Tuesday, September 28, 2010

1st Scribe Software User Conference (part 2)

The first day started of course with the keynote. The breaking news was the announcement that Scribe is going into the cloud in addition to their 'on premise' solution.

They doubled their software development department to build this new solutions. The first beta known as Denali project is the possibility to replicate Dynamics CRM database and use the replicated data for Business intelligence. The BI part is created in cooperation of Infinity Info Systems.

More details on the announcement can be found here!

Personally I am very curious about it, because I am working with hosted, cloud and on premise based solutions or a hybrid which sound very awesome*, doesn't it? (* - I picked that up in the USA).

Check back later for my next awesome posts ;)

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Attending the first Scribe Software User Conference (part 1)

The last 10 years I attended many different conferences. Most of them were ok, some were excellent and the last one held by some company called MS was very disappointing (Convergence 2009).

Of course, I was glad to hear Scribe organized their first conference and I decided to travel to Bedford NH, the A on the map ;-) As you may read before this is still my fav migration & integration tool.

After 7 hours flight to Boston and 1,5 hour drive to Bedford, I witnessed this at my breakfast the next morning..

Lucky some people of the hotel set off the fire alarm by accident, but what better entertainment with your first coffee and waffles ;)

The conference was held in SERECS not far from the hotel. A modern conference center with all the equipment you need, beamers, video sytems, multiple screen, so you could see presentations from every place in the room.

The people attending were both partners, mvp's as customers, which worked out fine. The presentations addressed topics that were interesting for all audiences and I thought most were very useful.

The sessions of the first day, I will give some highlighst in my next post(s), were well prepared and presented. The atmosphere of the day was I think best described as relaxed. It was not over the top and covered with marketing sauce like some...mmm (MS) events, but just down to earth, to the point and pratical and of course with some good sense of humor.

And maybe the lesson learned for the first day...

uncrapify yourself.... (guess you should have been there)

to be continued

Friday, September 17, 2010

First impressions - CRM 2011 beta

After the installation adventure, which wasn't too bad (read previous post). I did browse around.

The new layout 'ribbon' is not too bad, but I guess you have to get used to it. Your routines make you expect functionality at other places. Out of the box a lot of 'wizard' guide you in easy step what to do.

Interesting new feature are integration with SharePoint, you can define on which location you want to save your documents and that already big enhancement compared to previous versions.

Sure interesting to test this later, but I still need to install SharePoint. Other features that seems interesting is auditing tracking functionality, dashboards althought this might make your application slower.

And I am very curious about data import capabilities, so a lot to find out.

Keep (beta) exploring ;)

Setting up VM VirtualBox for CRM 2011 beta

Finally had some time to install VM virtual box, due to 64 bit issues with VPC. I must admit it works quick and easy, so nice tool to make images and its tool provided by Oracle ;)

So, I spend some time setting up basic instance of Windows 2008 Enterprise R2 and give it some basic roles for AD, DNS etc. I had to look up the details for deploying the domain, but the magic tool was dcpromo.exe.

I, of course, decided to change domain and servername, which gave me some issues with SQL & Reporting Server and had to change names. This article might be helpful. After few reboots, some reconfiguring using Report Server Configuration Manager was needed.

I ran into issue that the SRS was stilling using the old sql server name and already new service account. The solutions was change service account back to system and then you can change the database, reconnect and go head..

Some more rebooting and then installed the beta verion of CRM 2011 and alter SRS Connector.

And yes finally it works....

PS Don't forget the windows update... only 46+ updates were available ;)

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Issues during adhoc install of CRM 4.0 on Windows 2008 R2

Sometimes, you will be asked to (re)install CRM 4.0 and then you can expect to run into trouble. Mostly you won't have the right permissions or previous installation has failed and you have to figure out why... mmmm and not surprising I run into some nice issues...

The first I ran into was the following, after someone had installed CRM 4.0 and browsed to CRM:

"Problems with this Web page might prevent it from being displayed properly or functioning properly" Line: 194 Char: 1 Error: Object expected code: 0"

I found the solutions in one of the communities, here the quick summary:

On IIS 7.0, this issue mostly happens when the static content role is
installed AFTER CRM 4.0 is installed,

Steps to solve this issue:
1) Check if the static content role service is installed on IIS 7.0
(Server Manager -> right-click -> add roles -> check static content)

2) Be aware if the static content role is installed AFTER CRM 4.0 is installed,
the static http handler mappings are not configured!
( IIS 7.0 > website: Microsoft Dynamics CRM -> features view ->
double-click: handler mappings -> double click: "StaticFile" -> Type:
StaticFileModule,DefaultDocumentModule )

3) Do IISreset

Hope this helps and happy debuggin :)

Can you keep track of available CRM solutions?

I like to think about the right CRM solution for my customer, guess thats not surprising :-) This is also the major reason why I visit Convergence, conference and other CRM events. I am interested new crm solutions

In daily life I mostly come in contact with new addons or CRM solutions if the customer requires extra functionality that CRM is not providing. Guess everyone knows the solutions by companies like C360, but what about the others? I noticed that interesting solutions which are available in Europe are unknown in USA/Canada and vice versa.

One of the advantages of my blog is that people suggest article, books or blogs to read some are very interesting. Lauren mentioned her article to me and I think this gives a fresh view on solutions that are currently offered, but might not be known to you.

The article gives an overview of populair CRM solution per industry and mostly I did know, but some were new to me.

I am also interested in solutions which are not industry specific and of course you might guess this are currently favorite general solutions:

Scribe Software
CWR Mobility
WaveAccess ChatOnline

Of course there are others too, so feel free to add some in the comments or share you thought about your solution wishes :-)