What’s coming up for Business Contact Manager for Outlook 2007?


  Business Contact Manager product team is working on few things that will be released over next few weeks.


  1. Business Contact Manager Database Tool: Our customers have requested an easy way to deploy Business Contact Manager database on server without installing Office and BCM. We addressed this request by releasing a Admin Tool back in September. To further support it, we have been working on a lightweight tool that will help create and maintain database on server. This tool will essentially replace the whitepaper and make the process easy. The tool is currently going through testing and bug fixes. We are hoping to release it in next few weeks.

  2. Business Contact Manager for Pocket PC: We released beta of this product in October. We have been working on final version scheduled to be out in next few weeks, and adds support for Windows Mobile 6.0 for Pocket PC. We are still working on a version that will support Smartphones devices, and will update the blog as we finalize the plan. For Palm users, there are some third party solutions available that sync Business Contact Manager data.

We are hoping that you are finding contents on this blog useful. Please look forward to some interesting articles on using BCM in more powerful ways. Feel free to send your feedback on what type of contents you would like to see in the future.


Have a nice weekend


Mukesh

Comments (41)
  1. ramonduraes says:

    I have two suggestions:

    I would like to know the best form to register in cadastre emails qe I receive as potênciais customers. I want to effect click with right button and to have option to add the customer fast.

    In the case I specify of campaigns for email, I see the necessity to order one id to identify that email and that the customer returned the same. Also so that when if click in this email already has the option to generate a oportunity tying automatically the marketing campaign Grateful.

    Thanks,

  2. Jerry Blake says:

    There are couple of ways you can generate a Business Contact from Email. While the email is selected, click Email Auto Link button on the toolbar. This will bring up a dialog with a list of all recipients.

    You can select the one that you want and click OK. This will create a business contact if the contact doesn’t exits. Note that this will also enable this address for automatic linking. If you want to disable that you can open business contact, click Email Autolink and uncheck the email address.

    Another way is to create a regular contact through persona menu and importing that contact to business contact.

  3. ramonduraes says:

    I am thankful for the information. For that it informed me I do not have an option to create a fast contact with only one click.

    I have more 02 questions 🙂

    1) For example if I to want to create one oportunity of business for this email that still is not contact. I choose to  > new oportunity > in this screen I need a contact > I choose new contact > only that in this screen of new contact it does not load the data of the email of the user.

    2) Creating a campaign of marketing for email it does not send an identification to capture the reply of this customer.

    tks,

  4. maxusfinancial says:

    I just purchased Sprint Moto Q phone (on Feb 7 2007) not but didnt realize that it won’t work with BCM 2007 (crucial)!  I have only 30 days to decide to return it to exchange it for Treo 700xw but prefer the Q.  Are you really going to come out with BCM 2007 integration for this phone (the Q)?

  5. Jerry Blake says:

    Smartphone version of Business Contact Manager is being planned and under development but it is too early to give out any release date.

  6. h2otoxin says:

    Hey Business Contact Manager product team,

    Glad to find you guys. I’ve been charged with getting BCM and Accouting 2007 up on 2003 server so I was excited to find you are working on a database installer tool. Looking forward to seeing it.

    Sorry but I must ask, any idea on the release date? I’m trying decide if I can wait for the tool or if I need to move forward with the white paper install.

    Thanks

    H2otoxin

  7. eddy.minet_fr says:

    Hi BCM team,

    We’ve just installed BCM database on a shared server, regarding to the sql_bcm doc. This server is also running Exchange Server and we use Sql Express version.

    We are a little horrified  to see that SQL Server Process is often using 99% of Processor resources !

    We have such as 4000 accounts and contacts and the exchange server is often unusable due to this excessive consumption of sql service …

    Putting Sql Server shared db on a dedicated server is it the only way to get a usable solution or should we upgrade Sql Server to a non-express version ?

  8. Jerry Blake says:

    CPU usage could be high when you first connect clients to the BCM database.  Check “Start | Control Panel | Indexing” on each client and see if indexing is underway.  Also, E-mail Auto-link may be searching through existing e-mail and linking to BCM items when you first connect.

