The CDM (Common Data Model) is a configured Microsoft SQL Server database so I am confused by some of the comments. The benefit to CDS(Common Data Service and CDM) over green field Microsoft SQL Server databases or Azure SQL Server DBs really revolves around Role Based Entitlement and Localization features to name two key deliverables. The database model definitely has fits and gaps, but there are many deeper features that deserve respect for the many years that they have withstood the use and abuse by millions of users and users who are currently using the structure.
In general I think we all need to continue to educate each other so that the best of the best gets absorbed into the platform.
Hey @Astanton ,
Interesting point on how CDM sits on top of SQL Server. I suspected as much, somewhat similarly to how SharePoint sits on top of SQL as well. That being said, if we can't adress the underlying SQL layer, all the pain points discussed above remain intact no matter the underlying technology... :-/
I like (and hoped for) the fact that you discuss the "benefits" side of the equation. I didn't know much about role-based entitlement. I read up a bit on it. In general, I find it similar to SQL roles (with a nicer GUI) but the addition of column-level security and OOB views limiting rows per users are good perks! The localisation is also interesting, although I haven't used it very often in other platform where something similar is available (say, SSAS cubes).
These two points are certainly interesting, and I'm definetly all hears for more great stuff about CDS. But I can't shake the feeling they are mostly "nice-to-have" features on a platform that is missing it's "must-have" (in our context, that is). Having low-code options to develop and deploy a back-end solution makes great sense in some situation (espescially for a developper who doesn't know any other way), but the cost/benefit expressed above still remains overwhelingly negative in most of my uses-cases.
Case in point : I'm currently building a trainning app where users can search for different types of material (videos, webpages, notebooks, etc) which can be organised into "playlists" and where users tag/rate/comment them for others. Here, 98% of the CDM is unrellavant to my problem (and thus is noise to me), indexing, upserting and search procedures are less than trivial (if you want good performance) and I've got no need for complex security beyond what SQL offers or for localisation. So my reflex is to stick to SQL, which I already know well and can pop up quickly...
(ps : now I'm dreading migrating this solution to a SPO-based one since there's no way we'll pay 10$/month/user for it... Aaah, the joys of licensing ! )
>>In general I think we all need to continue to educate each other so that the best of the best gets absorbed into the platform.
Very much agree.
As mentioned, I'm a noob on CDS, and interested to hear about benefits / use-cases (if you can point to any good resources comparing CDS to SQL and showing the pros/cons of each that would be interesting to see).
I do have to support @FredericForest's point that even though CDS may sit atop SQL, that isn't any help if we can't use our SQL knowledge and skills to get the most out of the platform (views, indexes, stored procs).
@PaulD1 I would start with switching hats and looking at the Enterprise Accounts using Dynamics 365 CE/CRM, because these clients have been maturing with the platform anywhere from 2004 through to new users today. Many projects in Enterprise are xRM or (Any Relationship Management) what has happened is that the power of that platform has now exploded even more outside the standard integrations originally shipped and matured.
As an original design and long term SDK offering Dynamics 365 CE was always about open integrations and ships with integrations to Active Directory, Outlook, Excel, Word, OneNote, SharePoint and more.
It was also built (starting in 2004) to be highly configurable AND Extendable and can now be extended with over 100 different development languages (don't ask me to list them).
So now we shift from the "Dynamics World" into a full platform offering on the same platform. So you take this great "HEART" from the product and offer it to the world of people who have not put the "Dynamics" hat on.
I think there is a part of me that considers it similar to the 6th or 7th or 8th ... I lost count some time ago level of a development language world.
What is even more interesting is that given the product is now on AZURE and SaaS, the product teams are now incorporating and adopting tons of AZURE functionality into the platform. So instead of being restricted by Microsoft SQL Server, they can now use Microsoft SQL Server AND Azure Functions (logic apps, search, etc. etc. ) and offer OOB platform that pulls the entire Microsoft Stack together.
It is important to be a guru on a technology like Microsoft SQL Server, but we all have to understand the choices and architecture of other technologies so that we can recommend or recruit the right experts for the problem of the day.
Is technology going the way of medicine? Where you have a general practioner and referrals to experts?
@PaulD1 I would start with switching hats and looking at the Enterprise Accounts using Dynamics 365 CE/CRM, because these clients have been maturing with the platform anywhere from 2004 through to new users today.
While its de facto what we HAVE to do, that's a bit sad to me. It more or less comes down to saying "PowerApps will now be positionned mainly as an extension of Dynamics" and therefore drastically limits the outreach of the platform. Dynamics is a great product, but it covers a fraction of the potential market.
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