A Tinkerers Notebook

Role Centers are cool, but you don’t have to just personalize them with Dynamics AX information – you have a whole slew of standard SharePoint web parts that you can use to spice up the pages.

An example of something that you may want to do is add a banner image to the role center to display corporate banners or branding information. This is easy to do – all you need to do is create the banner image and then add it to your role center through the personalization.

If this sounds interesting to you all then just read on and learn how you.

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A Tinkerers Notebook

Sometimes the menus within Dynamics AX can be a little overwhelming because there are so many different menu items, and really you just use a handful of the menu items on a daily basis. Also, sometimes to perform a business flow you need to go to a couple of different area pages in order to find all of the things that you need.

You can use the Favorites to create a collection of all the menu items that you use, but if you really want to be clever you can create your own custom menu which will become your go-to location to find everything that you need. This also gives you the option to re-arrange the business processes a little so that they follow a more business process centered flow. You only have to go off the reservation if you need to find a menu item that you don’t usually…

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A Tinkerers Notebook

I absolutely love Power BI, and a couple of weeks ago, Microsoft snuck out a preview product which takes all of the good parts of the PowerBI that we like in Excel (which is pretty much everything – PowerQuery, PowerPivot, PowerView etc.) and packaged it up into a nice little standalone product that they call the Power BI Designer. And you can download it for free directly from your PowerBI portal within Office 365.

You can also post everything that you create within the Power BI Designer to the new and improved Power BI sites within Office 365, and from there you can use Power Q&A to search through your data and then create summary dashboards that combine information from multiple sources.

So when the AXUG asked me to host a webinar for them next Monday I couldn’t think of a better topic – especially since the new Power BI…

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As you use Dynamics AX more and more, you will find that you are sometimes using some functions from one area of the system, and then other features from another area in order to complete a task. Although everything is in the logical place, you may want to have a way to access everything at once from one menu. That’s not a problem though, you can easily create your own menu groups that meld multiple areas into one single location to make it easier to find everything that you want.

And you don’t even have to wait for lightening in order to make it come alive.

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A Tinkerers Notebook

Yay! Today I launched my new Dynamics AX Companions ( website which despite what you may imply from the name is not a dating site for Dynamics AX users.

It is a consolidation site where I am going to post all of the blog posts that are scattered about on WordPress to make it easier to find the information that I have created for you all.

This is also where you will be able to download the source files for all of the presentations that I have posted to SlideShare, and Scribd, in their original format so that you will be able to see all of the screen shot details that you haven’t been able to see in the past because those sites compress the images during the upload process.

Also over the next few weeks I will be posting the drafts of my upcoming Dynamics AX Companion…

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Access to all of the roles have to be configured within Dynamics AX, but that does not mean that all of the users have to be managed there as well. If you want, you can link all of the security roles to Active Directory Groups, and then within Active Directory, when you assign the users to the groups, then Dynamics AX will automatically inherit these, even if the user is not explicitly added to the system.

Now you can manage all security access through Active Directory and simplify your security administrator’s life. Read More

There are those people that are casual users of Dynamics AX that look through the data and occasionally update it, and there are those that are always updating and tweaking the data in the system. If you are in the latter of the two groups, then you probably hate going into a form and having to click on the Edit button so that you can change the data. It may be one click, but if you are doing it thousands of times a day, then this quickly starts becoming a chore. Luckily there is a simple option that you can change that will make it so that every time you go into a form, it will automatically start in edit mode.

With all the spare time that you just got, what on earth will you do with yourself.

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Sometimes you need to create a more traditional paper mailing for your campaigns, but that doesn’t mean that you need to jump through a lot of hoops in order to get it done. The Campaigns function within Dynamics AX 2012 has the ability to create mail merge exports directly from the application that can then be married up to Word mail merge templates. Once you have set this up, your standard mailings are just a matter of clicking a couple of buttons.

Let’s keep the USPS in business people.

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If you have linked Dynamics AX with your local version of Microsoft Outlook, then you have probably ran the synchronization that adds all of the appointments, tasks, and also the contacts to Outlook.  But there is a more powerful option that allows you to synchronize not only from Dynamics AX and Outlook, but with Outlook back to Dynamics AX giving you an even more useful form of contact synchronization.

This is a great way to keep your contacts up to date, and also to populate Dynamics AX with all of your contact data without having to key in all of the people by hand, and also keep it up to date because it synchronizes both ways.

Remember, a contact does not become less useful if you share it with your friends.

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Create collaboration workspaces to share information

Create collaboration workspaces to share information

There are times when multiple people are working on a project and you need a place to share all of the common documents, and also a place where everyone is able to collaborate and add their input.  Dynamics AX has an inbuilt feature that is designed just to allow that called Collaboration Workspaces, which are linked to a number of the functions such as Projects, Campaigns, Cases etc. allowing you from the record to create a SharePoint workspace that everyone is able to access and collaborate through.

Not only is this much better than the usual way of doing this which is usually through some sort of shared network folder, or even worse, a folder on someone’s desktop, it is more secure, and also gives you the ability to use all of the functions within SharePoint to really share information.

All you need to do is create the workspace and you are up and going.

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