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Archive for December, 2014

70-488 Manage Workflow Associations for a Content Type

Posted by Paul on December 31, 2014

In this article we can explore how to associate Workflows with Content Types.

Workflows

Workflow allows set of pre-defined activities to be executed.  Workflows work using Windows Workflow Foundation 4.0 engine in SharePoint 2013.

Associations

We can associate workflows against a list, library or content type.  Here we are focusing on associating workflow with content types.

Steps

Follow the steps below to associate a workflow with a content type.

Create a new site content type named Expense.

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Then click the Workflow Settings and in the appearing page choose Add a workflow.

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In the appearing page you can choose the workflow & enter name, configuration settings.

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Choose the start option to start on creation of new item.

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You will get the workflow created as below.

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This concludes our workflow association. You can test the code by creating a content type item.

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Once the workflow is created, it will fire for all the items created based on the Expense content type.

References

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ee662529(v=office.14).aspx#Section2

Summary

In this article we have explored how to associate Workflows with Content Types.

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Excel Error :: This workbook cannot be opened..

Posted by Paul on December 28, 2014

While working with Excel Services we might often get an error shown below:

This workbook cannot be opened because it is not stored in a trusted location.

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Problem

The location of excel file (library) may not be a trusted file location.  You can have to add the library location to the Trusted File Locations through SharePoint Central Administration.

 Solution

Central Administration > Service Applications > Excel Service Application > Trusted File Locations for this.

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Create a new item with http:// as the string.

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Check the Children Trusted label and Save the item.  Your new item will look like  below.

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References

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/jj219698%28v=office.15%29.aspx

Summary

In this post we have explored a common Excel Services error scenario & solution.

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Display Worksheet using Excel Services in SharePoint 2013

Posted by Paul on December 27, 2014

Display Worksheet using Excel Services in SharePoint 2013

In this article we can explore how to display an Excel Sheet using Excel Services in SharePoint 2013.

Create Excel Sheet with Graph

Create a new excel sheet, fill some data & insert a graph as shown below.

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Upload to SharePoint Library

Now you can upload the above file to a SharePoint Library.

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Trusted File Locations

Ensure you have added the library path to the Trusted File Locations.  You need to open Central Administration > Service Applications > Excel Service Application > Trusted File Locations for this.

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Create a new item with http:// as the starting address and check the Children Trusted column.  This will make sure all URLs with given starting address are trusted.  

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Open File

Back in SharePoint user interface; open the Excel File using context menu.

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You can see the excel file get opened in the browser.

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This concludes our simple experiment with Excel Services.

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The http:// string as trusted entry is not recommended for production scenarios.

References

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/jj219698%28v=office.15%29.aspx

Summary

In this article we can explore how to display an Excel Sheet using Excel Services in SharePoint 2013.

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Configure Excel Services

Posted by Paul on December 26, 2014

In this article we can explore how to configure excel services in SharePoint 2013.

Excel Services Application

Excel Services Application is required to be created as the first step of configuration. Open Central Administration > Manage service applications link.

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Ensure that the following service application named Excel Service Application is created.

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If it is not created, choose New > Excel Service Application link to create one.

Excel Calculation Services

Excel Calculations Services needed to be turned on. Open Central Administration > Manage services on server link.

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Ensure that the following service Excel Calculation Services is started.

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If it is not started, you can click the link to start it.

Manage Excel Service Application

Click the Excel Service Application from Service Applications. You will get the screen below.

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Global Settings allows load balancing, memory management, security, external data, cache etc.

Trusted File Locations allows specifying trusted file location from which the Excel Services can load files.

Trusted Data Providers allow managing of external data providers like SQL Server.

Trusted Data Connection Libraries allows management of trusted data connection libraries.

User Defend Function Assemblies allows management of custom assemblies.

Data Model Settings allows management of SQL Server Analysis Services instances.

References

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/jj219698(v=office.15).aspx

Summary

In this article we have explored how to configure excel services in SharePoint 2013. In the upcoming articles we can explore loading & manipulating an excel file using the excel services.

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Excel Services in SharePoint 2013

Posted by Paul on December 19, 2014

In this article we can explore Excel Services in SharePoint 2013.

Excel Services

Excel Services is a Shared Service Application in SharePoint 2013.

Following are the properties of Excel Services:

  1. Can render an excel sheet in a browser
  2. Only available in Enterprise Edition of SharePoint
  3. Business Intelligence category

Excel Services consists of following three:

  1. Excel Calculation Services
  2. Excel Web Access web part
  3. Excel Web Services

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Excel Calculation Services is the engine which loads the work book, does calculations, resolves external connections and maintains sessions.

