Microsoft acquistion of LinkedIn News!

In my opinion great move by Microsoft:

Question is how or if this will impact SharePoint 2016 and Office 365?  There are obviously potential integration opportunities between both platforms.

LinkedIn established as the social networking platform of choice for professionals world-wide and it’s large member base.  For enterprises an opportunity to move to the MSFT cloud for recruiting, task management, organization contacts, etc. with an established professional social network LinkedIn and the associated features and benefits.

For Microsoft conceivable this move will cause organizations on the fence to consider  a move to Office 365 verses other platforms.  Compelling to combine the social networking features of LinkedIn with the collaboration features of Office 365, SharePoint Online, PowerView Business Intelligence, and Outlook Online verses the competition out there.  Have to wait and watch for the availability of APIs for integration into applications and services on premises, Azure hosted, SharePoint or Office 365.


SharePoint Lists-Smarter with JavaScript

SharePoint lists are great for tracking data-easy to create, export to Excel, develop against using JSOM.  Problem is when you have a list sometimes you have documents that are associated with the list item.  There are attachments to the list but better to use a document library right?  Maybe create a folder in the document library for each new list item created and tag the folder for the specific folder associating the item to the folder.

Here is where some simple JavaScript and the SharePoint JSOM come in to save the day…

Step 1: Create your SharePoint list, add your fields, etc.

Step 2: Create a new item, when the newform.aspx opens simply select Edit Page from settings.  Settings-Edit page.  Now you can place a content editor web part referencing your script file.

Screenshot (Standard NewForm.aspx un-customized)


Also, add a document library web part to display the folders we are going to create from the script and filter for your specific list item using the web part connection from the list item web part to the document library web part.

Add any other web parts to the page, calendar, tasks lists etc.  This provides a simple all up view for related content tagged to the list item.

Add a content editor web-part or script editor web part referencing your script file (I typically organize conveniently in the site collections style library)

Example script:


var matterName;
var matterNum;
var folderName;
var collListItem;
var folderUrl ;
var folderpath;

//Execute when the user saves the item create a folder in our document library and tag the folder with relevant data from our list item in order to associate the two
function PreSaveItem()

//grab some fields off the newform.aspx to use for tagging the folder we create
matterNum = $(‘input[title=”MatterNum”]’).val();
matterName = $(‘input[title=”Name”]’).val();

//Create the folder

folderName = matterName;
folderUrl = “[SiteUrl]” + “/” + folderName;

createFolder(folderUrl, folderName, matterNum);

return true;
function createFolder(folderUrl, fname, matterNumber) {

var clientContext;
var oWebsite;
var oList;
var itemCreateInfo;

clientContext = new SP.ClientContext.get_current();
oWebsite = clientContext.get_web();
oList = oWebsite.get_lists().getByTitle(“Documents”);

itemCreateInfo = new SP.ListItemCreationInformation();
//I am using a specific content type inherited from the folder type
this.oListItem = oList.addItem(itemCreateInfo);
this.oListItem.set_item(“ContentTypeId”, “0x0120003C4F41AA23709B458E3DA2EEFAA5DCAA”);
this.oListItem.set_item(“Title”, fname);
this.oListItem.set_item(“MatterNum”, matterNumber);
Function.createDelegate(this, successHandler),
Function.createDelegate(this, errorHandler)
function successHandler() {

//Yeah have a new folder


function errorHandler(sender, args) {
alert(‘Record Create failed. ‘ + args.get_message() + ‘\n’ + args.get_stackTrace());

//TO DO-This part for next time-build out a complete folder structure based on a pre-built document libary structure
function retrieveFolderStructure() {
var _clientContext1;
_clientContext1 = SP.ClientContext.get_current();
var oList = _clientContext1.get_web().get_lists().getByTitle(‘Matter Documents’);

var camlQuery = new SP.CamlQuery();

this.collListItem = oList.getItems(camlQuery);


_clientContext1.executeQueryAsync(Function.createDelegate(this, this.onQuerySucceeded2), Function.createDelegate(this, this.onQueryFailed2));




Make your SharePoint lists a little smarter.  Why not?  Of course all this works on SharePoint 2013 and Office 365.  Also can use on editform.aspx, the script to access the form fields slightly different but doable np.

Bonus material:

Add a calculated column to your SharePoint list that links users to the specific folder:

=”<a class=’docs’ title=’Documents’ href=”&”‘”&”/[Site]/Shared Documents/Forms/AllItems.aspx?RootFolder=/[Site]/Shared Documents/”&Name&”‘”&”>Documents</a>”

*Set your column format to “number” so displays HTML


SharePoint 2013-Printing List Item Forms using jQuery and CSS

UPDATE 4/26/2014:

Have heard from a lot of people who are having some challenges putting all the pieces of this solution together, particularly the calculated field for the print icon.  Providing detailed instructions and a screenshot to get started.

