Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Most Commonly Used Terms in SalesForce

A procedural scripting language that allows developers to execute flow and transaction control statements in the Force Platform environment. Apex code runs on Force Platform servers and is closely integrated with the Force Platform environment.
A collection of components such as tabs, reports, dashboards, and custom s-controls that address a specific business need. Short for “application.”
Analytic Snapshots
Used to capture and store data from a particular point in time.
Application programming interface (API)
The interface that a computer system, library, or application provides in order to allow other computer programs to request services from it and exchange data between them.
Apex-managed sharing
The ability to designate certain sharing entries as protected from deletion when sharing is recalculated.
Approval process
An automated process your organization can use to approve records on the platform. An approval process specifies the steps necessary for a record to be approved and who must approve it at each step. Approval processes also specify the actions to take when a record is approved, rejected, or first submitted for approval.
Auto number
A custom field type that automatically adds a unique sequential number to each record.
Cascading style sheets
Files that contain all of the information relevant to color, font, borders, and images that are displayed in a user interface.
Child relationship
A relationship that has been defined on an SObject that references a selected SObject as the “one” side of a one-to-many relationship. For example, if you expand the Child Relationships node under the Account object, contacts, opportunities, and tasks are included in this list.
Class, Apex
A template or blueprint from which Apex objects are created. Classes consist of other classes, user-defined methods, variables, exception types, and static initialization code. In most cases, Apex classes are modeled on their counterparts in Java and can be quickly understood by those who are familiar with them.
Cloud computing
A virtual development and deployment computing environment that eliminates the need for computing hardware and software infrastructure and components. Developers and users connect to this environment through a browser.
Component, Visualforce
An entity which can be added to a Visualforce page with a set of tags. You can create your own Visualforce components, which can contain multiple standard components.
Controller, Visualforce
An Apex class that provides a Visualforce page with the data and business logic it needs to run. Visualforce pages can use the standard controllers that come by default with every standard or custom object, or they can define custom controllers.
Custom field
Fields that can be added to customize an object for your organization’s needs.
Custom link
A custom URL defined by an administrator to integrate your data with external websites and back-office systems.
Custom object
An entity that you build to store information, analogous to a table in a relational database.
A graphical representation of data from up to 20 summary or matrix reports arranged in a two- or three-column layout. Every user can select a favorite dashboard to display on his or her Home tab.
Data Loader
A Force Platform tool used to import and export data from your Force Platform organization.
Dependent field
Any custom picklist or multi-select picklist field that displays available values based on the value selected in its corresponding controlling field.
Delegated authentication
An security process where an external authority is used to authenticate Force Platform users.
Developer Edition
A free Salesforce edition that allows you to get hands-on experience with all aspects of the platform in an environment designed for development. Developer Edition accounts are available at
Developer Force
The Developer Force website at provides a full range of resources for platform developers, including sample code, toolkits, an online developer community, and the ability to obtain limited Force Platform environments.
DML statement
An Apex statement that inserts, updates, or deletes records from the Force Platform database.
Email template
A built-in feature that enables you to create form emails that communicate a standard message, such as a welcome letter to new employees or an acknowledgement that a customer service request has been received.
Email service
A service set up for your Force Platform organization that can receive incoming emails and direct them to an Apex class for processing.
Enterprise Edition
A Salesforce edition designed to meet the needs of larger, more complex businesses. In addition to all of the functionality available in Professional Edition, Enterprise Edition organizations get advanced customization and administration tools that can support large-scale deployments.
A part of an object that holds a specific piece of information, such as a text or currency value.
Field dependency
A filter that allows you to change the contents of a picklist based on the value of another field.
Field-level security
Settings that determine whether fields are hidden, visible, read only, or editable for users based on their profiles.
Force Platform
A platform for building cloud computing applications from The Force Platform provides a full stack of default and extensible functionality which allows you to create cloud computing applications for your entire enterprise.
Force Platform API
A Web services-based application programming interface that provides access to your Salesforce organization’s information.
