Create or edit a field (attribute)

This topic applies to Dynamics 365 Customer Engagement (on-premises). For the Power Apps version of this topic, see: How to create and edit fields

With Dynamics 365 Customer Engagement (on-premises), fields define the individual data items that can be used to store data in an entity. Fields are sometimes called attributes by developers. You can use the customization tools in the solution explorer to edit system fields that allow customization, or to create, edit, or delete custom fields.

Create and edit fields

Before you create a custom field, evaluate whether using an existing field would meet your requirements. More information: Create new metadata or use existing metadata

Part of the name of any custom field you create is the customization prefix. This is set based on the solution publisher for the solution you’re working in. If you care about the customization prefix, make sure that you are working in an unmanaged solution or the default solution where the customization prefix is the one you want for this entity. More information about how to change the customization prefix: see Solution Publisher.

You can access fields in the application in several ways:

  • From the solution explorer you can expand the entity and choose the Fields node. From the list of fields, click New to create a new field or double-click any of the fields on the list to edit them.

  • Expand the entity and choose the Forms node. Open a form in the form editor and below the Field Explorer click New Field to create a new field. For any field already added to the form you can double-click the field to display the Field Properties. On the Details tab, click Edit. Another way to go to the form editor is to use the Form command on the command bar for any entity record.

  • If you use the metadata browser tool, use the Entity Metadata Browser page to view details about a specific entity, and then click the Attributes button. If a field is editable, you can click the Edit Attribute button to edit the field. More information: Use the metadata browser.

    All fields have the properties described in the following table.

Property Description
Display Name The name that appears as a label in the heading for lists where this attribute is included. It is also the default label when this field is shown in a form, but the label text in each form can be edited separately.
Name This field is prepopulated based on the Display Name you entered. It includes the solution publisher customization prefix. You can change the Display Name later, but the Name can’t be changed after the field is saved.
Field Requirement There are three options:

- Optional
The record can be saved even if there is no data in this field.
- Business Recommended
The record can be saved even if there is no data in this field. However, a blue asterisk appears next to the field to indicate it is important.
- Business Required
The record can’t be saved if there is no data in this field.
Be careful when you make fields business required. People will resist using the application if they can’t save records because they lack the correct information to enter into a required field. People may enter incorrect data simply to save the record and get on with their work.
You can use business rules or form scripts to change the requirement level as the data in the record changes as people work on it. More information: Creating and editing business rules
Searchable When a field is searchable it appears in Advanced Find and is available for filtering records when customizing views. Use this when there are fields for the entity that you don’t use. Setting this to No reduces the number of filtering options shown to people using Advanced Find. The Searchable property does not affect the columns available for display.
Field Security For custom fields, enable this to allow this field to participate in field-level security.
Auditing Disable this so that data in this field won’t be included with auditing data.
Description Enter text that will appear as a tooltip when the field is displayed in a form.
Type Select the type of record. Depending on the type you select, you’ll have different options. More information: Types of fields

Any of the fields that provide direct text input have an IME Mode. The input method editor (IME) is used for East Asian languages like Japanese. IMEs allow the user to enter the thousands of different characters used in East Asian written languages using a standard 101-key keyboard.

Create or edit entity fields

Create new fields to capture data when existing system entities don’t have fields that meet your requirements. After you create new fields, be sure to include them on the forms and views for the entity so that they are available from the relevant app user interface. You can also add the new fields to reports, but be aware of the following restrictions:

  • Some system entities or custom entities that are included in a managed solution might not allow you to add new fields.

  • Some system fields or custom fields that are included in a managed solution might not allow you to edit them.

  • The default solution is a special, unmanaged solution that shows you all solution components from any managed or unmanaged solutions. You can’t edit anything in the context of a managed solution; However, all the things you find there are in your default solution anyway, so you won’t need to.

  1. Go to Settings > Customizations.

  2. Select Customize the System.

  3. Under Components, expand Entities, and then expand the entity you want.

  4. Select Fields.

    • To add a new field, on the Actions toolbar, select New, and enter a Display Name to generate the Name.


    • To edit one or more fields, select the field or fields (using the Shift key) you want to modify and then on the Actions toolbar, select Edit. You can make changes to the following fields:

      • For Field Requirement, select whether it’s optional, recommended, or required.

      • In Searchable, select whether to include this field in the list of fields shown in Advanced Find for this entity and also in the list of fields available for customizing the find columns in the Quick Find view and the Lookup view.

      • For Field Security, enable or disable the feature for this field.

      • For Auditing, enable or disable the feature for this field.


    When you select multiple fields to edit, the Edit Multiple Fields dialog box appears. You can edit Field Requirement, Searchable, and Auditing.

  5. For new fields, under Type, enter the required information for the specified type. For existing fields, you cannot modify the type, but you can modify the settings for the type. More information: types of fields.

  6. Select the Field type, Format, and Maximum length of the field.

  7. Select the IME mode for this attribute.


    This specifies whether the active state of an input method editor (IME) is enabled. An IME lets you enter and edit Chinese, Japanese, and Korean characters. IMEs can be in an active or inactive state. The active state accepts Chinese, Japanese, or Korean characters. The inactive state behaves like a regular keyboard and uses a limited set of characters.

  8. For a new field, be sure to add a Description of the field – that provides instructions to your users about how to use the field.

  9. Select Save and Close.

  10. Publish your customization.

    • To publish your changes for one entity, under Components, select Entities, and then select the entity that you made changes to. On the Actions toolbar, select Publish.

    • To publish all changes you have made to multiple entities or components, on the Actions toolbar, select Publish All Customizations.


Installing a solution or publishing customizations can interfere with normal system operation. We recommend that you schedule a solution to be published when it’s least disruptive to users.

Community tools

Attribute Manager is a tool that XrmToolbox community developed for Dynamics 365 Customer Engagement (on-premises). Please see the Developer tools topic for community developed tools.


The community tools are not a product of Microsoft Dynamics and does not extend support to the community tools. If you have questions pertaining to the tool, please contact the publisher. More Information: XrmToolBox.

See also

Entities and metadata overview
Create and edit entities

Create and edit global option sets
Define rollup fields
Define calculated fields