Tips for Creating Custom SRS Reports In CRM Online 2011

Prior to the release of CRM 2011, I was relieved when I learned that the CRM Online group was going to allow customers to deploy custom SQL Reporting Services reports.  I just wrapped up building the most challenging SRS report I have ever built and experienced many challenges, limitations, and frustrations associated with building custom SRS reports for CRM Online.  Here are some quick points that I hope will save others some time and frustration:

  • You must use FetchXML…you cannot use SQL and CRM filtered views with CRM Online
  • CRM 2011 Online does not support most SRS functions in expressions
    • You will receive a vague error when you try to upload a report containing an unsupported function
    • (-2147188072) “An error occurred while trying to add the report to Microsoft CRM. Try adding the report again. If this problem persists, contact your system administrator.”
    • As an example:
      • CInt is supported
      • Fix, Floor, Int are not supported
  • FetchXML is much more limited than SQL
    • No functions or expressions
      • Unlike SQL, FetchXML can only return attribute values…you cannot apply any functions to do data conversion inside FetchXML
    • Basic Joins only
      • You can create joins on a single attribute only

The fact that you can create custom SRS reports in CRM Online now is fantastic.  It can be challenging but if you are persistent and creative enough, you can probably find a way to build the report you need.

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