MSCRM On-Premises – the Rise and Fall of Rollups

February 5, 2016


MSCRM Rollups per Version

I recently made this diagram for a presentation regarding Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2016. Looking at it, I can’t help wondering about the future of Rollups as a package containing bug fixes and new features for On-premises deployments.

Microsoft wants you to migrate to the cloud. Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online offers many features which are not available for On-premises deployments. As with version 2015, some new features were deployed Online and were never made available for On-premises deployments.  If you wanted these features, you had to migrate Online or upgrade to version 2016.
In the last few years, Microsoft released a major version almost every year while the number of Rollups per version dropped from 18 (version 2011) to 1 (version 2015).

What does this mean for On-premise deployments? Are enterprise organizations expected to upgrade their Microsoft Dynamics CRM applications each year to get new and important features?

I think not. I’m guessing Microsoft will change its method for deploying new features for Microsoft Dynamics CRM.
Assuming Microsoft will keep offering the On-premises deployment type for a few more years, new features will not be packaged in Rollups anymore, but rather as smaller Solutions with longer backward compatibility span. I also expect major versions will become almost transparent for both Online and On-premises deployments. While Online Organization admins will have an option to activate these solutions, On-premises admins will be able to download and install when required.

Anyway, until we are all in cloud, Online deployment will always have a unique set of features.

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  1. Tal SimonFebruary 5, 2016 ב 11:29 AM

    I agree with your analysis but disagree with your conclusion.
    As i see it, microsoft is determine to get everyone onto the cloud.
    Her sale method is similiar to the best advise that any project manager receives in the beginning of his/her career. if you want someone to decide on the solution you want, offer him 2 – 3 choises: one unrealistic, one with major faults and the one you want. same goes for microsoft.
    for new customers given the features availble for online, then the choice between on premise an online for most clients seems very clear.
    while for existing customers, i expect that microsoft will soon offer them services which only work (like MDM and etc) as long as the customer rollup for AZURE or other cloud service.
    from that point convincing the customer to go full cloud on his next upgrade will be easier if not mandatory.
    i believe microsoft is determine to dry-out onpremise enviorment and each version will be less and less attractive until it becomes unrellevant.

  2. SillaFebruary 7, 2016 ב 9:14 AM

    hi nice analysis,

    i implement CRM on-premise for enterprise in the EMEA for FSI, i can conclusively say that CRM online will never be adopted for the enterprise in sub-sahara Africa in the large financial institutions. It is sad that alot of features we require can only be found on the online version.

    infact if this trend continues most FSI will start investing in alternative on-premise CRMs’

  3. Henrik JensenFebruary 7, 2016 ב 5:46 PM

    Thanks for a great blog post.
    I totally agree with Tal Simon. For about a year ago, I asked a technical guy at Microsoft Denmark why Microsoft does not release more rollups to MS CRM 2015. The only answer I got was: I recommend that you move to Online.
    I was angry given this answer because many customers (some very large) has policies stating that they must be on premise with their IT systems. I tried asking the same question to other people at Microsoft, but the answer was the same.
    Another thing who is annoying is the release of MS CRM without informing partners in advance. Very frustrating because I have upgraded many of my customers to MS CRM 2015, and shortly after Microsoft released MS CRM 2016…arrogant approach I believe.

  4. rdtFebruary 7, 2016 ב 10:24 PM

    Thank you for the comments, guys.

    I work with many enterprise level organizations which will not migrate Online in the next 5 years.
    I don’t see Microsoft letting thousand of seats just go and look for other on-premises replacements.
    Also, as long as Salesforce lacks an On-premises deployment type, Microsoft will keep this advantage

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