Blog entries related to Microsoft SharePoint and Office 365 solutions such as Power BI, Microsoft Flow, Power Apps and Microsoft Teams
SharePoint has had excellent dashboard presentation capabilities for a long time now. Dynamics CRM formally rolled out dashboard reporting with CRM 2011 (although using SharePoint and/or SSRS enabled dashboard reporting with previous versions of CRM). Now that this functionality is getting embraced and adopted by many organizations, how can it best be leveraged to change the game by truly accelerating performance? Simple. Combine the best of Microsoft SharePoint, Dynamics CRM 2011 and TV or large monitors placed in public areas within your business. Here’s how we’ve done it at C5 Insight.
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One of the most common issues I hear when implementing SharePoint for new clients, or supporting an existing SharePoint environment is the dreaded login prompt. There are multiple reasons for the password prompt, but I'll try and cover the basics here. Personally, I haven’t had to login to our internal company SharePoint in at least 6 or 8 months! How can you achieve this SharePoint nirvana? Let’s walk through the common steps to avoid having to login to SharePoint, whether opening the site or when opening documents. Here’s a quick rundown.
There are numerous cool new features in SharePoint 2010, and I’ve found that integrating them into custom solutions are not always straightforward. I found this to be true with ratings as well. Ratings are one of the new social tagging features that gives users a 1–5 star graphic to rate content. You can find a high level overview of social tagging features here on TechNet.
Normally this isn’t a problem. For example, you have your normal Shared Documents library, and you want users to be able to rate content. No problem right? We go into the library settings, and then click on Rating Settings. We simple click Yes, and hit ok. Too easy:
There was no big fanfare on this and could have been easily missed, so I thought it was worth repeating. Microsoft and the content publishing team have compiled their downloadable content and made available on Amazon in a nicely bound book! It’s great for all those out there that would stay up late at night feeling guilty for killing so many trees printing it yourself. You can find the the download links here on TechNet. I will include the information here as I’m just nice like that. I also didn’t say they were the cheapest around, but price varies by book ($66 is a little steep in my opinion).
Every so often while working in SharePoint, you encounter a feature that has almost no documentation or you can’t find anyone with a similar issue. This happened to me when I was trying to configure a workflow to move a document set to a Records Center. After I got this to work, I wanted to try and save others the grief and frustration that I experienced. If “Unknownerror” means anything to you, this post is for you.
This action might be useful in document management scenarios, where documents have a formal “approval” process, and management policies are defined to “expire” them to meet retention policies. Once expired, they would be removed from the current location and moved to another location, specifically a Records Center in this case where they sit waiting to be purged from the system.
Even if you’ve planned your SharePoint project properly, or it might be years later, you need to rename your SharePoint 2010 server. This quick tip covers this on SharePoint 2010 which is a much cleaner experience than it was in 2007. There is an STSADM switch that can handle it, but for 2010, there is a certain procedure to yield best results. I was able to do this on a single SharePoint server earlier and it worked great! This was a single SharePoint server with SQL on another server.
For 2010, there’s a new PowerShell cmdlet for this very thing, Rename-SPServer. This is this article on TechNet covering the procedure. It has you renaming the server itself first, then fixing up SharePoint. However I’ve heard of issues with that, and I had better results by doing it in reverse. That is, running the PowerShell to fix up SharePoint then renaming the server. Here is what I did:
1: Rename-SPServer –identity “old_server_name” –name “new_server_name”
Well, today’s the last day of the conference. I know, it’s very sad, but a great time was had by all. This was my first big conference, and I really enjoyed the experience. There were 3 breakout sessions today back to back with the day closing out with lunch in the early afternoon. It’s hard to believe they crammed 240 sessions in 3 and a half days! I got to rub elbows with some of the greats in the industry, bloggers, authors, MVPs and lots of folks from Microsoft. If there’s one tip I can give, it’s to stay in a hotel close to the conference! It was awesome to be able to be in 1 minute walking distance. You have to be able to drop off all the freebies in your room.
Whew what a wild couple of days! I didn’t get to blog last night so I figured I would combine yesterday and today. The sessions have been really good.
Tuesday started with the Todd Carter’s session about Extending SharePoint Health & Monitoring. He put on a good show, giving details on web analytics and diagnostic logging, and how to extend them using custom providers to get detailed reports. Very cool stuff! Then I attended one of the more popular sessions of the day by Microsoft Certified Master Scott Jamison, Best Practices Around SharePoint 2010 User Profiles. Now this topic is very near and dear to my heart. I’ve laughed, I’ve cried, but I’ve come to a place where I accept the UPA for what it is, even with its shortcomings. He got a volunteer from the crowd (a fellow MCM and MCA Spence Harbar) to configure the UPA live. This was really more of a part 1 of 2, where Spence would take it deeper under the covers and show how to implement it via the UI and PowerShell.
