Dynamics 365 Online: How to fix a broken Notes control on a custom entity

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After upgrading from CRM 2016 to Dynamics 365, we noticed that the Notes control on a form for one of our custom entities was no longer working properly. It would display, but there was no longer any way to add notes to the record:

 

When it should be displaying like this:

 

Researching the issue led us to two different posts that seemed to describe the same behavior, but no permanent solutions. In Bug: Notes creation in custom entity, Natraj Yegnaraman mentions that using DevTools revealed that the DOM elements are all still there, but aren’t displaying. He provides code for a bookmarklet that temporarily displays the “Enter a note” area on the control in his post, but was unable to track down exactly why the elements were hidden in the first place.

Possible issue with Notes on Dynamics 365 CRM latest version? is a Dynamics Community post that describes a similar, though slightly different, issue. In it, Mohamed Mostafa explains that he created a new custom entity with Notes and no Activities, and that the Notes control provides no way to add a note. Where things differ from our issue, though, is that he was able to address it by adding Activities to the custom entity, whereas our custom entity already had Activities activated. Another user in the thread reported that a ticket for the issue has been submitted to Microsoft and that a fix should be in the next update.

In the end, what corrected our issue was to simply create a copy of the form in question for the custom entity. The Notes control rendered just fine on the new form, so we exported both the old and new forms to compare them. Aside from the “labelid” attributes that were added to the new form, we noticed that the value for “FormPresentation” had been changed from 0 to 1:

 

To test whether or not this really had an effect, we changed the “FormPresentation” value to 1 on the old form and 0 on the new form. Once imported and published, the Notes control started showing the same issue on the new form and was fixed on the old form, so there must be something about how Dynamics 365 renders the control based on that value. MSDN's article on <FormPresentation> (FormXml) says that it indicates whether the updated or classic layout is used, but this wasn’t an issue in previous versions of CRM.

 

About the Author:

TopLine Strategies delivers the complete integration and development of sales, marketing and customer service technologies that enable corporate clientele to improve revenue streams and strengthen customer interactions. Our project management and consulting is designed to achieve timely delivery, 100 percent user adoption of the technologies we implement and deliver measurable returns on investments for our clients.

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