Start from a new team site:

  • Create a new subsite from the Collaboration template using the Team Site template.
  • Use listprint for the site name and URL.
  • Create a new picture library named “Images1”
  • Upload the print icon to the picture library.  Download image here
  • Create a custom list named “List”
  • Add the following columns to the list:
  • Column name: Printed | Column Type: Text | Default value: No
  • Column name: Print Item | Column Type: Calculated Column  Download calculated field formula example here










  • Add a new item to the list.
  • Click on the new item link.
  • From the standard DispForm.aspx page select Settings > Edit page
  • Add a new Script Editor web-part to the page (located in the Media and Content Category in web part gallery)
  • Set the Script Editor web-part properties zone index to 2 from the web part settings, layout section.
  • Select Edit Snippet in the Script Editor webpart and paste in the following jQuery/CSS-Download script here
  • Update the siteUrl variable in the jquery to use your site URL as required.
  • Select Page, Stop Editing from the SharePoint ribbon.
  • From site contents select “List”
  • Select a link to one of the two items in the list, select the Print button.
  • From site contents select “List” and notice the first item in the list has been updated to reflect Printed=Yes.

That’s it to getting started.

I have paired down the solution to get you started and make additional customizations specific to your requirements for example the listitemid that gets updated is hard-coded to the first item id since my solution depends on a SharePoint Designer workflow which I did not package up in the wsp (Coming soon) This can be easily updated to use your own jQuery inside the script editor web-part to obtain from the querystring on dispform.aspx or from a custom field that is populated from a SPD workflow when the item gets created.  You can easily create a list on any existing SharePoint 2013 or Office 365 SharePoint site providing you update the script and calculated columns to reflect the correct URLs and image source in the jQuery embedded in the Script Editor web-part and also the Print Item calculated field formula.

Thanks, Rod.

Added Functionality verses standard list item form:

* Add a print button to a SharePoint list item form.

* Displays a print icon linked to the custom print preview form.

* Tracks which list items were printed by the user. Works on both Office 365 and on-premises versions of SharePoint 2013.









Solution Details

Solution designed to meet a requirement from a customer to allow users to easily print a list item from the primary SharePoint list view page in a layout that maximized the allowable printing real-estate while also removing most of the SharePoint toolbars etc. from the printed page.  Also, the customer requested that we track which items had been printed since this solution was part of a larger scheduling solution for SharePoint.   Since the customer is hosting their SharePoint on Office 365 in the cloud we opted to use jQuery and CSS directly on the list item form.  For layout we opted to use a custom list item display form and modify the XSL although this is not necessary to support the jQuery and CSS for printing the list item.


  • jQuery added to list item form with embedded jQuery and CSS overrides in a script editor web-part.
  • Calculated field with a print icon and link to list item form added to the list view.
  • Optional: Customized list item form layout using XSL.

Next Steps:

Package as a SharePoint app that can be added to any site.
Create a custom print template.
Incorporate PDF.


Even in 2013 it is sometimes necessary to print to paper.  With SharePoint being used more and more for scheduling and tracking systems, workflows, and calendaring the ability to print a SharePoint list item when necessary is an added benefit.  With the advent of CSOM and JSOM developers are increasingly taking advantage of jQuery, HTML, and CSS to tackle specific gaps in the OOB SharePoint features and particularly in the O365 cloud version.

Have fun!



SharePoint 2010 Upgrade Tips and Dreaded User Profile Synchronization Service Stuck on Starting…

SharePoint 2010 Upgrade Tips:

I have been working with SharePoint since way back in 2000 when I started at Microsoft, with every release of the product the upgrade process has been getting easier. If you are upgrading only content databases, no significant customizations are detected, and are not planning on upgrading MySites then upgrading SP2007 to SP2010 is very straight-forward using the database attach method, virtually bullet-proof from  my experience over a multitude of SP2010 upgrades both small and large. If however significant customizations are detected (covering in more detail in subsequent post) have been deployed and/or you are upgrading MySites (focus of this post) then a successful migration requires a solid assessment and planning to limit impact to the business. I always strive to limit the impact of the upgrade on the business keeping the production upgrade in as short of a window as possible: “Everyone leaves on Friday with SP2007 and comes in on Monday with SP2010”:)   To that end sharing a few of the lessons learned during recent SharePoint 2010 upgrades for those of you in the planning stages of an upgrade.  Not a comprehensive guide, for a more comprehensive list of upgrade planning steps the place to start is the SharePoint 2010 Upgrade documentation on TechNet.

