31 March 2007

MVP Summit Team Dinner

A photo of all the attending SharePoint MVP's together at the team dinner.
Sitting:  Loke Kit Kai, Zhongli Wang(王忠力), Matthew McDermottGary BusheyPierre Vivier-MerleXi Chen, Ocean Ju(鞠海洋)
For a version of this picture with two more SharePoint MVP's (Ivan Wilson and Gayan) "added" in, see this page.
If you have any, leave me a comment here.

28 March 2007

Is America stupid… or rather is American Idol voters stupid?

How is it that Sanjaya Malakar from American Idol fame is STILL in this thing?!!!
This guy can't sing to save his life and every week he comes up with some weird stunt to stay alive.
I must say, I have my doubts about the "crying girl" in the audience two weeks ago.
I'm beginning to think she was planted… Mmm… makes you wonder, doesn't it?
For now, Howard Stern's minions will probably have enough votes to keep this guy in the contest.
Eventually though, even Stern's minions can't be enough to get Sanjaya to the top spot. The only question is… how many weeks of torture will we have to endure listening to this guy? Thank goodness for the MUTE button! J

How do I? – Fix my Alerts that have no body text

Have you received a SharePoint Alert lately that had no body text to it?
Even when you double click it and try to open the item all you get is an error message stating:
Well fear no more because this annoying problem has been solved! It turns out there's an issue when MOSS 2007/WSS 3.0 alerts are generated and sent to Exchange 2003 which is then in turn read using Outlook 2007.
Microsoft has a fix for this issue as detailed in KB 930807. As this is a very specific fix, you will need to contact PSS to get the patch. One thing to be aware of is the fact that the patch will not magically fix already received Alerts, but only works on future Alerts that are received.
WORKAROUND: My buddy Todd Klindt provided a good way to be able to see the body of old Alerts prior to applying this patch. You simply reply to the Alert message and the body becomes magically visible in the reply, provided you have that option enabled in your Outlook properties.
As you can see, there is no body text in the preview pane. Now we'll reply to the Alert…
And magically, we can read the Alert body now! J Thanks for that one Todd!

27 March 2007

Having trouble upgrading your custom SPS areas to MOSS?

I went through the very same issue with our customized SPS portal and ended up having to work with support to figure out what the issue was. I published a KB on the simple work around. Though it doesn't yield the exact results you'd want (loss of some customization) it gets the migration process back on track.

26 March 2007

How do I? – How I built this blog (Part 2 of 3)... Install Windows SharePoint Services 3.0

