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Use Dash to Build to Web Apps on Dynamics CRM Data

The CData Python Connector for Dynamics CRM enables you to create Python applications that use pandas and Dash to build Dynamics CRM-connected web apps.

The rich ecosystem of Python modules lets you get to work quickly and integrate your systems more effectively. With the CData Python Connector for Dynamics CRM, the pandas module, and the Dash framework, you can build Dynamics CRM-connected web applications for Dynamics CRM data. This article shows how to connect to Dynamics CRM with the CData Connector and use pandas and Dash to build a simple web app for visualizing Dynamics CRM data.

With built-in, optimized data processing, the CData Python Connector offers unmatched performance for interacting with live Dynamics CRM data in Python. When you issue complex SQL queries from Dynamics CRM, the driver pushes supported SQL operations, like filters and aggregations, directly to Dynamics CRM and utilizes the embedded SQL engine to process unsupported operations client-side (often SQL functions and JOIN operations).

Connecting to Dynamics CRM Data

Connecting to Dynamics CRM data looks just like connecting to any relational data source. Create a connection string using the required connection properties. For this article, you will pass the connection string as a parameter to the create_engine function.

The connection string options meet the authentication and connection requirements of different Dynamics CRM instances. To connect to your instance, set the User and Password properties, under the Authentication section, to valid Dynamics CRM user credentials and set the Url to a valid Dynamics CRM server organization root. Additionally, set the CRMVersion property to 'CRM2011+' or 'CRMOnline'. IFD configurations are supported as well; set InternetFacingDeployment to true.

Additionally, you can provide the security token service (STS) or AD FS endpoint in the STSURL property. This value can be retrieved with the GetSTSUrl stored procedure. Office 365 users can connect to the default STS URL by simply setting CRMVersion.

After installing the CData Dynamics CRM Connector, follow the procedure below to install the other required modules and start accessing Dynamics CRM through Python objects.

Install Required Modules

Use the pip utility to install the required modules and frameworks:

pip install pandas
pip install dash
pip install dash-daq

Visualize Dynamics CRM Data in Python

Once the required modules and frameworks are installed, we are ready to build our web app. Code snippets follow, but the full source code is available at the end of the article.

First, be sure to import the modules (including the CData Connector) with the following:

import os
import dash
import dash_core_components as dcc
import dash_html_components as html
import pandas as pd
import cdata.dynamicscrm as mod
import plotly.graph_objs as go

You can now connect with a connection string. Use the connect function for the CData Dynamics CRM Connector to create a connection for working with Dynamics CRM data.

cnxn = mod.connect("User=myuseraccount;Password=mypassword;URL=https://myOrg.crm.dynamics.com/;CRM Version=CRM Online;")

Execute SQL to Dynamics CRM

Use the read_sql function from pandas to execute any SQL statement and store the result set in a DataFrame.

df = pd.read_sql("SELECT FirstName, NumberOfEmployees FROM Account WHERE FirstName = 'Bob'", cnxn)

Configure the Web App

With the query results stored in a DataFrame, we can begin configuring the web app, assigning a name, stylesheet, and title.

app_name = 'dash-dynamicscrmedataplot'

external_stylesheets = ['https://codepen.io/chriddyp/pen/bWLwgP.css']

app = dash.Dash(__name__, external_stylesheets=external_stylesheets)
app.title = 'CData + Dash'

Configure the Layout

The next step is to create a bar graph based on our Dynamics CRM data and configure the app layout.

trace = go.Bar(x=df.FirstName, y=df.NumberOfEmployees, name='FirstName')

app.layout = html.Div(children=[html.H1("CData Extension + Dash", style={'textAlign': 'center'}),
	dcc.Graph(
		id='example-graph',
		figure={
			'data': [trace],
			'layout':
			go.Layout(title='Dynamics CRM Account Data', barmode='stack')
		})
], className="container")

Set the App to Run

With the connection, app, and layout configured, we are ready to run the app. The last lines of Python code follow.

if __name__ == '__main__':
    app.run_server(debug=True)

Now, use Python to run the web app and a browser to view the Dynamics CRM data.

python dynamicscrm-dash.py

Free Trial & More Information

Download a free, 30-day trial of the Dynamics CRM Python Connector to start building Python apps with connectivity to Dynamics CRM data. Reach out to our Support Team if you have any questions.



Full Source Code

import os
import dash
import dash_core_components as dcc
import dash_html_components as html
import pandas as pd
import cdata.dynamicscrm as mod
import plotly.graph_objs as go

cnxn = mod.connect("User=myuseraccount;Password=mypassword;URL=https://myOrg.crm.dynamics.com/;CRM Version=CRM Online;")

df = pd.read_sql("SELECT FirstName, NumberOfEmployees FROM Account WHERE FirstName = 'Bob'", cnxn)
app_name = 'dash-dynamicscrmdataplot'

external_stylesheets = ['https://codepen.io/chriddyp/pen/bWLwgP.css']

app = dash.Dash(__name__, external_stylesheets=external_stylesheets)
app.title = 'CData + Dash'
trace = go.Bar(x=df.FirstName, y=df.NumberOfEmployees, name='FirstName')

app.layout = html.Div(children=[html.H1("CData Extension + Dash", style={'textAlign': 'center'}),
	dcc.Graph(
		id='example-graph',
		figure={
			'data': [trace],
			'layout':
			go.Layout(title='Dynamics CRM Account Data', barmode='stack')
		})
], className="container")

if __name__ == '__main__':
    app.run_server(debug=True)