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  • The add-in model for SharePoint (formerly known as the app model) was a major shift in development practices for Office 365 and SharePoint 2013. The add-in model abstracts any third-party, server-side code from the SharePoint server and allows developers to run their custom code in separate contexts. This allows SharePoint administrators to gain stability in their SharePoint implementations and guards them from any poor practices a developer may have used.

  • Every few years, folks who work with SharePoint wrangle with the issue of community. The most recent go-round was likely sparked by a Facebook post from Microsoft's Dan Holme, who also happened to start a SharePoint community website called IT Unity prior to joining Microsoft. Je said that a higher-up at Microsoft thought it would be a good idea to build a community around SharePoint. Meanwhile, Mark Miller, who created and curated endusersharepoint.com and nothingbutsharepoint.com, chimed in with a great comment, to the effect of "What a great idea! I'll get right on that 10 years ago!?

  • Dell Boomi today announced connectivity support for MicrosoftCortana Intelligence Suite, Microsoft's cloud-based big data, advanced analytics and machine learning platform for organizations to transform data into intelligent action. Utilizing Boomi connectors, customers can quickly and flexibly integrate data and applications between Cortana Intelligence Suite, part of the Microsoft Azure cloud platform, and virtually any combination of cloud or on-premises data sources. Dell Boomi's extension of its market-leading AtomSphere integration platform as a service (iPaaS) for Cortana Intelligence Suite better equips organizations to make informed, data-driven decisions, while seamlessly transitioning to hybrid IT environments of cloud-based and on-premises applications.

  • Defining a governance strategy for your SharePoint environment doesn’t have to be an exhaustive exercise. However, it should be one where everyone agrees on the purpose of SharePoint, the role it has within enterprise IT, and what SharePoint shouldn’t be. These boundaries are a great place to start.

  • Recently, I had to come up with a new way to deploy our email site columns for our OnePlaceMail product as the old way (sandboxed solutions) were no longer supported.

  • Developer Days

    David Rubinstein

    I’m putting the finishing touches on the program for SPTechCon Developer Days, a three-day conference on June 24-26 designed to give SharePoint and Office 365 developers the tools and skills they need to enhance the value of their organizations’ SharePoint implementations.

  • For those of you unable to attend SPTechCon Austin this week, one thing you missed was the panel discussion on "Analyzing the Size, Scope, and Opportunities within the Hybrid SharePoint Ecosystem.? The evening event was sponsored by AvePoint, and joining me (@buckleyplanet) on stage were Mark Kashman, Microsoft (@mkashman), D'Arce Hess, AvePoint (@darcehess), Eric Overfield, PixelMill (@ericoverfield), and John White, UnlimitedViz (@diverdown1964) where we shared some of the findings of the Hybrid SharePoint research being conducted by my company CollabTalk, in conjunction with the Marriott School of Management at Brigham Young University. The entire panel was streamed live on Facebook, which you can watch here.

  • Electronic signature technology and transaction-management service provider DocuSign has announced a new integration of its Digital Transaction Management (DTM) solution, along with new features and functionality for SharePoint 2013 users.

  • No matter how much Microsoft and other platform providers talk about the speed of delivery in the cloud, there still needs to be some kind of "shock and awe" announcements left off of the weekly build schedule and shared through a carefully orchestrated mega-conference.

  • SP Marketplace (www.spmarketplace.com), the leader in Office 365 business portals and applications, released SP DataManager, a robust Microsoft Excel add-in that can retrieve, clean, and migrate SharePoint data and documents.  

  • Don't quit your Yammer-ing

    David Rubinstein

    A little more than a year and a half ago, I was invited by Joel Oleson to join #spyam, a network of SharePoint people who communicate via Yammer. Let me tell you: If you’re not there, you need to be.

    It’s not a place where people wax rhapsodic about the future of SharePoint, or disparage Microsoft for not doing a better job with the software. It’s where folks go to ask intelligent questions and (hopefully) receive intelligent answers. And I’ve found that more often than not, that is exactly what happens...READ MORE

  • If you are as excited as I am about the soon-to-be-released SharePoint Framework (#SPFx), then there is much planning to do before the public release.

  • Our local newspaper is updating its content-management system, and as a part of that, the staff is going through 12 hours of training. Key changes include an unfamiliar user interface, new functionality designed to eliminate many steps needed to do the same tasks today, and capabilities that didn’t exist in the prior version. The software will be implemented in stages, with certain departments getting it before others, but all the training is being done prior to the launch.

