Monday, February 25, 2008

Hiding Views in CRM 4.0 Using Plug-in

There are many new moving parts added to CRM 4.0 and I am learning something new every day from the community, the projects that I am working on and the people around me. What I have learned this week by working with Sean McNellis at Microsoft is to hide Views using a simple CRM 4.0 plug-in.

As many of you may already know that Microsoft took off the capabilities of sharing views which many people used in CRM 3.0 to hide unwanted System Views from the user's view list. There have been many posts in the CRM newsgroup community on how to hide the views.

My colleague, Jeremy Hofmann found a clever way of hiding the views by updating a bit field in SavedQueryBase table against the MSCRM database. Unfortunately manipulating with the MSCRM database is not encouraged and also not supported by Microsoft. So what can we do?

What I have learned is that we can manipulate with the SavedQuery entity through a simple plug-in to control what shows up on the user's view drop down list. There are many neat things that you can do through the savedquery class offered by the SDK, you can read about it in the 4.0 SDK.

In this post, I will show you how to hide some Contact System views by writing a simple plug-in. I will intercept the retrieve operation that CRM used for getting the views and then append more condition logics to the its query expression.


ScreenHunter_01 Feb. 25 22.10

C# Code:

using System;
using System.Collections.Generic;
using System.Text;
using Microsoft.Crm.Sdk;
using Microsoft.Crm.Sdk.Metadata;
using Microsoft.Crm.Sdk.Query;
using Microsoft.Crm.SdkTypeProxy;
using Microsoft.Crm.SdkTypeProxy.Metadata;

namespace CrmAddon.Crm.Plugin
public class HideContactViewsPlugin : IPlugin
public void Execute(IPluginExecutionContext context)

            // Query the SavedQueryBase table to retrieve the Query Id
Guid[] Views = new Guid[] {
new Guid("9818766E-7172-4D59-9279-013835C3DECD"), //NA-Contacts: No Orders in Last 6 Months
new Guid("9C241A33-CA0B-4E50-AE92-DB780D5B2A12"), //NA-Contacts: Responded to Campaigns in Last 6 Months

if (context.InputParameters != null && gHiddenViews.Length > 0)
if (context.InputParameters.Properties.Contains(ParameterName.Query))
QueryExpression qe = (QueryExpression)context.InputParameters.Properties[ParameterName.Query];

//only apply this action if the query is for 'views' or saved queries
if (qe.EntityName == "savedquery")
if (qe.Criteria != null)
if (qe.Criteria.Conditions != null)

                                //Append more condition logic to the default query that's used by CRM. In this case, I filtered on the savedqueryid to exclude the views from the Ids identified above.

ConditionExpression queryCondition = new ConditionExpression("savedqueryid", ConditionOperator.NotIn, Views);
context.InputParameters.Properties[ParameterName.Query] = qe;

Plug-in Registration:

Message: RetrieveMultiple
Primary Entity: savedquery
Stage of Execution: Pre Stage
Execution Mode: Synchronous

Sample Registration Snapshot:



    CustomConfiguration = ""

    Description = "Hide Contact View Plug-in"

    FilteringAttributes = ""

    ImpersonatingUserId = ""

    InvocationSource = "0"

    MessageName = "RetrieveMultiple"

    Mode = "0"

    PluginTypeFriendlyName = "Hide Contact Views"

   PluginTypeName = "CrmAddon.Crm.Plugin.HideContactViewsPlugin"

    PrimaryEntityName = "savedquery"

    SecondaryEntityName = ""

    Stage = "10"

    SupportedDeployment = "0" >





As you can see that the "Contacts: No Orders in Last 6 Months" and "Contacts: Responded to Campaigns in Last 6 Months" views are removed from the drop down list. The new CRM 4.0 SDK is really powerful and you can definitely do more with it. E.g. hide/show the view based on the user id or team, etc...

I hope this will help you on your next CRM project. :)