Install CRM 2013 Developer Toolkit on Visual Studio 2013

I had a hard time to install the CRM developer toolkit found in CRM 2013 SDK on VS 2013 that is running on Windows Server 2012 R2, so I thought of sharing the steps to make this happen:

  1. Download the CRM 2013 SDK and after extracting it navigate to: sdk\Tools\DeveloperToolkit\
  2. Open a Command Prompt as Administrator
  3. Run: msiexec /a CrmDeveloperToolsVS12_Installer.msi /qb TARGETDIR=c:\temp
  4. Navigate to the folder which you extracted the files
  5. Open the Visual Studio folder
  6. Open the archive file Microsoft.CrmDeveloperTools.vsix (I used 7-Zip for this)
  7. Edit extension.vsixmanifest
  8. Replace: InstalledByMsi=”true” with: InstalledByMsi=”false”
  9. Replace all instances of: Version=”[11.0,12.0)” with: Version=”[11.0,12.0]“ (note the closing bracket changed) and update the file in the archive.
  10. Double click to install the VSIX package Microsoft.CrmDeveloperTools.vsix found in the visual studio folder.
  11. Add the files found in the folder named “CRM MSBuild” extracted from the CrmDeveloperToolsVS12_Installer.msi to the folder in the path “C:\Program Files (x86)\MSBuild\Microsoft\CRM”
  12. If things didn’t work out you may need to edit C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Visual Studio 12.0\Common7\IDE\devenv.exe.config and add the following lines:
    <assemblyIdentity name=”Microsoft.Windows.Design.Host” publicKeyToken=”b03f5f7f11d50a3a” culture=”neutral” />
    <bindingRedirect oldVersion=”″ newVersion=”″ />

In case the CRM explorer window is not loading when opening the CRM Toolkit project types you will need to add the below lines in the visual studio solution file:

  GlobalSection(CRMSolutionProperties) = preSolution
    SolutionIsBoundToCRM = TRUE

Changing Dynamics CRM Service Accounts

If we needed to change CRM service accounts at any point of time due to password loss or the need of setting specific SPN accounts as services accounts we can use the CRM repair wizard by running the installer and selecting the repair options, this option applies this change smoothly and without affecting the current CRM deployment.

Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 Best Practices Analyzer

I found this nice tool while searching for Dynamics CRM 2013 best practices.

The Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 Best Practices Analyzer is a diagnostic tool that performs the following functions:

  • Gathers information about the CRM 2013 server roles that are installed on that server.
  • Determines if the configurations are set according to the recommended best practices.
  • Reports on all configurations, indicating settings that differ from recommendations.
  • Indicates potential problems in the CRM 2013 features installed.
  • Recommends solutions to potential problems.

You can find here also best development practices for Dyanmics CRM 2013