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Using Plug-Ins To Modify Views

Using Plug-Ins To Modify Views

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I Wish…

I realise it has been a while since I last posted, but I have been mega-busy working with some of the top UK financial services organisations and selling Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 into various divisions such as business banking, corporate  banking, wealth management and investment banking. Just from a personal productivity perspective, the latest version of our product is so much quicker to configure compelling demos, that I can now crank out a decent demo in less than half the time it took with CRM 4.0. What’s more the new features such as charting, dashboards, goal management, team-ownership of records are really resonating with Business Decision Makers (BDM) when comparing us against the competition.

I particularly like the new data import functionality, which combines the best bits of the CRM 4.0 data import and data migration tools and adds additional capabilities. It’s not perfect (e.g. no ability to import many:many relationship data), but hey, that’s why our product teams in the USA and India are flat out working on CRM v.next :-)

I wanted to share some of the more interesting pieces of the demos I have been working on, so I will start with a security requirement that cropped up recently.

The client, a corporate & investment banking (CIB) division of a large retail bank, was looking for additional security over-and-above the role-based security model of CRM 2011. They wanted the ability for the owner of a record (either an individual, or members of the owning team), to restrict access to that record simply by selecting a “Private” check-box on the form.

CRM 2011 IsPrivate UI

Obviously, adding a new field is simplicity itself, but what about the business logic? Looking back at one of my previous posts from October 2007, I achieved something similar when trying to restrict which queues would show up in any view. So I converted the code from VB.NET to C# and, pulled some sample plug-in code from the new SDK and put together a very simple solution.

Every time you access a view in CRM user interface, it causes the CRM platform to execute a query by raising a RetrieveMultiple request. A plug-in that intercepts this request, can modify the query before it is executed by the CRM platform, and this is exactly what I have done in the code below.

   1: public class RetrieveMultiple : Microsoft.Xrm.Sdk.IPlugin
   2: {
   3:     public void Execute(IServiceProvider serviceProvider)
   4:     {
   5:         // Obtain the execution context from the service provider.
   6:         IPluginExecutionContext context = (IPluginExecutionContext)serviceProvider.GetService(typeof(IPluginExecutionContext));
   7:  
   8:         // Get a reference to the Organization service.
   9:         IOrganizationServiceFactory factory = (IOrganizationServiceFactory)serviceProvider.GetService(typeof(IOrganizationServiceFactory));
  10:         IOrganizationService service = factory.CreateOrganizationService(context.UserId);
  11:  
  12:         // Get a reference to the tracing service.
  13:         ITracingService tracingService = (ITracingService)serviceProvider.GetService(typeof(ITracingService));
  14:  
  15:         // Check that all of the following conditions are true:
  16:         //  1. plug-in is running synchronously
  17:         //  2. plug-in is running on the 'pre-stage' event
  18:         //  3. plug-in is running on the 'RetrieveMultiple' event
  19:         if (context.Mode == 0 && context.Stage == 10 && context.MessageName.Equals("RetrieveMultiple"))
  20:         {
  21:             // The InputParameters collection contains all the data passed in the message request.
  22:             if (context.InputParameters.Contains("Query"))
  23:             {
  24:                 if (context.InputParameters["Query"] is QueryExpression)
  25:                 {
  26:                     // Get the QueryExpression from the property bag
  27:                     QueryExpression objQueryExpression = (QueryExpression)context.InputParameters["Query"];
  28:  
  29:                     // We can modify the original query to ensure that any record marked "Private" will only be visible to either
  30:                     //  1. The owner of the of the record (if user-owned)
  31:                     //  2. Members of the owning team (if team-owned)
  32:                     ConditionExpression privateFlagCondition = new ConditionExpression()
  33:                     {
  34:                         AttributeName = "srh_private",
  35:                         Operator = ConditionOperator.Equal,
  36:                         Values = { false }
  37:                     };
  38:  
  39:                     ConditionExpression owningUserCondition = new ConditionExpression()
  40:                     {
  41:                         AttributeName = "owninguser",
  42:                         Operator = ConditionOperator.EqualUserId,
  43:                     };
  44:  
  45:                     ConditionExpression owningTeamCondition = new ConditionExpression()
  46:                     {
  47:                         AttributeName = "owningteam",
  48:                         Operator = ConditionOperator.EqualUserTeams,
  49:                     };
  50:  
  51:                     FilterExpression newFilter = new FilterExpression()
  52:                     {
  53:                         FilterOperator = LogicalOperator.Or,
  54:                         Conditions = { privateFlagCondition, owningUserCondition, owningTeamCondition }
  55:                     };
  56:  
  57:                     objQueryExpression.Criteria.AddFilter(newFilter);
  58:                 }
  59:             }
  60:         }
  61:     }
  62: }

No matter what the original query, the QueryExpression object can easily be modified to filter out records where the “Private” flag is set, and the the user is not the record owner.

In order show this in operation, I developed a sample Call Report solution which you can download here. Once you have imported this into your CRM 2011 environment, please feel free to customise to your own requirements.

This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties, and confers no rights.

Attachment: callreport_1_0_0_1.zip
Comments
  • How do you handle that security requirement in Filtered Views/SRS Reports/ODBC? or in FetchXML?

  • Secret Messages… Following on from my previous post ( Using Plug-Ins To Modify Views ), I developed

  • Casper,

    You will need to modify your queries to respect this business rule.

    You can't hook at database level using supported Dynamics CRM 2011 customization (maybe using some SQL Server solution).

    The one solution I can imagine is restricting record visualization/ownership using CRM security model (record scope to user), but that will apply the requirement in every platform aspect.

    We have some blog post involving security model at www.virtualgroup.com.br/blog if you understand portugues (ptbr) ;)

  • Hi.

    I need to add new column in view at runtime.

    I've modified QueryExpresion in RetriveMultiple plug-in like this:

    QueryExpression qe = context.InputParameters["Query"] as QueryExpression;

    qe.ColumnSet.AddColumn("attribute_name");

    I can see during debbuging that new attribute has been added to ColumnSet Quera , but I cann't see new column in view.

    Could you please help me with this ?

  • Hi Miroslav, I might not have understood your scenario correctly, but the columns displayed in a view are defined separately from the columnset columns. I think the best way to check that your code is succeeding is by building using fiddler (www.fiddler2.com/fiddler2) to check that the web service actually returns the column you are requesting.

  • Hi, this doesn't work. I am getting error custom field doesn't exist in savedquery entity?

  • Hi Eric. I didn't really spend time looking at how this affected views. I suspect this is similar to the issue highlighted by Miroslav in the comments above.

  • Hi Simon,

    Great article. We are using this method to filter our views applying runtime filters in a plugin. However, we cannot make it work for our charts. Have you ever managed to apply runtime filters to charts using a plugin or any other method?

    Thanks,

    Georgios

  • Hi Simon,

     Thanks for the post.  This is almost like what we try to do except that we don't want to filter out the record all together but simply convert the value of some of the fields to ******* instead of hiding it all together.  Is there a way to manipulate the query results before displaying it to the screen?

    Thanks

    Erik Leung

  • @Miroslav I am looking for exactly the same solution. Had you find any solution for this ??

  • Hi, The retrieveMultiple message is not firing on mi Plugin, what can be the problem?

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