Tuesday, May 17, 2022

TournamentCompare v0.007 - The microsoft alternative

 After getting a standard user set up (so I'm not directly touching the admin account), the first step is to set up a new Power Platform environment to keep all the development tables and apps away from the default instance. I'm also tempted to have a Dev / Test / Prod environment too. Yep, may as well go full lifecyccle management from the get-go (It'll be in Dev for a significant chunk of time anyway).

Hmm, apparently the tenant doesn't have enough space for the database. Sure enough, database capacity is 0 of 0, No space allocated. Might see if  I can create the environment without the dataverse database and make afterwards. Hmm nope, still complaining about capacity constraints. Tried signing up for the developer plan for power apps, but it just took me to the same environment. Looks like Microsoft confirms that the developer plan cannot create environments. Oh well.

The next alternative is to create separate databases in the dataverse of the default instance and hopefully link them to separate solutions. Actually without environments the standard solution export / import isn't going to work. Possibly just use DevOps and branching?

Setting up DevOps it looks like my personal account had got there first to register VRBones. Since my personal account is also set up as a developer for Visual Studio, it probably makes sense to leave it there, so I just added the organisation admin and standard user to the mix and made a new TournamentCompare project. 

Upon looking into the DevOps integration it looks to be only with VS Team Services account. Ok, it looks like I'll just need to build out the app in default and keep it lightweight before deciding whether lifecycle management will help to push out anything.  

Tournament Template files created pretty quickly. Next step is to check the model-driven app and especially the self-referenced heirarchy.

Tuesday, May 03, 2022

Microsoft 365 and Power Apps development

Inspired by my new job at Best Practice, I have been looking at Microsoft 365 Dataverse and model-driven power apps as a potential replacement for TournamentCompare development (and possibly others). 

Although it looked like you could sign up for a free community / developer plan, it didn't like my hotmail address. Digging deeper it looked like all I had to do was have a custom domain, so I set up a dev account on tournamentcompare.com, but it still rejected stating it needed a O365 tenant (had expected such, otherwise it would have created all the back end anyway). 

It turns out what I REALLY need is a developer tenant for the entire Microsoft 365 suite, which comes with 25 sample E5 licenses and a 3 month extendable trial window. Super impressed with this offering and goes along the lines of Visual Studio being offered for free too. 

Initially it offered a sample userbase and SharePoint site for a trial, but since I had used the admin tools before I decided to go with the custom install and eschew the trial data, even though it warned on a possible 2 day setup timeframe. Luckily it was provisioned within a minute and sure enough, all the admin controls are available. 

Checking SharePoint and it has a boilerplate communication-style site already set up and admin back end ready to go. 

Jumping straight over to Power Apps and although it took a little to process, it was also provisioned and looks to be ready for development. Excellent, don't need the developer plan (kinda makes sense since I am already inside a dev plan for the entire tenant).

Popping over to Azure Active Directory and, as expected by now, it is also provisioned on a Premium P2 license. This will also allow a great sandbox for testing some of the potential dev opportunities at work (PIM springs to mind).

Overall super happy with the offering.