Force Platform AppExchange
A Web directory where hundreds of AppExchange apps are available to Salesforce customers to review, demo, comment upon, and/or install. Developers can submit their apps for listing on AppExchange if they wish to share them with the community.
Force Platform IDE
An Eclipse plug-in that allows developers to manage, author, debug and deploy Force Platform applications classes and triggers in the Eclipse development environment.
Force Platform Migration Tool
A toolkit that allows you to write an Apache Ant build script for migrating Force Platform applications and components between two Salesforce organizations.
Force Platform Sites
A feature that allows access to Force Platform applications by users outside of a Force Platform organization.
Formula field
A type of custom field that automatically calculates its value based on the values of merge fields, expressions, or other values.
A set of users that can contain individual users, other groups, or the users in a role. Groups can be used to help define sharing access to data.
Group Edition
A Salesforce edition designed for small businesses and workgroups with a limited number of users. Group Edition offers access to accounts, contacts, opportunities, leads, cases, dashboards, and reports.
Home tab
The starting page from which users can view a dashboard, choose sidebar shortcuts and options, view current tasks and activities, or select each of the major tabs.
A unique 15- or 18-character alphanumeric string that identifies a single record in Salesforce.
Import Wizard
An tool for importing data into your Force Platform organization, accessible from the Setup menu.
A server that hosts an organization’s Force Platform data and runs their applications. The platform runs on multiple instances, but data for any single organization is always consolidated on a single instance.
Junction object
A custom object that implements a many-to-many relationship between two other objects.
Lookup relationship
A relationship between two objects that allows you to associate records with each other. On one side of the relationship, a lookup field allows users to click a lookup icon and select another record from a list. On the associated record, you can then display a related list to show all of the records that have been linked to it.
Managed package
A collection of application components that are posted as a unit on Force Platform AppExchange, and that are associated with a namespace and a License Management Organization. A package must be managed for it to be published publicly on AppExchange, and for it to support upgrades.
Many-to-many relationship
A relationship where each side of the relationship can have many children on the other side. Implemented through the use of junction objects.
Manual sharing
Record-level access rule that allows record owners to give read and edit permissions to other users who might not have access to the record any other way.
Matrix report
A report that presents data summarized in two dimensions, like a spreadsheet.
The foundation of Force Platform applications. Metadata is used to shape the functionality and appearance of Force Platform applications. A developer modifies the metadata to create an application, and the Force Platform uses metadata to create application components as needed.
Merge field
A field you can place in an email template, custom link, or formula to incorporate values from a record. For example, Dear {!Contact.FirstName}, uses a contact merge field to obtain the value of a contact record’s First Name field to address an email recipient by his or her first name.
Mini-Page Layout
A reduced display of information about a record that can be enabled to display when a user leaves their mouse on a link to the record.
An application model where all users and apps share a single, common infrastructure and code base.
MVC (Model-View-Controller)
A design paradigm that deconstructs applications into components that represent data (the model), ways of displaying that data in a user interface (the view), and ways of manipulating that data with business logic (the controller).
A one- to 15-character alphanumeric identifier that distinguishes your package and its contents from packages of other developers on Force PlatformAppExchange, similar to a domain name. Salesforce automatically prepends your namespace prefix, followed by two underscores (“__”), to all unique component names in your Salesforce organization.
In Force Platform terms, an object is similar to a database table—a list of information, presented with rows and columns, about the person, thing, or concept you want to track. An object is the core component of the data-driven Force Platform environment, with automatically generated user interfaces, a security and sharing model, workflow processes, and much more.
Object-level security
Settings that allow an administrator to hide whole tabs and objects from a user, so that they don’t even know that type of data exists. On the platform, you set object-level access rules with object permissions on user profiles.
One-to-many relationship
A relationship in which a single object is related to many other objects. For example, each Candidate may have one or more related Job Applications.
Organization, or org
The virtual space provided to an individual customer of Your org includes all of your data and applications, and your org is separate from all other organizations.
