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Fix issues with D365 instance copying, backup and restore

We have discovered recently that copying a D365 instance can have some issues with regards to PA/Flows that are contained in the instance. These issues are not documented on the Copy an environment page, which is where you would expect such issues to be, and is the documentation we followed in implementing this change. Instead, they are documented on the Solutions Overview page, which has no bearing on the process of copying an instance. That page states:


Database operations such as backup, restore, and copy are not supported for canvas apps and flows. These operations can corrupt canvas apps and flows.


From this I would highlight the following.


  • This should be documented on the "Copy an environment" page as that is the most logical page someone would turn to for performing such an action.
  • The idea that backup and restore could corrupt such components lessens the viability of these methods being used as a valid rollback option. For this reason alone I would put forward that this issue should be fixed as a matter of priority.
Status: New
Advocate I

Agree with this 100%. Moreover, Microsoft is pushing Power Automate as a replacement for the legacy Power Apps (e.g. Microsoft CRM) workflow engine, for which copying / restoring did work as expected. I think the average citizen developer will think that copying to a sandbox environment will work, especially while using the Common Data Service (current environment) connector, since it is literally impossible to choose an environment *other* than the current one. While it's good that this is documented somewhere, the documentation is fairly mundane in its wording and it's unrealistic to expect that everyone is going to go hunting through the Known Limitations section of a tangentially-related topic first.


If this is truly unsupported (and given that moving forward with a copy can actually corrupt your production data when flows fire from the sandbox), at a minimum, the actual tooling itself should check to see if you have any flows in the source environment and either block you from making the copy or emphatically highlight  the risks.


Ideally, though, there should be some sort of mechanism for fixing the CDS (current environment) triggers when copying an environment so that they do, actually, refer to the current environment after copy.