Dynamics 365 community rallies around Microsoft MVP and FetchXML Builder creator Jonas Rapp

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Jonas Rapp

Dynamics 365 developer and Microsoft MVP Jonas Rapp is recovering from a stroke, his friends and colleagues have revealed.

The stroke happened on February 17, according to news shared by his CRM Konsulterna colleagues Gustaf Westerlund, Carina Claesson, and Benedikt Bergmann on a new episode of the XRMToolCast podcast that Rapp normally co-hosts with Daryl LaBar.

“We were all very shocked, it’s a tight group, a small company,” said Westerlund on the episode.

Jonas had surgery and has been undergoing rehabilitation, his colleagues said. They were encouraged at the “huge progress” they have seen in calls with him in the days since.

Rapp is perhaps best known in the Dynamics 365 CRM community as the creator of the FetchXML Builder, a tool that works with the XrmToolBox and provides a visual interface for building and testing complex FetchXML queries. Developers execute the tool over 3,000 times a day and it was executed over 1 million times in the last year, Rapp recently reported. Rapp also contributes to several other XrmToolBox tools and he can regularly be found presenting educational sessions at Dynamics 365 and Power Platform events around the world, either in person or virtually.

As a way to help the global community support Jonas in his recovery, his colleagues have set up a donation page at https://fetchxmlbuilder.com/donate. While there are no immediate plans for how funds will be used, the CRM Konsulterna team and LaBar both noted Rapp’s fondness for supporting his favorite charitable organizations. They expect Jonas will want to put at least some of the donations toward those causes. And, as his colleagues explained on the podcast, living and working in Sweden means the personal financial impact of such a serious illness will be less of a concern than it would be for people in other countries.

Rapp’s setback, and the shows of support in response, also call attention to the broader need for community support of opensource projects, Westerlund said on the podcast. That need is especially relevant for a project like FetchXML Builder, a tool that has proved its worth across thousands of downloads and a huge number of real Dynamics 365 customer scenarios. Without a broader base of contributions, either through payments to help support the current developers (in this case, primarily Jonas) or by pitching in to work on the project by writing code, fixing bug, writing documentation, and other support, the project’s long-term success is less certain.

As word emerged about Rapp’s illness, support has come from many corners of the community this week. But his spirits appear to be high: he also tweeted some photos, apparently from his hospital room, as he logged in to the virtual Scottish Summit 2021 conference.

“I hope we can see Jonas doing the next version of FetchXML Builder very soon,” said Westerlund.