Organization-wide defaults
Settings that allow you to specify the baseline level of data access that a user has in your organization. For example, you can make it so that any user can see any record of a particular object that’s enabled in their user profile, but that they’ll need extra permissions to actually edit one.
Outbound message
A SOAP message from Salesforce to an external Web service. You can send outbound messages from a workflow rule or Apex.
A group of Force Platform components and applications that are made available to other organizations through a publish and subscribe architecture.
Page layout
The organization of fields, custom links, related lists, and other components on a record detail or edit page. Use page layouts primarily for organizing pages for your users, rather than for security.
Personal Edition
A free Salesforce edition designed for an individual sales representative or other single user. Personal Edition provides access to key contact management features such as accounts, contacts, and synchronization with Outlook. It also provides sales representatives with critical sales tools such as opportunities.
A selection list of options available for specific fields, for example, the Country field for a Candidate object. Users can choose a single value from a list of options rather than make an entry directly in the field.
Picklist values
The selections displayed in drop-down lists for particular fields. Some values come predefined, and other values can be changed or defined by an administrator.
Platform Edition
A Salesforce edition based on either Enterprise Edition or Unlimited Edition that does not include any of the standard Salesforce CRM apps, such as Sales or Service & Support.
Production organization
A Salesforce organization that has live users accessing data.
Professional Edition
A Salesforce edition designed for businesses who need full-featured CRM functionality. Professional Edition includes straightforward and easy-to-use customization, integration, and administration tools to facilitate any small- to mid-sized deployment.
A component of the platform that defines a user’s permission to perform different functions. The platform includes a set of standard profiles with every organization, and administrators can also define custom profiles to satisfy business needs.
A collection of records that don’t have an owner. Users who have access to a queue can examine every record that’s in it and claim ownership of the records they want.
A single instance of an object. For example, Software Engineer is a single Position object record.
Record name
A standard field on all Force Platform objects. Whenever a record name is displayed in a Force Platform application, the value is represented as a link to a detail view of the record. A record name can be either free-form text or an autonumber field. The Record Name does not have to be a unique value.
Record-level security
A method of controlling data in which we can allow particular users to view and edit an object, but then restrict the individual object records that they’re allowed to see.
Related list
A section of a record or other detail page that lists items related to that record.
A connection between two objects in which matching values in a specified field in both objects are used to link related data. For example, if one object stores data about companies and another object stores data about people, a relationship allows you to find out which people work at the company.
Report types
The foundation of Force Platform reports. A report type specifies the objects and their fields that can be used as the basis of a report. Standard report types are created by the Force Platform, while you can create custom report types for more advanced or specific reporting requirements.
Role hierarchy
A record-level security setting that defines different levels of users such that users at higher levels can view and edit information owned by or shared with users beneath them in the role hierarchy, regardless of the organization-wide sharing model settings.
Roll-Up Summary Field
A field type that automatically provides aggregate values from child records in a master-detail relationship.
A component that allows you to embed custom HTML and JavaScript into Salesforce detail pages, custom links, Web tabs, or custom buttons. For example, you can define a custom s-control containing JavaScript and address merge fields to display a map of a contact’s address. The functionality provided by s-controls has been replaced by Visualforce.
Sandbox organization
A nearly identical copy of a Salesforce production organization. You can create multiple sandboxes in separate environments for a variety of purposes, such as testing and training, without compromising the data and applications in your production environment.
Search layout
The organization of fields included in search results, lookup dialogs, and the recent items lists on tab home pages.
Session ID
An authentication token that’s returned when a user successfully logs in to Salesforce. The Session ID prevents a user from having to log in again every time he or she wants to perform another action in Salesforce.
Session timeout
The amount of time a single session ID remains valid before expiring. While a session is always valid for a user while he or she is working in the Web interface, sessions instantiated via the API expire after the duration of the session timeout, regardless of how many transactions are still taking place.
Setup menu
Interface to Force Platform metadata that allows you to create and shape Force Platform applications. You get access to the Setup menu through the Setup link in a standard Force Platform application.