    Let us know if this CPU usage continues to be a problem.

  9. Lucifer79 says:

    When will the "Business Contact Manager Database Tool" be release?

  10. thirunachi says:

    When will be the BCM Database tool is available for download?

    We have SQL 2000 Enterprise version and would like to use it as a database server.  Can BCM 2003 and BCM 2007 be configured to use SQL 2000 using this tool?

    Thanks

  11. troublz says:

    Another vote for the release for the Database Tool!! We are anxiously awaiting! Mukesh, any word on a release date??

  12. Lucifer79 says:

    Hey Mukesh

    This blog entry was posted on: Saturday, February 10, 2007 1:06 AM… it stated "The tool is currently going through testing and bug fixes. We are hoping to release it in next few weeks."

    Its been over a month and there hasnt been anymore mention of it? or an update on how its going?

    Just to know that it might be another month, would be nicer than hearing nothing…

    Please?

    Lui

  13. Jerry Blake says:

    Thanks for you patience on database tool. Since we are not planning to do any Beta release, we want to make sure that it is tested thoroughly internally. To give a update on this, we have completed testing and bug fixes and currently going through a release process. If everything goes smoothly, expect it to be out by end of this week or early next week. The deployment of the tool for download on microsoft.com site can take quite some time.

  14. Force says:

    Mukesh,

    I very much apreciate your effort to make it posible to host the BCM 2007 Database on a dedicated server that (already) runs the required SQL server software. There is an additional problem however:

    As of now, the BCM 2007 setup automatically installs SQL Server 2005 Express on each and every client computer. In a client/server scenario, that seems totally superflous and is quite frankly not wanted!

    Is there a way to install nothing but BCM 2007 and the required client components only?

    btw, thanks for your effort it is very apreciated.

  15. Jerry Blake says:

    Hello,

    In BCM 2007, a big improvement to client/server scenario is ability to work offline. A client machine can create an offline copy of remote database and use it if connection to remote database is not available. This feature requires SQL Express on client machine, hence BCM installs SQL Express as part of setup.

    If you are not using Offline, theoratically you should be able to uninstall SQL express. However, it is untested and non-supported scenario.

    -Mukesh

  16. Jerry Blake says:

    Sorry if BCM doesn’t meet your needs. This blog is team members’ personal attempt to provide useful information to BCM customers and it invites healthy and friendly discussion.

  17. Lucifer79 says:

    Hi bcmteam and Mukesh

    Firstly… BCM is great! 🙂 it is a massive improvement on the previous version… thank you

    Do you have any plans to test and then support the client BCM machine not having SQL Server on it?

    As Office 2007 and BCM 2007 use alot of resources and then you add SQL Server which is a massive drain on the PC’s resources… it can make systems very slow.

    Cheers

    Lui

  18. Lucifer79 says:

    Hi BCM Team and Mukesh

    Just out of interest, why didnt you post a blog entry on the 21st of March when you released an updated version of the "Deploying Business Contact Manager for Outlook 2007 Database on Remote Server" Guide Document?

    As I have been checking this blog daily for any updates on the DB tool and the new guide might have been all I needed.

    Download here: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=f24267ee-9ad5-4be5-b888-c9a50ae395ca&DisplayLang=en

    Is there somewhere else i should be checking for BCM news?

    Regards

    Lui

  19. Jerry Blake says:

    If we get feedback from enough customers, we will probably look at it. We have not heard this complain from our customers since our V2 release that supported remote database.

  20. Lucifer79 says:

    Hi all

    Please take the survey below:

    Should the Microsoft BCM Team Test & Support BCM without SQL Server installed on the client machine?

    http://www.opinionpower.com/Surveys/876047027.html

    Lui

  21. Canada61 says:

    BCM Team –

    What’s the status on a BCM tool that actually syncs BCN 4 PPC in WM5 to BCM in Outlook 2007 without 3rd party tools tools?

