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Configuring host name with a wildcard SSL certificate for IIS

This is a long due post almost a year or more. I was working with an ADFS 2.0 setup on a single box (Development only) and was facing challenges with installation and configuration of IIS Host Headers which will allow me to complete required steps for ADFS 2.0 setup for Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011. When you are configuring a wildcard SSL certificate (*.crmxpress.com) in IIS snap-in you will notice that Host name is disabled when you try to configure site binding. After a little research, I found an article that described the steps to enable the host name.

  1. Open Microsoft Management Console (MMC) by Start -> Run -> Type MMC -< Enter.
  2. File -> Add/Remove Snap-ins.
  3. From the list of Snap-ins, select Certificates and add it to Console Root.
  4. Select appropriate option, in my case, it was My user account but you can select Service account or Computer account based on your configuration.
  5. Once the Snap-in has been added locate the certificate and right click-> Properties.
  6. In General tab, you will see Friendly name field. Enter *.<<yourdomainname>>.com or appropriate value based on your certificate.
  7. Click on Ok and now you can configure the site bindings and configure the host header.

Releasing CrmXpress OptionSet Manager v1.0

After a long time I am writing a post on CrmXpress and I will post my story so far, separately.

As of this post, I have a very important announcement to make. There is yet another release from CrmXpress and this time it is CrmXpress OptionSet Manager For Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011. As the name suggests it's a very simple utility to manage OptionSets [Local and Global] within CRM 2011 and helps to automate really boring tasks i.e. to maintain [CRUD] option sets manually.

Here is a screenshot from the documentation :

Click Here to see the documentation in case you need any help with the usage of the app.

Click Here to download the latest stable build. As usual we intend to develop it further and we appreciate your feedback on the same.

PS: Watch out for few more CrmXpress releases in very near future.

Exam MB2-876 Extending Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 has been released

I have recently completed a set of exams [CRM 2011 and .Net 4.0] and almost thrice a week I check if new exams are released on CRM 2011, especially Extending Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 as this one is very important for CRM/xRM developers out there.
And good news is this exam is already out. Surprisingly the release date is 29th December 2011, I mean how many of us would have thought of checking released exams during the holiday season?

Anyways I am glad it is finally here and I intend to give it a shot ASAP. If you are looking for more information about the exam then follow this link.


Releasing CrmXpress SmartSoapLogger v1.0

Every Microsoft Dynamics CRM developer runs into a situation when JavaScript + SOAP call is the only logical way out. Now with Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 things have changed and old solutions which worked really well with Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 don't work anymore. The only way you can achieve this is to use the solution provided in SDK to dump raw SOAP packet and then using Jamie's Soap formatter tool (http://crm2011soap.codeplex.com) you can get a JavaScript that can be used against CRM 2011. Now this is a lengthy process so it is time consuming and as it involves multiple manual steps that make it more error-prone. I am always bit lazy when it comes to monotonous tasks which don't add value to my current engagement. That makes me a big fan of automation, and by automation I mean reduce my efforts to minimal manual inputs to get things done.

On the great journey of automation, inspired by many others, here I would like to present one of the first utility from CrmXpress - SmartSoapLogger v1.0. It is a very simple tool that integrates all of the above mentioned manual tasks in one click and helps you generate required code to make JavaScript + SOAP calls. This tool is available on CodePlex at: http://smartsoaplogger.codeplex.com.

It works with Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 On-Premise as well as Online (With some creative thinking this utility can work with CRM 4.0 as well just you will have to put some efforts in order to introduce CRM 4.0 support). Thanks to Jamie Miley (http://mileyja.blogspot.com) the source code for this tool is available on CodePlex at: http://smartsoaplogger.codeplex.com/releases/76542/download/301730.

Also I would like to thank Jamie Miley for his efforts on building SOAP formatter (http://mileyja.blogspot.com/2011/03/crm-2011-jscript-soap-request-formatter.html) as I could build this tool very quickly using his codebase.
Here is a small video demo where SSL (I know SmartSoapLogger is a long name) connects with CRM Online and generates script and SOAP packets for a WhoAmI call.