This is Part II in a three part series detailing the steps to setup a blog on WSS 3.0. In Part I we provided detailed instructions for installing SQL Server 2005 Express, the database engine behind the blog. In this episode, we're going to detail the installation steps for WSS itself, so let's begin:
  1. A prerequisite for WSS 3.0 is the .NET Framework 3.0 which can be downloaded here. As per our standard practice, we saved the installation file to our C:\Setup\... folder structure. If you select the main file on the download page, you will download only a loader component which, when you install it, will then download the rest of the framework. If your server may not have internet connectivity at the time of the install, download the full package by scrolling further down the download page and selecting the X86 or X64 link, depending on your server architecture. In our case, we're using X86.
  2. After downloading the framework, double click the executable package to launch the installer.
  3. Setup will load the install components and the present you with the Welcome screen.
  4. The Welcome screen also contains the EULA (End User License Agreement). Read the EULA and ensure that you understand what it contains and agree with it.
  5. Select the "I have read and ACCEPT the terms of the License Agreement" radio button. That will enable the "Install" button.
  6. Check the "Send anonymous information about my setup experiences to Microsoft Corporation" check box if you wish to help make Setup and future installers better. If you have privacy concerns, you can uncheck the box and no information will be sent.
  7. Click the "Install" button to commence the Framework installation. If you downloaded just the launcher component of the Framework as mentioned in step 1, you'll see the progress indicator as Setup downloads the remainder of the Framework for installation.
  8. Once the download portion of Setup is complete, it will be indicated to you in the status window.
  9. Once Setup completes the Framework installation, you'll be presented with the Setup Complete screen. Click the "Exit" button to complete the process.
  10. Now we are ready to install WSS 3.0. If you have not already done so, download the X86 version of WSS 3.0 from here. If you are installing the X64 version, you can download it here. Again, in the example, we're using X86. We saved it in our C:\Setup\... structure as usual. The download is just under 80 MB. Locate and double click the SharePoint.exe file to launch Setup.
  11. Setup will commence by extracting the installation files from the package.
  12. Next you'll be presented with the EULA screen. Read the EULA and ensure that you understand it and agree with it. Check the "I agree with the terms of this agreement" check box.
  13. The "Continue" button should now be enabled. Click it to continue.
  14. You will be presented with the Installation Choice screen.
  15. This is where many people go wrong during farm installations. Do NOT select the "Basic" option. If you have a database server to which you wish to point your WSS installation, you need to select the "Advanced" option. The "Basic" option will install WSS as well as a(nother) copy of SQL Server 2005 Express on the target server and though this is OK for demo's etc. it's probably not desirable in our case.
  16. Click the "Advanced" button to continue.
  17. Next you'll be presented with a 3 tab screen. The first tab to which the screen will default is the Server Type tab.
  18. The "Stand-alone" option will probably be selected by default. Change the radio button selection to "Web Front End". If you have multiple drives in the server and wish to change the location of the data files, you can select the "Data Location" tab at the top of window and change your location accordingly.
  19. Click the "Install Now" button to commence the installation.
  20. Setup will present you with some very rudimentary progress feedback during the installation process.
  21. Once Setup completes, you'll be presented with the final status window.
  22. If you were doing an upgrade of WSS, this is where you would be terminating the process ensuring that the Wizard does not run, but in our case, we're doing a fresh install so we want the Wizard to run. Ensure the "Run the SharePoint Products and Technologies Configuration Wizard now" check box is checked and click the "Close" button to launch the Wizard.
  23. You will be presented with the Config Wizard welcome screen.
  24. Click the "Next" button to continue.
  25. A modal window will popup notifying you of services that will need to be reset during the configuration process.
  26. Unless you are performing this installation on a pre-existing web front end server, this message should not be cause for concern. If you are indeed installing on a web front end server that has other web applications running on it, be sure to schedule, communicate and conduct this installation off hours so as to minimize the impact to your existing user base.
  27. Click the "Yes" button to continue.
  28. You will be presented with the Connect to Server Farm screen.
  29. If you were building a server farm and this was the 2nd plus installation of web servers, you'd use the "Yes, I want to connect to an existing server farm" option. As this is our first server, the farm does not yet exist and needs to be created. Select the "No, I want to create a new server farm" option and click the "Next" button to continue.
  30. You will be presented with the Specify Configuration Database Settings screen.
  31. If you have a separate SQL server, specify the server name. In our case, the SQL Server is the same server as our web server so the name will be the same.
  32. The Database Name defaults to "SharePoint_Config". You can keep this default value or you can choose to change it now if you wish.
  33. Lastly, you need to specify a Username and Password value. If your web server is part of a domain, it needs to be a domain account. This is especially true if the SQL Server is also on a separate server. If both the SQL Server and the web server are the same, you can use a local server account in the form of SERVER\Account.
  34. Click the "Next" button to continue.
  35. You will be presented with the Configure SharePoint Central Administration Web Application page.
  36. The Wizard will prepopulate a random port number for your Central Admin app. Personally, I don't like this and I standardize all Admin ports to make it easier to administer remote servers when needed. You can check the "Specify port number" check box and enter the port of your choice here. Be sure not to enter standard ports like 80 (Web), 441 (SSL) or 21 (FTP). It's usually best to use something in the 5000+ range.
  37. Select your authentication provider of choice. The default value here is NTLM, but Kerberos is really the better option. NTLM is easier to setup and configure because there's nothing much to do while with Kerberos there are other configuration steps to follow. For our purposes, we are not going to use Kerberos and will accept the NTLM default value. I will detail Kerberos configuration in a later post.
  38. Click the "Next" button to continue.
  39. You will be presented with the Config Summary page.
  40. Look over your selected options. If you need to change anything, you can use the "Back" button to navigate to the section you wish to change, make the changes and then navigate forward with the "Next" button again.
  41. Click the "Next" button to commence the configuration.
  42. There are 9 steps to the configuration and the Wizard will provide you some visual feedback related to progress.
  43. Once the Wizard completes, you'll be presented with the Configuration Successful screen.
  44. Click the "Finish" button to complete the process.
  45. The WSS Central Admin page will load.
Your installation of WSS 3.0 is now complete. We will detail the remaining configuration and customization steps in Part III.

SharePoint Remote Event Receivers are DEAD!!!

 Well, the time has finally come.  It was evident when Microsoft started pushing everyone to WebHooks, but this FAQ and related announcement...