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Dynamics 365 Virtual Entities

Dynamics 365 Virtual Entities

Dynamics 365 Virtual Entities

Dynamics 365 v9 is here, and it's packed tight with new features and enhancements! My favorite is the introduction of virtual entities, but are they the right fit for you?

What are Virtual Entities?

Virtual entities provide a way to view data from an external data source inside Dynamics 365. This is not a data integration, but a way to see real time data in a format that's already familiar to your end users. Imagine including live stock prices in your Dynamics advanced find searches. How about linking transactional data to your Dynamics 365 customers from your local financial application? If the data source has a modern web API, supports Odata v.4 and uses a GUID as the primary key, then you can probably view it as a Virtual Entity.


What are the benefits?

There's a lot of upside with virtual entities. Since the data is delivered in real time, you can be assured that the data is always current. This process does not store the data in your Dynamics system, so it won’t consume any significant storage space. The data is presented just like any other entity in your Dynamics system, so your end users can interact with it in very familiar ways like forms, advanced finds, FetchXML based reports and dashboards.

What are the drawbacks?

There are a few drawbacks that you should take into consideration.
Since the data is stored externally, you cannot edit it in Dynamics. If there is internet latency between your Dynamics 365 site and the data source, you may find that it's slower to work with than native Dynamics data.
Some of the common features associated with native Dynamics entities do not apply, like record ownership, field level security, auditing and offline support.

Contact us today

Will a Virtual Entity fit your needs, or do you require a data integration? If you are not sure, then let Beringer Technology Group guide you to the right solution.
Please feel free to contact us and see how we can help you. 

Beringer Technology Group, a leading Microsoft Gold Certified Partner specializing in Microsoft Dynamics 365 and CRM for Distribution. We also provide expert Managed IT ServicesBackup and Disaster RecoveryCloud Based Computing and Unified Communication Systems.



Rob is the CTO of Beringer Technology Group, and focuses his efforts on software development, cloud engineering, team mentoring and strategic technical direction. Rob has worked with Beringer since 2005, and has influenced every department from Development, Security, Implementation, Support and Sales. Rob graduated with his MBA from Rowan University in 2012, earned his Bachelors of Computer Science in 1997, and is current with several Microsoft technical certifications. Rob is very active, and loves to mountain bike, weight train, cook and hike with his dog pack.