Tip #1: Perform Database Attach as the upgrade approach: Database attach is the best upgrade approach providing you put the necessary time into planning the upgrade including planning for several test upgrades particularly if you are upgrading MySites as well. Also provides a viable rollback plan if production upgrade fails-reset the databases to read/write while you address upgrade issues and schedule another pass-live to fight another day:)

Tip #2: Perform Test Upgrades and document results: Always perform test upgrades on a virtual machine in advance of production upgrade to resolve issues and verify a successful upgrade path.

  • Document: Document successful  upgrade path based on test upgrades, including environment variables and PowerShell  scripts with the assumption you could follow step-by-step on production      upgrade. Great documentation to provide IT for future reference as a runbook.
  • Test on production hardware and configuration: Consider a test upgrade pass on the new SP2010 production environment prior to actual production upgrade to identify and address environment variables prior to actual production      upgrade weekend i.e. web part caching issues in production environment  where NLB is configured, web.config modifications, SMTP out-bound and  in-bound email,  Alternate Access Mappings, IIS Bindings, all general configurations. You do not want to address these during actual production upgrade for release!
  • Hint: Plan for available free disk space of 3-times the size of the content database or  user profile database you are planning to upgrade. When upgrading a database exceeding 100GB expect the upgrade process to take some time. I was upgrading a content database of 100GB in one scenario and noticed the upgrade progress stayed at .30% complete for some time, after a duration of 2 hours it eventually upgraded so don’t end the process too soon. Monitor the SharePoint upgrade log file if you suspect it’s taking too long.

Tip #3: Provide adequate time to identify and address customizations:

  • STSADM Pre-Upgrade Checker and PowerShell Test-SPContentDatabase are  required. If you are not familiar with STSADM already then could be rough going:) Overall, being proficient in PowerShell is a pre-requisite skill  for SharePoint 2010 upgrade.
  • Consider how best to deal with the Fab 40 templates and provide ample time if you need  to provide support in SP2010 for existing Fab 40 sites.
  • Determine the need to upgrade InfoPath form administrator templates in Central Administration Form Template Library as these may have to be upgraded manually and there could be custom dlls that need to be migrated as well.
  • Plan for addressing custom applications, services, and custom and/or third-party web-parts.
  • Transfer the customizations into the test upgrade environment and test thoroughly.
  • Consider transferring customizations you plan to keep to production environment prior to actual production upgrade and test against production environment to eliminate environmental variables to address during production upgrade i.e. web part caching issues in environment where NLB is configured, web.config modifications, SMTP out-bound and in-bound email, Alternate Access Mappings, IIS Bindings, and all general configurations.

Tip #4: MySite Upgrades:

  • For MySite upgrades do not forget to create or upgrade the MySite host and set MySite      host URL in Profile Service Application prior to upgrading MySites.
  • Create a new web application to host MySites when possible,  I have found no issues with deploying a new site collection for the MySite host rather than upgrading the SP2007 MySite host with the exception of scenario where the MySite host was originally created in the default web application on port 80. Recommend hosting the MySites site collections as part of a separate web application providing a level of isolation for MySites.
  • Use PowerShell to upgrade MySite SSP and provision UPS application pool etc. Ensure you reference the correct Shared Services Database typically SharedServicesDB etc. rather than the MySite content database when activating User Profile Service Application.

Tip #5: Plan to address the Dreaded User Profile Synchronization Service not starting… You have successfully upgraded your content databases via the recommended database attach upgrade and proceeded to the MySite upgrade process. After completing the upgrade of the profile db following the steps on TechNet to the letter and in preparation had reviewed the UPS Architecture when you advance to the step to configure your profile service application settings i.e. to set the MySite host link SharePoint on the Profile Service Application management link it returns an error page instead of the expected  administration page. Potential cause: the user profile synchronization service is not started.  On more than one occasion I noticed the profile synchronization service was stuck on starting in the manage services administration page for more than 10 minutes after provisioning and activating the UPS and until the service is started you will not be able to access the manage profile service application page.

Resolution: There have been many posts dedicated to resolving the profile sync stuck on starting. Here is one of my favorites that includes significant detail and troubleshooting steps.  TechNet article   Recommend reviewing these posts in cases where following the steps I outline below are not successful. There are cases where permissions have not been set properly in AD, NetBIOS issue, or security access issues with the FIM Services themselves that will require access to both SharePoint, SQL, and Active Directory to resolve.  In such cases I involve IT Admin/IT Services team and in some cases contacting Microsoft support. In one case with MS support assistance uncovered changes made to the AD containers were causing synchronization errors.

Quick steps to try before getting too deep into the weeds that has worked for me over the course of several SP2010 Upgrades.