    THX

  22. Jerry Blake says:

    Not sure what is BCN. If are asking a tool to sync BCM contacts with PPC WM5, a beta version of this already exist. Look for the links on the main blog page. We are getting ready to release final version that will have several bug fixes.

    Note that this is only for Pocket PC, not for Smartphone.

  23. Samvnw51 says:
    1. BCM for WM5 Smartphone Edition. Please do it.
    2. I’m testing BCM for PocketPC WM5 (Beta) and have found only one problem, but it is a deal breaker: If I update a contact on Outlook 2007, the change does not synch through to the WM5 PPC even if PPC is connected at the time. Updates made on the PPC synch through beautifully to Outlook 2007 on the PC. (PC is running Vista Business). Adds and Deletes work fine.

    Is this bug known and on the fix list for the next release?

    Can I sign up as a BCM for PPC beta tester and officially submit bugs? Or is this the best place to do that?

    Thanks for a great product.

  24. vcrocca says:

    We installed the BCM Beta for PocketPC for one of our customers that is seriously considering switching from ACT to BCM and so far they are very happy except for one Major showstopper. When they receive a call to their phone the Caller ID name lookup that used to happen when all of their contacts were in their personal contacts does not happen against the BCM contact database. So all they receive is a incoming phone number. Can this be corrected via a configuration paramter?

    Also they cannot assign BCM contacts to Speed Dials on their cell phone.

    Any help would be appreciated.

  25. Jerry Blake says:

    Answering last two comments. The sync issue is going to be fixed with the final release of Pocket BCM. We are expecting to release is very soon.

    Unfortunately, the integration with caller ID and speed dial is not going to be available due to some technical limitations. We are hoping to improve the experience with our next major release.

  26. vcrocca says:

    Thank you! The next major release of BCM? Is this a service pack or the next version of office?

    Or is this capability going to be part of Windows mobile 6?

  27. Samvnw51 says:

    Suggestion for synching with WM5/6 devices:

    Exchange Direct Push (EAS) is fantastic, because it synchs "over the air" in real time, but currently does not synch BCM contacts.

    Please provide a feature that lets you synch BCM contacts into Outlook Contacts (all within Outlook). That would cause the BCM data to synch out to WM5/6 via Direct Push along with the rest of the Outlook data. I beleive this is how Dynamics CRM does it. Maybe you could borrow their software.

    This would make everything more seamless and simple for Exchange users.

    Thanks. Great Product.

  28. Samvnw51 says:

    I installed BCMV3PPC.exe on Vista business. It worked ok, but now I need to

    uninstall it. I followed the instructions on the BCMV3PPC.exe downlaod page and got it uninstalled from the PPC, but then on the Vista control panel, it just does not uninstall correctly. It

    finishes with a message saying something like, "setup wizard did not complete

    successfully", and the program is still listed as a program that can be

    uninstalled. Are there some special instructions for uninstalling this puppy?

    Thanks in advance.

  29. halman says:

    I run a 22 man sales force. We all use motorola q phones. All I am waiting on before switching everyone from ACT to BCM is the ability to access BCM via  smartphone. When is that likely to happen? It has been quite a while since you commented about it on this blog. If you have scrapped plans or if it is likely to be more than 6 months, please let me know.

    I also discovered that there was a beta for BCM access via smartphone. There was a post on another blog that said it worked well. When I followed the link that had originally apparently been for the smartphone beta, it brought me to the current non-smartphone version. Why did you guys do away with the beta and is there any way I can get my hands on it? I personally have already switched over from ACT to BCM. I did so before I knew it wasn’t supported on smartphones and now I am totally stuck. Thanks guys!

  30. Jerry Blake says:

    Halman,

    We are very close to shipping the Smartphone solution for BCM. It is definitely not 6 months out. We have completed all development and testing, and it is going through release activities. Let me say that release is very close.

  31. halman says:

    Thanks for the info. Quick clarification please. Who are you "shipping" the smartphone solution to? I didn’t quite follow that part. How will we know when it is available and how do we get our hands on it once it is? Is there limited release that we can sign up for in the meantime? If you’d like to take this off-line, my e-mail is kenhalaby@yahoo.com.

