Online Training On SharePoint

Sunday, 26 July 2009

Error While Adding a WFE to the existing SharePoint Farm

We have build a new Server to add in existing SharePoint Farm as Web Front End Server. We installed SharePoint 2007 in the server having Windows Server 2003 as the operating System. While running the configuration wizard there was a error and the server could not be added into the farm.

In the SharePoint Logs following entries were there:

07/27/2009 09:36:30 8 INF Now joining to farm at server MOSSDBServer database SharePoint_Config
07/27/2009 09:36:38 8 ERR Task configdb has failed with an unknown exception
07/20/2009 09:36:38 8 ERR Exception: System.Security.SecurityException: Access denied.

Since we were using the farm admin account when attempting to join the new WFE, all the required privileges were there.

On further investigation we found that there was a application pool in IIS which was not getting used anywhere and was having a password which was expired. Because of this application pool this issue was coming. We have deleted this app pool. Again the config wizard was executed and it ran successfully.

Thursday, 23 July 2009

Finding the STSADM commands

I found a very helpful command with STSADM. There are lot of STSADM commands which are available and it is really difficult to find related commands from this ocean for any specific operation. This command really help me to do that. Now suppose I am working with Solutions in SharePoint and I want to see quickly all the related commands which are available for working with Solutions then this command is really helpful for me. So for this purpose I will run:

stsadm | find "solution"

Also to see all the STSADM commands available for working with features I will execute:

stsadm | find "feature"

You will see the output like:

You do not need to pass the full name of the related operation to get the set of commands. So if i want to see commands which are related to delete i will just type:

stsadm | find "del"

User Details are not showing up in the SharePoint site

I was having a issue where the details of one of the user in the site collection was not showing up. I checked in Active directory as well in the Shared Service Provider (SSP). All the details were imported properly in the SSP:

I tried to remove the user by selecting "Remove Users from Group" and tried to add this user again but that did not help and still the user details were not shown properly.

So now I clicked on the user name and there was a option to delete the user from the Site Collection (as highlighted). Once doing this the user was deleted from the Site Collection and I believe it has cleared any cache of the user details. Now I have not added the user again in the usual way. I clicked on the directory button which prompted a dialogue box as shown below:

This dialogue box was adding the user from the directory service. I typed the name of the user and searched the user and then followed the normal procedure of adding the user.. Eureka!!! All the user details now started to showing up when i clicked the user. So looks like some cache of user details was stored somewhere and this was cleaned after deleting from Site Collection and adding the user from Directory Services has retrieved all the user information.

You can also find interesting to read Data Sync Issue for a User between Active Directory and Site Collection

Sunday, 19 July 2009

How Readers on SharePoint sites can create SharePoint SubSite

SharePoint is all about creating different sites easily. But it is also important that only the people who have correct rights should be able to create these additional sites.

I was managing a site where all the users were having read access the main site. So they can not create any new site under this site. I had a requirement where a set of users should have only read permission on the home page but they should be allowed to create new sub sites if required.

SharePoint security model is very flexible and if we understand the permissions and permission level properly these kind of scenarios can be solved easily. So for solving this I have created a new permission level copying the the Read Permission level and then adding an additional permission called 'Create Subsites'.

This permission level was assigned to a new SharePoint group and all the user who need to have access to create sub sites has been added into this group. Now when the users from this group access to this SharePoint site they can see the Site Action button. And once they go inside this they can see only one link which is "Sites and Workspaces"

Also users can see the Create Menu option. They can see three links which are shown in the screen shot. The first two links does not work and says that users does not have access. But the third link works and the users are able to create the sub sites into the site in which they are only reader.

Thursday, 16 July 2009

Videos on SharePoint 2010

Microsoft has released some videos on SharePoint 2010. Though they don't provide detailed info but helps to get a quick overview about what we can expect in next generation of SharePoint product.

Check the videos here:

1. SharePoint 2010 Overview

2. SharePoint 2010 for IT Professional

3. SharePoint 2010 for Developer

After seeing the video the following new features can be expected in the new version of SharePoint:

* Customizable Ribbon based UI (As given in Office suite of products)
* Inherent Support for Silverlight Web parts. Develop the Silver Light code and use SilverLight Web Part to use .xap file which was created
* Enhanced Themes
* Multi Select list items using check box to do certain operation.
* Enhanced Central Admin Design/UI.
* Cool tools included in the Visual Studio 2010.(Visual Webpart designer, BCS Designer, Complete integrated option for developing Solutions)
* SharePoint Best Practice Analyzer which monitors farm health and shows the report where issues related to performance and security are there. It also allows to configure so that these issues can be fixed automatically.
* Support for Linq which allows to read and join list data easily
* Developer Dashboard which helps to understand how the request is getting processed. Where each event is taking time in this process. It will be helpful in writing efficient code and debugging performance issues
* Introduction of Business Connectivity Services (BCS) and removal of BDC
* External List to store the data fetched from BCS
* Client Object Model to access SharePoint on the client side using Java Script

Sunday, 5 July 2009

Web Applications are not propogating to the Web Front End Servers

I was having a Medium Server Farm for SharePoint Installation consisting of 4 servers as:

1. 1 Server with SharePoint Central Administration
2. 2 Servers playing the role of Web Front End Servers
3. 1 server with the Content DB

I was having a strange problem with this Farm. When I was creating Web Applications in the Central Admin and a site collection I was able to browse them through the Central Administration Server but not from the Web Front End Server. While browsing the application the 404 Error was coming. When I tried to see this Web Application in IIS of the Web Front End Machines this Web Application was not appearing. So the problem was that the Web Application was not propagating to the WFE Servers and because of that we can browse the site collection from the Central Administration but not from the WFE Servers.

On further investigation it was found that the Time Zone was different on the WFE Servers. Windows SharePoint Services Web Application is the service which is responsible to create the Web Application in all the WFE servers which are part of the SharePoint Farm. Because of this service was not working properly and the web applications were not synced to the different Web Front End Machines from the Central Administration Server. Once the Time Zone was set to be the same for all servers, the web application got synced in the WFE Machines and we can see in IIS Manager the corresponding Web Site

Wednesday, 1 July 2009

Conversion of Special Character in SharePoint forms

I was working on a requirement in which we were creating a page in SharePoint using the controls. The users were giving inputs in this field. If the users were giving any special characters such as ">" or "<" they were getting encoded to ">" and "<". Then to overcome this the input field type was converted to SharePoint Control. With this the issue was fixed and the special character was encoded properly except the apostrophe (') special character. This was getting converted to "'". So to fix this issue we have added a the following tag in the xslt-value of tag:

<xsl:value-of select="@comments" disable-output-escaping="yes"/>

This has fixed the issue where the apostrophe was not encoded correctly and showing "'" while displaying the data.
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