How to change Dynamics CRM 2013 Navigation Bar Colours and Sandbox Text

If you have over 25 CRM users with professional CALs and have been using a CRM 2013 online free development environment, you may have noticed that the navigation bar has become a sickly vomity orange colour in the past few weeks. Now you can distinguish between your production CRM online instance and your non-production instance by the colour of the navbar. In case this confused you and you thought you had entered a parallel universe, they have also helpfully added the word ‘Sandbox’ in the middle of the navbar which gets bigger if you click it. This is undoubtedly useful and will hopefully prevent you from messing up some live data by accident. More details on Sandbox environments can be found on Mike Carters CRM Online product team blog.


However, what if you are using CRM 2013 on-premise and want to highlight to a user that they are working on a different environment. Well, it looks like this Sandbox code has also made it into CRM 2013 Rollup 2, so it can be enabled somewhat, though not in a supported way.

To do this, you need to make sure that the javascript variable IS_SANDBOX_ORG is set to true. I have yet to determine how this flag can be set to true, server side per Organization. It looks like it should be set by a numerical value in the Organization.type column in the MSCRM_CONFIG database, however there may be some other server side settings that need to be changed to allow this to be enabled per organization.

Having failed to find this setting however, I settled upon being able to change this on an environment basis with a bit of a hack. Many organizations will have multiple non-production environments, each with their own dedicated server – typically a development environment, a test environment, a training environment and a live environment. So to that end, I have updated the core CRM files javascript and CSS files to ensure that these can be displayed as below. You will need to overwrite just 2 files on your CRM server (if load balanced, don’t forget to do all CRM front end servers).

The end result should look like so :







Remember, this change will likely be wiped out by upgrades and rollups and is unsupported. You will have to reapply the changes manually after future updates (tip – use Winmerge). Let’s hope Microsoft make this easier to do in the future in a more configurable way.

You can download the files, which you should only apply to CRM 2013 Rollup 2 here.

With a little bit of Javascript knowledge, it’s also possible to change the displayed text for each organisation within a 1 server environment, but I’ll leave that for another day (hint update Javascript file NavBar.js to check ORG_UNIQUE_NAME instead of IS_SANDBOX_ORG).

One thought on “How to change Dynamics CRM 2013 Navigation Bar Colours and Sandbox Text

  1. Great article, very useful. I know this is a bit old but was hoping to download the files you linked but it didn’t work. Could you please update the link? Thanks!

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