  • Ensure you have installed SharePoint latest SharePoint 2010 cumulative updates
  • Ensure the ForeFront Identity Management Services are enabled and set to manual start and configure to run under your service account. DO NOT START YOURSELF-the user profile service will attempt to configure and start these services automatically.
  • Start the Profile Service application from Central Administration (in addition to the Profile Synchronization Service)
  • Reboot the SharePoint server.
  • Verify FIM  services are started. Hint: You can view FIM services in action using the FIM Client located at C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office Servers\14.0\Synchronization Service\UIShell\miisclient.exe
  • Verify the Profile Synchronization Service and User Profile Service status are both reporting as “Started” and no longer “Starting”
  • If the Profile Synchronization Service status is still stuck on starting, try setting the FIM Services to “Automatic-Delayed Start” then Reboot once more.
  • At this point your profile synchronization service status should be reporting as started, review errors in event log, and if successful you will be able to access the Profile Sync Settings page and verify the user profiles have been successfully imported, configure your MySite settings etc.
  • Hint: Do not be shy about deleting the UPS application and re-activating using PowerShell from scratch once more to ensure all configurations are correct.
  • Consider turning off the SMTP service to disable email during user profile upgrade to avoid emails being sent out to Managers from the MySite Cleaner Timer Job.


Performing database attach upgrade is a great approach for planning an upgrade that limits the overall impact to the business and provides best roll-back plan. Plan for several test upgrade passes to get to a successful upgrade pass, particularly if upgrading customizations and/or MySites. Document the test results as part of a step-by-step upgrade guide that includes each step, environmental variables i.e. server names, service accounts, database names, general configurations, list of customizations, and accompanying PowerShell scripts will help make the actual production upgrade go smoothly.  Also consider the additional step of performing a test upgrade on the planned production environment to identify and address environmental variables early. Plan out the production upgrade tasks, activities day by day, including all tasks, resources, and estimated time necessary for copying databases from production, estimate for performing database upgrade, and allocated time/resources for performing post-upgrade testing.

Most importantly, bring coffee.

Rod Stagg
SharePoint Practice Manager and Architect


SharePoint Intelligence Conference Bellevue KeyNote Take Aways

In Bellevue for the conference, key takeaways from keynote.

Self service BI tools are compelling in SharePoint 2010 in conjunction with SharePoint SQL Server 2008 R2 and upcoming SQL Server 2012.
Adoption of SharePoint is being driven by organizatizations seeking a unified Infrastructure reducing impact to IT freeing time for strategic initiatives

LINQ and integrated Voice Messaging worth looking into, shows presence in SharePoint 2010 and an interesting feature in Outlook that summarizes cm in text and search.

Unified Communications offer potential ROI opportunities.



Tips/Tricks: moved on to

Mark Miller announced  Dec 10, 2010 the closing of but good news is the new launch from Mark Miller, Jeremy Thake, and Joel Oleson with sections for End User, Developer, and IT Pro.


Holiday Gift SharePoint to help others during the holidays

Using SharePoint to help others during the holidays

For the past several years, our employees have helped make the holidays very happy for many local children.  Because of thier thoughtfulness and generosity, these children woke up to presents and a wonderful Holiday Season.   Last year you helped a homeless family of six move into an apartment for the holidays – and if that wasn’t enough, fulfilled the kid’s wish lists! 

Again, this year we have a wonderful family who is going through some hard times.  A single mom with four children who works full time but struggles to make ends meet.  Last year, she was only able to get a few gifts for the youngest child.  We thought it be great if we could make this holiday a good one for all of them and knew this family would appreciate any help we can offer.  

This year we have a Holiday Gift SharePoint!

How SharePoint can help:
In previous years we sent out an email similiar to the above.  Thanks to the generousity of our employees many of the gifts came in time for the holidays, some even 2 or 3 times! 

Preventing duplicate gifts:
This year we wondered if we could provide the holidays wish list that could work much like a wedding registry preventing duplicated gifts.  When employees purhase a gift, they could go to the list and mark off that it is fulfilled. 
In SharePoint this turned out to be easy and fast to implement: 
  1. Create a custom list to store the holiday gift wish list items.
  2. Add fields for a picture of the gift, title, family member, and check-off field.
  3. Populate list with gift items.
  4. Create a new site page and add the gift list as a web-part to the page.
  5. Configure the list view to enable inline editing.
  6. Add content explaining how to view and select items from the list.
  7. Optional: Create a SharePoint Designer Workflow to automatically send out a thank you email.

Increasing Participation:

To increase participation we made the SharePoint accessible to more employees and also partners by enabling claims-based authentication and providing access through the firewall. 

Happy Holidays!