Customize CRM Data right inside Visual Studio 2005

CRM customization tools are pretty cool in a sense that they allow you to customize the CRM schema with just a few clicks. If you are a developer building CRM Applications, you typically do this: go to CRM application UI in IE à add your data customizations à publish à go to Visual Studio(VS) à add or update Web Reference (WSDL) à VS generates strongly typed classes for you à you start having some fun coding. During develoment, it is likely that you need to update your data schema a couple of times before you are done coding.


Well, you don’t need to jump back and forth between CRM & VS each time you want to update the schema. VS allows you to link to CRM customization page in an IE window right inside your development environment. You can do all of your development inside VS (the power of web based customizaiton tools...).


Here is how:

Open VS à View à Other Windows à Web Browser à type in http://<your_CRM_Server >/tools/systemcustomization/systemCustomization.aspx?pid=01 à this will open the CRM entity customization page in VS à right click and select Dockable to dock the frame into anywhere you fancy.


Now, you can double click on the entity that you want to customize. VS is smart enouhg to open a new IE frame when CRM trys to pop up a dialog for different customization sections (e.g. relationships). When you are done with your data customization, click publish followed by a Web Reference update in solution explorer and you are done. VS creates new classes or update existing ones in your project based on your schema changes.