Copy task recordings from one AX2012 instance to another

As Fredrik Saetre posted a few weeks ago, in the old days (AX 2009) our Dynamics AX system environment setup was simpler – but now we’re most often faced with various Dynamics AX system environments, for instance:


In one of the first posts in this blog I talked about how you can import your own business process hierarchy into the Task recorder – then, during testing and training you can use the task recorder to build up user documentation. The task recorder creates word documents and videos in a shared folder – and you may find it useful to be able to access the same task recording from more than one instance of Dynamics AX (Test, Training, Live, etc.). One way to achieve this is to copy the task recording setup (but not the word documents and videos) from one Dynamics AX instance to another.

Simple enough to do, and here’s how it goes, we’re going to use a Data definition group to copy the task recorder setup tables from one Dynamics AX instance to another.

1. Log into the environment where you are making your task recordings, then (and obviously you only need to do this once), setup a data definition group.

System administration > Common > Data export/import > Definition group:

System administration > Common > Data export/import > Definition group > Select tables:

The table names are:

SysTaskRecorderBusinessValidations

SysTaskRecorderFramework

SysTaskRecorderFrameworkIndustryMap

SysTaskRecorderFrameworkLevel

SysTaskRecorderFrameworkLine

SysTaskRecorderIndustry

SysTaskRecorderLineArtifact

SysTaskRecorderParameters

SysTaskRecorderPopulateTrace

SysTaskRecorderRecordedEntryPoint

2. Export the task recorder tables via the data definition group:

System administration > Common > Data export/import > Definition group > Export to:

Enter a filename, click OK to export.

3. Now log out of your first Dynamics AX instance – and log into the Dynamics AX which is going to receive the Task recorder setup and import the file you created (you don’t have to have a data definition group setup to do the import). Also note that if you need to move the export file from one folder to another before you import, that the data definition group export creates two files (a .dat and .def file) – you need to copy both files.

System administration > Common > Data export/import > Import:

Enter/select the file saved above.

On the Advanced tab Tick the Include shared tables and Include system files checkboxes:

We’re not going to update existing records – we’re going to delete and re-add the records so this is a complete one-off copy of the task recordings.

When you click OK the system will display a list of tables with data:

Click ‘Yes to all’ and OK to import. The system displays a confirmation form:

Click Yes to import. The system displays a warning

Click Yes to accept the warning and you are done – easy as.

Adding a voice narration to a Task Recorder video in Dynamics AX 2012 R3

Lachlan Cash is generating a great set of blog posts, and this one caught my eye (http://organicax.com/2014/11/09/adding-a-voice-narration-to-your-bpm-recording-in-lifecycle-services/).

If you’ve looked at the new task recorder in Dynamics AX 2012 R3 (and R2 CU7) you’ll know that as well as recording your task, it automatically creates a word document, and it creates a Video recording (of up to 10 minutes).

Go to File > Tools > Task recorder

 

Task recordings are now made against a Process hierarchy – the standard Dynamics AX demo images come pre-loaded with this APQC hierarchy, but it’s possible to create and import your own business process (See  How to import a process hierarchy into the Advanced task recorder
).

Note. In the Task recorder Settings > Hierarchy levels you define a Recording mode of ‘Basic’ or ‘Advanced’. To use the Advanced mode you have to be running the Dynamics AX client on the Dynamics AX AOS server – if you’re logged into a Terminal server and the AOS is on another server, you’ll have to use Basic mode – but you still get a Video recording in Basic mode.

Select a node in your Business process hierarchy and click Start. The Task recorder form minimises. Perform your task and when you’re done click back into the Task recorder form and click Stop. There’s a short pause as your recording is processed.

You’ll see that the Node is now flagged to show that you’ve performed a task recording:

So as you’d expect, if you click on ‘Document’ the system reads the stored task recording and generates the familiar word document:

But what’s not so obvious is that it’s also created and saved a Word document and Video:

In the Settings > Parameters you find a Recording file path:

Navigate to that folder and you can find those documents. Firstly there’s a folder for your business process hierarchy and then there’s a folder for your task. The folder name is abbreviated, but it’s quite recognisable:

Now you can take the Word document and edit it, and take the video and add a commentary.

Lachlan Cash recommends using Movie maker to edit the Video:

 

The only thing that’d make that simpler was if it was easier to access those files – in a previous company we added a couple of extra buttons on the Task recorder:

We re-named ‘Document’ to ‘Generate a document’ and added ‘Edit document’ and ‘Play video’ buttons.

How to import a process hierarchy into the advanced task recorder

Introduction

The Advanced Task recorder can be installed in Dynamics AX 2012 R2 CU7 and ships as standard in Dynamics AX 2012 R3.

When you open the Task recorder, if the standard Dynamics AX demo data has been installed you’ll see an APQC business process hierarchy:

But here’s how you can import your own Business process hierarchy.

Setup

Framework

As shown above, the Business process hierarchy is defined by ‘Framework’ and ‘Industry’.

File > Tools > Task recorder > Settings > Setup > Framework.

Enter your framework name as above.

Industry

File > Tools > Task recorder > Settings > Setup > Industry:

Enter an Industry (as above).

Hierarchy levels

File > Tools > Task recorder > Settings > Setup > Hierarchy levels:

Select the Framework and Industry you just created, select ‘Advanced’ recording mode (you can’t import the Hierarchy if you choose Basic) and create levels for your hierarchy. (You don’t have to import all the levels you define).

Locate the import template format

You might need to get a developer to help you with this bit, but it’s not that technical.

Open the AOT and Navigate to Resources >

Right-click > Open gives:

Export gives:

Select a folder, give the file a name and a .xlsx extention and save it

Create your template

Open the template in Excel and populate it:

As soon as you open the template you’ll see that it’s pretty obvious what goes where.

Save your template.

Import your template

File > Tools > Task recorder > Settings > Periodic > Import hierarchy:


Enter/select your file name.

Click Validate.

Click Import hierarchy.

If all goes well you’ll get:

View hierarchy

File > Tools > Task recorder.

Select your Framework and Industry:

Now you’re all set to do your own task recordings (but you might want to go back the Hierarchy levels setup first and change from Advanced to Basic recording). To run an Advanced recording you have to be running your client on the AOT server.

More information can be found at:

https://community.dynamics.com/ax/b/kayaconsulting/archive/2013/07/09/ax2012-task-recorder-update.aspx