Lately, I’ve had the wonderful experience of being able to meet a number of very exceptional people in this industry. Perhaps it goes with the territory of writing on the internet, but I deeply appreciate the feedback and encouragement. The people have come across all areas of Dynamics AX/Operations from functional to technical. One common question that I often see is how to get a Dynamics Operations Machine for Deployment, whether it be a partner, customer, or organization. To answer the question, I will share a very little known method that you can use to get access to a Dynamics 365 Demo and Deployment machine for free if one is an individual. I will also share how to get access if one is a partner. And I will finally share how to get access if one is a customer. It’s a challenge to stay current, but it is certainly worth it.
First, (optional), if you need full blown Office 365 and licenses for several other products.
I understand that many people are unable to afford Visual Studio licenses and the cost of Microsoft Azure as independents. But did you know. Microsoft has a little known program called Bizspark where you get one year to all of these things for free. You will need at least one Office 365 license to download Dynamics AX. The requirements are listed on the Microsoft Bizspark for Dynamics Operations Deployment (that is valid as of now). But basically, all you need is a business and a website with a few other small things to fill out an application. This doesn’t apply to everyone, but it is very helpful as the licenses alone can easily get past 10K a year just for a personal development environment and msdn subscription.
Second, (mandatory), fill out a free Microsoft Partner Network agreement and become a “network” non-selling partner
Again, this doesn’t cost anything unless you are a selling partner. If you are non-selling, you simply need to sign up for the purpose of networking. Remember that in order to Deploy Dynamics Operations Demo machines, you must be a partner or a customer. That is why a quick 5 minute registration helps to get a partner number.
Third, fill out the MBS Partner Agreement and choose the “Professional” Designation if you wish to have the right to access Dynamics Operations Deployment Machines
You need to download the partner agreement from the link that I just posted if you wish to deploy a Dynamics Operations Machine. You have to be both a Dynamics partner and a regular Microsoft partner if you wish to have the right to deploy machines. Fill out the application below by selecting the Consultant option and then you have to mail or fax it into Microsoft.
Fourth, you will get a confirmation that you have been added via email. Make sure that you have an office 365 tenant setup
You just need to setup an Setup an Office 365 Tenant for Dynamics Operations if you already don’t have one. This will be essential.
Fifth, Email DAXCF@Microsoft.com and you are all good to go based on wanting your Dynamics Operations Demo Machine
This is the magic email address. Here is the email that I sent to them. The key is to send your partner organization name and the partner organization id.
They will email you back a special URL that you can use to activate a trial for Dynamics Operations and get access to lifecycle services. You then need to remember to login to Lifecycle services using your Office 365 email address for access to the goodies.
That’s all she wrote folks for getting full blown access to a Dynamics Operations Demo Machine(s) for Deployment using the method above, but there are two more methods now – one for Customers and one for partners.
Sixth, new awesome method for getting a trial for Partners
Check out this for how to get a Preview Subscription for Partners. The new 30 day trial subscription for partners is a lot more comprehensive than the previous 30 day trials in that partners get to create a full lifecycle services project and do a real trial – not the constrained one for sales, high level functionality only. It’s a quick way for partners who are now selling D365 to get it up and running.
Seventh, awesome ways to get a trial for how to get a dynamics 365 for existing customers or new customers
Here, Microsoft explains that customers can directly request a longer trial or a special trial by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. So, if you want to get your trial directly and your partner isn’t involved for whatever reason, this will show you how to get it as an official customer organization. For upgrades, you can even request a longer period.
In Summary, I think that covers all the ways to independently get a Dynamics Operations Machines for Deployment as a customer or a partner. You should see a million and one ways to get it. I find that there is still nothing quite like having my very own machine. So for everyone who wanted this, I’d say have fun and keep up the good work. It’s worth it when that late night of learning allows you to do something very special for an organization. Ramesh, in a few years, I hope to hear of a strong technical architect doing very special things at a number of implementations. J Till the next post..