    Thanks!

  32. smurphy says:

    Hi,

    We are a 15-person sales force considering moving from ACT to BCM.  The only issue is that we all use Blackberrys, and BCM doesn’t seem to work with Blackberrys.

    We also use Exchange Server.

    Any plans to support Blackberry?

    Thanks,

    Sean

  33. Sahid says:

    To the BCM Team – I am new to Blogging so my appoligies.

    I have loaded BCM on Server 2003 and works very well. I have been testing for the last 4 months with Outlook 2007 & usage with different applications. I ahave come across two things that I think is critical for any database which share with other users:-

    1. Must – Admin to control granting of visable, read only, edit or delete to Account & Business contacts.
    2. Ability – to sychcronise the database via the internet when offlline so user are kept upto date of any changes.

    Reasons:-

    point 1 above – fear of users deleting Accounts or business Contacts by accident and or if an Account is of sensitive nature you may want limit the access to a one or a few users.

    point 2 above – some users are away from the office for long periods of time, without the updates users offine are left behind and no longer productive.

    Help required please !!!!

    PS. how do you reply other blogs questions?

    Sahid  

  34. DawnMarie says:

    Hi BCM Team,

    We’ve just installed BCM database on a shared server.  I operate remotely nearly 100% of the time.  

    I do VPN in to my server occasionally to synchcronize my files.  I believe this is when BCM is updating.  Is this correct?

    I am also shocked at how much resources are consumed by the SQL software.

    Is there a better way to set this up that will not hog so much resources.  Is there an optimal performance with a particular configuration of server software?  I find that my laptop is now running slow all the time regardless of whether I am using VPN connection or not.

    We are still trying to decide if BCM is for us and we are looking for some clarification to this issue to figure it out.

    Thanks for your help.

  35. Jerry Blake says:

    Hi Sahid,

    Thank you for the suggestions.  We will take your input into our next release.

    -Sateesh

  36. Jerry Blake says:

    Hi Sean,

    Thank you for the suggestion.  Blackberry support is not thought yet.  We will take your input.

    -Sateesh

  37. Escamoteur says:

    Hi,

    I’m just getting started to use BCM 2007 and I’m happy to find out that in comparisson to the 2003 Version it know is usable (sorry).

    Some suggestions (if it’s already possible please teel me how)

    1. Context Help, when pressin F1 you always only get to the Start page of the helpfile.
    2. When creating a Appointment from a opportunity all I get is a blank Appointment in the Calendar. It would be great if there would be an option that would set the Title of the appointment automatically to the Title of the oportunity and also add a short summery to the appointment. In my business I don’t have business projects. I’m a magician so my opportunity most of the time only have one date. And when looking into the calendar it would be great to automatically know a bit about the linked BDM entity without opening the liked object. Also I sync outlook with my Sony-Erricson M600i, so I have to copy the information from BCM into the Appointment to have it with me.

    3. Integration with Word: I would like to have the possibility to right click on a contact and choose "Create Word Doc from Template". So that writing offers or invoices would get much more comfortable.

    4. As written before my business most of the time has a fixed time period a oportunity is referencing (one day to some days) But in a Oportunity I only can set an end date (perhaps I should use a business project, but that a bit an overkill what I would have to enter)

    So any help, improvement in future would be great

    Best

    Thomas

  38. Pinseek says:

    Is there any way to view contact info when viewing a task.  It would be nice to right click a task and pull up contact info to make a call/email… instead of exiting out of Task and going over to contacts.

    Am I missing something?

  39. Jerry Blake says:

    Hi Pinseek

    Thank you for your suggestion.We may consider this for our future releases.

    Now regarding your task view, you can open the task and click linked to button and see the associated Business Contact. You can also go to communication history under Business Contact Manager Menu Item and the particular task should have all the data about the business contact.

    Thanks

    Vinit [MSFT]

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