Microsoft Dynamics CRM Codeless Data Integration and Synchronization

 

Microsoft Dynamics CRM data can be integrated and synchronized codeless with 100+ other data sources, systems and applications using the Layer2 Cloud Connector via the Layer2 Data Provider for OData.​ CRM Online is supported as well Dynamics CRM on-premises.

 

Microsoft Dynamics CRM/ERP Integration Synchronization Codeless

Benefits of Microsoft Dynamics CRM Integration via Cloud Connector

 

Integrating Microsoft Dynamics CRM via the the Layer2 Cloud Connector has the following features and benefits:

 

  • 100+ systems and apps can be connected: Commonly requested data providers are included in package, vendor specific ADO.NET data providers can be used, as well as 3rd-party providers. On-premises and cloud-based systems and apps are supported. Please find your specific data source or destination here.
  • Fast and codeless implementation: No programming or tools required. Setup in a few minutes guided by a wizard. Sample connection templates included. Just adapt your connection string and data query. 
  • Risk-free no touch integration: Does not require any customization or installation on the CRM or external data source side.
  • Flexible sync options: One-way or two-way sync, insert/update/delete operations can be blocked, if required. Scheduled update in background or on-demand.
  • Reliable architecture: A connection is established only for data synchronization – not for general CRM usage. External data is stored directly in the CRM. CRM data can be synced to many external systems.
  • All CRM features provided: As external data is cached in CRM data collections all CRM features are provided as usual, e.g. views, search, notifications. 
  • Best performance: Fast synchronization, supports large datasets. No bulk-import. Data changes are processed. Users directly work with CRM-cached data for best user experience.
  • Highest Security: No need to open your local network for access from outside. Secure communication, e.g. SSL/HTTPS (depending on data provider). No 3rd-party or cloud involved. The tool runs as a Windows service on a server or client in your secure network and directly connects both ends.
  • 100% Microsoft API compatible: XRM OData interface is used to connect and sync. Several authentication methods supported including Windows AD, ADFS, Windows Live and others.

 

"The Layer2 software has been exactly what we were looking for. It has allowed us to seamlessly connect our Office 365 and Dynamics CRM environments together in an easy to maintain and easy to administer solution.   The ease of the mapping feature and the bidirectional communication allowed us to go ahead and extend the solution into some new directions that we have originally planned for next year due to supposed complexity. Layer2 has become a critical solution for us and one that we have already started including as standard project elements for new projects with our clients." Brian J. Clark, The Normandy Group.

Microsoft Dynamics CRM Specific Integration Settings

 

To connect and sync a Microsoft Dynamics CRM data entity with other data sources, it must be configured as follows in the Layer2 Cloud Connector Connection Manager:

 

Example of configuration for office 365 and dynmaics CRM Integration

 

 

Fig. Example connection configuration to connect to Microsoft Dynamics CRM data via OData.

 

Please note the following specific settings:

 

  • Select the OData Data Provider to connect. The provider is part of the Layer2 Cloud Connector ADO.NET provider package and should be already be installed. You will find an OData Provider specification here.
  • You can use a connection string like this to connect:
    url=https://myCompany.crm4.dynamics.com/XRMServices/2011/OrganizationData.svc/; Collection=AccountSet; [email protected]; Password=myPassword; Authentication=DynamicsCrmOnline;
  • Several different authentication methods are generally supported. See provider specification linked above for more. 
  • You can make use of OData to query your data as supported by the data provider and source system. For more information about supported queries, see Microsoft Dynamics CRM OData specification.
  • For best performance on the OData service call, only select the necessary fields in the select statement.
  • You can make use of where conditions or filters and other query options as described here.
  • You can map your data fields to specific external fields in the Layer2 Cloud Connector. Please take care about data types (simple type conversions are supported).
  • Please enter an appropriate primary key (column with unique values), depending on query (see data preview for this).
  • You can use the connection for uni- or bi-directional synchronization.
  • Data synchronization can be started manually in the Connection Manager, per command line or scheduled in background by the Layer2 Cloud Connector Windows Service. Only data changes are processed (no delete / bulk import).

Step-by-Step Intros For Dynamics CRM Data Integration And Synchronization

 

​Just some ideas what to connect next:

 

  • Sync Microsoft Dynamics CRM / ERP (on-premises or online) via OData with SharePoint or Office 365.
  • Sync with SQL Server or SQL Azure for improved reporting via SSRS.
  • Sync with Microsoft Exchange (on-premises or online) for notifications, contacts, tasks, calendar events, mobile access and offline availability on any device.
  • Migrate Microsoft Dynamics CRM to or from Salesforce CRM via 3rd party data providers.
  • Sync with 3rd party tools based on SQL databases like Oracle, mySQL or Microsoft SQL Server.

 

Can't find what you are looking for? Take a look here for supported systems or contact [email protected] for help.

CRM Data Integration And Synchronization - Known Issues and Workarounds

 

  • In case of inserts to CRM (full CRUD) via external systems please take care of the primary key(s). CRM-side IDs will not work in his case. You can take customer IDs, email addresses, etc.
  • Data Preview may take a long time to load, especially if you have a lot of records. To help speed this up, you can add "$top=10" to your select statement, which will only take the top 10 records. Remember to remove this for the actually data sync.
  • Required fields on CRM must a have a valid value in case of inserts. Otherwise the insert will fail.
  • If you insert new items in the CRM in some cases GUIDs must be provided. You can use the Cloud Connector replication key settings to generate these GUIDs automatically. For example, to provide an Accountid, set this name to the replication key settings of the data entity.
  • If you are evaluating data changes, note that the CRM uses an auto-save feature with some delay. Means what you see in the user interface is not always what's already stored in the cloud. The Layer2 Cloud Connector compares with the data stored in the cloud, not with your user interface.
  • If you are using an On-Premises installation of CRM, you may need to use the NextCRMOnline or NextCRMOnlineIntegrated authentication methods.

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