Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Configuring ASP.NET 2.0 Application Services to use SQL Server 2000

I was just trying out the code in Introducing ASP.NET Web Part Connections and I immediately stumbled upon an error stating "System.Data.SqlClient.SqlException: An error has occurred while establishing a connection to the server." Fortunately I got to this great blogposting from Scott Guttrie - important things to know:
  • Most of the ASP.NET 2.0 application services are configured to use the built-in SQL Express provider. Since I didn't install it ;-(

  • If you want to use a different provider - you first need to create the SQL database scheam with the aspnet_regsql.exe utility

  • Point your web application to the new DB in your web.config - just replace the connectionstring value for the "LocalSqlServer in the web apps web.config
    <remove name=”LocalSqlServer”/>
    <add name="LocalSqlServer" connectionString="Data Source=localhost;Initial Catalog=appservicesdb;Integrated Security=True" providerName="System.Data.SqlClient"/>

  • Monday, February 27, 2006

    SharePoint Server 2007 Search

    I recently came accross this posting from Arpan Shah - Office "12" Beta at Microsoft - especially the last paragraph was quite interesting:

    There are a bunch of great WSS "v3" and Office "12" SharePoint Servers features that are my personal favorite that I've already blogged about... but the one feature that recently got exposed internally was the next version of SharePoint Search. Sure, the relevancy is significantly better for enterprise search, there are great User Experience enhancements (query hit highlighting, query correction, duplicate collapsing, et cetera)... but the one thing that absolutely takes it to another level is how the next generation SPS search technology allows you to search business data. Data trapped in LOB systems will be searchable in Office "12". We've deployed it internally to search our CRM database so I can find information on a customer very easily. :-) I've used this several times over the last couple weeks to find a specific account manager for a specific account. It's jaw dropping amazing.

    P.S. This is the first posting tagged SharePoint2007 in Technorati ... I hope a lot more will follow in the coming months ;-)

    Office 2007 - launch date October 3th?

    Edd Bott wrote a blog entry about when Office 2007 will be launched:

    I don’t have any inside information, but that date sounds exactly right to me, based on what I see in current Office betas and a review of previous Office beta programs. Think you can guess the exact date? You’ll get your chance at the end of this post.

    First, a little background:

    Office 2007 Beta 1 has been in testers’ hands since November 16, 2005. I’ve lost count of the number of features that Microsoft developers have promised will be ready for Beta 2, along with hints that the ribbon and other interface elements are getting a pretty good overhaul in the name of usability. In addition, Beta 2 is going to be publicly available as part of a preview program that anyone can try. So the sheer number of changes is daunting, and the quality bar is very, very high, which means that Microsoft can’t afford to rush the testing process.

    Microsoft has publicly committed to delivering a “Beta-1 Technical Refresh” in the March timeframe, with Windows Vista compatibility high on its list of changes. The actual release data for Beta 2 is being held close to the vest, but you can bet it’s not imminent (if it were close to being complete now, why bother with that interim release?).

    So, if Beta 2 is ready in April, how long will the Office dev team need after that to get the code ready to ship?

    Read more

    Wednesday, February 22, 2006

    Problem with Office2007 tag page on Technorati

    I just noticed that you get a very strange error when trying to look for all blogs on Technorati with the tag Office2007 - just type in http://www.technorati.com/tag/office2007. I get an error stating

    "Internet Explorer cannot open the Internet site http://www.technorati.com/tag/office2007. Operation aborted."

    Afterwards the page simply closes. Anybody seeing the same problem, or is it just me .... ;-)

    Saturday, February 18, 2006

    2007 Office System - Synopsis and some remarks

    Microsoft just released details on Packaging and Pricing for the new Office Suite:

    Finally the speculation about which different Office Servers Microsoft would release is over. There will be no separate Excel Server, CMS has been integrated into SharePoint Server 2007 but we will see a separate Forms Server, an electronic forms solution which allow users to fill in InfoPath Forms through a common web browser.

