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Chapter 4. Microsoft CRM Functional and ... > Microsoft CRM User Interfaces

Microsoft CRM User Interfaces

To confuse matters more, we need to touch on the user interfaces that are provided with Microsoft CRM. Microsoft CRM has two user interfaces that can be used to access the system, depending on the user's role. The two user interfaces are the Web (i.e. browser) client and the Microsoft Outlook client. The Web client is a browser-based client that provides all application functionality, assuming the user has the appropriate license. The Web client can be accessed with only a Web browser (currently, Internet Explorer 5.5 sp2 and 6.0 are the supported browser versions) and requires no additional client software install.

The Microsoft Outlook client (officially named Microsoft CRM Sales for Outlook) is an application that is installed on the user's machine and works with Microsoft Outlook. In fact, Microsoft Outlook 2000 or Outlook XP (also referred to as Office 2002) must be present to install the Outlook client. The Outlook client enables the user to connect directly to the production database when on the network. The Outlook client also gives the user the option to go offline and work with a subset of records while disconnected from the corporate network. To do this it uses Microsoft SQL Server replication and the desktop edition of Microsoft SQL Server (MSDE) on the user's laptop. More on the Outlook client and the underlying technologies can be found in Chapter 8, “Microsoft CRM Sales for Outlook.”


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