Deploying Provance ITSM to Dynamics CRM

Author by Dan Fink

The Provance ITSM software is more than just a solution you add to CRM, it's a set of entities, processes, web resources, and data which makes up what they call a Package, all of which needs to be deployed to CRM. There are hundreds of components to this package, which might seem overwhelming for those of us that need to deploy it, but Provance has made it quite easy with a Package Deployer utility, which automates nearly the entire process. Provance includes a full deployment guide with their product which can be used to walk through the installation, but since screenshots never hurt, we've done an overview of the installation below so you can get an idea of the (relatively small) workload to get the CRM components installed.

The steps below may not be exactly the same as you encounter, as we're working with the first version of this tool, so some things may change, but the guide below is generic enough that it should apply to your scenario.

What This Guide Covers
We're big fans of CRM Online here at Concurrency, so we'll be using an online environment for the below steps. If you're using CRM On-Premises, that will need to be set up and configured ahead of time. If you have access to a CRM Online trail, that might also be a way you can get a taste of ITSM without a major time investment. This guide also assumes you have the installation components for the Provance ITSM product, and note that at the time this post was written, a license was not needed to install the software (though it was required to use it in CRM).

 

Installation Steps

Step 1

You'll need to Unblock the archive before you can extract it, or the Deployer will not function correctly, so make sure to view the Properties of the ZIP archive and check 'Unblock' then 'OK'.

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Extract the archive to somewhere on your machine, and view the contents.

  •  Data Migration
    • This is an additional utility included with the software which makes it possible to define a schema and then use that schema to export data from an existing product so that you can import it into CRM.
  •  Deployment
    • The Deployer is in here, which we'll be using to install the software to our CRM environment 
  • Deployment Guide
    • You can follow the steps in this well-put-together guide, and it will go into more detail than we've covered in this post.
  • Sample Data
    • Provance provides some data that you can use the Data Migration utility to Import, providing some sample data to help make sense of all the new components added to CRM.

Step 2

We'll be using the Deployment folder to access the PackageDeployer, which is the utility used to connect to CRM and push all the components. Open the PackageDeployer, and after reviewing the license agreement, click 'Continue'.

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Step 3

Select your deployment type, which in the case of this guide, is going to be Office 365. Since we only have a single CRM organization in our Office 365 tenant, we do not need to select that checkbox, but we do know the region that our tenant is located in, so to avoid requiring the PackageDeployer from having to iterate through all the regions, we'll check the 'Show Advanced' checkbox, and enter the username and password for our CRM Online instance, which is located in the North America region. Make sure that the account you're using here has the System Administrator role assigned to it in CRM.

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The Deployer will go out and find your CRM instance, which may take some time if you did not specify a region, as it will iterate through all the regions.

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Step 4

You'll next get a chance to look through the full EULA, but since we did that earlier in Step 2, we can click 'Next' which will get us to the point where the Deployer is ready to install.

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The Deployer will then iterate through the initial 15 configuration step 010 through 015, where it's prepping for the installation actions. This step should go rather quickly, so don't grab your coffee just yet, save that for the next step.

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Step 5

Once you click 'Next' on the Installer Configuration page, it's going to start executing Install Actions. This one is going to take a while, as it's loading all the solution components it staged in the previous steps into CRM. Go grab some coffee (or lunch, depending on your connection speed), as it will take a while to run through all these.

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After a bit of waiting, the installation actions have been completed, with just one possible error on Entity Enumeration, but we'll worry about that at a later time, as it's not a fatal error. We can click 'Next' which will take us to the finish line.

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Note: This is just the CRM portion of the installation, and does not cover the setup of the users, licenses or PDB (the PDB is an awesome external database which can store all your asset configurations, as well as integrate with other pieces of the whole ITSM/CRM ecosystem, which we'll be covering in the future).

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Author

Dan Fink

Senior System Engineer