Friday, May 27, 2011

CRM 2011 Metadata Browser

I am not sure how come it has been so long that I haven’t noticed there is such a cool tool out there, I just came across Rhett Clinton’s blog and saw a link to a few CodePlex projects he has shared. Among them, there is the Metadata Browser for CRM 2011. One of the coolest things about this tool is that it is implemented as a CRM solution that you install in your CRM organization and it integrates with the CRM application!

I’ve developed the CRM 2011 Metadata Browser as a Silverlight 4 application that is packaged as a Managed CRM 2011 Solution. This tool allows you to view metadata within CRM including Entities, Attributes and Relationships. The tool uses the 2011 endpoint Organization.svc/web WCF service and is accessible from the Settings area under Customizations in CRM once imported into CRM.

So what does it do?
It gives you a matrix of all the CRM entities with all the metadata. Then I was pleased to see that you can even dig deeper into the attributes and the relationships.

Why is that good?
It is true this information is already accessible OOB by other means, but this tool gives you everything in one page without having to build SQL queries or navigating to multiple entities in CRM to gather the same information. Many times we want to document the metadata for multiple entities in the CRM organization and this tool provides a comprehensive view of all the information you need in one page. I would love to see an “export to excel” feature or maybe the ability to produce a report from it.

He has also published two other tools to CodePlex for converting CRM4 to CRM2011 JavaScript and for building OData queries for CRM, great stuff, check it out here.

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