Vote for Salesforce as the best Enterprise

January 14, 2011 at 9:50 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Hi all ..Tech Crunch is conducting an online voting for your favorite companies, products and people for a Crunchie Award

You can cast your Vote at http://bit.ly/guVYWU

Salesforce.com Integration Options

January 3, 2011 at 10:08 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Hi Folks as you know i am not a big fan of SFDC. But i had a chance to do a bit of research on Integration Options available in SFDC and come up with my findings as below. I thought it would be a good source of reference for all of you.

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10+ Salesforce.com Integration Options

1. UI Layer Integrations:

a.    URL Formula Fields

b.    Weblinks

c.    Mashups – S-control, Visualforce

d.   Web Tabs

e.    Javascript DOM Insertion

i.    Greasemonkey User Scripts – Setup Enhancer

2. Data Layer:

a.    Dataloader – UI and CLI

b.    Excel Connector

c.    Eclipse Anonymous Block Query Runner

3. Application Layer:

a.    Salesforce 2 Salesforce (Possibly using SOAP)

b.    Portals

i.    Self Service

ii.    Customer Portal

iii.    Partner Portal

iv.    Force.com Sites

c.    REST Based Bulk API – Used for high volume data imports

d.   SOAP Based API

i.    WebServices

1.   Custom – .Net (C#, VisualBasic), JAVA, ASP, PERL, Python, PHP

2.   Web-to-Case

3.   Web-to-Lead

4.   Workflow – Outbound Calls

5.   Developer Toolkits / SDK

a.    Amazon Web Services

b.    Facebook

c.    Google AppEngine

d.   Python

e.    Ruby on Rails – ActiveSalesforce

f.     PHP

g.   Facebook

h.   Google Visualization

6.   Application Frameworks

a.    Adobe Flash Builder for Force.com

b.    Adobe Flex for Force.com

c.    Adobe AIR for Force.com

7.   PlugIns

a.    WordPress

b.    Twitter

8.   PreBuilt Integrations

a.    Google AdWords

ii.    Email Services

1.   Custom Email Services – Apex Trigger on InboundEmail

2.   Out of Box

a.    Email-to-Case – On Demand Email to Case

b.    Email-to-Case – Email to Case Agent

3.   My Email to Salesforce

iii.    Outbound Emails

1.   Mass email Users/Contacts

2.   Emails using Apex/Workflow email alerts

e.    ERP Native Connectors – Oracle and SAP

f.     Integration Middleware / Cloud Connectors – Appexchange/3rd Party

g.   Client/Desktop Connectors

i.    Salesforce.com Provided

1.   Force.com Connect for Microsoft Outlook

2.   Force.com Connect for Lotus Notes

3.   Force.com Connect for Microsoft Word

4.   Force.com Connect for Microsoft Excel

5.   Demo CTI Adapter

ii.    3rd Party Desktop Connectors

1.   KlipFolio

4. Industry Data Integration (Leads/Account/Contact Information)

a.    JIGSAW

5. Offline

a.    Salesforce.com Offline Edition 2.0

b.    Custom/3rd Party eg: Model Metrics – Pharma2Go

6. Authentication

a.    Single Sign On – SAML or Delegated

7. Metadata API Layer

a.    Eclipse

b.    ANT

c.    SOQL Explorer

d.   Apex Explorer

e.    3rd Party Apps like SnapShot

 

* – Everything above is technically Not an integration per se, but I figured it would make sense to list them as long as they were some kind of an “interaction” with Salesforce.com/Force.com

 

As you can see, Salesforce.com provides a host of options to integrate your existing and future applications. New toolkits and better API support are introduced with each release.

If you are evaluating a CRM or custom application/platform, consider the integration options available to you as part of the new application/platform.

2010 in review – Thanks for all your support Friends

January 2, 2011 at 4:48 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Below stat shows how my Blog did last year. Thanks a lot for all your continuing support and this encourages me to do much better this year and share all my knowledge with you all.

