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Work offline with Dynamics 365 for Outlook

You can use Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Outlook to access your Microsoft Dynamics 365 data when you’re on the go. For example, if you travel to a customer’s site, you can look up your Dynamics 365 contacts, review and add new notes, and more without connecting to the Internet.

When you go offline with Dynamics 365 for Outlook, the software copies a subset of Dynamics 365 data to your computer’s hard drive. Changes you make while you’re offline are stored locally. When you connect to the server again, the changes are automatically synchronized with the Dynamics 365 server.

On this page:

Before you go offline

Go offline

Go back online

What features are unavailable offline?

Other things to know about going offline

Before you go offline

Dynamics 365 for Outlook uses offline synchronization filters to determine the subset of data to copy to your local hard drive when you go offline. Before you go offline, you can modify these filters or create new filters to synchronize just the data you need. You can also delete, deactivate, or activate filters. More information:  Choose records to work with offline in Dynamics 365 for Outlook


Tip

The first time you go offline, it can take a significant amount of time to synchronize your local data with the Dynamics 365 server if you have a lot of data. For example, in customer service situations, a parent case may have thousands of child cases. Dynamics 365 isn’t available when Dynamics 365 for Outlook is synchronizing. You can shorten the time by using the offline synchronization filters to limit the amount of synchronized data.


Go offline

  • When you’re ready to go offline, in Dynamics 365 for Outlook, choose File > Dynamics 365 > Go Offline.

    When you choose Go Offline, Dynamics 365 for Outlook syncs your data to your local computer using the offline sync filters. When synchronization is complete, you can disconnect your computer from the network.


    Tip

    You can tell if you’re offline by using any of the following indicators:

    • The Dynamics 365 toolbar displays the Go Online button.

    • The Dynamics 365 menu displays the Go Online option.

    • If you’re using Outlook 2010 or Outlook 2013, the Dynamics 365 tab displays the Go Online button.


Go back online

  1. Make sure you’re connected to your organization’s network.

  2. Choose File > Dynamics 365 > Go Online.

What features are unavailable offline?

Not available offline

  • Assigning records

  • Posts

  • Converting quotes to sales orders

  • Converting sales orders to invoices

  • Managing system administration

  • Updating system configuration

  • Managing service activities

  • Managing services

  • Using the Service calendar and Workplace calendar

  • Editing articles

  • Editing or managing sales literature

  • Changing organizations

  • Sharing records

  • Detecting duplicate records

  • Managing system jobs

  • Running some diagnostic tests

  • Running workflow rules

  • Create quick campaign and related activities from a mail merge

  • Tracking assigned tasks

  • Revise quote functionality

  • Follow or unfollow in the activity feed

  • Custom themes

Limited availability offline

  • Creating or viewing reports (based on local data groups and offline data)

  • Running some custom business processes (plug-ins)

Can be viewed, but can’t be edited offline

  • Articles

  • Sales literature

  • Mail-merge templates

Other things to know about going offline

  • Shared use of a computer. Any users who log on locally to a computer that has Dynamics 365 for Outlook installed can potentially access Dynamics 365 data stored in the offline database. Shared use of a computer running Dynamics 365 for Outlook is not supported.

  • How Dynamics 365 handles changes from multiple users.Dynamics 365 applies additions and changes to the Dynamics 365 server in the same order they’re entered. If you make a change to a record while you’re offline, and another user changes the same record during that time, when you go back online, your change will overwrite the changes that the other user made while you were offline.

  • Workflows. When you work offline, Dynamics 365 disables workflow notifications. If the changes you make offline are set to trigger an automated workflow process or a system job, the process is automatically triggered when you go back online.

  • Duplicate detection. Dynamics 365 disables duplicate detection when you’re offline. Duplicate detection is automatically re-enabled when you go back online. You can set a personal option to determine how duplicate records are handled during synchronization. More information: Set personal options that affect tracking and synchronization between Dynamics 365 and Outlook or Exchange

  • Undelivered messages. Email messages can fail to be delivered if the mail server is down, or can be blocked if the recipient doesn’t want to receive the email. If this happens, Outlook saves the email message to your Drafts folder, but Microsoft Dynamics 365 creates a closed activity. In Microsoft Dynamics 365, use the Pending E-mail view to see unsent messages.

    When you’re working offline, email messages that you send are saved to your Outlook offline queue. When you go online, Microsoft Dynamics 365 automatically tries to send them and create the activities. If an email message can’t be sent, Microsoft Dynamics 365 saves it as a draft activity, but it does not appear in your Drafts folder in Outlook.

  • Offline security permissions. You have the same security permissions offline as when you’re online.

  • Adding a related record type using the Add button (+). If you’re offline, you can’t add a related record type by using the Add button (+). Add the related record type while you’re online, and then go offline.

Privacy notices

To use Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Outlook, you are required to sign in by using your credentials (an email address and password). You may choose to save this information locally so that you are not prompted for your credentials each time you open Outlook. If you do choose to save this information locally, Dynamics 365 for Outlook will automatically connect to Microsoft Dynamics 365 (online) every time you open Outlook.

After the first time you sign in and use Dynamics 365 for Outlook, the connection between your computer and Dynamics 365 (online) will always be open when you have access to the Internet. You may choose to turn off the connection between your computer and Dynamics 365 only by using a configuration setting, but if you do turn off the connection, Dynamics 365 for Outlook may exhibit decreased performance.

If you use Dynamics 365 for Outlook to track email, the email thread will be visible to users in your organization who have permission to view it.

For every email you receive, Dynamics 365 for Outlook will send Dynamics 365 (online) the sender’s email address, the recipient’s email address, and the subject line of the message. This allows Dynamics 365 (online) to validate whether or not a particular mail should be stored by the Dynamics 365 (online) service. When you track an item, a copy of that item will be maintained by the Dynamics 365 service and will be visible to other users in your organization who have the appropriate permissions. When you untrack an item, that copy is automatically deleted from Dynamics 365 (online) only if you own the item.

If you use Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Outlook, when you go offline, a copy of the data you are working on is created and stored on your local computer. The data is transferred from Dynamics 365 (online) to your computer by using a secure connection, and a link is maintained between the local copy and Dynamics 365 Online. The next time you sign in to Dynamics 365 (online), the local data will be synchronized with Dynamics 365 (online).

An administrator determines whether or not an organization’s users are permitted to go offline with Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Outlook by using security roles.

Users and administrators can configure which entities are downloaded via Offline Sync by using the Sync Filters setting in the Options dialog box. Alternatively, users and Administrators can configure which fields are downloaded (and uploaded) by using Advanced Options in the Sync Filters dialog box.

If you use Microsoft Dynamics 365 (online), when you use the Sync to Outlook feature, the Dynamics 365 data you are syncing is “exported” to Outlook. A link is maintained between the information in Outlook and the information in Dynamics 365 (online) to ensure that the information remains current between the two. Outlook Sync downloads only the relevant Dynamics 365 record IDs to use when a user attempts to track and set regarding an Outlook item. The company data is not stored on the device.

An administrator determines whether your organization’s users are permitted to sync Dynamics 365 data to Outlook by using security roles.

Applies To

Dynamics 365 (online)

Dynamics 365 (on-premises)

Dynamics CRM Online

Dynamics CRM 2016

Dynamics CRM 2015

Dynamics CRM 2013