Extracts from the CRM Q2 2012 Release Notes

The following article are extracts from the CRM 2011 Q2 2012 Release notes:


Today’s businesses use a wide variety of technology platforms and form factors across many different locations. Microsoft is deeply committed to a rich application experience for users wherever they are. The Microsoft Dynamics CRM Q2 2012 service update provides the flexibility to consume Microsoft Dynamics CRM through the most popular web browsers running on both PC and Apple Macintosh computers. It also delivers a range of rich device-specific applications for popular mobile devices that keeps the user informed and productive when they are out of the office. This update showcases our interoperability with non-Microsoft platforms and alignment with industry standards to promote choice. Flexibility of device and browser, coupled with the productivity features of Microsoft Dynamics CRM, enables individuals to access the right information at the right time on the right device.


The Microsoft Dynamics CRM Q2 21012 service update brings a new cloud based mobile CRM service called Microsoft Dynamics CRM Mobile to customers of Microsoft Dynamics CRM. As part of this new mobile solution, Microsoft will provide a full range of rich native CRM applications (apps) for the most popular smartphones and tablets. These new applications allow a sales, service or marketing professional to access Microsoft Dynamics CRM both Online and On-premises. These apps allow organizations and individuals to be productive with their device of choice thereby enabling them to manage customer relationships anywhere.

It is common for sales, service and marketing professionals to use a variety of devices e.g. a sales person might have both a phone and a tablet device from which they need to access their CRM data and processes. With Microsoft Dynamics CRM Mobile, each licensed mobile user can access Microsoft Dynamics CRM from up to three different mobile devices. Microsoft Dynamics CRM Mobile will also offer an offline mode on most devices* so that Microsoft Dynamics CRM can be accessed even when there is lack of Internet connectivity.

Native apps for devices supported by this offering include:


Operating System

Windows Phone


Apple iPhone 3GS+

iOS 5+

Google Android


RIM Blackberry

6.x and 7.x

Apple iPad/iPad2

iOS 5+

 Microsoft Dynamics CRM Mobile offers the user the full breadth of Microsoft Dynamics CRM functionality, including the dashboard capabilities, on the mobile device of their choice. There is no need to load multiple apps onto their device; Microsoft Dynamics CRM Mobile provides a single consistent application experience


In addition to Microsoft Dynamics CRM Mobile, the Microsoft Dynamics CRM Q2 2012 service update provides the ability for end users to access the Microsoft Dynamics CRM Web Client across all modern Internet browsers on various platforms. This includes browsers such as Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome, and Safari running on PC, Apple Macintosh or iPad. The list of devices and specific browser versions that will be supported is as follows:






In many organizations there are groups of users who typically use a CRM system to look up key information about their contacts, accounts, opportunities and cases but have no immediate need to modify that information. For example, many contact centre employees or managers primarily use Microsoft Dynamics CRM to review business information before deciding whether any action is required. For these users the optimal experience is to load this information very quickly so they can immediately assess a situation and determine the correct course of action. In order to provide this type of user experience, we’re introducing rapid view forms.

The rapid view form is a read-only form that can be configured like any other form in Microsoft Dynamics CRM to display any record in the system.

When viewing information in these forms, users can switch to an editing experience with the click of a button. Administrators of Microsoft Dynamics CRM will have the option to set all forms to load in rapid view mode if appropriate for business needs. Individual users will have the personal option to choose the form mode they prefer (Rapid View or Standard Edit).


Organizations are constantly seeking new ways to facilitate simple and effective communication and collaboration between their employees. Social networks such as Twitter and Facebook provide a very simple micro-blogging user experience to post observations and information as well as ask questions and find expertize. More and more users are demanding these types of social experiences in business applications such as CRM. The Microsoft Dynamics CRM November 2011 Service Update delivered these capabilities through Activity Feeds which introduced micro-blogging and social collaboration capabilities within Microsoft Dynamics CRM. With the upcoming Q2 2012 service update, Activity Feeds will be further enhanced to provide additional functionality and simplified access to relevant feeds.

 We are adding the ability to “Like” and “Unlike” posts in Activity Feeds similar to the concept in Facebook. Activity Feeds will also offer improved filtering capabilities. A user can view a timeline wall of all posts that mention them (the @me filter). Users can also filter posts relating to types of records they follow. For example, a user can create a filter to only show posts related to the Accounts that they follow. Finally, filters can be based on data views configured within Microsoft Dynamics CRM. For example, ‘My Direct Reports’ view will show all posts related to anyone who reports to me regardless of whether I follow those team members or not. These new filtering capabilities provide a user with even greater flexibility over the information they want to see on their wall.


Microsoft SQL Server 2012 introduces a new Reporting Services Add-in for Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010 called Power View, previously code-named Project Crescent. Power View is a next-generation BI tool for interactive data exploration, visualization, and presentation. It provides intuitive ad-hoc reporting for business users such as data analysts, business decision makers and information workers. In short, Power View provides better business insights and collaboration for casual and experienced users alike. Power View allows a user to configure reports that connect to Microsoft Excel’s PowerPivot or SQL Server Analysis Services (SSAS). Power View is so much more than just breath-taking end user analytics visualizations and tools, it redefines the data analysis process for business and technical users alike.

 With the Microsoft Dynamics CRM Q2 2012 service update, we’re releasing a set of Microsoft Excel workbooks with pre-defined PowerPivot models and Power View Report templates. These templates will be available in the Microsoft Dynamics Marketplace as a Microsoft Dynamics Labs solution.


With the Microsoft Dynamics CRM Q2 service update, developers can build custom .NET Workflow activity assemblies for Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online. These custom assemblies can be developed and deployed as part of a Microsoft Dynamics CRM solution package. Once a custom workflow activity has been deployed, it can then be utilized within the workflow engine for business process management. These new capabilities ensure parity in the developer experience between Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online and on-premises. It also empowers organizations to bring external data, custom actions and integrations into their standard CRM

Microsoft CRM 2011 and SharePoint 2010 Integration – What happens to Special Characters in CRM record names?

When you utilise the OOB integration between CRM 2011 and SharePoint 2010 you need to be aware of how special characters will be handled in SharePoint as they are not supported in the folder name.

SharePoint doesn’t support the following characters in folder names so when a record in CRM contains an invalid character it is converted to a dash “-“. Invalid characters in SharePoint  ~ ” # % & * : < > ? / \ { | }