Saturday, December 15, 2007

Language is not supported error activating training kit feature

I have been trying to install the new SharePoint Training Kit on my MOSS 2007 server.

Get SharePoint training on your desktop - SharePoint Server - Microsoft Office Online

I followed the instructions and at the last step found that when I tried to Activate the feature on the training site, I received a 'language is not supported' error. I am in Australia so the OS was set to English (Australia) as the language.

So I reverted my VM to a previous snapshot and tried again having changed the OS language setting to English (United States). Again I got to the last step and was disappointed to see the same message.

After more testing, I thought to change the Regional Settings for my SharePoint Site that I created for the training from English (Australia) to English (United states), and that allowed me to activate the feature.

It is a great idea to publish the training this way and I'm looking forward to investigating it in a bit more detail.

LearnerSite sample screen

Thursday, December 13, 2007

SharePoint Products and Technologies Service Pack 1 Resource Center

Microsoft have released SP1 for Office 2007 and also WSS and MOSS 2007. This is the place to go to find out about the MOSS and WSS upgrade...

SharePoint Products and Technologies Service Pack 1 Resource Center

Get SharePoint training on your desktop - SharePoint Server - Microsoft Office Online

I have been working with the SharePoint Learning Kit for a while now, but haven't had much compelling content to demo. Microsoft have released SharePoint training in SCORM format, so I'm pretty keen to install it and try it out....

Get SharePoint training on your desktop - SharePoint Server - Microsoft Office Online

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

How do I turn off Internet Explorer Enhanced Security Configuration in Windows Server 2008?

I have been setting up a Windows 2008 virtual machine with Office 2007, WSS 3.0, Visual Studio 2008 etc, and was wondering how to turn off the IE Enhanced Security settings. It has changed from Add/Remove programs to using the Server Manager. Click on the root and then click "Configure IE ESC"  in the server summary.

How do I turn off Internet Explorer Enhanced Security Configuration in Windows Server 2008?

Monday, November 19, 2007

Search Server 2008 Express - Install

I found some time to install Search Server 2008 Express over the weekend. So far I am very impressed. There were some issues with the installation (thank goodness for VMWare Snapshots). First I installed it (without reading the documentation of course :) ) trying to just select the WFE rather than complete install. This was because I wanted to use my SQL installation rather than SQL Express. The VM I was installing on already had WSS 3.0 on it.

After the first attempt, my WSS installation was really unhappy and I was getting a null reference exception whenever I tried to open a page including the WSS Central Admin.

So I rolled back to my previous Snapshot and had a brief look at the installation instructions. Realizing that I needed to do a complete installation, I tried again. It took quite a while to install but eventually completed successfully. It seemed to recognise the existing WSS 3.0 install and performed an 'upgrade'.

During the installation, I elected not to create a Search site, rather do it manually. The UI for the configuration is pretty simple, more nicely setup than the MOSS Search configuration UI.

By default it setup the content source for the WSS site to be crawled. I kicked of a crawl and that was done.

I created a Search site in my existing WSS site collection and lo and behold it worked straight away. I noticed immediately that the new Federated search web part was in place searching ninemsn.

I decided to download a couple of other Federated Search Connectors for Google etc and reconfigured the web part to search Google, and sure enough it worked like a charm.

I have not investigated it fully yet, but it looks like you can pass parameters to the federated search web part, so I am guessing that you can search many data sources simultaneously this way.

I am pretty interested to investigate this further and will post other findings as I try it out.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Enterprise Search from Microsoft

Wow, Microsoft have announced a free version of Search - Microsoft Search Server 2008 Express. It looks like this has most of the features you find in MOSS 2007 including best bets and reporting.

It also has the ability to perform federated search with connectors to other systems that implement the Open Search standard.

Looking forward to giving this a try. It makes for some interesting opportunities to leverage this with WSS.

Enterprise Search from Microsoft

Enterprise Search from Microsoft

Wow, Microsoft have announced a free version of Search - Microsoft Search Server 2008 Express. It looks like this has most of the features you find in MOSS 2007 including best bets and reporting.

It also has the ability to perform federated search with connectors to other systems that implement the Open Search standard.

Looking forward to giving this a try. It makes for some interesting opportunities to leverage this with WSS.

Enterprise Search from Microsoft

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Windows Live

Hmm, I have not been a fan of Windows Live up until now, but I have to say that I just installed the latest software for Windows Live, and I am pretty impressed so far.