Sharing model
A security model that defines the default organization-wide access levels that users have to each other’s information.
Sharing rules
Rules that allow an administrator to specify that all information created by users within a given group or role is automatically shared to the members of another group or role. Sharing rules also allow administrators to make automatic exceptions to org-wide defaults for particular groups of users.
SOQL (Salesforce Object Query Language)
A query language that allows you to construct simple but powerful query strings and to specify the criteria that should be used to select the data from the database.
SOSL (Salesforce Object Search Language)
A query language that allows you to perform text-based searches using the API.
Standard object
A built-in object included with the Force Platform. You can also build custom objects to store information that’s unique to your app.
An interface item that allows you to navigate around an app. A tab serves as the starting point for viewing, editing, and entering information for a particular object. When you click a tab at the top of the page, the corresponding tab home page for that object appears. A tab can be associated with a Force Platform object, a web page or a Visualforce page.
An identifier that can be attached by a user to an individual record. Force Platform tags can be public or private.
Test method
An Apex class method that verifies whether a particular piece of code is working properly. Test methods take no arguments, commit no data to the database, and can be executed by the runTests() system method either via the command line or in an Apex IDE, such as Eclipse with the Force Platform IDE.
Time-dependent workflow action
A workflow action that occurs before or after a certain amount of time has elapsed. Time-dependent workflow actions can fire tasks, field updates, outbound messages, and email alerts while the condition of a workflow rule remains true.
A piece of Apex that executes before or after records of a particular type are inserted, updated, or deleted from the database. Every trigger runs with a set of context variables that provide access to the records that caused the trigger to fire, and all triggers run in bulk mode—that is, they process several records at once, rather than just one record at a time.
Trigger context variables
Default variables that provide access to information about the trigger and the records that caused it to fire.
Unlimited Edition
A Salesforce edition designed to extend customer success through the entire enterprise. Unlimited Edition includes all Enterprise Edition functionality, plus Apex, Force Platform Sandbox, Force Platform Mobile, premium support, and additional storage.
Unmanaged package
A Force Platform AppExchange package that cannot be upgraded or controlled by its developer. Unmanaged packages allow you to take any app components and move them “as is” to AppExchange without going through a lengthy publishing process.
URL (Uniform Resource Locator)
The global address of a website, document, or other resource on the Internet. For example,
Validation rule
A rule that prevents a record from being saved if it does not meet the standards that are specified.
A simple, tag-based markup language that allows developers to easily define custom pages and components for apps built on the platform. Each tag corresponds to a coarse or fine-grained component, such as a section of a page, a related list, or a field. The components can either be controlled by the same logic that’s used in standard Salesforce pages, or developers can associate their own logic with a controller written in Apex.
Web service
A mechanism by which two applications can easily exchange data over the Internet, even if they run on different platforms, are written in different languages, or are geographically remote from each other.
WebService method
An Apex class method or variable that can be used by external systems, such as an s-control or mash-up with a third-party application. Web service methods must be defined in a global class.
Web tab
A custom tab that allows your users to use external websites from within the application.
A user interface that leads a user through a complex task in multiple steps.
Workflow action
An email alert, field update, outbound message, or task that fires when the conditions of a workflow rule are met.
Workflow email alert
A workflow action that sends an email when a workflow rule is triggered. Unlike workflow tasks, which can only be assigned to application users, workflow alerts can be sent to any user or contact, as long as they have a valid email address.
Workflow field update
A workflow action that changes the value of a particular field on a record when a workflow rule is triggered.
Workflow outbound message
A workflow action that sends data to an external Web service, such as another cloud computing application. Outbound messages are used primarily with composite apps.
Workflow queue
A list of workflow actions that are scheduled to fire based on workflow rules that have one or more time-dependent workflow actions.
Workflow rule
A “container” for a set of workflow instructions that includes the criteria for when the workflow should be activated, as well as the particular tasks, alerts, and field updates that should take place when the criteria for that rule are met.
Workflow task
A workflow action that assigns a task to an application user when a workflow rule is triggered.

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