===========================================================================================

 

The stats helper monkeys at WordPress.com mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads This blog is doing awesome!.

Crunchy numbers

Featured image

A Boeing 747-400 passenger jet can hold 416 passengers. This blog was viewed about 5,800 times in 2010. That’s about 14 full 747s.

 

In 2010, there were 2 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 77 posts. There was 1 picture uploaded, taking a total of 19kb.

The busiest day of the year was June 9th with 55 views. The most popular post that day was Creating a Custom Workflow in CRM 4.0.

Where did they come from?

The top referring sites in 2010 were google.co.in, google.com, google.co.uk, social.microsoft.com, and google.com.au.

Some visitors came searching, mostly for crm ui, crm 4.0 retrieve saved queries, creating a workflow for dynamics crm, ganpati bappa, and ms crm 4 test if opportunity is closed via sdk.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.

1

Creating a Custom Workflow in CRM 4.0 September 2009

2

Creating A Sub-Lookup in MSCRM 4.0 August 2009

3

About February 2009

4

How to Send and Receive Hotmail from Your Gmail Account March 2009
3 comments

5

Contact Me October 2009

Folks I am Back

October 1, 2010 at 5:54 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Hi Folks,

Thanks for all your support to my blog. I came out of my exile now and you can expect few more posts from me on Microsoft Dynamics CRM now.

Loving Dynamics CRM

YAHOO MAP MASH-UP TRIAL

February 19, 2010 at 4:36 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

This is an example yahoo MAP
//

CRM Customization File Best Practices

September 17, 2009 at 11:30 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Today I thought I’d share what I think are some best practices when working with CRM’’s customization files.

Procedure

When exporting customizations for either edit (ISV.Config or Site Map ) or transport, I always save them to disk so I have a reference copy of the customizations.

Location

Pick a specific folder on your system an always store your exported customization files there.  It helps to always have your customizations in a central place should you need to revert or refer back to a previous version.

File Naming Convention

Over time, I’ve developed the following convention to help me organize my export files:

[organization]-[dev/prod]-[entity]-customizations-[date].zip

Examples:

contoso-dev-sitemap-isvconfig-customizations-0820.zip

contoso-prod-all-customizations-20090820.zip

If I am exporting all customizations, I just use that for the entity name.  Since I rarely export customizations for specific entities besides the SiteMap and ISV.Config, I don’t usually have to worry about having too long of a file name.

If you are working on a development team, you may also add your name ( or email alias ) to the file name so everyone knows who saved the customizations.

Unpacking

If I need to edit the exported customizations, I will first unzip them into a folder with the same name as the .zip file so that I can edit a copy of the customization file.  This also gives me a reference copy of the file should I need it later.

Editing

If at all possible, use Visual Studio to edit the customization.xml file.  This will prevent possible illegal formatting that will prevent CRM from reloading your customizations.

Now this is probably a duplication of effort, but the first thing that I do after opening the file in Visual Studio is perform a Save As operation, giving the new file the following name:

customizations-NEW.xml

After editing, this is the file that will, of course, be re-imported into CRM.

Conclusion

Well, that’s about it for today.  While most of what I’ve shared is pretty much common sense, I thought I’d write about it so that people just starting have a starting point when working with customizations.

If you have your own best practices, I’d love to hear them.

Testing Customizations as a Normal User

September 17, 2009 at 11:28 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

This will probably be old news to most of you, but for those who are just starting with CRM, you should have a methodology in place to test your customizations as a normal user.

The Basics

You should have at least one test user for each role in which normal users exist.  Normal being not-CRM Administrators.  This will allow you to test the functionality of your customizations and custom solutions as each type of user.

While this may not seem like a huge issue, you need to keep in mind that CRM alters the environment and the user interface based on the user’s security.  This means that sometimes they will not see things you expect them to or they will have permissions issues where you least expect them.

How to Test

Prior to Windows Vista and Server 2008, you could simply right-click on the Internet Explorer icon, select Run As, then supply the credentials of whatever test user you wished.

