason has posted more verified answer than any other CRM person (in fact more than the people at 2 and 3 put together)

419 verified answer

1216 total answer – 2nd position

578 Suggested answer – number 1

Donna Edwards created a great blog post on what her CRM MVP buddies will be up to at Convergence and I have borrowed Jason’s part and pasted it below. Here is what he looks like


Here are Jason’s CRM MVP Q&A’s and the previous weeks are below his if you missed them.

1.    Name, current job title and social media links please
Jason Lattimer
CRM Development Consultant
@JLattimer –

2.    What does an average day at work look like
My day typically is filled with project work with some support work intermixed. I try to work in some time for the company blog or other things that help develop internal processes/standards.

3.    What different roles/Job titles have you had whilst using CRM
Mostly development related functions but with some the smaller places I’ve worked I covered all the roles like design, customization, deployment and training.

4.    What job did you did before you starting using CRM
.Net Developer

5.    What was the first version of Microsoft Dynamics CRM you worked with and how long have you been using Microsoft Dynamics CRM
v1.2, that came out in 2003 so around 10 years on and off.

6.    How do you stay up to date with the CRM
I read the various Microsoft and community member blogs, keep an eye on Twitter and am always looking at the forums.

7.    How do you find time to contribute to the CRM community whilst doing your job
If there is something I want to build to put out on CodePlex, off hours are when that happens. Otherwise during the day while I’m in between tasks or when I need a little break from what I’m working on I jump on the forums and see if there is a question I can answer.

8.    What advice would you give to someone who wants to have a successful career in Microsoft Dynamics CRM?
Know the strengths and weaknesses of the system. Try to leverage as many out of the box out of the box features as possible before getting crazy with customizations or custom development. Also if a customer/user wants the system to do something that requires major work, don’t be afraid to question (nicely) why. Sometimes by provoking a little thought you can eliminate a needless process or come up with a different solution that works alongside the system’s strengths.

9.    What where your first impressions of CRM 2013 and what do you think now.
I always liked the new look and feel and better use of screen real-estate. The tablet application shows a lot of promise and I’m looking forward to seeing that evolve.

10.  What one feature would you add to CRM 2013
More extensibility in the mobile spaces.

11.  Most annoying feature of CRM 2013
Logical and Schema names for fields that are different.

12.  You favourite 2 CRM blogs (I have filled the first one in for you)

            1.  Hosks Dynamic CRM blog
            2.  The Microsoft Dynamics CRM Team Blog

13.  What year will Microsoft Dynamics CRM have more customers than Sales force

14.  Are you doing more CRM projects with CRM online?  Do you think it will all be online in the future
Definitely doing more CRM Online deployments but there will always be the need to for On Premise deployments unfortunately.

15.  What is the best tool/solution you have used recently
Ribbon Workbench (Scott Durrow), XrmToolBox (Tanguy Touzard), and the XrmServiceToolkit (Jamie Ji, Tanguy Touzard, & David Berry)

16.  What CRM certifications do you have, do you try and keep up to date with CRM certifications
All the v1.2 and 2011 exams and I just completed my first 2013 exam.

17.  How important is it to have good business analytical skills working with Microsoft Dynamics CRM.
Very important I think. It’s a good thing to ask questions and understand the business needs in a project or feature request. Not having a good handle of what needs to be accomplished will lead to a bad experience on someone’s part, either yours or the customers.

18.  How useful is it to have programming knowledge to become a good Microsoft Dynamics CRM Professional?
It can certainly help but you can accomplish a lot in Dynamics CRM with resorting to coding. Understanding basic program flow like if/else, and/or, and things like that can help make creating workflows or advanced finds easier.

19.  What knowledge/experience do you have with software/systems which integrate with Microsoft Dynamics CRM e.g. (sharepoint, SQL Server, Scribe, Etc)
I like working on projects that integrate with other systems, specifically the ones that require a little more than just pushing records back and forth.

20.  How often do you travel as a Microsoft Dynamics CRM Professional?
Not so much anymore with decent internet connections available almost anywhere but I still like to get out when I can.

21.  Can you see yourself not using CRM in your career in the future
Anything is possible, technology changes quickly in this day and age.

22.  What is favourite part of being a CRM MVP
Without a doubt the other CRM MVPs, you couldn’t ask for a nicer or more helpful group of people.

23.  What are your hobbies outside of CRM
I’m a big fan of the UFC (MMA in general).

24.   What was the last book you read and what was the last film you watched
Book: Ringworld         Movie: Ender’s Game

25.  Has CRM ever got you in trouble with your partner/family.

26.  Have you friends ever told you to stop talking/tweeting/blogging about CRM? What does your partner/family member(s) think of CRM
No. My family is glad I’ve found something I like enjoy and can pay the bills
27.  Tell me something interesting/unusual about yourself
I am not interesting L

28.  Who is the first CRM MVP you remember reading/seeing
Jamie Miley

29.  Tips for someone who wants to become a CRM MVP
Find a few ways to contribute to the CRM community and be consistent. Play to your strengths, for just about any skills needed in CRM (developer, analyst, infrastructure, etc…) there is probably a forum someplace where people need help that you could participate in. Attend events and get to know people. Local CRMUG meetings or big events like Convergence are great places to meet people and network.