The first day started with the big keynote with all of the about 7500 attendees! That’s a lot of people lovin’ some SharePoint in one place! Well, let me back up. On my way into the convention center for breakfast before the keynote, I noticed there was all this noise outside. Turns out a software vendor and SharePoint competitor called Huddle had hired a marching band to play a few tunes right outside the conference and march through. In my opinion, quite childish. Anyway, on the good stuff …
Walked into the keynote speech, and was entertained by the sweet sounds of DJ Keenan Kameleon. He’s a Senior Product Manager with the SharePoint Team at Microsoft. I’m told you can listen to his music mix from the keynote online here. Jared Spataro, Senior Director of SharePoint Product Management was up first, and gave some updates on some numbers. Can you say 62 million licenses sold of SharePoint with 125 million users? The overall theme for the conference is Productivity Delivered, which celebrates all the excellent work and solutions that customers and partners have developed on the platform. I won’t bore you with all the details, but you can read more on the MS SharePoint Team blog.
Wow, the time is finally here for the Microsoft SharePoint Conference 2011! What an exciting time this is for SharePoint. The product celebrated it’s 10 year anniversary recently, and it has come a long way! The latest release SharePoint 2010 is really a game changer and is continuously expanding it’s presence and impact in the industry. This conference celebrates the product in a way that is just amazing. There are so many people from all over the world coming together for a single purpose – to share knowledge.
This year’s conference takes place in sunny Anaheim, California at the Anaheim Convention Center. Every hotel in a 15 mile area is SOLD OUT! Ok some of that is probably Disneyland. After checking in to my hotel and getting settled, I walked across the street to the convention center to check things out. I got registered and checked out the venue. This place is huge, three floors of SharePoint goodness! There are lots of great-looking sessions, and I narrowed down the ones I want to attend.
SharePoint 2010 has many new and very useful features, one of them being new functionality with content types via the Managed Metadata service application. It allows you to specify a content type hub, a central location for managing content types. You can then publish those content types to subscribing site collections. This opens up a lot of flexibility to manage content consistently.
Recently I ran into a scenario where I had configured content types in the hub site, and set the column order and published the content types. After awhile I had made changes to the root content type column order and re-published those changes. I found that the settings for the columns were updated (hidden, required, etc.) but the changed order did NOT update. This is fairly significant to users of a document management system as you don’t want your optional “Enterprise Keywords” field showing first with a required important required column at the bottom. Oh the humanity!
It’s well documented that the What’s New web part can be very helpful in showing recent information about content in a list or document library. It’s also well documented that to be able to add this web part in SharePoint 2010, you have to activate the site feature “Group Work Lists”. But what happens when you go to Site Actions –> Site Settings, click Manage Site Features and activate the feature, but the web part is still missing from the available web parts list?
Everyone has meetings they have to attend on a frequent basis, and we all want to get through them as quickly as possible (so we can get back to our game of angry birds). We need to have a quick and easy way for team members to provide an update on their assigned duties, as well as a streamlined method of reviewing them during the meeting. Since we’re lucky that our company has invested in SharePoint, let’s use it! This method I believe provides a very quick and easy way to accomplish your goals for capturing the information without using complicated add-ons or any other heavy lifting.
This is the final result. Cool huh? Nothing fancy, but it does the job (sometimes simpler is better). This is driven by a wiki page library, where every team member gets their own wiki page. You could just have one wiki page and sections where everyone just updates their text, but then you would have multiple people trying to edit that one page 15 minutes before the meeting, and get frustrated with all the merge conflict warnings. If everyone gets their own page, no conflict warnings. Let’s see how it’s done so everyone is happy.
Some of you may have heard by now that service pack 1 for Office 2010 and SharePoint 2010 products has been released. There have been some blog posts out there that talk about the improvements in SP1 and major reasons why SP1 is actually a good thing! What I wanted to do here is look at some improvements that perhaps have been overlooked. First let’s get the basics out of the way so you can see the big picture like everyone else. Here’s a list of recent blogs on the subject:
In our day-to-day client work, we recently stumbled upon a web service that is installed with SharePoint, but honestly we had never implemented. In fact, the web service is not listed on either MSDN page for SharePoint 2007 or 2010. However, we have now tested this web service, so I wanted to share our findings with the community.
I use SharePoint’s ULS logs almost daily when supporting and administering SharePoint (2007 and 2010 for that matter). Let’s look at what it is, and how it can help you troubleshoot issues in SharePoint 2010.
Like most (but not all) features in SharePoint 2010, logging did get an upgrade from 3.0 / 2007. First of all, what is ULS? It stands for Unified Logging Service (ULS). It is the engine that handles creating a detailed trace output of all of the events that occur in SharePoint. It is dependent on the Windows service “SharePoint 2010 Tracing”. By default, SharePoint creates these log files in the file system in the “14 hive”:
C:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\Web Server Extensions\14\LOGS
These log files are written by SharePoint in real-time and contain information regarding event logging per its configuration in Central Administration.
As we mentioned in a previous post, SharePoint 2010 uses a client dialog framework for elegantly showing forms in a dialog box without having to leave the current page. In this same post, we also mentioned the IsDlg URL parameter, and how it can be added to nearly any page to prepare it for showing in a dialog (essentially a 'quick-n-dirty' way of removing the navigation, quick launch, etc.). Armed with this knowledge, we assumed that we could use the IsDlg feature for a recent project, which required a specific page on SharePoint to be shown without any 'standard' UI components (navigation, title bars, ribbon, quick launch, etc.).
