CRM 2013 Server Side Sync. Synchronization Improved

In CRM 4 and CRM 2011 email synchronization was accomplished by installing a plugin called the email router and worked in tandem with the Dynamics CRM for Microsoft Outlook Plugin. You needed both because the email router only tracked email, thus the Outlook plugin when running tracked and synced contacts, appointments and tasks. Why did I used the word when running? Because the drawback of the Outlook plugin is it would only work while Outlook was running.

Enter Dynamics CRM 2013 and Server Side Sync. Server side sync has replaced the email router and has been baked right into the Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013. Server Side Sync works with Microsoft Exchange 2010 and Exchange 2013 to synchronize

  • Email
  • Tasks
  • Appointments
  • Eliminating the need for the Outlook plugin. So why is the Outlook plugin still available? If you don’t have CRM 2013 on premise, Exchange 2010 or Exchange 2013, but still have POP3/SMTP access you can still sync emails with server side sync, and tasks, calendars, and contacts will require the Outlook plugin to sync.

Ok cool, I have all of the pre-reqs, how do I get me some Server Side Sync?

There are a few components to setting up server side sync. The first we will look at will be on the Exchange 2010 and 2013 side, with the other setup being in CRM itself.

Exchange Configuration


  1. If you’ve already setup OWA, you’ve probably already setup a certificate for SSL on your Exchange server

Exchange Account Impersonation.

This is the method used in CRM to impersonate an account and have access to other email accounts. It’s important with this account that you secure it with a complex password.

Exchange 2010/2013

  • Open Exchange Management Shell
  • Use the following command (substitute your own values)

New-ManagementRoleAssignment –Name “Impersonate” –Role:ApplicationImpersonation –User “CRM Sync”


To set impersonation via the Exchange Admin Center

  1. Open the web-based Exchange Admin Center (EAC) for your Exchange 2013 server.
  2. Click Permissions.
  3. If Impersonate isn’t already there, click New (+)
  4. Enter a name for the new role group, such as Impersonation.
  5. Under Roles, click +.
  6. Select ApplicationImpersonation and click add->.
  7. Click OK.
  8. Under Users, click +.
  9. Select the account that will be used to collect the mailbox data from Exchange 2013 and click OK.
  10. Click Save.

Now that Impersonation is setup, this account now has permission to impersonate other accounts and route emails, contacts, tasks and appointments.

Setting up CRM 2013

  1. Open up CRM with an account that has administrative priviledges.
  2. Click on the top Navigate Menu, Microsoft Dynamics CRM > Settings > Email Configuration
  3. Click on Email Server Profiles
  4. Fill out the configuration to your settings
  5. On the left menu bar, click on Mailboxes
  6. If the mailbox already exists, click on Add Existing Mailbox and add
  7. Select the newly added Mailbox and click Test & Enable Mailboxes
  8. You should see that the mailbox succeeds and is ready to start syncing


Setting up Global System Settings

To complete this setup you will want to setup the Global System Settings.

  1. Click on Microsoft Dynamics CRM > Settings > Administration
  2. Click on System Settings
  3. Click on the Email Tab
  4. Make sure that the Server Profile is set to what you’ve setup in pervious steps and all of the other settings are set to Server-Side Synchronization


Once this is completed, you will be ready to start synchronizing information back and forth between Dynamics CRM 2013 on premise and your Exchange server. The first emails should be generated from CRM to set the CRM tag to help CRM route them more accurately.

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