Excel Web Access Web Part takes care of rendering the web part in browser.

Excel Web Services provides API for developers.

References

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ee424405(v=office.15).aspx

Summary

In this post we have explored an overview of Excel Services in SharePoint 2013.

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Externalizing SharePoint Content

Posted by Paul on December 17, 2014

While working with SharePoint Intranet, sometimes the user required content to be accessible outside.  The need arise from:

  1. External Customers
  2. External Vendors
  3. External Partners

For example, You have a Sales Quote required & You can externalize a SharePoint Library where the Vendors can upload their Quotations.

Solutions

Following are the 3 commonly used Externalizing Solutions:

  1. Extending
  2. VPN
  3. Third Party

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Extending

We can extend an existing SharePoint web application using Zones.  Zones will point to the same application pool, but with different authentication mechanism.

For example, An Intranet require Windows Authentication, An Extranet can be configured with Forms Authentication, An Internet can be configured with Forms Authentication Anonymous.  Each Zone can have separate Access URLs too.

Each Web Application can have up to 5 zones.

Default

Intranet

Extranet

Internet

Custom

When we create a new web application in SharePoint, the Default zone is activated.  We can later extend it to use additional zones.

VPN

Virtual Private Networks are other ways to access SharePoint outside the Intranet network.  This will be usually done for employees.

Third Party

There are third party no-code solutions available.  Here, the SharePoint Intranet contents are synchronized to an external website through connectors.  Although, this is a no-code solution, purchasing & configuration overheads exists.  Please see the references sections for more details.

References

http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ff648385.aspx

http://bit.ly/1CTVTdV

Summary

In this post we have explored externalizing ways for sharing SharePoint content outside Intranet.

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70-488 Create Content Type Event Receiver

Posted by Paul on December 16, 2014

In this article we can explore how to create a content type event receiver.

Scenario

We are using an existing content type of template type Contact. We are adding an event receiver which operates on the Item Add event. For time being, we are just using the event receiver to block the item adding with an error message.

Steps

Open Visual Studio and create a SharePoint 2013 Farm Solution.

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Add a new Event Receiver as shown below.

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Open the XML file and choose the template id as 105.

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In the event handler code, use the following statements.

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Now you are ready with the event receiver. Build & Deploy the project.

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Testing the Event Receiver

Create a new Contacts list in SharePoint.

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Try adding a new item & Save it. You should get the following error.

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This concludes our simple example of using event receiver against content types. The above event receiver will fire for all the Contact content type instances.

You may wish to use advanced property manipulation based on your business scenario.

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You can use SharePoint Manager a free tool for examining events for a content type. The tool is downloadable from: http://spm.codeplex.com/

References

http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ee231563.aspx

Summary

In this article we have explored how to create an event receiver for a content type.

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Product Review – LepideMigrator for Documents

Posted by Paul on December 15, 2014

In this product-review, I am going to take you through the functioning of the LepideMigrator for Documents (LMD). Software has been designed to migrate content from Windows File Server, Exchange and Office 365 Public Folders to SharePoint on premise and online versions.

Installation

After installation following is the screen.

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Scenario

In this review I am going to add a local Windows File System (MS Windows XP Professional SP3) as a source and will migrate content from it to on-premise SharePoint 2013. However, software allows adding remote File Servers as source as well and both on-premise and online version as destination.

Step 1: Adding source to the application

The following dialog box shows “Add New File System” dialog box. Just enter the computer name/IP and select the drives that you want to add. Click on Ok and the source drives can be seen in the source pane. You can add multiple computers and drives so no need of amassing data from entire network to one computer. Leave the source content where it is and fetch it directly from the application.

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Step-2: Perform pre-migration analysis for smooth migration

Though I can straightaway go and add destination SharePoint site and start the migration, I would love to do the pre-migration analysis to see all that software has to offer. The Migration Analyzer will perform the following steps:

  • Validating the names and types of files to be uploaded
  • Validating the invalid characters and end strings in the file names
  • Validating the blocked file extensions
  • Validating the file size limitations

The following screenshot shows the available criteria for migration analysis. Though you can specify your own values for different criteria, it comes loaded with the values that are acceptable to SharePoint.

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The following screenshot shows the analysis report. It clearly shows files or folder that will be uploaded, files and folders that need adjustments before uploading and the files and folders that simply could not be uploaded.

