Monday, August 18, 2014

How can we contribute back to the Awesome Salesforce Community

I started working with Salesforce platform for quite sometime now and learnt most of the stuff on the job and the rest with a great help from the awesome salesforce community channels ..

  • Success Community (Answers Board & Chatter)
  • Salesforce Developer Forum
  • Salesforce Stackexchange (SFSE)
  • Lots & Lots of Blogs (from MVP members and other great minds)
  • User Groups & Developer Group Meetups
  • Dreamforce Sessions
  • Webinars & Salesforce Youtube Channel videos
  • Social #AskForce in Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, Google+
  • and many more.....

as a Developer when you see so many different options/places to find a solution to what you are working on, over a period of time you will start thinking about contributing back to these channels which helped you.. and thats how i started my work in sharing what i learnt from the community back to the crowd to help people like me who are reaching out to the community everyday.. 

believe me this is more interesting / challenging / engaging / satisfying than just browsing existing answers or repeatedly asking the questions .. the more you share the more you learn.. the amount of research I do to post an answer helps me to understand and gain a deeper knowledge of a topic to which i answer.. i would never read those documents or articles if I am not answering a question..

I initially started with Salesforce Success Community Answers Board and then extended myself into Salesforce Developer Forums and recently into Salesforce Stackexchange as well.. 

each of these forums has a unique way of operating / dealing with questions & answers, how the contributors are rewarded / ranked, etc.. it takes a while for anyone to understand the moderation rules. I would suggest users to go thru existing discussions, use the search to find whats already existing, browse already Solved ones, top answers, FAQ pages to understand more about how the forums work, then get started with simple ones which you are very sure & confident about.. 

If you are answering to a question in any of these forums, I would suggest to follow these simple steps
  • Salesforce has Awesome Documentation resources (Salesforce Help, Docs, Youtube videos, blogs, etc..) if the answer exists in any of these please share those links and guide the user to the related section 
  • if the question has already been asked and answered before, provide those links instead of copying & sharing the answer again
  • if someone already answered to the question, no point in repeating the same.. see if you are adding more details or value with your answer compared whats already there
  • do your research and provide as much details as possible in a single answer rather than making it a chat by asking more questions and answering at the same time
  • finally share some respect to fellow contributors
here's my profile across the 3 different discussion boards I am currently involved in

Success Community Answers Profile

Developer Forums Profile

Salesforce Stackexchange Profile

Remember the more we share the more we learn.. :-)

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

How to Select a Best Answer in Salesforce Success Answers Community

Just a quickie to let all the new users in Salesforce Success Answers community to show how to select a best answer when someone's answer solves your question.. 

here is an image used by Steve Mo explaining how to select a best answer

Best Answers are something that energizes / encourages the community contributors to support and contribute more..

so don't miss to do it if someone helped you :-)

Monday, January 13, 2014

Salesforce GeoLocation Error "No such column GeoLocation__c"

If you are using the latest geolocation feature in your existing salesforce apex classes & soql queries, then chances are you might hit this error "No such column GeoLocation__c. If you are attempting to use a custom field, be sure to append the '__c' after the custom field name. Please reference your WSDL or the describe call for the appropriate name" as we did in our org..

there is a known issue which the salesforce team is reviewing currently

the workaround is to increase the version number of your apex class to something greater than 26 and try.. please note in certain cases, we might need to increase the version number of the class that has the geolocation field / soql and also the version number of the classes being referred inside the class with the geolocation / soql..

good luck.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Issue with DBAmp (SQL Server to Salesforce Integration tool) upgrades

If you are using DBAmp from , and if you plan to upgrade your current version to the latest version please make sure you restore the dbamp keys in your windows registry.

Shocked - ye we too went through this pain recently.. when we updated our DBAmp to the latest version 2.17.7 it wiped out all the existing dbamp registry keys which was added during the initial installation.

This had an impact on our case assignment rules. wondering how ? here is the reason...

one of the dbamp registry key is UseDefaultAssignment.
if this key is not there or if its not set to true, the leads/cases created in salesforce thru dbamp will not trigger the assignment rules and all will be sitting with the default user you configure in dbamp.

here is the explanation for this registry key from the DBAmp document
This entry controls whether DBAmp adds an AssignmentHeader to all requests made to A checked value forces DBAmp to include the header.
Note: Setting this registry switch forces DBAmp to add the header to all DBAmp operations. If you need finer control then use the optional SOAP header of the SF_BulkOps stored procedure.

so make sure after you upgrade your existing dbamp installation you check your dbamp registry keys and restore them as it was before the upgrade.

good luck.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Dreamforce 2013 Developer Keynote Highlights

Just finished watching the developer keynote from this years dreamforce..

here are some of the key highlights that i noted down from this hour long video.. Command Line Interface (CLI)
its an open source tool to help developers access the salesforce instance and all of the objects (standard, custom), run soql queries, import & export of metadata, etc..


Some more details

source code and setup

API.. API.. API.. API...
one of the buzzword througout this dreamforce is API.. most of the stuff in salesforce platform is now API enabled.. this will be the base for cross platform, device independent, application development.
since most of the integration with API's happens over http, xml & json, there are not client libraries to ease the integration. couple of libraries highlighted are

Ruby Client for REST api

Node.js REST api wrapper for

d3.js - to visualise & chart the data from analytics api
example -

This is probably the biggest anouncement for developers this year... its a complete rebranding and futurisitc strategy to put the platform as mobile first & api driven.. this is an umbreall of, heroku and exact target and other supporting components put together. we now have a new developer site for the salesforce1 platform.. which has a good collection of documentation & other resources around the platform and api's..

Mobile packs and Mobile SDK
these are already released in phases over the period and got a special mention in the keynote to hightlight how it fits in the Salesforce1 platform. the mobile packs covers the development with existing client side web technologies like HTML5 with javascript libraries like Angular, Knockout, jQuery, etc.. and the Mobile SDK covers the iOS and Android based development

Heroku Connect
if you have any of your apps running in heroku and interfaces with salesforce, then this will be a handy app to sync the data between your postgres database and salesforce data. you can create mapping between these 2 databases and enable syncing (uni directional or bi directional)

you can try heroku connect by logging in here

you can find more details on this here

Demo Time
some of the cool stuff shown in the demo in keynote are

  • Mobile Cards in page layouts
  • creating a simple chart with analytics api, add it to object page layout, show it in mobile devices
  • Enhanced Lookups in page layouts
  • Flexi pages
  • creating Quick actions (publisher actions) and using it in Salesforce1 mobile app

Finaly you can watch the developer keynote video here

will try to cover more on the Salesforce1 platform in future blog posts.. lets learn this together :-)