Remove friction when working with external app dependencies

Important

Some of the functionality described in this release plan has not been released. Delivery timelines may change and projected functionality may not be released (see Microsoft policy). Learn more: What's new and planned

Enabled for Public preview General availability
Admins, makers, marketers, or analysts, automatically Jun 2024 Jun 2024

Business value

For resellers who develop per-tenant extensions for customers, or for publishers who create AppSource apps, it isn't uncommon for them to build on the work by other publishers, and thereby take a dependency on these. However, in order to develop or test, they need access to the AppSource apps they depend on.

Today, this involves a tedious manual process where resellers and publishers with dependencies must contact publishers owning the applications they depend on and ask for symbols to develop against or runtime packages to test with. This is not only required once, but continuously as new versions of the Business Central first-party applications and the publishers' applications versions emerge, making the whole process tedious, time-consuming, and error-prone.

In this version we plan to unblock developing and compiling against external applications in containers and test in online sandboxes.

Feature details

In this release we plan to allow resellers and publishers to download symbols for AppSource applications to use these to develop against on-premises and in containers. In addition, we also plan to provide GitHub actions to make it easy to provision online sandboxes with the required applications installed to run tests on.