  • Microsoft this week let its partners in on a premium Office 365 suite designed to enhance productivity through collaboration and innovation—and to give third-party providers new opportunities to integrate with Microsoft’s tooling.

  • For many of us, the rise of the remote workforce comes as no surprise. For years now, office workers have been abandoning their desks in favor of settings that are farther afield and allow them to work in a more comfortable—and often more productive—environment. And it’s a trend that only promises to keep growing.

  • The new SharePoint Framework (sometimes referred to as SPFx now) is really only for developers, in most cases. End users really shouldn't care whether their developers are building things in an "old? way or a "new? way as long as what they get meets their requirements. Most-if not all-of the information we've seen about the SharePoint Framework (including the video below by Dan Kogan) is focused squarely on developers. Unless you're into syntax and semicolons as my pal Jennifer Mason Roth likes to say, the available information may seem like Greek to you.

  • There is a lot being written today that ETL is dead, dying, an old horse that can no longer keep up with the automobiles of today – namely, Big Data.  To some extent this is true, but not in the Microsoft ecosystem of Cloud First, Mobile First, self-service BI. In four steps I will show you how you can extract, transform and load data today.  

  • You read the title correctly: You have the ability to help shape the BI capabilities that Microsoft is delivering via Power BI. If you are not familiar with Power BI today, you will be in the near future. It’s a business intelligence tool in Office 365 that allows end users to mine their data in dynamic and insightful ways.

  • In the enterprise, less is often more. When it comes to search, it's not helpful for users to find thousands of irrelevant results when they're looking for one specific item.

  • According to Merriam-Webster, a trend is defined as following a general course or to veer in a new direction. Based on the way Microsoft is deploying rapid updates to us in Office 365, I would say a new direction is the only direction you can take when it comes to engaging your users during an Office 365 rollout. Upgrading, migrating or just deploying SharePoint is a whole new ballgame now, not to mention all of the other Office 365 applications you need to keep in mind.

  • Branding (changing the look and feel) of SharePoint seems to be at the top of every user's list. While Microsoft's out-of-the-box look and feel has improved over SharePoint's iterations, companies want their intranets to look like it's all part of one shiny, happy corporate infrastructure.

  • With SharePoint 2016 and Office 365, Microsoft has introduced PowerApps and Flow. PowerApps is a low-code solution for creating quick business solutions that information workers and power users can use. Flow is a way to create simple workflows, such as "When a document is loaded into SharePoint, send me an e-mail.?

  • Formotus, a mobile enterprise form provider, announced an expansion to its mobile form offerings at Microsoft Ignite including the Formotus SharePoint List Connector. The new custom control enables uses of a repeating table in any form to update data in a SharePoint list. The expansion also adds a feature allowing column additions to SharePoint form libraries for one-click item opening in the Formotus mobile app from the browser. The company also announced on-demand mobile data forms through its new Formotus Now mobile app for iOS and Windows 8. The app is in limited beta preview. More details are available in the Formotus blog post.

  • Your organization has finally made the decision to make the big leap, to migrate from one version of SharePoint to the next best thing. As daunting of a task as this may sound, there are a variety of resources and tools that can assist your organization in this process.

  • Fpweb.net, a global SharePoint hosting provider, has added a new service to its arsenal. Keeping with their mission to add value to their customers’ SharePoint, Fpweb.net takes a big step with their latest SharePoint solution that makes their five star customer-rated support and expertise available regardless if it is hosted in Fpweb.net’s private cloud, left in an on-premises data center, or placed in a hybrid environment.

    Fpweb.net’s “SharePoint Anywhere” showcase is headlined by a managed SharePoint on-premises solution for businesses. This service caters to organizations that currently struggle with maintaining and upgrading their environment or lack a team dedicated to the complicated platform and need a cost-effective solution for their in-house deployment. Fpweb.net’s managed services place a full team of specialists at your disposal 24/7 to handle backups, patching, monitoring, site design and functionality, upgrades, support and more.

  • H3 Solutions, Inc. announced today the availability of free developer licenses for their mobile SharePoint solution, Mobile Entrée. This accompanies the announcement of new subscription licensing for Mobile Entrée, as the industry moves away from perpetual licenses. The founders of H3 Solutions have deep roots in the SharePoint development community, and want to offer their framework, free of charge, to the over 3.4 million developers worldwide who already recognize the extensibility of SharePoint.

    Mobility in SharePoint has always been a wild card with many different approaches to solve the issue. From commercial or custom phone apps to responsive design, there hasn’t been a definitive answer to the question “How do I make my SharePoint solution mobile friendly”. Mobile Entrée answers this question with the most robust and tightly integrated framework for building mobile web apps around all types of SharePoint solutions. With these new, free licenses, SharePoint developers can build, test and market their mobile solutions without having to spend a dime.