Unfortunately, Microsoft changed that behavior and according to this article, it no longer works.  Thanks guys.

A possible work-around is using the ShellRunAs commandlet found here.

It is supposed to provide this functionality but I’ve had mixed results ( probably didn’t follow the directions properly ).

So if you’re using Vista or Server 2008, should nothing else work, you can always just Switch Users and log into the machine as the test user.

What to Test

Here are the usual suspects for testing customizations within CRM:

  • The Site Map ( left-hand navigation )
  • ISV.Config ( buttons and menus )
  • JavaScript ( does your custom JavaScript work with all users )
  • Custom Solutions ( any custom ASP.NET code you have written and added to CRM )
  • Processes.  If you have a process that moves data through the system, test it from start to finish as the particular user or users who actually perform the work to make sure you’re covering the whole process as a “normal” user and experiencing what they experience.

Conclusion

This is, at the very least, the minimal amount of testing you need to perform on a customized system.  You can get as comprehensive and complex as you desire.

If you will document your testing procedures and steps and repeat those each time a change is made, you should be able to more quickly identify problems and create solutions before your changes reach the hands of the users.

Enabling Quick Find of Disabled Records

September 17, 2009 at 11:25 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Hi Guys,

This week we discovered a requirement to allow the user to perform a Quick Search on both active and close Opportunity records. We did an unsupported customization to acheive this. This is how we did it!

1) Export the Entity in question. In my case, it was Opportunity.

2) Locate the Quick Find view.

3) Change filter type from this:

<condition attribute="statecode" operator="eq" value="0" />

to this:

<condition attribute="statecode" operator="not-null"/>

4) Save the customizations.

5) Import and publish the customizations.

This will allow the Quick Find operation to find Opportunity records no matter what their state is ( active, canceled, closed, etc. ).

And yes, this is unsupported.

Cheers!!!

xRM contest – Show what you can do with xRM

September 10, 2009 at 10:28 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Hi Gurus,

Microsoft INDIA is conducting a contest for developing a custom xRM solution and all are welcome to participate.

You can visit here to find the details.

Cheers!!!

xRM Services

September 10, 2009 at 10:25 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Ever thought of using CRM to manage relationship other than customers? If so you already using xRM to manage your relations.

At xrm.com and Streamline Solutions we want to understand every aspect of your business. Doing so will allow us to offer you the best products and strategy. Every business has its unique set of challenges and strengths that we seek to build on. We work with clients in a broad range of industries—from entertainment and government to finance and manufacturing. Below are some “snapshots” which detail our expertise in a variety of settings.

Entertainment—From post-production to television distribution, this industry is rife with complex tracking and operational needs that are best served by a unified solution. Streamline Solutions has created a number of high-profile, very effective implementations that have dramatically increased the efficiency and operational method of some major corporations.

Manufacturing—This industry has a unique set of problems relating to efficiency and profitability. Streamline Solutions has been able to change the way companies do business by deploying highly efficient, customized dashboards presenting data contained in Microsoft Dynamics CRM. As in all industries, the relationship between customer and company is important, but so is the relationship between product and sales. Effectively managing those very relationships is what it’s all about.

Finance—As we enter uncharted territory in the way our financial sector is run and managed, the need for a full-featured, reliable platform that can provide the highest levels of accountability, performance, and intelligent data mining becomes greater. For those companies that need a true understanding of the data they possess, no solution is better than Microsoft’s .NET platform in combination with Microsoft CRM. At xrm.com and Streamline Solutions, we believe that tethering a business to this fully-integrated and developed platform in uncertain times is a smart business move.

Government—Companies that win large contracts from federal and state governments often face having to fulfill complex and demanding reporting requirements that sometimes resemble mountains of minutiae. To address this, Streamline Solutions has provided completely customized solutions which are underpinned by the Microsoft platform. They offer ease-of-use and scalability, and most importantly, help companies meet those difficult conditions.

Cheers and happy xRM’ing.

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