Create and design forms

 

Updated: November 28, 2016

Applies To: Dynamics 365 (online), Dynamics 365 (on-premises), Dynamics CRM 2016, Dynamics CRM Online

In Microsoft Dynamics 365, forms provide the user interface that people will use to interact with the data they need to do their work. It is important that the forms people use are designed to allow them to find or enter the information they need efficiently.

This topic introduces how forms vary by groups of entities, the different types of forms available, and how you can control access to forms. For information about the elements and properties of forms, see Use the form editor.

Microsoft Dynamics 365 provides many options for designing forms. The forms for the Updated entities and custom entities provide the most options. We selected a group of entities that are used by most people and gave them a new user experience that includes many new capabilities including support for the Microsoft Dynamics 365 for tablets client, business process flows, and business rules. One of the key requirements in providing these new experiences includes the goal that a form customizer can design once and deploy to all clients.

Yet there are still a number of entities that retain the appearance and capabilities carried over from the previous version. Entities using classic forms weren’t updated because they are not used frequently by most people and updating them wouldn’t have a significant impact on the experience of most people using the application. This allowed us to focus our attention on the updated entities.

Most of your customization work will probably involve the updated entities and custom entities. If some capability applies only to forms for updated entities this document will note that.

Updated entities are listed in the following table:

Account

Appointment

Campaign

Campaign Activity

Campaign Response

Case

Competitor

Contact

Contract

Contract Line

Email

Fax

Invoice

Invoice Product

Lead

Letter

Marketing List

Opportunity

Opportunity Product

Order

Order Product

Phone Call

Price List Item

Product

Quick Campaign

Quote

Quote Product

Recurring Appointment

Sales Literature

Team

Task

User

Entities that use classic form presentation are listed in the following table:

Address

Article

Article Comment

Bulk Delete Operation

Connection

Discount

Discount List

Document Location

Email Attachment

Follow

Goal

Goal Metric

Import Source File

Invoice Product

Order Product

Price List

Queue Item

Quote Product

Rollup Field

Rollup Query

Saved View

Service

Service Activity

SharePoint Site

Site

Territory

Unit

Unit Group

The following table describes the types of forms in Microsoft Dynamics 365:

Form Type

Description

Main

Used in the web application, Dynamics 365 for Outlook and Dynamics 365 for tablets.

These forms provide the main user interface for interacting with entity data. More information: Design considerations for main forms

Mobile

Used for the Microsoft Dynamics 365 for phones pages. This simplified form is designed to be used for mobile devices.

The mobile forms for updated entities are not changed. More information: Create and edit mobile forms for Dynamics CRM for phones express

Quick Create

Used in the web application, Dynamics 365 for Outlook and Dynamics 365 for tablets.

For updated entities, these forms provide a basic form optimized for creating new records. More information: Create and edit quick create forms

Quick View

Used in the web application, Dynamics 365 for Outlook and Dynamics 365 for tablets.

For updated entities, these forms appear within the main form to display additional data for a record that is referenced by a lookup field in the form. More information: Create and edit quick view forms

When you have multiple main, quick create or mobile forms for an entity you can assign a form order. The form order determines which of the available forms will be shown by default. The available main or mobile forms can be further controlled by assigning security roles to forms. See Control access to forms for more information.

You cannot assign security roles to quick create forms, so the only form that will be used by everyone is the one at the top of the form order.

To assign a form order

  1. Go to Settings > Customizations.

  2. Choose Customizations, then choose Customize the System.

  3. In the solutions explorer, expand the entity that you want and select Forms.

  4. In the form list toolbar select Form Order.

  5. Choose either Main Form Set, Quick Create Form Set, or Mobile Form Set depending on the type of forms you want to work with.

  6. The Form Order dialog is a simple list where you can move a selected form up or down in the form order.

  7. After you have set the order you want, click OK to close the dialog.

There are two ways you can control access to main forms:

  • Make a main form inactive

    The capability to set an active or inactive state to main forms is new in this release. This was included primarily to manage new forms included when organizations upgrade but you can use it to prevent people from being able to use any main form. See Update your forms for more information.

  • Assign security roles to the main form

    Use this to make a main form available to specific groups.

Different people in your organization may interact with the same data in different ways. Managers may depend on being able to quickly scan information in a record and service people may require a form that streamlines data entry. You can accommodate different requirements by assigning forms to the security roles that different groups of people belong to.

For step-by-step procedures, see Assign security roles to forms.

When you have more than one main or mobile form defined for an entity, you can select which forms users will be able to use based on their security roles. Because each entity must be able to display a form for any user, at least one form must be designated as a ”fallback” form – a form visible to users whose security roles do not have any forms explicitly assigned to them.

System_CAPS_noteNote

Quick Create and Quick View forms cannot be assigned to security roles.

Within the Form editor or from the Forms grid you can assign security roles to a form. However, if there is only one form for the entity, you will not be able to clear the Enabled for fallback option in the Assign Security Roles dialog box. In this case, even though you have assigned security roles to the form, anyone associated with a security role you did not include will still be able to view the form because it is enabled for fallback.

After you create a second main or mobile form for the entity, you will be able to clear the Enabled for fallback option for one of them. The system will always make sure that at least one form is enabled for fallback.

When you have more than one main form, you can specify a form order that will control which of the forms a person is allowed to see will be the one they see by default. If there is more than one form they can use, they can change forms and the form they choose will be their default form until they choose a different one. This preference is stored in their browser. If they use a different computer or browser they will see the original default form.

Strategies to manage the fallback form include the following:

If you do not require multiple forms for an entity you do not need a fallback form.

If you are using role-based forms because you want to restrict the information people might view or edit, consider creating a form that has a minimum of information displayed. Then, in the Assign Security Roles dialog box, select Display only to these selected security roles, but do not select any roles except System Administrator, and select Enabled for fallback. The result is that this form will never be seen by anyone except the System Administrator and anyone whose security roles have not been associated with a specific form. You could include a HTML web resource in the form with information about why little information is visible in the form and a link to information about how to request being added to a security role that is associated with a from or to include a new security role for a form.

System_CAPS_noteNote

You can’t include a web resource in a form header or footer.

If you use role-based forms to provide a customized user experience based on a person’s role in the organization, you can set your least specialized form as the fallback form and configure it to display for everyone. Then, create customized forms for specific security roles and configure those forms to only display for security roles that require them. Do not enable these forms for fallback. Finally, in the Forms list use the Form Order dialog to specify which forms to display ranking them from most exclusive to least exclusive. Your fallback form will be at the bottom of the list. This strategy will cause people seeing the form that has been customized for their role as the default form, yet they can still use the form selector to select the most common form if they want. Whatever form they select will remain their default form until they select a different form.

Finally, in the web application it is possible, but not recommended, for a developer to use scripts in the form Onload event to use the Xrm.Page.ui.formSelector.items collection to query available forms and use the navigate method to direct users to a specific form. Remember that the navigate method will cause the form to load again (and the Onload event to occur again). Your logic in the event handler should always check some condition before you use the navigate method to avoid an endless loop or unnecessarily restrict users options to navigate between forms.

This approach will not work for Microsoft Dynamics 365 for tablets because multiple forms are not available for selection.

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