Traditionally when working on Microsoft Dynamics 365 projects, consultants receive a dedicated login with System Administrator privileges. The problem with this is, that the customer has to pay for an additional license which it can’t use. Especially with Dynamics 365 online, this has become more and more of an issue with customers… and rightfully so.

Enter Delegated Administrator

To solve this, Microsoft came up with the concept of a Delegated Administrator. As described in the Microsoft Docs, a Delegated Administrator provides access from someone without the organization to your Dynamics 365 environment as a System Administrator. This means that I can login with my Thrives account, and access my customers’ Dynamics 365 without consuming a license. Great, isn’t it?

A few caveats

Of course, there are a few caveats to this solution…

  • You can’t use the XrmToolbox, or any code-based solution to connect to Dynamics 365
  • is not working with delegated administrators.

Both of these have proven to be real pains when customizing the customers Dynamics 365. When googling this, you’ll find plenty of partners asking for a solution to this problem.

Enter Non-Interactive User

For a long time, we have been able to use Non Interactive users to resolve the first issue. With Non-Interactive users, you create a user in your customers’ Dynamics 365 system and then set to user to ‘Non-Interactive’. This way your user does not consume a user license. It doesn’t have access to the User Interface but is able to connect through api’s… which is perfect for the XrmToolbox solution.

While this works great, Non-Interactive Users don’t provide a solution for accessing the environment… Or so it seems.

When accessing the, we get prompted with a trial screen:

Accessing as a Non-Interactive user

Which is not quite the result we were hoping for. However after some digging, we’ve found that accessing directly with the environment id in the url actually does provide access to the platform. The url looks like follows:[yourenvironmentid]/solutions

In conclusion

If you do not have a dedicated full user license at your customer, here’s how you can get around:

  1. Use a Delegated Administrator for everything that requires the Dynamics 365 UI.
  2. Use a Non-Interactive user for XrmToolbox and access to the interface.
  3. Bookmark this post to always have the direct url at hand 😉