    Another surprise was the actual demise of FrontPage - this product has been rebranded to SharePoint Designer 2007 and will focus more on web development with SharePoint and less on general web design. General web design functionalities will be available in the new Expression Web Designer

    In the product fact sheet we also see a new EPM product surfacing - Office Project Portfolio Server 2007. This will be a top-down portfolio management governance solution.It has been designed to help ensure that organizations gain visibility, insight and control over their project, program and application portfolios. Project Portfolio Servers analytical modules will help ensure that organizations can prioritize, optimize and select the investments that are best aligned with their strategic priorities, and proactively schedule the selected projects to maximize resource utilization across the planning horizon.

  • Q&A: Microsoft Unveils Next Generation of Web Authoring and Design Tools (Feb. 15, 2006)

  • Customers to Receive Better Solutions and More Product Options With 2007 Microsoft Office Release (Feb. 15, 2006)

  • 2007 Microsoft Office System Packaging (.doc file, 344 KB, February 2006)

  • 2007 Microsoft Office System Pricing (.doc file, 300 KB, February 2006)

  • Reaction from Richard Teper - SharePoint team blog

  • Microsoft to unleash host of Office suites

  • MS Unveils Office 2007, Multiple versions (Slashdot)

  • 2007 Microsoft Office system (aka Office '12')

  • Why Office 2007 Pricing and Product Info Now?

  • It's official: 'Office 2007'

  • Thursday, February 16, 2006

    Tuesday, February 14, 2006

    Microsoft to detail Office 12 SKUs

    Source Microsoft Watch: The Office team is expected to unveil on Thursday branding around Office 12, according to sources. NeoWin.Net reported on Monday that Microsoft is planning to unveil Office details, including product names, licensing information and some "directional pricing information" around its next-gen Office suite. We're hearing the same.

    SharePoint 2003 sizing and capacity planning

    When planning for a large SharePoint deployment - you should probably take a look at the links listed below:
  • HP SharePoint Sizing and Configuration Tool 2.0

  • Capacity Planning for Microsoft Office SharePoint Portal Server 2003

  • Capacity Planning for Windows SharePoint Services

  • Saturday, February 11, 2006

    SharePoint webpartpages -

    I have been doing a project in which we started to customise the webpartpages you can add to a SharePoint site or area, which allows you to enhance your SharePoint solutions. You can select from 8 templates and the webpartpages are stored in a document library which allows you to build a basic CMS system. When browsing some SharePoint newsgroups - I came across this interesting newsgroup posting from Todd Bleeker. I have to say it is definitely a worthwile read for everybody. I do have to add that although the webpartpages are ghoested when you add them through the SharePoint web UI, they immediately become unghosted when you change the metadata for the webpartpages stored in the document library.

    Newsgroup posting:
    The following MSDN article is very similar to what you are after:

    Unfortunately, the article results in UNGHOSTED pages. I advise against
    unnecessary unghosting. The article is good food for thought and allows for
    an unlimited number of templates. I have a friend that has even tweaked this
    solution to use an unlimited number of page templates from a Document
    Library. Very cool.

    However, I have pursued the same URL Protocol approach that the spcf.aspx
    page uses making RPC calls to SharePoint via the owssvr.dll. This solution
    has a hardcoded limited of eight template pages. But the resulting pages ARE
    GHOSTED. Based on my extensive work with Microsoft Content Management Server
    (I wrote a good portion of the technical content in the Addison Wesley book,
    ISBN: 0321194446) and on my own personal experience; eight templates are
    typically enough for most Web sites. At least they have been for mine. I'm
    going to limp-along using this approach to content management in SharePoint
    until we get full-blown access to Master Pages.

    You can find limited documentation for the /_vti_bin/owssvr.dll?CS=109
    command using in the spcf.aspx page in the WSS SDK under "Windows SharePoint
    Services RPC Methods", specifically the NewWebPage Method. The parameters of
    this method are posted to the dll using mostly hidden form fields defined
    throughout the spcf.aspx page.

