Tuesday, January 24, 2012

From Here to There

Imagine you are headed on vacation and planning your driving route on how to get there. What is the first question to answer? The first question isn't where am I going but where am I currently. An effective SharePoint migration requires the same first question, what data do I currently have that needs to be migrated?

Planning out a SharePoint 2010 farm, site collections, user access and many other details need to be done in light of what existing data is being migrated to the new farm. In many ways, it is like the analogy of the square peg and round hole. If we design the 2010 site structure and do not take into account the existing data, it can lead to a difficult transition for both administrator and user.

As the journey to SharePoint 2010 begins for many organizations, take time to map out your 2003/2007 sites. In the process of meeting with site owners, many organizations learn that there are many undocumented sites that have been created over time.

Until we know where we are at, we cannot map out where we are going.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Lead by Example

Change- books have been devoted to it, classes presented about it yet it still continues to be challenging. Many times the use of SharePoint means a change of sorts. Change of how data is accessed, where data is stored and how data is presented. From a SharePoint Consultant stand point this change is good but to many users it is different and slow to be embraced.

I wish I had a magic formula or 5 easy steps to get user adoption. That may come in time but the first step in my opinion is to lead by example.

Do you want users to utilize a new SharePoint list? You utilize it first. Do you want users to use My Site? You setup and utlize yours first. I have seen many cases where solutions are created but the SharePoint team never utilizes the solutions to address their own challenges.

If we can create a user base that asks and demands new SharePoint solutions, the adoption process is something that takes care of itself - we have other issues to address then.

I must get back to work now..... I have a My Site to setup.

Thursday, January 05, 2012

Moving Day

One of my current consulting projects is migrating SharePoint 2007 sites to SharePoint 2010 for a large, global company. This is a major undertaking and will require a significant amount of investment from both my customer and myself. My plan is to document our challenges and successes throughout this endeavor here.

Migrating SharePoint sites is a lot like moving houses – preparation in advance makes for a much easier move. Moving is a pain (as is migrating) but the goal is to make the pain as minimal as possible.

Recently my family and I moved across the country. When deciding what to pack, I used the one year rule. If it was something that I had not been used within the past year, then it was not being packed – rather it would be discarded or donated. In migrating SharePoint data, I have a similar approach. The client decides the threshold but typically if data has not been modified in over 2 years, it is a candidate to not be migrated.

Preparing for a migration? Evaluate the existing data first and see if needs to be migrated. Stale, unused data can be removed, making a better SharePoint experience for our customer.

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

Hiding Upload Button in SharePoint

For many of our form libraries (in SharePoint 2007), our client wished to have the Upload button hidden. Our client has SharePoint locked down so utilizing SharePoint Designer for this was not an option. Tight restrictions like these is what led to the blog title” Coloring within the Lines”. I had to turn to jQuery in order to fulfill this request.

I came across an article here that discusses this subject and I found the following code in the comments section.

$('.ms-menutoolbar td:eq(5)').hide();
$('.ms-menutoolbar td:eq(6)').hide();

Please note that I am not taking credit for developing this code as it came out of the comments section above but just passing along what I found to accomplish this task. I have not tested this solution in a SharePoint 2010 environment at this time.