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Utilizing GUID’s for Importing Data to Multiple Orgs in Dynamics CRM

Post Author: Joe D365 |

Do you have multiple entities in your Dynamics CRM system that are simply used for look-ups? Or maybe you want to replicate data across multiple orgs, but have workflows that specify specific records using lookups? This can be a hindrance when you have to move these workflows from one CRM organization to another, because the look-up value (label) may be the same from one CRM organization to another, but the GUID will be different because it was more than likely imported/entered manually.

Did you know that the "Out of the Box" Data Import Wizard can help you keep the GUID (Primary Keys) Synchronized over multiple CRM organizations so you don't have to keep updating workflow look-ups each time you move them from Development > QA > Production?

The process is pretty simple:

  1. Determine which organization will be the Master (Usually the development Organization works best).
  2. Enter or Import all values for the Entity.
  3. Export the Entity using the Export Tool for CRM (Don't forget to check the box "Make this data available for re-importing by including required column headings)

    Utilizing GUID’s for Importing Data to Multiple Orgs in Dynamics CRM

  4. Save the file to your Desktop (Or somewhere you will remember).
  5. Open the Import Wizard in your target organization.

    Utilizing GUID’s for Importing Data to Multiple Orgs in Dynamics CRM

  6. Select your File.
  7. Choose your Data Map – (Default (Automatic Mapping) works slick if you don't have one already).

    Utilizing GUID’s for Importing Data to Multiple Orgs in Dynamics CRM

  8. When setting up your field mapping, simply add the field containing the GUID (ONLY exported if you remember to check that box on the export of data!) to the Primary Key field of your target entity.

    Utilizing GUID’s for Importing Data to Multiple Orgs in Dynamics CRM

  9. Click Next.
  10. And Next again to get past the Review Mapping Summary screen.

    Utilizing GUID’s for Importing Data to Multiple Orgs in Dynamics CRM

  11. Hit Submit.

    Utilizing GUID’s for Importing Data to Multiple Orgs in Dynamics CRM

And there you have it...synchronization  is now complete! If you have any more data import questions make sure to check out our blog focused wholly on Dynamics CRM or stay up to date via our CRM Book. Happy CRM'ing!

Joe CRM
By Joe D365
Joe D365 is a Microsoft Dynamics 365 superhero who runs on pure Dynamics adrenaline. As the face of PowerObjects, Joe D365’s mission is to reveal innovative ways to use Dynamics 365 and bring the application to more businesses and organizations around the world.

4 comments on “Utilizing GUID’s for Importing Data to Multiple Orgs in Dynamics CRM”

  1. Does this work with CRM 2015? I have tried your steps and as soon as I attach the xml file for Business Unit, it skips all the pages in between and goes directly to your step 11. The status shows 0 for all results. I don't even get an error message.

  2. Yeah CRM is dumb enough that it can't import to a different org the same file that it exports, in my experiences. Import as CSV and double-check the Guid.

  3. This does not work with CRM 2016. In CRM 2016 the system tried to update an existing record as soon as it sees the GUID and mapping and it fails.

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