CRM 2011 Online was released January 17th, 2011.  The new release delivers a number of new features and has changed the way much of the application data is displayed.  In some cases, the new user interface customization capabilities can lead to an increase in the time it takes to load screens while the data is retrieved from the system. 

Microsoft continues to listen to our customers and partners and we are committed to deliver the the best in performance and experience with our products.  As a result of the feedback we’ve heard and other internal testing we’ve done, we recenty deployed the first Update Release for CRM 2011 Online which resulted in faster data load into the user interface and faster overall performance.

Internet Connectivity Bandwidth and Latency

Depending on how you configure CRM Online 2011, the application may need to make a number of round trips to the server to retrieve forms and data. This can have a real effect on performance especially when you consider the internet connectivity for a user or location.  Even a high bandwidth connection can appear slow if the connection has a high degree of latency.  Satellite links are an excellent example of this.  A typical broadband Internet connection has latency of less than 100 ms, and 25 ms is desirable. A satellite Internet connection normally suffers from latency above 500 ms. When you have a lot of latency in your connections, you rarely “fill the pipe” with the amount of data it could theoretically handle.  We have designed CRM Online to work best on networks with latency under 150 ms.  There are a number of simple tools out there to measure bandwidth and latency. A common tool used is the ping command, but pinging the URLs used for CRM Online 2011 will not respond because we have disabled this for security reasons.  You may also want to consider Visual Round Trip Analyzer  , Fiddler, and httpwatch as alternative tools to measure network latency.

Internet Browser

The latest Internet Explorer 9 is available from Microsoft.  With the enhancements to the browser, the performance can be enhanced when using CRM 2011 with this browser.   IE 9 is not a requirement to run CRM 2011 however.  It is recommended to run the “Fix It” after install, for more details: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/282402

System Customization and Design

1.  Consider your use of Javascript. A few lines of Javascript can greatly enhance the user experience by automatically updating data as a form loads or as data is changed. This can also cause a performance issue if there is a lot of javascript code running on a form.  If you are using any jscript on your forms, make sure that code is optimized.  It really can affect form load times, for example.  There are a few good posts about this at http://blogs.msdn.com/b/jscript/archive/tags/javascript+performance+ie/default.aspx.

Note:
To test if Javascript is an issue with performance, we recommend removing all Javascript from a form to test the performance with and without Javascript to determine the extent to which the javascript customization may be affecting things.

 

2.       Consider your use of iFrames.  More iFrames on a form will result in slightly longer form load times.  If your iFrame is not on the form’s primary tab, use onClick Jscript for the tab on which the iFrame resides.  This way the iFrame isn’t loading every time a record is opened, only when a user clicks that tab.

3.       Consider the number of Sub-Grids added to the form.  Each sub-grids used in a form is querying the CRM Online system in the background for a set of data to load into the grid.  While the query executes in the background, each sub-grid control adds more HTML to the page and will take slightly longer to load as a result.  With the recent update sub-grids are now loaded asychronously for better performance, however still keep in mind the more you have can still effect load time.

 

4.       Consider using Role Based forms, CRM 2011 allows personal forms to display fields necessary pertaining to a user’s security role.  This will auto hide certain fields that may not be necessary for all users.

5.       Consider adjusting security roles to only allow users  the functionality they need for specific records.  The ribbon will update displaying the allowed functionality for the user for the specific records they are currently viewing.  The less options displayed, may allow the ribbon to load faster.

6.       Remove extraneous fields.  Configure the form to only display fields needed for that record.

7.       Check your machine.  Be sure that your computer is suitable meeting the system requirements for CRM 2011.  Note that the system requirements are minimal requirements needed to run CRM 2011 successfully (CRM 2011 Implementation Guide).  However, increasing performance of a user’s machine based on hardware specs can increase performance as well.

Optimizing and Maintaining Client Performance for Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 White Paper

 http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/en/details.aspx?FamilyID=37c5488f-e09d-4adf-8033-eae6137c1c89

Optimizing Performance in CRM Online Blog

http://blogs.msdn.com/b/dynamicscrmonline/archive/2010/05/24/optimizing-performance-in-crm-online.aspx (this has been directed towards CRM 4.0, however many of the tips are related to the latest release CRM 2011).

CRM Online Update Release 1 Information

http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?kbid=2466084