Thursday, November 12, 2009

SharePoint 2010 Learning Snacks

"Learning Snacks" is Microsoft's brand for short training videos. These videos are normally introductory in nature, providing a "First Look" into new products. New SharePoint 2010 videos are available for the following topics:
These videos run from 17-20 minutes, and I would anticipate that more videos are coming.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

New SharePoint 2010 information on MSDN

While the SharePoint Conference 2009 continues to day 2, Microsoft adds more SharePoint Content to MSDN. Did you notice that MSDN looks different this week?

Windows SharePoint Services are now, collectively, called SharePoint Foundation. This makes sense, since a number of products (Dynamics, Project Server, Commerce Server, etc.) use these services. Microsoft Office SharePoint Server is now simply called the SharePoint Server. Hopefully, this will be easier to explain that the difference between WSS and MOSS.

While you're at it, try to call InfoPath > Design mode the InfoPath Designer (as opposed to the InfoPath Editor). Oh, and don't call anything Groove, either.

Monday, September 28, 2009

MOSS 2007 webinar with YASH Technologies

Utilize MOSS 2007 to Deliver Better Business Intelligence

I'm listed as a "MOSS Product Champion"... which means that I officially have more questions than answers? ;)

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Office 2010 Technical Preview

I've been invited to participate in the Technical Preview, so I'll be posting very little until the public beta in October. I'll post relevant class reference information, since the object model has been publicly released. See you soon!

Friday, July 17, 2009

InfoPath 2010 - What's New?

Getting Started
Getting Started has moved to the Backstage > New. Some of the templates available are SharePoint List, SharePoint Document Library (editform.aspx, newform.aspx, etc. forms) and Document Information Panel. We could build these before, but only from other applications.

The description of the SharePoint List template is "Start with the default SharePoint list form, create rules, and modify form layout and formatting. Users fill out the form when working with items in the Sharepoint list."

SharePoint 2010 Sneak Peeks - Developers

Visual Studio 2010 Sharepoint Tools
This is an equivalent product to the VSeWSS. Here are the tools:
  • Import VSeWSS Project
  • Import Reusable Workflow
  • List Definition
  • Sequential Workflow
  • Content Type
  • BDC Model (Application Definition)
  • Module
  • Empty Project
  • Event Receiver
  • State Machine Workflow
  • Import SharePoint Solution Package
  • Visual Web Part

VS 2010 Server Explorer can drill-down into sites with "Folder List"-like structure. You can see lists, libraries, etc. exactly like the Folder List in SharePoint Designer. The VS Debugger can now attach to a Sharepoint site, and you can establish breakpoints in your aspx runtime. A demonstration showed a webpart which, when viewed, transferred control back to Visual Studio and stopped execution at the breakpoint!

Also, a Developer Dashboard control is on the SharePoint pages (an icon) which refreshed the page and displayed a pane containing server information, database query statistics, event reports, web part rendering times, etc. I would imagine that this control is only available if debugging is enabled in the web.config file.

Client OM
A Client Object Model is provided as an abstraction into client-side processing functions (AJAX, JavaScript, Silverlight, etc.). Part of this library is a ClientContext datatype, which presumably keeps track of the site as it is manipulated by client-side functions. A ClientContext.ExecuteQuery method was shown to query a database (in a Silverlight web part) based on infomation kept in the client.

SharePoint 2010 Sneak Peaks - IT Professionals

Central Admin
There is a new Central Admin Site, with a new look-and-feel and the Ribbon. More options exist in the Quick Launch (including something called Configuration Wizards).

The Best Practices Analyzer (BPA) is part of SPPT 2010, in Central Administration > Monitoring > Health Status: Review Problems and Solutions. Not only are issues listed, but guidance is provided on how to manage the issue. Also, issues may be automatically managed through the use of BPA Rules. Rule Definitions specify how this automatic issue management works. Rule Definitions list issues, whether to fix issues automatically, the scope of the rule (all servers, this server, etc.), scheduling, and schedule enabling/disabling.

More reports are available:
  • Web Analytics
  • Administrative Reports
  • Information Management Policy reports
  • Health Reports
  • Usage Logging
  • Diagnostic Logging
Also, logs may be saved to a file system OR to a new logging database!

Large Lists
List Views may now be limited to an arbitrary number of items (default=5000). Several limits may exist: a hard limit, a soft limit (warning issued) and a separate limit for administrators. We can specify if the View will enable or prohibit viewing All Items. I'm not sure if the All Items view would be truncated or not. If "prohibited", the user is advised to create a new view. Also, an exception time, or "daily window for large queries" is available, to bypass the Large Lists rules.

Unattached Content Databases
SharePoint can now look at content databases that are not used by the system: migrated databases, staging systems, backups, etc. We can browse the data in Unattached Content Databases, back it up, or extract a site or list from it. Export options include exporting all versions, or only the current versions of items, or only major versions of items. Backups and exports can save the security applied to objects.