  • Security is a critical issue today. Yet for all the talk of dark ops, shadow ops and more, most data leaks occur because of poor access and sharing controls.

  • Get ahead of SharePoint 2016

    David Rubinstein

    The good news is that the SharePoint 2016 release candidate is here. The bad news, for those interested in giving it a whirl, is that you have to first install the beta before installing the RC.

  • The biggest challenge with the adoption of new technologies is that adoption requires change. And change is hard-even if it's a good change. If you want to make change (and thus adoption) a little easier, here are some ideas that can help:

  • Getting LinkedIn

    David Rubinstein

    Reactions to Microsoft’s Monday announcement about its acquisition of LinkedIn have been met with excitement in the SharePoint and Office 365 community, yet tempered by recent acquisitions (Yammer, Nokia) that did not turn out well.

  • One of the best features of Office 365 is the ability to easily collaborate with external users. By giving external users access to your SharePoint Online sites, you can share documents, lists, calendars, tasks, issues and dashboards; set up alerts; and even use these users in your workflows. What’s even better, there are no extra license fees for these external users and Microsoft manages various account utilities (like changing passwords) making external sharing an extremely cost effective and simple feature in Office 365. For many organizations, the ability to quickly set up an extranet in SharePoint online with no additional licensing fees is a no-brainer. I would argue this feature alone is worth investing some time into looking at Office 365 for most SMBs.

    But how do you get started? How do you enable external sharing? How do you effectively structure your sites? How do you invite external users to your site? How do you prevent external users from seeing information you don’t want them to see? How can you tell if a user accepted your invite? All these questions are answered in various posts around the interwebs, but I didn’t see a single post that summed it all up.

  • Hopefully by now you have fully embraced PowerShell as part of your SharePoint life. Why? Because it is magical no matter what your role is:

  • Microsoft recently announced the general availability of the SharePoint Framework, a new development model for the creation of custom solutions within Office 365. The SharePoint Framework, also known as "SPFx?, provides customers with a way to extend the platform for Intranet and collaboration scenarios with a "pages and parts? model that is lightweight and easily configurable. As with any new model, developers will need to learn a new way of doing things, but SPFx has some specific requirements that may prove challenging for those who have been working with SharePoint for any length of time as well as those who are new to the platform. Before getting started, it is important to learn what skills are necessary, which tools are required, and how to configure an environment to begin creating SPFx solutions.

  • Groups, meet Team Sites

    David Rubinstein

    The final touches are being put on SharePoint 2016, and it should be released "in relatively short order,? as told during the Microsoft keynote at SPTechCon Austin yesterday.

  • GSX Solutions, the global leader in proactive, consolidated monitoring and reporting of Unified Communication environments, including Microsoft, IBM, BlackBerry, Cisco ESA, and SQL Server applications, today announced that GSX 365 Usage to optimize cloud management for SharePoint will be showcased at SPTechCon Boston 2016. As a full-usage analysis tool, GSX 365 Usage delivers simple yet powerful reports that help organizations understand how their employees use Office 365. For a demo at SPTechCon, please visit booth #502.

  • Have a plan for video

    Brian Prigge

    SPTechCon Boston was another great week of sessions, panels, and exhibit hall attractions. One major change to the conference this year was the addition of video. From Office Video Portal demos in the Microsoft keynote, to the streaming of all main stage sessions, it was clear that video has arrived in the SharePoint space.

  • Help going hybrid

    David Rubinstein

    For months now, Microsoft has acknowledged that a hybrid approach to SharePoint—running those apps that make sense in the cloud while retaining sensitive information on-premises—informs the future of the software.

  • 0610.sp-bamboo

    SharePoint collaboration software provider Bamboo Solutions has announced that Workflow Conductor R4.0 is available for SharePoint 2013. Workflow Conductor is the company’s solution to creating, managing and reusing custom business processes without having to do custom coding.

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  • Beezy, the preferred enterprise social collaboration solution for SharePoint 2010 and SharePoint 2013, announced today the availability of Beezy for Office 365, with support for migration from Beezy on-premises to the cloud, and from competitive social platforms Jive and IBM Connections to Office 365. Beezy is the only social tool provider built on SharePoint that supports social collaboration on-prem, in the cloud, and in hybrid SharePoint deployments. Additionally, Beezy is the only solution providing migration options between platforms.

