Simple CRM Development Enviroment Setup RRS feed

  • Question

  • All,

    I have seen similar questions asked regarding setting up a development environment for CRM 2011 on-premise, but never really saw any answers that worked for our organization. I've read through the following Microsoft PDF documents:

    • ALM for Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011: CRM Solution Lifecycle Management
    • Deploying Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 and Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online solutions from development through test and production environments

    These documents give me some clues, but I miss the practical instructions of how to implement and operate it. Perhaps I'm just not properly understanding the language. It seems like they are building a "space ship", I would like to start with a very basic development setup that works for our organization. To illustrate what I'm trying to do, here is how I'd like the development environment to work:

    1. There are three CRM servers: CRM-DEV, CRM-TEST, CRM-PROD
    2. The CRM developers are asked to add a new set of fields to the lead entity. After getting all the requirements from the stakeholders, they add the fields to the CRM-DEV environment that is only accessible for developers
    3. Now that the new fields are added, and the developers feel comfortable with it, we create a managed solution with the lead entity and import it into our CRM-TEST environment
    4. Now that the new set of fields is available in CRM-TEST, we can have some end-users try it out.
    5. Based on their feedback, they want us to redesign the layout, remove some fields, and add others. To that end, we remove the managed solution from CRM-TEST, to make it go back to the previous state.
    6. Now we make the changes to CRM-DEV, create another managed solution and import it to CRM-TEST
    7. The end-users are happy with the changes and we are ready to "go live" with the new fields
    8. Now we take the managed solution that was imported to CRM-TEST and import it into CRM-PROD. Now everyone can use the new fields in the lead entity and CRM-TEST and CRM-PROD are now again exact copies of one another.

    This is what I'd like to achieve. Currently we already have CRM-DEV, CRM-TEST and CRM-PROD environments setup. The problem is that when I add a field to the lead entity, and try to create a managed solution from it, I get complications due to "Missing Required Components". Even if I add all of the required missing components on export, I still can't get the import to work on CRM-TEST. I get the following error (see screenshot):

    "The import of the solution X failed. The following components are missing in your system and are not included in the solution. Import the managed solutions that contain these components (Active) and then try importing this solution again."

    Then it lists additional components, that apparently were not added when it added the "Missing Required Components" on export (WHY?). The list is practically endless (at least 100 components) and practically impossible to figure out which additional components to add.

    What I need to note here is that CRM-DEV and CRM-TEST are not identical copies of one another. We might try building some functionality in CRM-DEV that never sees the light of day (this is our "sandbox"). Therefore there might be dependencies that are not in CRM-TEST.

    So my next question is, should we re-create CRM-DEV and CRM-TEST from CRM-PROD every time before we start a development cycle? That way all the dependencies are good?

    Any feedback would be greatly helpful.

    Many thanks,


    Thursday, December 5, 2013 2:09 AM