I went to go run a manual sync of the User Profile Service in SharePoint, and was unable to get to the Service Application. After reviewing the ULS logs, I found this error:
UserProfileConfigManager.StartSynchronizationForOneManagementAgent: Unexpected exception: System.ServiceModel.EndpointNotFoundException: Could not connect to http:///ResourceManagementService/MEX. TCP error code 10061: No connection could be made because the target machine actively refused it IP address:port. ---> System.Net.WebException: Unable to connect to the remote server ---> System.Net.Sockets.SocketException: No connection could be made because the target machine actively refused it IP address:port.
Luckily this error has an easy fix. This error occurred because one of the two ForeFront Identity Manager services that the User Profile Service depends on wasn’t started. Go into Services.msc and check to ensure both services are started:
You should be able to start the service without an issue and this should allow you to connect to the User Profile Service again.
I was troubleshooting a recent issue with the User Profile Service, where I would make a change to a user account in Active Directory (like a spelling correction). The Profile Sync would occur and I would verify that the correct spelling was in the profile. However, the change did not replicate to the site collection like it was supposed to. This normally happens via a SharePoint timer job named User Profile to SharePoint Full Synchronization. It’s described function is:
“Synchronizes user information from the user profile application to SharePoint users and synchronizes site memberships from SharePoint to the user profile application”
Well for whatever reason, it wasn’t doing that. To correct the issue, there can be a couple fixes:
I had setup a test environment to test out and play with the new hosting functionality of SharePoint, also called multi-tenancy. When you create your main web application that will be used to house the tenants, you have the option to have it use Claims Based or Classic Mode authentication.
While configuring a SharePoint farm for a client the other day, I came across a simple but problematic error with search. We had requested a full SSL certificate for the farm, but I was a self-signed certificate so I could work with the site. After configuring search content sources and I kicked off a full crawl, I got this error in the crawl log:
“The secure socks layer (SSL) certificate sent by the server was invalid and this item will not be crawled.”
Wells that’s a bummer. Luckily there’s an easy fix. What you need to do is configure search to “Ignore SSL certificate name warnings” via Central Administration. TechNet has the documented steps. After making this change and running a full crawl, voilà!
Success! Of course you should get an official SSL certificate, but sometimes you get by with what you have.
SharePoint 2010 introduced a quantum leap forward with the introduction of Visual Web Parts development integration with Visual Studio 2010. Most developers that have worked with SharePoint for any length of time are familiar with hosting custom ASPX pages inside SharePoint web parts. Doing so allows us to present robust applications and interfaces inside the SharePoint portal and fully utilize all of the robust security features and other goodies that come with SharePoint. The introduction of Visual Web Part development eliminates the need for separate web sites and pages since the custom web part becomes an integrated component of the SharePoint application. All of this come without having to use STSDEV, VSeWSS, or the like. We can simply build the web part right inside Visual Studio and click Deploy! A really great feature is the ability run & debug right from Visual Studio without any special configuration required. All of this greatly simplifies and expedites the development of custom enhancements to a SharePoint application and is no doubt Microsoft’s response to the fact that the number of SharePoint developers continues to grow, as does the number of SharePoint implementations.
Which clients should we focus more time on? Are there any clients that we should consider firing? How can we find new clients that look like our best current clients? Do we have clients that should be more profitable?
These are the questions that many B2B firms are asking themselves as they think through how they should prioritize their client list. So read on for some of the how’s and why’s of establishing a client scoring system.
In this blog post, we focus on searching SharePoint from within Windows. We've included plenty of screenshots and detailed instructions to walk you through downloading the search connector, installing the connector, and using it in Windows 7.
The Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Administration Bible is only a few weeks away (March 1, 2011) from being available! After lots of hard work and long hours, we’re going to celebrate by giving away five copies of the book for free!
To be entered to win a free copy, just sign up to follow C5 Insight on one of the various social channels that we offer (you must have a United States mailing address to be qualified). You can click here to follow us on Twitter. We’re planning to select 5 winners on March 21, 2011 (or once we have 200 new followers across our social channels – whichever comes first).
Or, if you’re in a hurry, then use the link to the left to order your copy today (our kid’s college funds thank you)!
For those of you who are interested in SharePoint 2010, the book includes a chapter on the “out of the box” SharePoint integration and a special appendix on customized SharePoint 2010 / CRM 2011 integration written by Curtis Hughes.
What’s next? We’ve created a site for the book (www.dynamicscrmbible.com) and we need to get the finishing touches on it ... Gotta get going!
The complementary paper includes over 12 years of research, recent survey results, and CRM turnaround success stories.
This 60-second assessment is designed to evaluate your organization's collaboration readiness.
Learn how you rank compared to organizations typically in years 1 to 5 of implementation - and which areas to focus on to improve.
This is a sandbox solution which can be activated per site collection to allow you to easily collect feedback from users into a custom Feedback list.
Whether you are upgrading to SharePoint Online, 2010, 2013 or the latest 2016, this checklist contains everything you need to know for a successful transition.