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The CRM Online performance topics listed below are general ideas that should be considered when working through performance issues. I will do my best to update this blog entry with new content when it becomes available.
Questions To Ask
Before digging in, we’ll need to get a better understanding of the performance issues that the user is experiencing. I’ve listed some of the questions that you’ll want to consider below. The answers to these questions will help you determine what areas you need to focus your troubleshooting efforts on.
One of the first things that we can do to verify where the issue lies is to verify whether or not the network (mainly bandwidth or latency) seems to be part of the problem. Low bandwidth and high latency will negatively impact the end-user CRM Online experience. It is a good idea to test WAN performance at the beginning of the troubleshooting process. Our CRM Online R&D team has created a CRM Online Network Performance tool that gathers client network configuration data.
The client latency tool provides insight into the network conditions you are working with. It’s important to note that CRM Online is designed to work best over networks with latency under 150 milliseconds and bandwidth greater than 50 KB/s. These numbers are provided as general performance guidelines rather than guarantees.
Client-side browser settings can have a significant impact on the performance of the CRM Online application. The items listed below are a few items to consider:
Note: After the client-side browser settings on a computer are modified, loading the Dynamics CRM Web client for the first time (the “cold” load) may take several moments longer than usual. Subsequent page loads (“warm” loads) will show improved performance, however, as many of the Microsoft Dynamics CRM Web pages will have been cached during the initial load.
When optimizing the performance of Microsoft Dynamics CRM clients, keep in mind that client performance is directly affected by the:
If the issue is general slowness, can the user reproduce the issue in a CRM Online test environment with no customizations? It will be important to determine whether or not the issue is potentially related to customizations from the environment where the issue has been reproduced. Can any customizations be disabled in the environment for testing purposes (ex. OnLoad events)? If subgrids are contributing to the long form load times, it may be helpful to contract the subgrid sections as a test to see if performance improves. It is possible to contract sections by default on the load of the form, then expand the form shortly after.
CRM Online Configurable Settings
CRM Outlook Client Performance
There are several factors, specific to the CRM Outlook client, that can increase the amount of time that certain actions take to complete (ex. CRM Outlook client opening, navigating to a view, etc.). You’ll find some troubleshooting items below to test out:
You may also see sluggish CRM Outlook client performance due to background polling activities that are taking place. During these polling intervals, the CRM Outlook client is communicating with the CRM server (often times reacting to server-side changes). These process will take place within your CRM Outlook client whether or not CRM functionality is actually being used at the time. There are caches for various CRM features like address book, reminders, views, and metadata. For example, one polling interval that takes place on the CRM Outlook client machine occurs when when the metadata file is being refreshed. Metadata refreshes occur due to certain CRM Admin related activities, such as publishing customizations, creating new CRM security roles, or modifying existing CRM security roles. To keep the metadata refresh minimal, publish your customizations at a less frequent rate. Ultimately, the less that you publish customizations, the less you’ll see the metadata.xml file refresh. If you have installed additional MUI packs (language packs) that you aren’t using, it will be in your best interests to remove the unused packs as those do add to the size of the metadata file. There are also a set of registry keys that can be modified to tune the polling intervals. For more information on these keys, please see the following KB:http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2585157
Our CRM Online team is always attempting to improve the CRM Outlook experience. This includes incorporating new functionality, as well as improving performance and resolving any existing CRM Outlook client issues. Improving the CRM Outlook client in this way is done through Microsoft CRM Update Rollups. When running into CRM Online performance issues within the CRM Outlook client, it's always a best practice to download and install the most recent Update Rollup. Update Rollups can be found at the Microsoft Download Center. You can find the most recent CRM 2011 Outlook client Update Rollup by doing the following:
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