Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online provides a sandbox (development and/or test environment) associated with your production CRM environment. You can create a “full” copy, which includes the data or you can also create a “minimal” copy, which only includes the customizations. In this post, we will cover how to make a copy of your production instance for this sandbox.

  1. Login to the Office 365 portal using the administrator credentials.Copy of a Production Instance in Dynamics CRM


2. Select the production instance and select Copy.

Copy of a Production Instance in Dynamics CRM


3. When you select Copy, the following form will pop up to fill in. Select a target instance (i.e. the sandbox instance), select copy type, edit friendly name and URL name (you are able to change the org name while you copy to the sandbox instance) if needed.

Copy of a Production Instance in Dynamics CRM


4. For security settings, select a security group in the form. All users of the Production instance are added to the sandbox instance if you do not select a security group (Security groups can be created under Users & Group in the Office 365 Administration Portal).

5. Click Copy. The status of the sandbox will show as “preparing instance” for a while. Once it’s ready to use, the status will change to “Ready.”

6. Use the new Org URL that you specified in the Copy step above to access the new sandbox instance.

7. After the copy, the sandbox instance is by default set to be in Administrative mode. Only users that have System Administrator or System Customizer Role can access the instance. You can change the Administrative settings for the instance by selecting the Admin icon on the sandbox instance shown in the screenshot below.

Copy of a Production Instance in Dynamics CRM

8. When you click on Admin a form will pop up (see the screenshot below). Uncheck Enable administration mode if you wish to allow all users to login to your sandbox instance. Click Save.

That is it—now you know how to create a copy of a Production Instance in Dynamics CRM Online! Find more great tips on how to manage Dynamics CRM Online and Office 365 here! For other helpful CRM tips be sure to check out The CRM Book.

Happy CRM’ing!

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Joe D365

Joe D365 is a Microsoft Dynamics 365 superhero who runs on pure Dynamics adrenaline. As the face of PowerObjects, Joe D365’s mission is to reveal innovative ways to use Dynamics 365 and bring the application to more businesses and organizations around the world.