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Blog Posts

  • In SharePoint 2010, the bulk of search ran under the mssearch.exe process. In SharePoint 2013, the search components are split out and now run under the "Search Host Controller Service." As defined by TechNet, "This service manages the search topology components. The service is automatically started on all servers that run search topology components."

  • Balancing security and usability are core to ensuring people can collaborate effectively without interrupting the necessary flow of information across organizations.  With SharePoint Online we've been at work developing security and sharing controls that are scoped at the site collection level.  This allows Tenant administrators to configure more restrictive controls at the site collection level, than those that are configured at the Tenant level providing a balance between the need to protect corporate information and the requirement to collaborate effectively across and outside of the corporate boundary.

  • I have been going to, and mostly speaking at, SPTechCons for a bunch of years now and I have to stay that I’m pretty biased towards the conference. Aside from Microsoft’s own SharePoint Conference, this is definitely the biggest conference attracting the best speaker talent from across the world.... READ MORE
  • Sharegate, the Office 365 and SharePoint Management tool known for its simplicity, extends its popular Insane Migration Mode to On-Premises SharePoint migrations. The feature, previously available to move data to the Cloud on Office 365, will now allow IT Administrators to experience unprecedentedly fast data transfer when migrating SharePoint locally.

  • Microsoft announced this week that the second beta of SharePoint 2016 will be released before the end of November and will be 99% feature-ready. That should give SharePoint users a real good idea of what the updated server can do, will no longer do, and whether or not an update is the right thing for them now.

  • With the release of a preview of SharePoint 2016 Monday, Microsoft has revealed the server that will act as a bridge to the cloud. The preview (some called it a pre-preview) focuses primarily on IT administration and enables cloud services to be integrated with the back end.

  • SharePoint 2016 resources

    David Rubinstein

    It's been more than three months since Microsoft made SharePoint 2016 available, and some folks have been kicking its tires for longer than that. So it seems appropriate to help those who are just getting started with it to compile a list of excellent resources to help a SharePoint brother (or sister) out!

  • When Office 365 really came into its own in about 2013, the message from Microsoft was “To the Cloud!” Later, they eased back to “Hybrid!” With SharePoint 2016, the messaging has become a heck of a lot more flexible. With 2016, you can have your cake, and probably eat it too.

  • One of the truly interesting things about SharePoint is that there’s an angle for just about anyone who touches it, from the front-office workers inputting orders, to HR sharing employee information and maintaining vacation calendars, to designers and devs charged with making it look good and augment out-of-the-box functionality, to IT pros who keep it all running and ensure its security.

  • We hear it time and again. “My company implemented SharePoint, but it’s not a good solution. No one wants to use it.” The blame falls on the software – which, to a degree, it should – but it should be falling on the company. Why? Because it’s the restrictive policies and procedures that govern usage that are turning people off to SharePoint. As Barry Jinks asks in this excellent blog post, do data security and regulatory compliance have to trade off with user experience? It’s an interesting look at a big problem facing organizations that want to go all-in with SharePoint, and you can find it here.

  • Whether or not to deploy a SharePoint-integrated antivirus solution is a topic that comes up in many architecture discussions with prospective clients. Despite the fact that typical collaborative documents are pretty low on the attack vector list, the answer remains very situational.

  • SharePoint is such a powerful service, and yet there are so many negative things consultants, your own employees and trade magazines say you cannot do without significant infrastructure and investment. Things like mobile SharePoint, branding SharePoint, and building a SharePoint app. While there is some truth in all three, I am focusing on the SharePoint app. I am here to share two ways you could build a SharePoint app without the significant cost and infrastructure.

  • Today I had a call with a customer who had a pretty common requirement. Their content editors work on files on a team site, and they want to have a way to have that content exist on the team site and on their main intranet site as well. Currently the content editors are making the changes in two different places, and they want to streamline this process for efficiency’s sake. They do not want to have to give everyone in the company access to the files where they are being worked on in the team site, and they are hesitant about allowing these content editors to actually edit the intranet site itself.

    How can this be accomplished in SharePoint 2013 and Office 365? There are several options available, with varying degrees of setup complexity, which I will describe in this article (with associated resource links for each).

  • We're seeing a growing need for information workers to create line-of-business applications on their own, without the need to put a ticket into the development group, being told they'll have to wait three weeks for it to get done, and then seeing a final product that doesn't quite do what the requester had envisioned.

  • Mark Kashman, Senior Product Manager at Microsoft, talks about SharePoints renewed focus on productivity in his Keynote at SPTechCon Boston 2015. The new Microsoft is listening carefully to their audiences need and demands and is implementing them in the latest iterations of SharePoint and Office 365. Improvements in content management and helping teams collaborate in new innovative ways will be the focus in the future iterations of SharePoint.

  • This year’s SPTechCon SF, going on even as you read this at the Hilton San Francisco hotel, has more going on than ever before. READ MORE
  • SharePoint changes... why?

