I’m not attending Directions ASIA this year – and it doesn’t really feel good. There is a major release around the corner, and I have to experience it through social media – I hate it! But that’s life – my wife is going live with a huge project, so I had some duties at home ;-). Luckily, the go live is going quite well, so it seems to have been worth it ;-).
Having said that – the below blogpost is actually completely redundant. In fact, when I finished it, and was reviewing it, I came across this article on Microsoft Docs: What’s new and planned for Dynamics 365 Business Central. But hey, I’ve put the work into it, and I put some of my own thoughts into it – who knows it’s still interesting to read ;-).
As said, there is a major release around the corner. And since we don’t have version numbers anymore (actually, we have… I assume this is going to be version “14”), let’s just call it:
The information that I will list here, is merely from twitter/facebook/.. . So definitely second hand – definitely not complete – and definitely only from my interpretation! Let that be a big fat disclaimer.
But nevertheless, let’s list what I learned from social media today:
I think the most important piece of information was the fact that this release is the last release that will contain C/AL, and also the last one with the windows client. Just look at these screenshots from Alexander Totovic:
Enjoy the last 6 months of windows client, people ;-)!
To quote Kamil Sacek: “from 12-24 month announced on 2018 is 12 month in reality!” ;-). Indeed, the last roadmap, it said that it might happen from 12 to 14 months – I guess it has become 12 months.
What does it mean for code modification in the base app? Well, you will still be able to do it, according to Tobias Fenster.
In the keynote, it was clear that this release had a very strong focus on these three pillars:
(screenshots by Dmitry Katson)
And going forward, the points that I will address, kind of indicates that. Let’s … get … started …
We already had the “system information” page in business central, which showed the last error, which I blogged about some time ago here. But now, they got the error info out of it (it seems), and created a new page “Error Details”, which shows like this (screenshot Tobias Fenster):
It brings more possibilities to the user as they can figure out in the application of what’s wrong – but also for developers this is interesting, for example to know where to put breakpoints ;-).
As you know, while developing extensions, it was “challenging” to keep the data. If you do a breaking change (like removing a field), it could happen that you had to remove all data (from the extension) to rebuild it.
Well – this release brings a “force sync”!
Screenshot from Saurav Dhyani:
This solves a LOT of frustrations ;-).
May be something we don’t really think about, but definitely important to realize it exists! From this release, we will be able to apply context sensitive help. More info on Microsoft Docs!
This time, APIs are not in Beta anymore, and will be v1.0. Which means: API contract is fixed, but also versioned ;-). If you need to extend APIs, you can obviously create your own!
Screenshot by Dmitry Katson:
Tharanga shared that Business Central now exposes all Standard APIs as “Open API 3.0” standard.
Which seems to bring “auto documentationand auto SDKs”. Screenshots from Dmitry Katson:
I have to be honest – I have NO IDEA what that means, but I’m sure that’s a good thing ;-).
Even more, Dmitry Katson shared that the APIs are in MsGraph now!
And let’s also mention “web hooks! Or at least, let Dmitry do that ;-):
When you are a CSP and sell SaaS implementation of Business Central, you probably know about the Business Central Admin Center. It would be weird if you would not know about it, because this is where you maintain, handle, set up, … your customers.
With this release, a lot of new features are introduced into this portal. Just to name a few:
As I’m not intelligent enough to tell you anything about the intelligent cloud and its enhancements .. But I’m just going to leave this here for you ;-): https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/business-applications-release-notes/april19/dynamics365-business-central/enhancements-intelligent-cloud
When you were using the in-client designer in the previous release, it created dependencies for all extensions in the database. This didn’t make sense, and caused a lot of problems going forward (where you had to remove the unnecessary dependencies). It was the exact reason why I hated the tool.
Well – it’s fixed now ;-). Only the necessary dependencies are there now! Time to give this tool another go – may be now it can be a real addition to a developer’s life. Screenshot from Saurav Dhyani:
“Runtime Packages” is also still an area I have to dive into, just because I never had the need to hide source code (as I don’t believe that’s where is the IP). But I didn’t want to hold this screenshot from you from Saurav Dhyani:
Some more minor enhancements:
Look at this screenshot by Dmitry Katson:
I seem to be missing a “Dark Theme” though – while I’m a fan of dark themes. Microsoft?
…to easily enter lines on document pages. Screenshot by Tobias Fenster:
Yep: you can save a view now :-). I’m sure users are going to love this! Screenshot from Docs:
As far as I know, we’re still not able to post from F9 or so (so no execution of actions on a page though shortcuts), nor are we able to configure our own shortcuts (yet?). But at least, even more shortcuts have made it to the client. More info here.
Let me explain by this screenshot from Microsoft Docs:
We are users from NAV, and we know that basically all pages our bound to the dataset – which means all data is automagically saved. For users that are expecting a cancel button, it might not be that clear. Now it is:
It seems a very simple thing – not that scrolling is faster (it might be though), but the experience is completely different. Just watch this here.
the “tell me” box is even searching in AppSource now!
And if you think Microsoft didn’t work on the Application, think again! Many changes on this side – en let me refer you to Microsoft Docs for this. Just to list a few:
Very important – Microsoft has documented all the things we can expect in this new release. As said, I just found this link after writing this blog – it could have saved me some time ;-): https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/business-applications-release-notes/april19/dynamics365-business-central/planned-features
I haven’t seen a definite release data. Is it already here? Next week? End of April? No clue – but I expect this Spring release to be here very soon. Will update as soon as I have it, but I’m sure you will know before me anyway .. as social media will be swamped with it ;-).
It tried to note down all resource I used to compile this blog. There are some blogs, some links to Docs, and some tweets. All worth checking out!