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Helper I
Helper I

Best Practice to customize entities

Hi,
I'm currently looking for a best practice on how to customize default entities in CDS.

Use case description:

I want to extend the Project Entity for Project for the web to add some fields, change option sets, forms and views.
The entity customization should be packageable to a solution to roll it our to test and prod environments.

 

Questions:

Is it the right way to customize the default entity or create an own to extend the default entity?
What if Microsoft changes some entity default fields or settings on its own? Is my setting overwritten?
If rolling out the solution to another environment where a project entity is already in use, will be all settings overwritten or only added to the existing ones?

Cheers

2 ACCEPTED SOLUTIONS

Accepted Solutions
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Super User II
Super User II

Hi @fs92,

The only best practices officially published by Microsoft are the following links:

  1. https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/dynamics365/customerengagement/on-premises/developer/best-practices...
    Note: it says on-premise but the same applies for online 
  2. For ALM, deployments and rolling out solutions as you mentioned, here's the Microsoft's ALM whitepaper: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=57777
  3. There are a lot of articles/blogs from the community that give tips, tricks and best practices. Here's a popular that I particularly like: https://crmtipoftheday.com/

For your specific questions:

  • Right way to customize entity? If you extend the entity and functionality with only supported customizations, then there's really no wrong way. The question of right/wrong becomes a design/architectural topic based on your requirements.
  • Microsoft will most likely enhance existing and implement new functionality and entities. The behavior depends on the solution layering. You are configuring in your "dev" environment as unmanaged. The unmanaged layer sits on top of managed so in theory your changes should take precedence, but it doesn't mean you will not be impacted by updates from Microsoft (e.g. a new optionset item or a new command bar button will appear in your solution until you remove)
    More info on solution layers: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/powerapps/maker/common-data-service/solution-layers

Hope this helps!

 

View solution in original post

Highlighted

My pleasure, happy it helped! Adding fields, changing optionsets, updating entities, etc are all supported. Unsupported customizations are things like manipulating the DOM, using undocumented internal objects, building new functionality using features that are deprecated and going away.
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/dynamics365/customerengagement/on-premises/customize/customizations...

View solution in original post

3 REPLIES 3
Highlighted
Super User II
Super User II

Hi @fs92,

The only best practices officially published by Microsoft are the following links:

  1. https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/dynamics365/customerengagement/on-premises/developer/best-practices...
    Note: it says on-premise but the same applies for online 
  2. For ALM, deployments and rolling out solutions as you mentioned, here's the Microsoft's ALM whitepaper: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=57777
  3. There are a lot of articles/blogs from the community that give tips, tricks and best practices. Here's a popular that I particularly like: https://crmtipoftheday.com/

For your specific questions:

  • Right way to customize entity? If you extend the entity and functionality with only supported customizations, then there's really no wrong way. The question of right/wrong becomes a design/architectural topic based on your requirements.
  • Microsoft will most likely enhance existing and implement new functionality and entities. The behavior depends on the solution layering. You are configuring in your "dev" environment as unmanaged. The unmanaged layer sits on top of managed so in theory your changes should take precedence, but it doesn't mean you will not be impacted by updates from Microsoft (e.g. a new optionset item or a new command bar button will appear in your solution until you remove)
    More info on solution layers: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/powerapps/maker/common-data-service/solution-layers

Hope this helps!

 

View solution in original post

Highlighted

Hi @EricRegnier ,

 

thank you for your response this helped a lot!

One last question. You wrote: " If you extend the entity and functionality with only supported customizations, then there's really no wrong way."

What means supported customizations? Adding Fields, changing Option Sets, add or edit views and Forms?

 

Thank you for your help.

 

Cheers

Highlighted

My pleasure, happy it helped! Adding fields, changing optionsets, updating entities, etc are all supported. Unsupported customizations are things like manipulating the DOM, using undocumented internal objects, building new functionality using features that are deprecated and going away.
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/dynamics365/customerengagement/on-premises/customize/customizations...

View solution in original post

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