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I should be able to modify a read only field in a workflow (without going through any workarounds)


Hi Team,

It will be a nice enhancement and it will also make Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 flexible, if I can modify read-only field in a workflow.

Let's say I have a field "Country" which is a lookup on a custom entity "Movie". The "Country" field is read only. I create a workflow on this entity "Movie". The workflow executes on any random field change. Now I add a step in the workflow to update the "Movie" record. When I go to "Set Properties" of the update record step, in the workflow, I can't select value in "Country". The reason being that "Country" field is read only on the "Movie" form.

I think we should be able to update fields in a workflow despite being read only. Read only is a UI property and update is a business requirement.

There are 2 workarounds:
1) Instead on making "Country" field read only through field property on form, make it read only through JScript.
2) Make this field not-readonly. Then create the step in workflow. Update the "Country" field in the workflow step. Change "Country" back to read only in the "Movie" form.

If an enhancement can be made to update read only fields in a workflow without going through extra steps of the workaround. This will save time in development.


Status: Completed
Level: Powered On
Status changed to: Completed
Level: Powered On
I avoid using JavaScript onLoad events for making fields read-only (as much as possible) as it could allow edit access when you do not want it, i.e. through the bulk edit form. Likewise, allowing the ability for the 'workflow editor' to update read olny fields would allow anyone with permissions to create and run workflows to change read only information. Take your point thogh as I have had to do your option 2 so many times! Could work if this ability was linked only to Sys admin / customizor security roles???
Level: Powered On
Thanks IanCRM for your comments.
Level: Powered On
The security roles are there for a reason. So why is MS not using them completely? There should be a option in the security role configurator, called "access to admin form" for example. An user with this right, gets a form with all fields (regardless whether it is hidden or read only on other forms, like the "additional fields" section) when designing the "update record" workflow step.
Level: Power Up

110% this.

Admins especially should be able to update fields in a Workflow, even if they are marked Readonly on a form. It's unexpected and unintuitive that in my Workflow editor - where I should be able to update anything - I'm suddenly restricted by various form and business rules despite the fact that Workflows are meant to be an advanced customization for admins.


Why is this idea marked "Completed"? This is still an open issue/request, as of 9/11/2019 on Dynamics 365 CRM, version 1710 ( online.