Dynamics CRM 2011 + Sharepoint 2010 integration and deployment to support multiple physical locations RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hi all,

    I've been asked for input on a proposal for a company that has multiple office locations, in both the northern and southern hemispheres, that want to implement Dynamics CRM 2011 and add integration with Sharepoint 2010 to provide a document management component as well.

    Each of the major office locations would like to have their own copy of CRM and have it all replicated/synchronized between the major offices. Basically they want to share information and documents between all locations. One of the reasons why they are thinking about replication is to provide a good user experience when managing documents for example, as uploading and downloading large documents from across the globe is not always the fastest and a lot depends on the local bandwidth and conditions.

    They are not open to using an external cloud based service and want to be in charge of their own servers. They also want to use Dynamics CRM for Outlook as the CRM client and use AD authentication across the whole network.

    One of the options I'm thinking of putting forward is to find a centralized hosting provider (where they can have their own servers) and have a single installation of both CRM and Sharepoint with some sort of replication of the Sharepoint document database/store to each of the major locations. However, I'm not sure at this point that it would even be possible?

    Any thoughts or advice on setting up such a distributed Dynamics CRM + Sharepoint installation with fast local access to documents would be appreciated.

    Thanks in advance

    • Edited by novascape Monday, September 5, 2011 9:45 AM
    Monday, September 5, 2011 9:45 AM

All replies

  • So the aim is to have a single centralised CRM Organisation sharing data, but with multiple localised SharePoint instances to give better performance when downloading/uploading documents.  So CRM data will be shared with the regions, and SharePoint data replicated across the regions.

    I believe this is do-able, but would create two tasks:

    (1) A load-balancing style server which would redirect a user accessing 'http://sharepoint' to the correct localised SharePoint Server for their region.

    (2) SQL or SharePoint Replication to create a copy of the Document Data in each local SQL Server to keep the different Regions SharePoint stores in synch - which I could imagine been quite tricky, would need a strong DBA/Infrastructure resource.

    If possible would be tempted to investigate whether you could store all the SharePoint data in a central Database server, with different front-end Application Servers for each region.  Bandwidth-wise you could then install a dedicated pipe between the localised Application Servers and the central Database Server to try and give good performance without getting into data replication.

    Depending on the region's bandwidth and likelihood of installing a good pipe may or may not be possible, but could save a lot of project costs if you could.

    Be worth asking in the SharePoint forums whether any of the SharePoint Experts have experience of using SQL Replication to duplicate Document Data across different SharePoint instances.




    Kind Regards, Paul | http://crmconsultancy.wordpress.com
    Monday, September 5, 2011 1:50 PM
  • Thanks Paul, your comments are appreciated.

    Had a good discussion over on the Sharepoint forum about this here: http://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/sharepoint2010general/thread/d37718f1-5f87-45cb-bec1-63f51d74a0b2/

    Tuesday, September 6, 2011 4:17 AM