Quickfire questions (choose one option and no explanation)

Steve Jobs or Bill Gates

Javascript or .NET

Internet Explorer/Chrome/Firefox/Safari

Wine/Beer/Soft Drink

Certifications or Use CRM

twerking or tweeting

books or ebooks

save or autosave

OnLine or On Premise

Windows 7/Windows 8/Linux/Mac/Other

work from home or work from office

Miley Cyrus or Billy Ray Cyrus


Zero Inbox/Overflowing Inbox

Early Bird/Night Owl

Do Today/Do Tomorrow

CRM Developer/CRM Consultant

Hot Weather/Cold Weather

Half Full/Half Empty

Previous CRM MVP Q&A

CRM 2013 – Verify new areas are available in the navigation bar

I saw a post this week by CRM MVP  raising some interesting points about site maps when you upgrade to CRM 2013, here blog post is here 

Donna links to an article

Verify new areas are available in the navigation bar

Basically the article above says CRM 2013 has changed the navigation bar and so after you upgrade it might not have added the new navigation areas because it was persevering your old navigation settings.

So what might happen is some of the navigation links will be missing after you upgrade.

Verify whether new areas are available in your upgraded organization

After you upgrade to Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013, if you have the System Administrator Role you should be able to use the navigation bar to go to the following areas listed in the following table.

Area Group SubArea
Sales My Work What’s New
Tools Alerts
Service My Work What’s New
Tools Alerts
Marketing My Work What’s New
Tools Alerts
Settings System Email Configuration
Post Configuration
Post Rule Configuration
Help Help Customer Center


if not you will need to manually add them to the site map, instructions on what to do are here, although I would use one of the tools available rather than manually editing the xml

Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 MVP Panel Chat

CRM MVP’s Donna Edwards, Alex Fagundes, Chris Cognetta, David Berry, Richard Knudson and Scott Sewell took some time out from preparing for Convergence 2014 to run a CRM Panel chat about the new features of CRM 2013, it was run as a live google chat where you could ask questions but they have also put it up on youtube.

This is a really good chat with some CRM experts.

They go through their favourite features in CRM 2013, which prompted me to go and research what custom actions where in CRM 2013.

A good question from a user was

What are the major pain points in upgrading from CRM 2011 to CRM 2013.  Dave Berry talks about the difficulties around the area of JQuery.

We plan to discuss Deployment, Security, Teams, Business Process Flows, Business Rules, Configuration and Customization, Server -Side Sync and other areas of CRM 2013 that we’ve had the opportunity to use.  We hope you come away with some great tips and tricks to help you along your way.

one good piece of advice was to only apply the rollup just before the next rollup is about to be released, this way you will avoid any bugs which sometimes get introduced in rollups.

They talk about access teams.

Whilst watching this one I also found a chat they did in 2013 called –

Dynamics CRM MVP Developer Chat

if you want even more MVP chat there are a couple more from 2013 from MS

The Future of Microsoft Dynamics CRM: An MVP’s Perspective

Ask the Microsoft Dynamics CRM MVP: An Interactive Discussion

CRM 2013 – Video – Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 Business Process Overview

I am still trying to learn about the new features in CRM 2013, so I thought I am going to try and watch a youtube video each week on some of the new features.

Business Process seems like a great enhancement for CRM 2013 but also one that can be confusing because of the way the data maps between the entities involved.

So I need all the help I can get understanding it, especially when I think of the projects I have worked on and wonder how this would fit in.

When I watch the video its feels like a powerful tool and can really streamline the process.

The first video is a quick 10 minute video from Microsoft which is half slides and half demo.

The second video is a lot more in depth and is 50 minutes.  If you want to view the CRM demo go to 17 minutes

CRM Rocks – A CRM Podcast

Recently CRM MVP’s Gustaf Westerlund tweeted a link to an interview he did and it was a link to the blog CRM Rocks which is a CRM talk show.

So firstly here is the link to the site –


it is run by Markus Erlandsson

The interviews are quiet in depth and often are 50 minutes long and Markus asks some interesting questions.  He has already done some really good interviews so I thought I would give him deserved publicity and encourage people interested in CRM to have a listen.  Markus has interviewed 5 CRM MVP’s about certain aspects of CRM 2013

I have just finished listening to the Leon Tribe and it was very interesting, especially if like me you don’t know much about Salesforce around the world and in Sweden and Australia.

Below are the links to other interviews Markus has done.  So pick one that looks interesting, have a listen and give Marcus a tweet or two.

Tool support in Dynamics CRM

featuring CRM MVP Gustaf Westerlund

CRM 2013 User Interface changes

featuring CRM MVP Jukka Niiranen

Mobile CRM

featuring Ivan Stano

JavaScript in Dynamics CRM

Featuring CRM MVP Mitch Milam

Community Resources

Featuring CRM MVP Donna Edwards

Dynamics CRM vs

Featuring CRM MVP Leon Tribe

if you want to subscribe to CRM Rocks then the feed is below