Getting started with XrmDefinitelyTyped

XrmDefinitelyTyped generates TypeScript declaration files for Dynamics 365 client-side coding (model driven forms). It’s the TypeScript equivalent of CrmSvcUtil. (An alternate is to use @types/xrm which isn’t covered in this post.)

This post describes how to setup and start using XrmDefinitelyTyped within Visual Studio.

For more information: Home · delegateas/XrmDefinitelyTyped Wiki · GitHub

Disclaimer: I may have missed steps in this description. For example, I may have already installed required libraries in Visual Studio which I haven’t described here

Steps involved

1.) Install the NuGet package ‘Delegate.Xrm.DefinitelyTyped’. (This will be installed in the solution’s web resources folder.) If installing v5.6.0 of the NuGet package, you’ll notice that it contains many assemblies. Most of which, I imagine, aren’t required.

Figure 1

2.) View packages.config to confirm that it now contains XrmDefinitelyTyped

Figure 2

3.) Update the XrmDefinitelyTyped.exe.config.

a.) To connect to Dynamics 365 on-premises

Figure 3

b.) To connect to Dynamics 365 online

Figure 4

For more information regarding this pattern, please refer to Registering an app in azure ad

4.) Right mouse click on Run.ps1 and add the following detail. This is required in order to execute the Run.ps1 file. (The arguments cause the PowerShell window to remain open to aid debugging.)

Figure 5

5.) Right mouse click on Run.ps1. Select ‘Execute Run.ps1’ which was just defined in the previous step. (To run the script, it might be necessary to update your PowerShell execution policy). XrmDefinitelyTyped is then triggered which generates declaration files for the entities specified in step 3

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6.) View the declaration files generated in step 5. (Located in the Typings/XRM folder.)

Figure 7

7.) Create the TypeScript file (Note the TS file shown below follows the ‘revealing module’ pattern).

Figure 8

When creating the TS file, auto complete selection can be displayed by pressing Ctrl-Space. Only current D365 Client API are listed for selection (as defined in the declaration file xrm.d.ts) and not deprecated API.

Figure 9

Also, only fields that exist on the form are available in the auto complete selection. (Note: Auto complete is available because of line 9 in Figure 8 as well as using single quotes Figure 10.)

Figure 10

After saving the TS file, the corresponding JS file is created in the same folder. (The line “outFile” was commented out in tsconfig.json.)

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Other benefits

Other benefits of using XrmDefinitelyTyped include the generation of enumerated type declarations.

For example, rather than manually specifying formtype ‘create’ as the number 1, it can be represented as Xrm.FormType.Create

Figure 12

Also, rather than manually specifying the option set number 717710001, it can be represented as follows

Figure 13

Consider when trying to set a value that is expecting this type. If, rather than setting it to cpl_gender.Male, it’s set to “Male”, the following message would be displayed

Figure 14