One of the biggest pain points of maintaining a Dynamics 365 CE Dev, Test or a Prod instance is a way to keep track of what solutions have been imported vs exported.  To get around this issue we had a add-on in XRM Tool Box called the “Solution History”.However recently, I came across a functionality that is within Dynamics 365 CE where we can monitor “Solution History”.  

What we are going to look at today is a high-level comparison between the two tools.

First let’s look at the “Solution History” functionality offered with the XRM Tool Box.

Getting started with the tool is very straight forward.

  • Install the “Solution History” plugin from the XRM ToolBox store.
  • Open the plugin and connect to the desired Dynamics CE Instance.
  • Select the solution, the data rage where you want to view the solution history
  • Select “Load Solution History”

The solution history will display the different solution that were Imported between the selected dates and if you select a particular solution you can drill down to the “Solution Components” that were included. Further you can view the Component Details by selecting each component.

The “Solution History” functionality within Dynamics 365 CE is also very straight forward.

  • Navigate to Dynamics 365 – > Settings -> Solutions History Menu item.

 

The Dynamics 365 Solution History will display the following information

  • Solution Name
  • Solution Version
  • Publisher Name
  • Operation (Import , Export , uninstall etc)
  • Start and End Time
  • Suboperation
  • Status
  • Result
  • Error Code

Which one is Better?

Dynamics 365 Solution History

Pro

  1. It can easily be accessed with in the Dynamics 365 interface.
  2. It provides details about the Operation

                            e.g If the solution was imported, exported or uninstalled.

  3. Entitles related to Dynamics 365 Solution History are virtual entities. Therefore, the Solution History data is not stored in the CE Database

Con

  1. It does not provide details on the Solution Components.
  2. The Solution history data cannot be exported to Excel
  3. Because the entitles related to Dynamics 365 Solution History are virtual entities we cannot use them to trigger a Dynamics 365 workflow or a Microsoft Flow to enable notifications.

XRM ToolBox Solution History

Pro

  1. Provide details on the Solution Components and details of the components
  2. Provides details about the user who Imported or exported the solution
  3. The solution history log can be exported as a XML to excel
  4. Ability to view the solution history within a provided date range

Con

  1. It provides details about the Solution Imports. Details about solution Exports and uninstalls are NOT provided
  2. Requires XRM Toolbox to view the Solution History 

I Hope this article will help you in your day to day consulting work . If there are any questions please feel free to email or comment.

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