When will we have the next version of Sharepoint? or a sneak peak?

Accordingly to Mary Jo Foley (From ZDnet) not before 2015!

My bet will be the 3 year gap, so 2016. Just to keep the usual time frame.

You can find Mary’s article here.

From Real Story Group kind of a sneak peak on Sharepoint 2016 . . . you can find it here.

Posted in Sharepoint

My story with Sharepoint – 10 years and counting

In January of 2004 I had my first contact with Sharepoint, at that time it was the 2003 version, and my first project was to implement an Intranet Portal for a Government Entity, related to the energy area.

I never heard of Sharepoint before, so when I started searching for information, the first thing that I realized was that there wasn’t that much!

So the beginning was learning to install, configure, administrate, manage and USE!

The first Intranet was implemented without any specific development, only adjusting the clients requirements to the way Sharepoint worked. I have to say that the project was a success, and ever since I have been working with Sharepoint almost constantly, not exclusively, but there seems to exist always another Sharepoint project to me :)

So after 10 years, I have followed, implemented and some times been the alpha and beta implementor of some of the Sharepoint versions. Currently I have implementations of 2003, 2007, 2010 and 2013 versions of Sharepoint.

  • Sharepoint Portal Server 2003 – Intranet builder, this version was purely for internal use! A very poor community with very few information.
  • Office Sharepoint Server 2007 – The merge between the Sharepoint 2003 and CMS 2002, it was an adventure to start using! a very exciting new approach, that for the first time allowed us to use the same platform for internal and external solutions. Nevertheless it was clear that the merge between the Sharepoint 2003 and the CMS 2002 capabilities was still to be ended. The boost of the Sharepoint community, because the information from Microsoft was limited, the community took for itself to create the information ans solutions, it was the start of one of the most “rich” communities in the IT industry.
  • Sharepoint 2010 Server – A much merged platform, giving the social enterprise boost, and with a real document management capability (instead of managing documents). The community keeps growing, beginning to include other products knowledge. A very timid approach to Sharepoint in the Cloud.
  • Sharepoint 2013 – The more recent version, were we are all at this moment! A very strong community is still growing, and with the reality of Sharepoint in the Cloud a new approach on implementation is being done.

After 10 years working with Sharepoint, sometimes I am asked if I don’t get bored with it and if Sharepoint’s life is reaching the end . . . well, there is no such thing as a Sharepoint project!!! believe me when I say that every project is unique :)

About the Sharepoint’s longevity it seems that for every new version that is released it becomes more of a core platform for Microsoft, some examples of this are the inclusion of Project Server and Commerce Server as services on Sharepoint, instead of standalone products.

A real threat to Sharepoint’s continuous use can be the licensing, because in these times of crisis one of the first cuts of costs that companies do is licensing, and if Microsoft doesn’t adjust to this “new” reality it will suffer, as well as the platform.

 

 

 

 

 

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Posted in Sharepoint, Sharepoint, Sharepoint 2010, Sharepoint 2013

Sharepoint versus open source solutions in times of crisis

Ok, this is an old discussion but in the financial crisis environment , many organizations are trying to get rid of licencing and opt for free or much cheaper solutions.

So this lead us to the main question, is sharepoint a solution in this context, or will it suffer because of it’s cost?

Lets be clear, Sharepoint is not a cheap solution! even though you opt for the Sharepoint Foundation version, you still need a licensed Windows Operating System and a SQL Server (ok, here you can go with the SQL Express, but it is limited in capability and cannot be clustered). On the other side there are several other CMS solutions that are not licensed or have non licensed versions (Community).

So What should my organization choose?

 

My answer is depends . . . ok, this is the easiest answer but the most honest one, why? because there are no two similar cases between two different organizations, and while some will get their objective with an open source solution, others will be very limited on their capability of work and evolution.

With more than 10 years implementing CMS solutions one thing I have witness is that free versions normally have a catch (not all!!! but most), the Community versions give you basic functionality and capability, but when you need more complex approaches usually you have to go with the Enterprise versions, and those are licensed. This also happens with Sharepoint, if you go with the Foundation version you will have a basic amount of functionality and capability, but if you want to go online in internet or the have more complex solutions you will need standard or enterprise versions.

So do I believe Sharepoint is a real solution in this times of crisis, hell yeah!

Sharepoint gives you something that most platforms don’t, it was built for a number of porpuses and it works! you can say that you have a lot of problems implementing Sharepoint solutions, believe I have seen a lot of them, and because I have I know what I am talking about.

