Upgrade Dynamics 365 Field Service
Microsoft releases updates to the Dynamics 365 Field Service app and related solutions to add new capabilities, enhance the performance and usability of existing features, and fix bugs. In this article we will provide details on upgrading Field Service, including the related mobile app and resource scheduling solutions.
When are Field Service updates released?
Multiple Field Service updates are released every year.
Minor updates are released each month and will include only non-disrupting bug fixes. All updates that have the potential to disrupt will be held until the major update periods.
Major updates are released twice each year in April and October. Major releases include major new features, as well as minor new features, enhancements, and bug fixes.
Though it is rare, occasionally a critical "hot fix" will be released outside of the monthly minor updates or the bi-yearly major updates.
The details of upcoming major and minor releases are listed in the upcoming release plans once they are committed. As an example, April 2020 release plans will include major and minor updates from November 2019 through April 2020; and October 2020 release plans will include major and minor updates from May 2020 through October 2020.
How do I upgrade my environment?
As of Field Service version 8.8.6+, the Field Service app will be updated automatically as part of the Dynamics 365 platform One version initiative.
Before your organization updates to 8.8.6+ or later, you can manually apply updates by going to the Microsoft 365 (Office 365) Admin Center.
Log in to https://login.microsoftonline.com with administrator credentials.
Go to Admin.
Then go to the Dynamics 365 Admin Center.
Select and highlight the environment that has the Field Service app you want to upgrade.
In the list of solutions, find and select the Field Service app. It will indicate if an upgrade is available. Then select the Upgrade icon.
In addition, once your organization begins receiving automatic updates with version 8.8.6+, you can manually upgrade the app in the seven days between the update release and when the automatic update applies. This is done via the admin center process above.
All new Dynamics 365 Field Service trial environments are given the latest generally available solution when a trial is created via https://trials.dynamics.com.
What gets updated?
When the Field Service app is upgraded, the Field Service solution is upgraded and multiple other solutions can be upgraded as well such as Universal Resource Scheduling (also called "Resource Scheduling"), Geofencing for Field Service, Field Service Mobile Push Notifications, and more.
To understand what version of the Field Service solution is in your environment, look at the version of the solution named FieldService_anchor.
- Before upgrading your production instance of Field Service, make a copy of the production instance and upgrade the copy first. Then test your business processes to understand consequences and upgrade the actual production instance after.
- Upgrading from Field Service version 7.x to 8.x is considered a major upgrade because it's upgrading to the Unified Client Interface (UCI). For more information, see the Field Service UCI Upgrade Playbook.
- If your organization is using Project Service Automation along with Field Service, it is recommended to upgrade both at the same time or soon after each other due to shared functionality.
- Editing out-of-the-box web resources is unsupported and can cause functional issues after upgrading. You can use Solution Health Hub to understand if web resources have been edited.
Field Service Mobile
The Field Service Mobile experience is updated independently of the Field Service app but on a similar cadence, meaning minor and major updates throughout the year.
Upgrading the mobile experience for technicians requires three steps:
- Update the Field Service Mobile app
- Upgrade the mobile configuration tool (Woodford) solution
- Upgrade the mobile project template
All of the steps are dependent on each other and need to be coordinated and executed together. Occasionally, only a new mobile project template is released and needs to be upgraded without the need to update the mobile app or upgrade the mobile configuration tool (Woodford) solution. In this case, skip to step 3.
Step 1: Update the Field Service Mobile app
Technicians use the Field Service Mobile app on their phones, tablets, and Windows 10 devices.
When a new version of the mobile app is released, the app will need to be updated on each user's device. This can be done manually, automatically, or via Microsoft Intune.
As an example, downloading Field Service Mobile from the Windows Store can allow for automatic updates as new versions are released.
Step 2: Upgrade the mobile configuration tool (Woodford) solution
To unlock the new capabilities of the updated Field Service Mobile app, you'll then need to download and import the latest version of the Mobile Configuration tool (Woodford) solution into your environment.
Step 3: Upgrade the mobile project template.
Mobile projects hold the configurations and customizations of the mobile app. Periodically, Microsoft releases new mobile projects in conjunction with or independent of a mobile app update or a new version of the mobile configuration tool (Woodford) solution.
See the topic on upgrading mobile projects for guidance and best practices.
Resource Scheduling, also called Universal Resource Scheduling, is the app that powers Field Service scheduling. You cannot upgrade Resource Scheduling on its own; it's upgraded with Field Service, Project Service Automation, or Customer Service.
However, before upgrading Resource Scheduling consider:
- Running the Resource Scheduling: Service Health Diagnostics
- Planning for updated Universal FetchXML (UFX) queries on the schedule board and schedule assistant.
Run Resource Scheduling: Service Health Diagnostics
Go to Resource Scheduling app > Settings > Administration > Scheduling Parameters
Then select Health Diagnostics in the top ribbon.
If the diagnostic tool flags any web resources that should not have been edited, you will need to remove the customizations from the web resources and then run the upgrade. Not all customized web resources will be flagged by this tool, only the ones that could have critical impact.
Plan for updated Universal FetchXML (UFX) queries
Occasionally, Resource Scheduling releases will include updates to the Universal FetchXML (UFX) queries that control how resources and requirements are fetched and loaded on the schedule board or in schedule assistant results. For more information, see the topic on schedule board tab settings.
As an example, a new version of Resource Scheduling may add a new resource filter to the left panel of the schedule board. To make this possible, the update will come with a new UFX query for the Retrieve Resources Query as seen in the screenshot below.
However, the XML in each UFX can be edited based on your specific needs. If a UFX query has been edited by your organization, the Resource Scheduling upgrade will import the new UFX query, but will not apply it. Therefore, you'll need to add your customizations to the new UFX query and select and apply it manually from the Schedule Board Tab Settings. One option is to use GitHub to understand the differences between the old XML file with your custom queries and the new XML file as part of the Resource Scheduling upgrade.
All UFX queries, both custom ones your organization creates and those included with the Resource Scheduling app, are listed as records in the configurations entity, and each record holds the XML queries.
Resource scheduling optimization
Resource scheduling optimization (RSO) is the app that allows for automated scheduling of work orders, projects tasks, cases, and more. Major and minor updates are released throughout the year. Unlike Resource Scheduling, RSO can be upgraded independently.
First, check if an RSO update is available.
From the Dynamics 365 Admin Center, select and highlight the environment that has the RSO app and select solutions.
In the list of solutions, it will indicate if there is an upgrade available for RSO.
If so, go to the Applications tab at the top, find the RSO application that relates to your environment, and choose Manage.
Then select Upgrade to new version.
Pro Tip: By selecting Change Organization, you can point RSO at a different environment to optimize those work orders, projects, cases, etc. Doing so will initiate an upgrade. Furthermore, your RSO data and configurations (optimization scopes, goals, and schedules) will remain in the previous environment in case you ever want to switch it back.
Field Service Mobile Push Notifications and Geofence Alerts solutions that are part of the install and upgrade of Field Service will only be installed if the mobile configuration tool (Woodford) version 11.1+ is present in the environment. Follow the steps below to get these solutions in cases where the mobile configuration tool (Woodford) was not present at install or upgrade.
- Download the mobile configuration tool (Woodford) and import into Settings > Solutions
- Delete the FieldService_Anchor from the solutions list in Settings > Solutions.
- In Admin Center, an upgrade will be available; proceed to manually upgrade.
- This will skip most of the installed solutions and will install msdyn_FSMNotification and msdyn_GeoFenceAlerts since the Woodford dependency has been met.