    David Rubinstein

    Microsoft has had some bad company habits when it comes to moving its users (developers, IT pros and information workers) to the new technologies it is developing.

  • SharePoint Client Browser wants to help users speed up their SharePoint development. The solution was recently updated with new fixes and features aimed at making remote SharePoint development and SharePoint apps easier.  

  • When I started speaking on the SharePoint conference circuit, I often told the story of one of the first implementations in which I took part. The project was for a communications company, and the scope was focused on getting the platform set up for basic team functions, document management and collaboration. The project team was made up of relative newcomers to the organization, and since it was 2003, many of us were new to SharePoint altogether.

  • Easier file sharing, communication sites, an official forms solution and personalized search topped the announced new capabilities of SharePoint and OneDrive at today's Microsoft SharePoint Virtual Summit.

  • I borrowed this week’s subject line from Marc Anderson, who penned an excellent article in the March 21 SPTechReport on the over-importance people place on SharePoint, sometimes forgetting to understand what they’re actually trying to DO with SharePoint.

  • At this past SPTechCon, there was a new type of vendor sitting in the booth area.  A vendor that seemingly is a direct competitor of SharePoint: Sitecore. However, Sitecore is more of a suitor. With the ability to create Web pages and a lot more, Sitecore represents a new type of Web Content Management that will work together with SharePoint.

  • Microsoft is giving Android users the ability to take SharePoint with them on the go. The Microsoft SharePoint app is now available on Google Play.

  • In the midst of the 2015 edition of the SharePoint Technology Conference—fondly known as SPTechCon—it’s tempting to look back over the last few years in the SharePoint universe.

  • I recently had a chance to reconnect with Andreas Grabner of Dynatrace, the application performance monitoring and management company. Andreas spoke at the very first SPTechCon back in January 2009 about gaining insights into how SharePoint performs in an organization, and he embarked on a SharePoint Performance Evangelist tour earlier this year.

  • If you use SharePoint as a document management solution, then you probably rely on SharePoint search to discover or locate specific files. In a site or library that houses thousands or even tens of thousands of documents, you should be able to use keywords and metadata terms to find the one document you require. Otherwise, your search can easily turn into a hunt for a needle in a haystack.

  • Finding information in your SharePoint environment can be a challenge.

    If you use SharePoint for document management, the chances are that you have thousands (and maybe even tens of thousands) of files stored on your intranet. In theory, this kind of system is terrific, because it gives everyone in your organization equal access to any files they might need to do their jobs. With so many files to sort through, though, navigating to the right document at the right time can be mission impossible. Only by ramping up the power and usability of the SharePoint search function can you improve navigation, discoverability, and overall efficiency.

  • SharePoint Server 2016

    David Rubinstein

    In a blog post Monday, Microsoft’s Julia White laid out a road map for the future of on-premises SharePoint (you can read more about the announcement in the news section of this newsletter).

    There wasn’t much revelation in the announcement. We have known for some time there would be a next version of SharePoint Server. We knew that it would incorporate features from Office 365, and the messaging from Microsoft caught up nicely with Office 365 by saying that many customers will opt for a hybrid solution, and SharePoint 2016 is being rearchitected in the image of the cloud.

  • As we go into a long Thanksgiving weekend here in the U.S., many of us will use this extra personal time to get up to speed on the flurry of activity that has been happening around the SharePoint platform this fall. Having returned from the European SharePoint Conference in Stockholm earlier this month, I'm still digging into the details of the keynote led by CVP Jeff Teper—who is back at the helm of SharePoint—as well as OneDrive for Business. He was joined on stage by senior director of product management Seth Patton, and IT Pro favorite Bill Baer, who is a senior technical product manager on the SharePoint team at Microsoft. It was a tremendous lineup, and the team did not disappoint—sharing details of what was coming, as well as some of the areas of investment Microsoft is looking to make over the coming year.

  • People always want to know what other people in their line of work are doing, to measure themselves and their organizations against. Our regular survey of attendees to next week’s SPTechCon event in Boston revealed some interesting facts.

  • Microsoft’s decision to move SharePoint into the cloud in Office 365 was the right move but was handled poorly, according to Andrew Connell, SharePoint trainer and keynote speaker at the upcoming SPTechCon SF in April. And the fallout has been a major shift in developing applications for SharePoint.... READ MORE
  • SharePoint is an enterprise application. But many organizations buy SharePoint without a full understanding of what they’re getting. They fail to grasp what it is and why it is important to them as an organization, not merely as a team or department…READ MORE
  • Full trust computing. That was the plan under Microsoft’s old application development model. But now, with all the moves Microsoft has made to jumpstart business, the question has become: Can developers trust Microsoft?…READ MORE
  • Marc Anderson has been around SharePoint since the early days, even before Microsoft’s collaboration software was called SharePoint. He’s seen a lot of changes to the platform in that time, but perhaps none so transformational as Microsoft’s move to put SharePoint in Office 365.... READ MORE
  • As Microsoft continues its strong messaging around Office 365 and the transformation of how work gets done, SharePoint MVP Robert Bogue—“The SharePoint Shepherd”—breaks it down for SPTechReport, and discusses what needs to be considered before making the decision to move to the cloud, stay on-premise, or go hybrid…READ MORE
  • If you’re responsible for keeping your organization up to speed with how to use SharePoint, moving to the cloud may seem like a daunting prospect. While moving to the cloud can provide many benefits, SharePoint Online in Office 365 in particular is changing extremely rapidly. As a trainer or a consultant, you may have to rethink how you impart knowledge about SharePoint.

