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Configuration Migration Tool

Discover the value and need of a configuration migration tool.

This step will introduce us to the configuration migration tool, and discuss the need for and value of it.

Overview

When organisations need to move data to another Dynamics 365 instance, they may need to export the configuration of the data as well as the actual data. This is particularly necessary for organisations that have customised their workflow over long periods, or have very unique requirements.

Types of configuration data often required:

  • Reference (e.g. lists of countries, subjects, or categories)
  • Configuration (e.g. units of measurements in a product catalogue)
  • Initial (e.g. lists of multiple currencies, including exchange rates)
  • Demo data

Capabilities of the Configuration Export Tool

  • Select the entities and fields
  • Avoid duplicate records
  • Disable plug-ins before import, and re-enable after import
  • Validate the schema
  • Export data from a source system
  • Import data into a target environment
  • Handle dependencies
  • Automatically adjust DateTime fields
  • Include schema & data as part of the Package Deployer distribution

Accessing the Tool

  • Download directly from NuGet
  • Visual Studio
  • Community site
  • Using PowerShell script

How Does it Work?

  1. Define the schema of source data to be exported
  2. Export the schema file, which contains information about the data you want to export (e.g. entities, relationships, whether plugins should be disabled)
  3. Use the schema file to export data
  4. create a combined zip file of both the data and the schema file
  5. Import the data into the new instance of Dynamics 365

The import is done in multiple passes, firstly the foundation data and then the dependant data in subsequent passes.

Troubleshooting

In the app data folder of the user running the tool, they can find the following three log files for troubleshooting

  • Login errors log

Contains information about errors occurring when using the import tool to sign into the Common Data Service instance.

  • Data migration utility log

Detailed information about each task performed by the tool during the last run.

  • Import data details log

Detailed information about the data imported during the last import done using the tool.

These files can be accessed by either clicking the link in the error message when an error occurs or by using the Logs the menu on the main screen

Best Practices

  • Define uniqueness roles for each entity
  • Prepare source data (the tool does not have filtering, and will include all existing data)
  • Perform trial import in a production copy
  • Backup production environment before importing the data

Join the Discussion

Can you suggest some reasons why an organisation might create multiple instances of their Dynamics 365 setups?

Use the discussion section below and let us know your thoughts. Try to respond to at least one other post and once you’re happy with your contribution, click the Mark as complete button to check the step off, then you can move to the next step.

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