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To contact me for any clarifications regarding any posts / information, please mail me at arijit [dot] basu [at] gmail [dot] com

Thursday, January 29, 2009

MSDN Ramp Up : Learning

Hi, looking at the solution scope of AX 2009, it has become essential for developers to learn up WSS/MOSS and Visual Studio 2008. For the developers of X++, skill upgradation is required at a very fast pace. There is something called "Ramp up" from Microsoft, which offers free courses on MOSS & VS 2008. Ramp Up is a free, online, community-based learning program that will help you build professional development skills. U just need to register. Hope you all sign up and enjoy the benefits. Click on the image below:

Happy learning :)

Sunday, January 18, 2009

AX 2009 Document Management & MOSS / WSS

Recently I was re looking at AX 2009 Document Management capabilities (Which is pretty limited) and trying to find some way to extend it. Since AX 3.x, the AX Document Management has hardly undergone any major changes. I was doing a POC on AX 2009 Document Management capabilities & MOSS. Since MOSS/WSS is an integral part of AX 2009, it would be a nice idea to integrate these so as to be able to take full advantage of the document features of MOSS/WSS. However there were challenges like Security, referential integrity etc which posed a challenge. However I did some R & D and created a POC which lets users attach documents to a MOSS Document library along with AX Metadata using the base AX 2009 Document handling functionality. Although its not complete and far from perfect, it opens up a new vista for developers who want to extend AX Document handling to MOSS.

If you are aware of the basics of WSS/MOSS, there are Web Services [_vti_bin\] (Specially copy.asmx) which lets u programatically upload documents. Other than that Microsoft,Sharepoint.dll also has some interesting methods which let u do the same .

The first step was to create a MOSS Site (Document Centre template - MOSS 2007 SP1). Now I needed to store documents of various AX Modules so I created subsites for the different AX modules like CRM, Projects etc. Then the next step was to create a document library, add some extra columns to store metadata from AX (I created columns for RecId, Company, Remarks). Then save this docu library as a template for reusability :-).

Since the plan was to have separate Sites for AX Modules and separate library for different kinds of documents within a module ( Say in CRM Module, the different types of documents required to be uploaded are case Studies, Brochures etc), I needed to create some parameter tables in AX which stored the parameters per module and per document category. See attached screens. I also had to tweak the basic docuview table and form as well as the Document handling functionality.

Then I created a C# Class library which accepts parameters and uploads the document to a specified URL, Site & Document Library and returns the URL of the attached document. See code snippet below:
using System;
using System.Collections.Generic;
using System.Linq;
using System.Text;
using System.Web;
using System.IO;
using System.Net;
using Microsoft.SharePoint;
using System.Collections;

namespace DynamicsAX2009
public class MOSSDocumentManagement
public String uploadDocument(String _URL,
String _Site,
String _Library,
String _File,
String _AXID,
String _AXCompany,
String _AXRECID,
String _AXReference)
String sUser = "mossadmin";
String sPwd = "H@lloom24";
String sDomain = "MVP";
System.Net.NetworkCredential NC = new System.Net.NetworkCredential(sUser, sPwd, sDomain);
string SiteURL = _URL + _Site ;// "http://arijit:150/AXCRM";
String Library;
SPSite sp = new SPSite(SiteURL);
SPWeb site = sp.OpenWeb();
Library = _Library;
SPFolder folder = site.GetFolder(Library);//Case Studies ; Solution Brief
SPFileCollection files = folder.Files;
FileStream fStream = File.OpenRead(_File); //path of the file to upload
byte[] contents = new byte[fStream.Length];
fStream.Read(contents, 0, (int)fStream.Length);
Hashtable MetaDataTable = new Hashtable();
MetaDataTable.Add("AX-ID", _AXID);
MetaDataTable.Add("AX-Company", _AXCompany);
MetaDataTable.Add("AX-RECID", _AXRECID);
MetaDataTable.Add("AX-Reference", _AXReference);
_File = _File.Substring(_File.LastIndexOf("\\") + 1);

SPFile currentFile = files.Add(_File, contents, MetaDataTable, true);

if (currentFile.CheckOutStatus != SPFile.SPCheckOutStatus.None)
currentFile.CheckIn("New Version from AX");

return SiteURL + "/" + currentFile.ToString();
catch (Exception err)
return ("
" + err.Message);


Then I deployed the dll in the \Client\Bin folder of the AX Client and added as a reference. Then write a few lines of code (See Project Screenshot) in the base AX Document Handling Functionality (Forms\DocuView) which let users upload documents into MOSS Site Library and store the URL in AX :-). Pretty kewl. However security remains still a challenge. I was hoping to use the Target Audience features of MOSS for Record level Secirity but didnt have time enuff :(.

Attaching a small video. Lemme know if anyone has any suggestions.

Uploading the video . Click on link below:

HAPPY DAX-ing :-)

Saturday, January 17, 2009

AX 2009 :Cubes & Security Documentation

I was kind of very busy with an AX 2009 SP1 GDL Cons Implementation and really had some tough time configuring the cubes when country configuration keys were switched off :(. Well I gathered some nice documents regarding this . Click on the link below to download these.

Happy DAX-ing :)