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Create BCM Ribbon with Visual Studio 2012

    Question

  • Hi Everyone,

    I'm trying to add a custom tab to a Business Contact Manager 2010 Account as below -

    <Image unavailable as new user>, basically the tabs go File, Account, Insert, Format Text... and I want my new tab at the end.

    I'm using Visual Studio 2012 and the Outlook 2010 Add In project template.

    I can add new tabs to emails etc using a RibbonType of Microsoft.Outlook.Post.Read, this works nice and simply.

    However if I choose IPM.Contact.BCM.Account for the RibbonType (This is the MessageClass given by OutlookSpy) the tab does not appear on the Account.

    Do I have to do this differently or is it not possible at all?

    Kind regards

    Phil Allen

    Tuesday, January 15, 2013 4:38 PM

Answers

  • Hi PhilAllen,

    Thank you for posting in the MSDN Forum.

    Overall, I'm afraid that I have to say that what you are trying to do is not really supported in the grand scheme of things, on two separate grounds.

    First, Microsoft provides very limited support for customizing or integrating with BCM. Supportability for developing with BCM is covered in this KB:

    2300392 Support for programming with Business Contact Manager for Outlook http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;EN-US;2300392

    To my knowledge, there is no documentation on how to integrate with BCM's ribbon, so this would not be something we could support.

    Also, in this case, BCM is itself an add-in that is customizing the ribbon. Ribbon extensibility was specifically designed to prevent add-in conflicts with ribbon customizations. So your end goal is unfortunately in conflict with the overall ribbon design goals.

    I wish I had better news for you, but this is my understanding of Microsoft's position on these types of customization scenarios.

    The above paragraph was from an expert in reply to an issue which is similar with yours.

    Hope it helps.

    Best regards,


    Quist Zhang [MSFT]
    MSDN Community Support | Feedback to us
    Develop and promote your apps in Windows Store
    Please remember to mark the replies as answers if they help and unmark them if they provide no help.

    Wednesday, January 16, 2013 10:50 AM
    Moderator

All replies

  • i do not know about ribbon designer, but with ribbon xml to append to other customization, the same custom xml namespace for elements must be used. So both originator and extender must use xml namespaces for ribbon customization and those namespaces must match. so i guess you would have to first discover if and what xml namespace is used for BCM ribbon customization.
    Tuesday, January 15, 2013 6:43 PM
  • Hi Damian,

    Thank you for your assistance.

    This will be something that I will have to look into as I'm very new to Office Add ins and Ribbon modification.

    Does anybody have any suggestions on reading material for the above, specifically relating to custom xml namespaces as I'm struggling to find anything?

    Thanks again

    Phil

    Wednesday, January 16, 2013 10:35 AM
  • Hi PhilAllen,

    Thank you for posting in the MSDN Forum.

    Overall, I'm afraid that I have to say that what you are trying to do is not really supported in the grand scheme of things, on two separate grounds.

    First, Microsoft provides very limited support for customizing or integrating with BCM. Supportability for developing with BCM is covered in this KB:

    2300392 Support for programming with Business Contact Manager for Outlook http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;EN-US;2300392

    To my knowledge, there is no documentation on how to integrate with BCM's ribbon, so this would not be something we could support.

    Also, in this case, BCM is itself an add-in that is customizing the ribbon. Ribbon extensibility was specifically designed to prevent add-in conflicts with ribbon customizations. So your end goal is unfortunately in conflict with the overall ribbon design goals.

    I wish I had better news for you, but this is my understanding of Microsoft's position on these types of customization scenarios.

    The above paragraph was from an expert in reply to an issue which is similar with yours.

    Hope it helps.

    Best regards,


    Quist Zhang [MSFT]
    MSDN Community Support | Feedback to us
    Develop and promote your apps in Windows Store
    Please remember to mark the replies as answers if they help and unmark them if they provide no help.

    Wednesday, January 16, 2013 10:50 AM
    Moderator
  • Hi Quist,

    Many thanks for your response.

    That is unfortunate as it would prove extremely useful for our companies use of BCM.

    I am aware that 3rd party options exist, such as Add In Express, however, given the simplicity of achieving the same results for standard ribbons I did hope that it would be just as easy for BCM.

    I'll take a look at the other options.

    Thanks again

    Phil

    Wednesday, January 16, 2013 10:55 AM