    Since the birth of Information Technology (or Data Processing, or Information Systems, or...), there has been some sort of training arm to the role. Back in the 1980s, I was responsible for training at a large management consulting company. We had to start with the very basics: This is a keyboard, here’s what a mouse does (when we had mice!), etc. The upside was that we had printed manuals that came with the disks. As time has gone by, people have learned what computers are all about. Now, almost everyone has at least one computer at home, perhaps a mobile device or two, maybe a tablet. Most people are pretty comfortable moving around in Web-based applications like SharePoint, too.

  • When we caught up in Boston a year ago with SharePoint Technology Conference Chair David Rubinstein, SharePoint 2013, Office 365 capabilities and mobile were all the rage.  

  • It continues to be an exciting time for SharePoint developers, especially with the seemingly inevitable task of moving our organizations to the cloud. A popular feature of on-premises SharePoint has been the ability to register event receivers-that being the ability to have SharePoint notify our custom processes when an action occurred. With SharePoint Online, this has been much more difficult, but with the recent release of SharePoint webhooks, we now have Microsoft's answer to our concerns.

  • Microsoft’s solution for a “social” workplace isn’t yet resonating with SharePoint users. That’s according to feedback we received from attendees and speakers from SPTechCon, held two weeks ago in San Francisco. READ MORE
  • SharePoint and Office 365 took center stage this week at Microsoft's Ignite conference here in Atlanta, with new features and functionality that move the platform closer to the company's vision of providing tools that further collaboration and productivity.

  • People get simultaneously awed and confused by new technology. In the SharePoint world, this reveals itself with the numerous options available for running SharePoint: on-premises, in the cloud, in a hybrid model, or as part of Office 365. With so many choices, it’s easy to get caught up in the functionality that each brings to the table, and in the capabilities each provides.

    But for businesses looking to make a decision on their SharePoint implementations, the most important thing to consider is how it will help the business. This was the point made repeatedly by SharePoint MVP Eric Riz and SharePoint consultant Susan Hanley during the first SPTechCon “G+ Hangout” (available on demand for your viewing pleasure).

  • A not-exactly-scientific survey of random SharePoint users walking around Microsoft’s SPC ’14 in March has revealed that investments in SharePoint are growing, though not so strongly in Office 365, where Microsoft is trying to lead its customer base; READ MORE
  • Those of you anticipating the ability to sync SharePoint documents and libraries to OneDrive will have to wait just a bit longer. After promising general release of the capability by the end of 2016, Microsoft now says it should be available some time in January.

  • SharePoint's Most Wanted

    Michael Pehel
    The HiSoftware Security Sheriff has put out an APB for users that break the laws around data and content security within SharePoint, and as of today listed its top three “most wanted” users: Andy the Anonymous Admin, Felonious Phil, and Fran the Folder Fiend. “It’s not that they’re necessarily malicious,” explained HiSoftware CEO Kurt Mueffelmann. “It could be people doing their jobs in a lazy way, circumventing rules and policies” regarding document visibility, alteration and movement…READ MORE
  • One of the more common requests I get about putting SharePoint to good use is how to build a hyper-responsive, beautifully designed, amazingly cogent dashboard displaying all the key performance indicators (KPIs), report updates, big data analyses, and business intelligence of the day.

  • SharePoint has seen tremendous uptake in organizations of all sizes. And, according to a Forrester Research report, more than half of those customers are building or plan to build custom apps in their SharePoint environments. But building these customizations is difficult, and even dangerous, as it can result in unstable SharePoint environments. Microsoft tried to address this with the introduction of the SharePoint App Model in the 2013 release, but developers are finding that difficult to use as well, and are looking for a better way to build SharePoint custom apps.

  • SMART Technologies Inc. now offers new capabilities in its  SMART Room System (SRS) for Skype for Business (previously known as Microsoft Lync), including enhanced functionality, new support services, and seamless integration with Skype for Business and Microsoft Office 365.

  • Smartsheet, the work management and process automation platform redefining the way that individuals, teams, and organizations work, today announced an exciting new integration with Skype for Business, which will be available to Smartsheet Enterprise accounts in December 2016. Smartsheet for Skype will enable team members using Skype to quickly start a video call, voice call or instant message (IM) from within the Smartsheet application. 

  • User experience. Branding. APIs. Office add-ins. Hybrid. Hosted. Business value. Office Graph. Videos.

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