Manage Sandbox instances

Applies to Dynamics 365 (online), version 9.0

A Sandbox instance is any non-production instance of Dynamics 365 (online). Isolated from production, a Sandbox instance is the place to safely develop and test application changes with low risk.

Note

With December 2016 Update for Dynamics 365 (online), we no longer require a minimum purchase amount to receive a free Sandbox instance. If you've purchased a subscription and have not received a free Sandbox instance, you will be provided one when you purchase full Dynamics 365 Enterprise licenses. There is a limit of one free Sandbox instance per tenant. You can also purchase additional Sandbox instances. For more information, see Dynamics 365 pricing and licensing.

Tip

Video symbol Check out the following video: Sandbox instances for Dynamics 365 (3:18).

View your Sandbox instances

You manage your Sandbox instances from the Dynamics 365 admin center.

  1. Browse to the Office 365 admin center and sign in using Office 365 Global administrator credentials.

  2. Click Admin centers > Dynamics 365.

  3. Choose the Instances tab.

    On the Manage your Dynamics 365 instances page, you’ll see a list of all your instances.

Reset a Sandbox instance

You can reset a Sandbox instance to delete and re-provision it. Consider a reset when you want to:

  • Change to a different version of Dynamics 365 (online).

  • Create a new project

  • Free up storage space

  • Remove an instance containing Personally Identifiable Information (PII) data

Note

An example scenario

Thomas is looking at the storage consumed by the various Contoso instances and is getting concerned that they’ll run out of space in one of their production instances. He’d like to free up some space so he can give the production instance some additional storage. He’s also been notified that the Legal department has set a retention policy on the use of production data in the test environment.

After contacting Isaac, Thomas resets the Sales department’s complete Sandbox instance. The instance is re-provisioned to factory settings and ready for future use as a Sandbox instance for a future project.

To reset an instance

  1. Browse to the Office 365 admin center and sign in using Office 365 Global administrator credentials.

  2. Click Admin centers > Dynamics 365.

  3. Choose the Instances tab.

  4. Select a Sandbox instance, and then click Reset.

  5. On the reset instance page, adjust the instance settings as needed and then click Reset.

    Warning

    The Sandbox instance will be deleted and reset to factory settings. You will not be able to recover any deleted data.

  6. Click yes in the confirmation dialog box.

Administration mode

When you place a Sandbox instance in administration mode only users with Dynamics 365 System Administrator or System Customizer security roles will be able to sign in to that instance. Administration mode is useful when you want to make operational changes and not have regular users affect your work, and not have your work affect regular users.

Note

On the admin settings page, you can set the following.

Setting Description
Enable administration mode Select to enable administration mode for the selected Sandbox instance. Only System Administrators or System Customizers will be able to sign in to the selected Sandbox instance.
Disable background operations Select to disable all asynchronous operations (see Asynchronous service architecture) such as workflows and synchronization with Exchange. Emails will not be sent and server-side synchronization for appointments, contacts, and tasks are disabled. Note: Administration mode must be enabled to disable background operations.
Custom message for end users Enter a message that will be displayed to all users when they attempt to sign in.

Set administration mode

  1. Browse to the Office 365 admin center and sign in using Office 365 Global administrator credentials.

  2. Click Admin centers > Dynamics 365.

  3. Choose the Instances tab.

  4. Select a Sandbox instance, and then click Admin.

  5. Select Enable administration mode to enable it, and then click Save.

See also

Blog: Introducing Sandbox Instances in CRM Online
Switch an instance
Delete an instance
Copy an instance