  • Beezy Inc., the premier enterprise collaboration solution for Microsoft SharePoint and Microsoft Office 365, is pleased to announce the publication of a new case study highlighting the company's integration with the Microsoft Graph as part of Microsoft's betterwith.office.com website. The Microsoft Graph uses machine-learning to identify connections between user profiles, social network activity, content, and other data sources and hen provides relevant, timely, and contextual data for the end user based on those connections. The case study highlights the innovative ways that Beezy leverages the Microsoft Graph to better surface content, conversations, and connections within SharePoint, turning the collective intelligence captured by the platform into timely and relevant organizational knowledge. The end result is a more contextual and intuitive platform, with productive and engaged end users.

  • Beezy Inc., the premier enterprise collaboration solution for SharePoint and Office 365, has announced the availability of new capabilities through integration with Microsoft's Office Graph. The Office Graph uses machine-learning to identify connections between user profiles, social network activity, content, and other data sources and hen provides relevant, timely, and contextual data for the end user based on those connections. The latest innovations from Beezy leverage the Office Graph to provide a faster and more personalized experience within the Beezy collaboration solution for SharePoint and Office 365.

  • Beezy Inc., the most comprehensive enterprise collaboration solution for Office 365 and SharePoint, today announced the general availability of the first seamless integration between Yammer and the award-winning Beezy enterprise collaboration solution. Using Beezy, community activity within Yammer is now visible and interactive in SharePoint, and likewise, all social activity in SharePoint can be visible within the Yammer newsfeed, allowing organizations to leverage their social investments across both Yammer and SharePoint.

  • Beezy Inc., the premier enterprise social collaboration solution for SharePoint, announced today the general availability of the latest release of its award-winning solution for Office 365, which is also available for SharePoint on-premises. Beezy Version 3 provides enhanced collaboration capabilities across the latest versions of the industry-leading Microsoft intranet and extranet platform, providing a superior user experience and leveraging all of the communication and collaboration capabilities within Office 365 and the Office suite.

    “We are able to match the robust social collaboration found in competing platforms, and we do it within the Office 365 platform. We are the only vendor within the Microsoft partner ecosystem that can match these competitors feature-by-feature, but we raise the bar beyond what they provide with an amazing user experience. There’s nothing else like it on the market today.” Commented Maximo Castagno, Product Lead for Beezy.

    Beezy is the first company to provide migration tools from competitive platforms, such as Jive, IBM Connections, Sitrion (formerly NewsGator). Supporting on-prem, cloud, and hybrid environments with a seamless UX, Beezy improves adoption and engagement, and gives customers the flexibility to move to the cloud at their own speed.

    “As we heard from Microsoft CVP Jeff Teper in this morning’s [European SharePoint Conference] keynote, Microsoft is continuing to make investments in the SharePoint platform, and because of that there is a renewed interest in building out a unified collaboration and digital workplace within most organizations. Beezy makes this a much more seamless experience for customers, enhancing and extending the platform that Microsoft provides with additional collaboration capabilities beyond what SharePoint can provide. The end result is that users are more productive, collaborative, and happy.” said Jordi Plana, Beezy’s Founder and Chief Executive Officer.

  • SPTechCon 2015 wrapped up a month ago, and those of us who were there are still processing the insights we had at the live event in Boston.

  • Scott Edwards and Ben Curry were chosen to present during five different sessions alongside 27 other industry leaders at SPTechCon (Nov 12-15) in Washington D.C. 

  • The pressure is high on all businesses to archive data for audit and regulation purposes. Data includes email, wherever it's hosted. So, if you're among the hundreds of thousands of companies around the world that have chosen to use Office 365 for their email, you must make sure you have a reliable archive of all mailboxes.

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    When a company begins looking into third-party business applications to integrate within their SharePoint environments, what should they look for? How can such companies best prepare themselves for the future of their company while also meeting their business’s present needs and challenges?

  • More and more offices are going green. The eco-friendly benefits that a paperless office provides is great, but that is a discussion for another post. In this article, let us discuss how effective and productive your office can get by going paperless. Also, we will discuss how SharePoint helps offices to go truly digital ? completely paperless ? by automating all your content management jobs in no time.

SPTechCon will be held at the Sheraton Boston Hotel

There are special discounted room rates for SPTechCon attendees and sponsors - $189 per night plus taxes.

The number of rooms in the discounted block is LIMITED and historically rooms sell out well before the deadline. Don't wait until the last minute to reserve your hotel room!

More information coming soon!

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Take advantage of special discounted room rates at the Sheraton Boston Hotel - only $189 per night!  

Sheraton Boston Hotel