Looking for PowerObjects? Don’t worry, you’re in the right place! We’ve been part of HCL for several years, and we’ve now taken the final step in our acquisition journey: moving our website to the HCL domain. Nothing else is changing – we are still fanatically focused on Microsoft Business Applications!

PowerObjects Blog 

for Microsoft Business Applications

Dynamics 365 July 2017 Update: Virtual Entities

Post Author: Joe D365 |

Virtual Entities are a new, easier way to create a quick view of external data sources in Dynamics 365.

For example, users need to be able to see a contact's Social Security Number in CRM but the data cannot be stored in CRM. Using virtual entities allows the data to be visible in Dynamics 365 without it being stored in a CRM database and allows the external data to be read at runtime for the page load.

Virtual entities also provide the capability for System Administrators/Configurators to be able to configure a data integration, rather than solely relying on a developer to manage and implement data integrations.

The entities are stored in CRM with an internal metadata flag on the entity marked as virtual, which tells the system not to put a schema in the database. Virtual entities are organization owned, there isn't any CRM role level security for virtual entities. Each virtual entity points to a row from the data source.

Virtual Entities

Image from Microsoft

Ways to connect data using virtual entities:

  • Initially OData v4 endpoint
  • Azure Cosmos DB for Document DB API (future enhancement)
  • Development team customization for web service hook with the framework to do pretty much anything

Here are a couple of things to be aware of with virtual entities: They do not support business process flow, portal to business logic, and cannot trigger workflows, since virtual entities don't support or trigger an update of the data.

To learn more about Dynamics 365 July Updates, check out our Update Webinar Series on demand.

Happy Dynamics 365'ing!

Please note: All content and information is presented on preview versions and not the launched product. Product is subject to changes per Microsoft’s discretion.

By Joe D365
Joe D365 is a Microsoft Dynamics 365 superhero who runs on pure Dynamics adrenaline. As the face of PowerObjects, Joe D365’s mission is to reveal innovative ways to use Dynamics 365 and bring the application to more businesses and organizations around the world.

One comment on “Dynamics 365 July 2017 Update: Virtual Entities”

  1. Do we know if the data in virtual entities can be queried via Advanced Find? And does it support relationships to other 'actual' CRM entities so you traverse across to those entities on that Advanced Find?

PowerObjects Recommends