Microsoft CRM Integration with Oracleoverview for programmer

By: Andrew Karasev

Microsoft Business Solutions CRM is very good budget alternative to Siebel and actually be-loved by Microsoft-oriented IT department system.  Considering the fact that in many cases Microsoft CRM should somehow fit into and cooperate with existing legacy business applications, integration question maybe the first to place.  We saw multiple cases when company uses Lotus Notes/Domino, and replaces portion of it with Microsoft CRM and wants to use Domino email server, connected to Microsoft CRM.  Also large number of legacy applications (legacy doesn’t necessary mean they are not supported – rather company is trying to get CRM solution fitting its budget).  Here we would like to give you some technology highlights on how you can have lookups from Microsoft CRM into Oracle system.  Oracle might be custom database, designed for the business, such as cargo tracking system for freight forwarding company, or even Oracle Financials.

Microsoft CRM web interface is built on .Net architecture and Microsoft CRM SDK is married with .Net.  We suggest you to use Microsoft tools to connect to Oracle database via ODBC.

  • Create ODBC linked server to Oracle in Microsoft SQL Server enterprise manager.  Again – it is safer to begin from Microsoft .Net side (linked server will be exposed in ADO.Net).  Microsoft should support its components in the future and inter-platform connection should be standard ODBC
  • Configure web.config to enable Microsoft CRM customization
  • Configure isv.config to place the button or navigation bar on one of your MS CRM customizable forms: Lead, Account, Contact, etc.
  • Use MS CRM SDK sample code to come into Microsoft CRM Security realm
  • Create separate Database on the same SQL server where Microsoft CRM is hosted and place heterogeneous stored procedures or views – which will be pulling data from Oracle linked server
  • Program ADO.Net calls and returned dataset processing in Visual Sudio.Net (preferably C#.Net, because Microsoft CRM SDK is C# oriented)
  • We probably should mention that isv.config buttons allow you to transfer GUID of the Contact, Lead or Account to your integrated web application
  • Crystal Reports caution – MS CRM has built-in Crystal Reports Enterprise, licensed for MS CRM data access only.  So, if you like to integrate web Crystal report into your application – you should resolve licensing issue and check with Microsoft on purchasing full version of Crystal Enterprise.  The other way is to separate your Crystal web application and MS CRM by placing them on separate hardware

Good luck with integration!  If you want us to do the job - give us a call 1-630-961-5918 or 1-866-528-0577!

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