After an upgrade from 2007, the functionality of SPTT 2010 exists, but the visual interface is still 2007. Options in Site Settings include previewing the new UI (is this applied on a site-by-site scope?). Limited functionality of the 2010 UI exists, and may be rolled back. The full 2010 UI is provided when the administrator upgrades the interface irreversably.

SharePoint 2010 Sneak Peeks - Overview

The SharePoint team released much more 2010 material this week. I feel like I can practically start using the product at this point. We now have 3 "sneak peek" videos - an Overview, one for IT Professionals, and one for Developers.

I'm very excited about what I've seen so far.

SharePoint pages have the Ribbon. Site Actions occupies the first tab location, similar to the Office 2010 Backstage. Many of the options that were available in List Settings / Site Settings / etc. are now in tabs in the Ribbon. For administrative pages, the forms suddenly "show" in the foreground (while the background dims).

Edit Page has a similar, "live" feel to it. Changing images used to require entering URLs into fields; now, there are Upload controls. Once images are uploaded, they can be resized in place using resizing handles. Tool Zones suddenly "show" in the foreground while the background dims. There is an option to Make Homepage, similar to the option in SharePoint Designer.

I noticed Office Client Applications Web Parts and Silverlight web parts. Theme Gallery has options to Custiomize Themes. There is also a PowerPoint Theme, which will steal colors, fonts, etc. from any PowerPoint slide.

Visio Services
Visio is now run server-side, similar to Excel. The interface looked much like Excel Web Access, with controls labeled Open in Visio, Refresh, etc.

Upload Multiple Documents now opens a textarea-looking control, wherein files can be dragged and dropped. There are options in lists to Change List Order (sort?) and a link for Validation Settings. I can select multiple items and perform a single function (checkout, e.g). Upon Check Out of an item, an httpGetRequest is made, without the need for a server roundtrip. No word yet on whether other browsers will update without a roundtrip.

SharePoint Designer 2010
SPD now uses the Ribbon. I saw a control on the Ribbon for Reusable Workflow. The interface used a "Web Parts Page" look-and-feel. The Web Site tab has now been replaced with a web-parts-page-looking form with site information grouped in chunks.

BDC Business Connectivity Services can now read/write to an external database! There is also a feature enabling offline data editing and synchronization (is this Groove SharePoint Workspace under the hood?).

In the Folder List, we can now see Entities (LOB Entities), and we are always one right-click away from creating CRUD transactions. Also, the right-click menu includes options for creating Relationships between entities.

The Office DIP and Smart Parts continue to connect to Business Connectivity Services. We can issue queries and read records directly from Office clients.

SharePoint WorkSpace
New controls on the SharePoint Ribbon include Sync to Computer (similar to Check Out, but includes the ability to take lists offline - without Outlook). A Synchronization group contains controls such as Connect to Server and Disconnect from Server.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

SharePoint Products and Technologies: 2010 (Technical Preview) Developer Documentation

I've been asked to study the new SharePoint Technical Preview documents released 7/13/09 from Microsoft. Officially called SharePoint Products and Technologies: 2010 (Technical Preview) Developer Documentation, the download is available here. Microsoft is officially silent about SharePoint 2010, until a Beta is available in October.

A new (albeit sparse) MSDN branch for Sppt 2010 has been created here.
Sppt = SharePoint Product and Technologies.

The download released Monday is a .zip archive of 4 files:
  • ReadMe.txt
  • Customizing the Ribbon in Windows SharePoint Services 14.pdf
  • Customizing the Ribbon in Windows SharePoint Services 14.xps
  • SPPT2010TP.chm
There is much legal text in these documents prohibiting the reproduction of the material. I'll try to summarize the contained information, so download these yourself to be informed.

The ReadMe file is helpful for opening .chm content. Compiled HTML (.chm) is a handy format for Help applications, but contains a vulnerability.

Customizing the Ribbon in Windows SharePoint Services 14.[extension]
Wss 14 will contain an Office Ribbon. The Office Ribbon will be customizable using Open XML (RibbonX) using the same model that Office 2007 customizations are made (ribbon > tabs > tab > group > control). These customizations are deployed as features, and pretty similarly to how a developer would customize a new Site Settings link.

Importantly, deployment of features can now be performed using PowerShell. New commandlets are Install-SPFeature, Enable-SPFeature, and (presumably) others.

This self-proclaimed "SDK" is a help file with the new Sharepoint namespaces, arranged alphabetically. This is a lot of information, and I'll commence to finding all the new stuff/good stuff.

On another note, there is new Office 2010 material at . Of mention are Groove SharePoint Workspace 2010 and Web Applications.