For use with Microsoft Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations
Note: If these features do not work for you, please contact your system administrator to go to Feature Management and Enable the feature called New Grid Control.
The new grid provides a number of benefits:
- Performance: The new grid provides improved rendering speed and a faster scrolling experience.
- Positional scrolling: Users can now positionally scroll in the data that has been loaded in the web browser. For example, if you have browsed through 10,000 rows in a grid, you can click the middle of the scrollbar to immediately go to record 5,000 without having to retrieve data from the server.
- General improvements: Various enhancements have been made to improve the usability of the grid. For example, in the existing grid, users might run into situations occasionally where the grid headers and data are misaligned, or the grid jumps while users scroll through data or create new records. These issues do not occur with the new grid control.
- Reorder columns: Users can now reorder columns by dragging them. Hover the mouse pointer over the column header and then drag the gripper control that appears on the left side of the column.
- Pinned marking column: The marking column in the new grid is pinned to the left and so will always be visible and available regardless of the width of the grid.
- Mathematical formulas: Users can now enter mathematical formulas into numeric cells in a grid. For example, you can enter =15*4. To make the system recognize a value as an expression, start the value with an equal sign (=).
- Totals: Business users can see totals for numeric columns in tabular grids. For example, financial users can view totals for a filtered set of transactions for a specific customer. Note that the entire dataset is required for this functionality, so it might take time to calculate totals for large datasets.
- Fast data entry: This feature lets users enter data in a grid ahead of the server. Therefore, it minimizes the need for users to wait for the server to validate one row in the grid before they move to another row. Users can also paste copied tables from Excel directly into grids in the system.
Specifying columns with totals
Currently, no columns show totals by default. Instead, this is considered a one-time setup activity, similar to adjusting the widths of columns in grids. Once you specify that you want to see totals for a column, that setting will be remembered the next time you visit the page.
There are two ways to configure a column to show a total:
- Right-click in the column that you want to see a total for, and then select Total this column. This action causes three events to occur:
- The footer becomes visible.
- Your preference for seeing a total for this column is saved.
- A calculation of totals is initiated for this column and any other columns that you previously configured to see totals for. The time that is required to show a total depends on the size of the dataset that you're totaling.
- After the footer is visible, select Show total in the footer area at the bottom of the column that you want to see a total for. If there are no configured columns, the Show total button will be available for all numeric columns.
After at least one column is configured for totals, the Show total buttons will be available only on hover or focus. The action of selecting Show total just saves your preference for seeing a total in this column, so that the preference is applied during future visits to the page. In the footer, this state is indicated by a dash that appears in the column. (Alternatively, if the dataset is small enough, a total is immediately shown.)
If you make a mistake and no longer want to see a total in a particular column, right-click on the column and select Hide total or select the Hide total button in the footer in that column. This preference will also be saved for future visits to the page.
When you come to a page with the footer visible and columns already configured for totals, totals may or may not be shown in the footer. The behavior is dependent on the size of the dataset on the page. If the dataset is sufficiently small, totals will be shown automatically, along with the number of rows in the dataset. If there are dashes in the footer under the columns you configured for totals, then the dataset is too large for the system to show totals immediately, and an explicit action is needed to calculate the totals. To do this, click the Calculate button in the footer, or right-click on a column you want a total for and select Total this column.
If the calculation is taking too long, you can cancel the operation by selecting the Cancel button. Sometimes, however, the dataset will be too large to calculate totals (a limit imposed by your organization), and you will instead be notified to filter your data more.
Totals will update automatically as you update, delete, or create rows in the dataset.
Typing ahead of the system
In many business scenarios, the ability to quickly enter data into the system is very important. Before the new grid control was introduced, users could change data only in the current row. Before they could create a new row or switch to a different row, they were forced to wait for the system to successfully validate any changes. In an attempt to reduce the amount of time that users wait for these validations to be completed, and to improve user productivity, the new grid adjusts these validations so that they are asynchronous. Therefore, the user can move to other rows to make changes while previous row validations are pending.
To support this new behavior, a new column for the row status has been added to the right of the row selection column when the grid is in edit mode. This column indicates one of the following statuses:
- Blank– No status image indicates that the row has been successfully saved by the system.
- Processing pending– This status indicates that the changes in the row haven't yet been saved by the server but are in a queue of changes that must be processed. Before you take action outside the grid, you must wait for all the pending changes to be processed. Additionally, the text in these rows is italicized to indicate the unsaved status of the rows.
- Invalid state– This status indicates that some warning or message was triggered during the processing of the row, and it might have prevented the system from saving the changes in that row. In the old grid, if the save operation was unsuccessful, you were forced back into the row to fix the issue immediately. However, in the new grid, you're notified that a validation issue was encountered, but you can decide when you want to fix any issues in the row. When you're ready to fix an issue, you can manually move focus back to the row. Alternatively, you can select the Fix this issue This action immediately moves focus back to the row that has the issue, and lets you make edits inside or outside the grid. Note that the processing of subsequent pending rows is stopped until this validation warning is resolved.
- Paused– This status indicates that processing by the server is paused because validation of the row triggered a pop-up dialog box that requires user input. Because the user might be entering data in some other row, the pop-up dialog box isn't immediately presented to that user. Instead, it will be presented when the user chooses to resume processing. This status is accompanied by a notification that informs the user about the situation. The notification includes a Resume processing action that will trigger the pop-up dialog box.
When users are entering data ahead of the place where the server is processing, they can expect a few degradations in the data entry experience, such as a lack of lookups, control-level validation, and entry of default values. Users who need a drop-down list to find a value are encouraged to wait for the server to catch up to the current row. Control-level validation and entry of default values will also occur when the server processes that row.
Pasting from Excel – Take note of this one!!! It’s cool!!! 😊
Users have always been able to export data from grids in Finance and Operations apps to Excel by using the Export to Excel mechanism. However, the ability to enter data ahead of the system enables the new grid to support copying tables from Excel and pasting them directly into grids in Finance and Operations apps. The grid cell that the paste operation is initiated from determines where the copied table begins to be pasted in. The contents of the grid are overwritten by the contents of the copied table, except in two cases:
- If the number of columns in the copied table exceeds the number of columns that remain in the grid, starting from the paste location, the user is notified that the extra columns have been ignored.
- If the number of rows in the copied table exceeds the number of rows in the grid, starting from the paste location, the existing cells are overwritten by the pasted content, and any extra rows from the copied table are inserted as new rows at the bottom of the grid.
Evaluating math expressions
As a productivity booster, users can enter mathematical formulas in numeric cells in a grid. They don't have to do the calculation in an app outside the system. For example, if you enter =15*4 and then press the Tab key to move out of the field, the system will evaluate the expression and save a value of 60 for the field.
To make the system recognize a value as an expression, start the value with an equal sign (=). For more information about the supported operators and syntax, see Supported math symbols.
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