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Step-3: Add Destination SharePoint

The following image shows the dialog box to add destination SharePoint site. If you don’t remember the site address you can enumerate all available sites using “Find Site Collection…” button. Provide target SharePoint servers’ admin User Id and passwords.

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Step 4: Perform Windows FileServer to SharePoint Server migration

The following dialog box shows all the files and folders that will be migrated to the destination SharePoint server. You can view the Groups/Users permissions by clicking on that button. In the next page you can provide the destination site URL and select the List, Library or folder.

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The migration wizard you also gives the option to map the columns of the source and desitnation files. LepideMigrator for Documents automatically maps the attributes and you can also map the attributes as per your own wish. The following image shows user defined column mapping.

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The migration wizard also provides all possible content filter values and permission migration option between Users. You can also remap the Users between source and destination. You will be required to provide access credential in case content lies on a remote computer. Finally, you get the option to run the task immediately or schedule it for future run.

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This is how software interface looks like after migration. As you can see migrated content is seen in the Central AdministrationShared Documents path.

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After the migration is complete you can open the destination site and view the migrated content. In the below image the migrated content is seen in the SharePoint environment.

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Here I have covered a particular scenario of migration. To know the working of software in full details and understand all possible scenarios, you can go through the configuration guide of software at its documentation centre on company’s website: http://www.lepide.com/lepidemigratordocuments/documentation/

Summary

So as I see, LepideMigrator for Documents offers plenty of options and features to let you migrate the content safely and swiftly to the destination SharePoint server.

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SharePoint Administrators & Job Security

Posted by Paul on December 10, 2014

I have been asked following questions by my Friends, SharePoint co-workers.

  1. Is SharePoint Online is the only future?
  2. What is the future of SharePoint On-Premise?
  3. SharePoint Administrator Job is Secure?

I am trying to answer the above questions producing the following facts.

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SharePoint Online is not Everything

First of all, SharePoint Online is not everything.  I believe the future will definitely have SharePoint On-Premise as well.  Why?

  1. SharePoint Online still face Connectivity (Internet-Online) problems
  2. Clients do not fully trust putting their legacy documents in SharePoint Online
  3. Bulk Operations in SharePoint Online can be time-consuming and tedious
  4. Custom full-trust solutions are not allowed in SharePoint Online
  5. Heavy customizations are still a limitation in SharePoint Online

So I believe SharePoint On-Premise still wins!  It has to stay for at least next 3 years.

SharePoint 2013 On-Premise Adaption is still Going On

Interesting to see that, closer to 2016 where Office 2016 is planned to be released, Still companies are migrating their systems from MOSS 2007 to SharePoint 2010/2013.  So I believe, next 3 years will see lot of migration happening in SharePoint On-Premises/Online. 

Legacy codes, Farm Solutions are not easily migrate able to Online.

Intranet Content Management Still Persist

Still people are more comfortable with their Intranet based Content Management System.

  1. Unless Microsoft comes with a different strategy for Office Systems & Cloud, I would not see any serious threat to SharePoint On-Premise.

Hybrid Models

Hybrid models are the upcoming trend.  It combines a solution of SharePoint On-Premise & Online.

SharePoint Online Still Requires Administrator

Good News is that the SharePoint Administrator have still Job to manage SharePoint Online contents.  Although it won’t be full-fledged On-Premise activities, still there are lot of scopes on Site Management, PowerShell script execution, Access Provide etc.

Note

By using future I mean the next 3 years.  In IT I do not take a risk of predicting more than 3 years.  If you wanted the prediction for 6 years, we have to wait for 3 years – as after 3 years I can predict for the 6th year. 🙂

Summary

SharePoint On-Premise & Administrator Jobs are going to stay for next 3 years, in my view.  I would recommend, gradually investing in SharePoint Online, Apps areas too.

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Create & Export Certificate

Posted by Paul on December 1, 2014

In this post we can explore how to create & export a certificate in IIS.

Certificates

Certificates are required for Secured Communications & Confirming Identity of a Server. For development purposes we can use IIS Certificates. For production purposes we have to rely on external certificate providers like VeriSign.

Create Certificate

Open INETMGR. Locate the Server Certificates icon.

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From the right pane click on the Create Self-Signed Certificate link.

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You will get the following wizard. Enter a name for the certificate as shown below.

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Once the certificate is created, you can right click & choose Export option.

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In the appearing dialog choose the file name and enter a password. The password will be used while importing.

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References

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc732230(v=ws.10).aspx

Summary

In this post we have explored how to create and export a certificate.

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