I have implemented CMS solutions with Liferay, Joomla, Sitefinity and other CMS as well as a lot of Sharepoint (Sharepointing since 2004), and I can honestly say that when comparing the various products with Sharepoint there seems something missing, either in the implementation of on the functionality / capability part.

Once again, I am not a Sharepoint only Purist, I can recognize that there are other CMS solutions better depending on the purpose o f the implementation. Sharepoint is not a tool for everything, but as far as I know is THE TOOL for some specific scenarios.

 

This is a very long post, but the objective is to question the future and utility of the Sharepoint Platform nowadays and in the near future. I believe Microsoft will have to adjust their licensing program, to enable Sharepoint, and other products to continue to be chosen. And I do still believe Sharepoint still have no direct match for all it’s range, but the evolution will show if the competition will keep up and catch up or even became better.

 

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Posted in Other, Sharepoint 2013

Sharepoint ONLINE: What, Why and How.

For a few years Microsoft has an online version of Sharepoint, but if you asked the partners if they would advice clients to opt for this solution, the answer would be negative. Why? because the Sharepoint online was a very limited sub-set of the Sharepoint on premisses.

 

Now, with the evolution to the 2013 version, Sharepoint online seems more ambitious, more complete.

Ok, it is still a sub-set of the on-premisses version, but a more complete one. It will be a huge task for Microsoft to have every feature online, but comparing to previous versions, my experience with the current version of Sharepoint online is very positive.

 

A warning has to be made, Microsoft is still updating their online solution for the 2013 version, this results in mixed 2010 / 2013 versions online at this stage, but it is planned to have a full upgrade to 2013 soon.

 

How can we know what Sharepoint 2013 versions offer? well, here is a cool and very long article from technet with the indication of the online service description that includes a comparison of the 2013 solution (Office 365, Online standalone ans on-premisses).

 

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/sharepoint-online-service-description.aspx

 

To start using Sharepoint online just follow this article from Office 365 and Sharepoint Online Help:

http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/office365-sharepoint-online-enterprise-help/get-started-with-sharepoint-2013-HA102772778.aspx

 

Remember thet developing for Sharepoint online is not the same of on-premisses, so just download this Developer guide:

http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=17069

 

Is this the time to start implementing more complex Sharepoint solution online?  :)

 

 

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Posted in Sharepoint 2013

Workflow History Description field limitation 255 characters

Well we know that Sharepoint is a WORLD to be discovered, in my opinion is in fact many worlds if you want to really know about it. Another thing is that no matter how many years of experience you have on it, that are always new things to discover, some good some bad . . . this time is one of the bad ones :(

One of my customers has as application of Ideas Management implemented in Sharepoint, the process os approval is based in Sharepoint 2010 workflows. When one idea is rejected it is written a justification text so that it stays associated to the Idea, in this specific case it stays associates to the workflow task.

Ok, so far no problem . . . the user types the justification of the rejection on the multiline field (Description) in the workflow task, and rejects.

So when the Idea author goes and tries to read the justification the text appears truncated … ??? Hum!!! so what is the problem?

The text fields in workflows are limited by design to 255 characters, so even though you can write more than 255 and it is stored (you can check this in the Workflow Tasks List) when it lists the workflow history in the workflow page it truncates the text to the 255 characters.

So the advice (Best Practices) from Microsoft in these cases are to ensure the text in the text fields in workflows do not exceed the 255 characters.

Sharepoint, always a surprise . . sometimes good sometimes bad!

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Posted in Sharepoint 2010

Why I Use Sharepoint – Videos

I found a series of funny videos to illustrate some of the situations that Sharepoint can help. The situations are very close to some of the realities I have come across :)

I don’t know who is the author of these videos.

Approval

 

Team Sites

 

Recover work

 

Proposal

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Posted in Sharepoint

MCSD: SharePoint Applications Solutions Developer

Microsoft has provided the roadmap of exams to be a MCSD. It consisst in the following topics:

  • Programming in HTML5 with JavaScript and CSS3
  • Developing ASP.NET MVC 4 Web Applications
  • Developing Microsoft SharePoint Server 2013 Core Solutions
  • Developing Microsoft SharePoint Server 2013 Advanced Solutions

 

You can check this list here: http://www.microsoft.com/learning/en/us/mcsd-sharepoint-apps-certification.aspx

 

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Posted in Sharepoint 2013
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