    <Method ID="Text">
    <SetList Scope="Request">GUID</SetList>
    <SetVar Name="Cmd">NewWebPage</SetVar>
    <SetVar Name="ID">New</SetVar>
    <SetVar Name="Type">[WebPartPage|BasicPage]</SetVar>
    <SetVar Name="WebPartPageTemplate">[1-8<<SetVar Name="Overwrite">[true|false]&tl;/SetVar>
    <SetVar Name="Title">Text</SetVar>

    This command will create a new Web Part Page or a new basic page in the
    Document Library specified by the GUID. These new pages ARE GHOSTED, that
    is, the content column in the Docs table in the database is Null. This is
    mandatory in our environment. Changes to the underlying series of SMARTPGS
    templates (spstd[1-8].aspx) will reflect in the pages generated using these
    templates. I don't understand why but changes to these pages show
    immediately, without an iisreset. This makes me think that these pages are
    not really ghosted (cached in IIS memory) like typical direct mode pages but
    read directly from the file system every time they are called. I haven't
    tested this idea further but it is curious. Other ideas are welcome.

    The eight templates can be used to create an unlimited number of pages. BTW,
    the CS in the URL stands for the FrontPage character set to use and the 109
    stands for the character set UTF-8. One last really odd bit of trivia, the
    _vti in the URL stands for "Vermeer Technologies Inc.", the company that
    Microsoft acquired to get the first version of FrontPage way back in early
    1996. Read about it here:


    <Todd />

    Thursday, February 09, 2006

    Change the fields in the current view of a listviewwebpart

    Something which is pretty handy to know, ... The AllUserswebpart section in ONET.XML defines which webparts are added to a site at site creation. For every list that is created on a site, you can easily add a listviewwebpart by adding <View List="104" BaseViewID="0" WebPartZoneID="Left"/> to the AllUsersWebPart section. The value for the List property references the ListTemplate element in the ListTemplates section - 104 is the ID for the Announcements list. The webpart on default.aspx uses the current view as defined in SCHEMA.XML with BaseViewID=0. If you want to change which fields are displayed in this view, you need to alter the ViewFields section in SCHEMA.XML.

    Wednesday, February 08, 2006

    SWMI or "swimmie"?

    Today, my boss asked me if I had heard about SWMI or swimmy ....

    I said what?!? Swimmy? My girlfriend told me, it actually is a story about a little black fish ... but I guess that is not what he meant ; -) ...

    Apparently it stands for a more Secure and Well Managed Infrastructure. I really don't know if this an universally known acronym but anyway you can find more information about it on these webpages - A more secure and well managed enterprise - liberate your infrastructure. You can find a series of webcasts on how to install, configure, automate and manage a more secure and well-managed infrastructure. Topics covered include Active Directory installation and monitoring, Step-by-step patch management implementation, server, application, and desktop monitoring, PKI Infrastructures, Security concepts and principals, and the utilization and configuration of Group Policy, SMS, MOM, ISA and Exchange.

    Tuesday, February 07, 2006

    Come on - start blogging about Office12 (Update: except persons in the beta program)

    Come on people, if you are currently using Office 12 - you are now allowed to blog about your experience. Be carefull though, only blog about Office 12 clients - specifically Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, Access, Publisher, Visio, Project, OneNote, and InfoPath. Groove “4.0” and all Office “12” server products as well as Windows SharePoint Services “v3” are still under NDA. ... I got it from a reliable source, Scoble - Office 12 NDA news.

    MVPs are still hesitant though - Can we blog about Office 12 Beta 1? (Pedro Serrano) - although some seem to be less reluctant Share your O12 Beta 1 Experience!

    Update (1 hour later):
    It seems that I jumped to conclusions a little too soon - I just got a confirmation that people allowed to blog about Office 12 seem to be an exception to the rule. Everyone in the beta program is still bound by the confidentiality clause in the EULA - including all MVPs. So still no blogging allowed for me :-( ...