Understand Unified Service Desk concepts

Unified Service Desk provides a configurable and extensible framework for quickly building applications for call centers so that agents can get a unified view of the customer data stored in Dynamics 365 for Customer Engagement apps instance and external applications. You can aggregate customer information from different areas in Customer Engagement apps and external applications into an integrated desktop that provides a 360° view of the customer interactions. This gives your customer service agent immediate access to business critical information so they can effectively engage with customers and address queries and issues. More information: What makes up Unified Service Desk and Call center challenges and how Unified Service Desk can help in the Unified Service Desk Administration Guide.

To develop an agent application using Unified Service Desk, you can directly configure the Unified Service Desk entities in your Customer Engagement instance, which does not require you to write code. To integrate with external applications, you can write code to extend Unified Service Desk.

Configure Unified Service Desk entities

Use Dynamics 365 for Customer Engagement or Dynamics 365 for Outlook to configure the Unified Service Desk entities that are created in your Customer Engagement apps instance when you deploy Unified Service Desk. Unified Service Desk provides a highly configurable interface that can be used to dynamically display controls and information based on the context of the active operation, which eventually defines the user interface and functionalities in your agent application. Creating or developing agent applications by configuring the Unified Service Desk entities in Customer Engagement apps doesn’t require you to write code, which reduces the lead time to develop a highly customized agent application per your organization requirements. This is the preferred way if you have to primarily deal with customer data available in Customer Engagement apps.


If you are on Unified Service Desk 3.1 or lower versions, Unified Service Desk client application loads a maximum of 5000 records for any Unified Service Desk entities that you have configured and deployed in Customer Engagement apps instance.

Example: You have configured 5105 answer records in Agent Scripts entity type. When you want to view these answer records, Unified Service Desk client application loads a maximum of 5000 record answers. The client application does not load the remaining 105 answer records even though you have configured answer records.

TotalRecordCountLimit is a UII option introduced in Unified Service Desk 3.2. This value is for Unified Service Desk to determine the batch size while fetching entity records from Customer Engagement apps instance. The default value of the TotalRecordCountLimit in Unified Service Desk and in MSCRM_CONFIG database is 5000. The TotalRecordCountLimit value must be always same as the value in MSCRM_CONFIG database. You can change the default value in Unified Service Desk only when CRM server administrator modifies the value in MSCRM_CONFIG database.


  • It is highly recommended that you do not change the default TotalRecordCountLimit value in UII option of Unified Service Desk unless there is a change of value in MSCRM_CONFIG database.
  • TotalRecordCountLimit value must be equal to the value in MSCRM_CONFIG database.


If you change the default UII option value to any value other than MSCRM_CONFIG database value, Unified Service Desk client application may not fetch the actual entity records.

A system administrator must configure the option on Active UII Options page and set the value.

To change the TotalRecordCountLimit timeout value:

  1. Sign in to Dynamics 365 for Customer Engagement apps.

  2. Go to Settings > Unified Service Desk.

  3. Choose Options.

  4. click New on the Active UII Options page.

  5. Choose Others for the Global Option field.

  6. Type TotalRecordCountLimit for the Name field.

  7. Type 5000 for the Value field.

  8. Click Save.

Configure TotalRecordCountLimit

More information: Manage Options for Unified Service Desk

Target audience: System administrator or system customizer who has experience working with different configurations in Customer Engagement apps, analyzing the results, and improving or changing the configurations in an iterative manner until the desired functionality and user experience is achieved.

To get started with configuring Unified Service Desk, see Core concepts for configuring Unified Service Desk.

Extend Unified Service Desk to integrate with other applications

Unified Service Desk is built using the User Interface Integration (UII) framework, which enables you to build and deploy composite agent applications that can provide unified access to customer information in Customer Engagement apps and external systems. Also, the computer telephony integration (CTI) framework of UII enables organizations to build adapters to connect Unified Service Desk with their existing CTI infrastructure to support customer communication in agent desktops over various channels such as chat, email, or telephone. To integrate with external applications, you’ll have to extend Unified Service Desk by writing code. Unified Service Desk provides you with Visual Studio project templates that you can use to create the modules and applications so you can integrate and interact with data in external applications.

Target audience: Software developer who has experience in creating applications/solutions using .NET Framework, Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF), XAML, and Java.

To get started with extending Unified Service Desk, see Unified Service Desk and the UII framework.