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Overview of Dynamics 365 Portals and PowerApps — October 2018 Release

In our previous blog posts, we covered the best picks of Microsoft Dynamics 365 October 2018 updates, and updates from Dynamics 365 for Sales and Dynamics 365 for Customer Service. This blog, which is our last part of the Dynamics 365 October 2018 update series, will cover all the major capabilities in PowerApps and Portals.


Improved responsive layout

Adding up to the April 2018 release, significant updates is set to be made in the PowerApps. There were a lot of complaints about the responsiveness in PowerApps but the upcoming release is set to fix the issues. Now users can create canvas apps optimised for tablets and desktops.

Improved ALM (Application Lifecycle Management) for canvas apps with solutions

Improving on the previous import-export functionality limitations, this new update will make it possible to combine both canvas and model-driven apps allowing users to move together all key platform assets across environments. With full solution browsing experience now inline and moderinised at PowerApps.com, it makes it easy for users to quickly pick a solution they want for app, flow, or other components to be included with when authoring. Users can leverage import-export functionality to distribute composite solutions and manage app lifecycles across environments, as well as publish to Microsoft AppSource.

Get helpful guidance with Solution Checker

This new feature analyses unmanaged solution for performance and stability risks, and identifies problematic individual component patterns like lines of code. Solution Checker is rolling into Private Preview in October and will be more widely available in the next few months.

Improved Unified Interface for model-driven apps

Microsoft is bringing fundamental improvements and features such as a better lookup experience, streamlined sitemap navigation and commanding experience that will help users enable Unified Interface by default for different types of new environments. Also, users can set custom sizes for apps to create the perfect fit for any kind of screen sizes whether it be a small widget for SharePoint Web Part or a standalone app running on a monitor.

Great admin visibility:

Now in Public Preview, user admins will now be able to access new usage, error and performance reports for the apps and flow that users have built within their organisation. Microsoft has plans to make the Power platform admin centre one-stop shop for administering PowerApps, Flow, and Dynamics 365 across an organisation and improved front door for support in the coming months. The new release will also see a set of management connectors for PowerApps and Flow that allow admins to use the platform itself to monitor and act on platform usage.

Rich Text Editor and HTML view controls for canvas apps

The new Rich Text Editor control in canvas apps allows end users to style their text, include lists, and insert links.  This new control feature coupled with the HTML view control allows end users full control of text customisation to edit email and report in email.

Errors more discoverable by app makers

The Error Checker tool provides a list of detected issue for the entire application in a single place helping app makers debug their apps. This feature enables app makers easily navigate the error list to the screen and control where the error exists. The error list provides detailed error information and also directs the user how to fix the issues.

Customizers can embed Power BI tiles and reports in entity forms

Now users can bring the power of Power BI to their forms by embedding reports and tiles of their choice. Users can model the Power BI reports and tiles by passing the record context, including any attribute information about the record or its related records to provide more meaningful insights.

Improved speed of apps

PowerApps is getting faster with every update and this time the speed of app-playing and authoring experience has increased rapidly. Older apps are repackaged into the most recent build of PowerApps once the older apps are updated and republished, allowing end users experience faster load time and performance.


Embedded Power Bi visuals:

With this update, users will now be able to embed and surface Power BI reports within the Dynamics 365 Portal. For example, organisations will be able to generate and show key metrics and data relevant to their suppliers or partners through personalised views.

Improved Security:

This important release which is made to improve the security system allows users to define a list of IP addresses (approved or restricted) to determine who can access the portal.

SharePoint Integration:

Already seamlessly integrated with Dynamics 365, this update allows SharePoint documents associated with Dynamics 365 entities to easily collaborate with Portals. Users can also upload, view and download documents through the portal.

Improved Customisation:

This new update provides an improvement in customisation of user experience to improve content creation and web page authoring. This update will also allow users to navigate sitemap configuration easily.

With this update, customisers and administrators benefit from:
  • WYSIWYG-based content editors to help users craft beautiful visual experiences.
  • Modern and intuitive web page authoring experience.
  • Improved sitemap configuration to help users manage navigation and page hierarchies efficiently.
  • Contextual component configuration and administration for improved productivity.

Self-service portal diagnostics

This new feature brings self-service diagnostic capabilities to provide customisers with the ability to resolve issues on their own. Its self-service diagnostic tool examines portal configuration and identifies potential configuration problems to provide solutions on how to resolve the issues. This tool can benefit portal customisers by quickly resolving common issues and reducing time spent on diagnosing issues.

With more than a decade of experience in CRM technology implementations and as Gold CRM partners of leading CRM providers Microsoft Dynamics and Salesforce, we can offer the best advice to help make your CRM project a success. You can call us at 01296 328 689 or email us at marketing@seelogic.co.uk