For the Dynamics CRM Online 2015 Update 1, Microsoft built in a reliable and efficient method for tracking transactional data changes within an entity. This new functionality is called Change Tracking and is available for Dynamics CRM Online only. This feature is currently not available in Dynamics CRM on-prem. In today’s blog, we’ll take a closer look at this feature. Let’s get started!

Change Tracking is used for the purpose of keeping data synchronized by identifying the data changes that have taken place since the last data synchronization was performed. By enabling the Change Tracking feature on any entity, the ability to retrieve entity data changes becomes available as standard functionality.

In order to enable the Change Tracking feature, follow these simple steps:

1. Navigate to Settings> Customizations> Customize the System and select the entity for which you want to track changes.

2. On the entity’s General tab, scroll down to Data Services, and select the Change Tracking option box.

*Dynamics CRM 2015 Online

*Dynamics CRM 2015 On-premises

For those choosing to enable the feature programmatically, this can also be accomplished by setting the ChangeTrackingEnabled property value to True.

It is worth noting that regardless of the method used to enable the Change Tracking feature, the feature must be enabled on each entity separately for which the functionality will be used.

The RetrieveEntityChangeRequest message is used to retrieve entity data changes. When executing the RetrieveEntityChangeRequst message for the first time, all data records in the entity that can populate the external storage are retrieved. In addition to retrieving the records, the message also returns a version number that is used the next time the message is sent. This allows for retrieval of only the data changes occurring subsequent to the previous version.

Now that you know this feature is available, dig in and start exploring the various ways this functionality can help your organization! And remember to stay informed and up-to-date by visiting the PowerObjects Dynamics CRM Blog often!

Happy CRM’ing!