I am writing this blog entry using Windows Live Writer, and the interface is very nice. It connected to my WSS based blog very easily and I am up and running...

Also, I am pretty impressed with Windows Live Photo Gallery beta. For a number of years I have used Microsoft Digital Image Suite which in itself has been a good application for managing my photos. Apparently that is discontinued, so this will be the replacement.

I haven't tried Windows Live mail yet, but I am told that it is pretty good.


Gosford to Lord Howe Island Yacht Race

Well it has been a while since I blogged. I have been pretty busy with work and sailing too...

Over the past week, I have been updating the Sailing Club web site with the news and positions for the 2007 Gosford to Lord Howe Island Yacht race. This race is the only other category one yacht race in Australia apart from the Sydney to Hobart.

Sounds like it was a tough race this year with strong headwinds for a substantial part of the race.

I did take lots of photographs of the start which I was pretty happy with. If you are interested in looking at them, look here.

And the winners are;

 Lord Howe Start 2007 007 (640x425) Lord Howe Start 2007 068 (2) (640x426) Lord Howe Start 2007 107 (2) (640x425)

The race is over for another year and the number of yacht races I actually sail in will now start to ramp up. I'm hoping for good weather this season... :)

Back to the tech stuff now....

Friday, August 24, 2007

K2 – Read the Troubleshooting instructions

After installing BlackPearl, when I opened the K2 Workspace, I was getting the following error;

Unable to generate a temporary class (result=1).
error CS2001: Source file 'C:\WINDOWS\TEMP\hq-r-kii.0.cs' could not be found
error CS2008: No inputs specified

Description: An unhandled exception occurred during the execution of the current web request. Please review the stack trace for more information about the error and where it originated in the code.

Exception Details: System.InvalidOperationException: Unable to generate a temporary class (result=1).
error CS2001: Source file 'C:\WINDOWS\TEMP\hq-r-kii.0.cs' could not be found
error CS2008: No inputs specified

After a little while, I found in the troubleshooting section of the installation guide, a note which said;

"To resolve this ensure that the following permissions are given to the users.

User Permissions

Give all "Authenticated Users" the following C:\Windows\Temp permissions: Read & Execute, List Folder Contents, Read, Write"

Once this was done, the workspace opened correctly.

Enabling the K2 Features from Central Administration

After installing BlackPearl when I clicked any of the 'Feature' links from the K2 Administration tab in Central Admin, I was getting the following error;

"The site http://<server>:<port>/ could not be found in the Web application SPWebApplication Name=SharePoint - <port> Parent=SPWebService."

I noticed that the reported site was my SSP Administration web application. Because I had this on a different port to MOSS, the only Site Collection is ssp/admin and there is no 'root' site collection. I tried deleting the SSP and web application, and the feature links then started working. I created a new SSP on a different port and it stopped working again. Then I tried adding a blank site collection at the root of the SSP Admin web application and they started working again.

I assume this means that there is an error when the BlackPearl link enumerates the site collections in all of the web applications and it expects there to be a site collection at the root of the web app.

So a work around is to create a blank site collection in the root of your SSP web application. (Or put your SSP in the same web application as your other sites)

K2Error.aspx missing from the admin folder

After installing and configuring BlackPearl RTM, I can get the server to start but when I go to MOSS Central Admin, if I click on any of the features, I get the following message;

Server Error in '/' Application.


The resource cannot be found.

Description: HTTP 404. The resource you are looking for (or one of its dependencies) could have been removed, had its name changed, or is temporarily unavailable. Please review the following URL and make sure that it is spelled correctly.

Requested URL: /_admin/K2Error.aspx

After a while, I realised that this was because the K2Error.aspx file is not deployed to the 12 hive admin folder. I copied it from the template folder into the admin folder and then I could see the real error.

K2 BlackPearl is here

I'm happy to see the K2 BlackPearl has made it to RTM. I'm pretty excited about the new possibilities it introduces and I thought I would download it and install it in my virtual machine. I've come across a few gotchas during the install that you might want to consider if you are performing the installation. I will blog these as separate entries....

Friday, July 13, 2007

SharePoint Permissions

I have been looking for a concise description of the relationship between permissions in MOSS. Thanks to David Marsh, he provided me with this link which nicely articulates this;

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

2-way offline sync for SharePoint

An extract from one of the MOSS Team blog entries which sounds interesting;

"Colligo recently released 2.1 of their Contributor for SharePoint, which provides similar synchronization and offline access capabilities for SharePoint content as their free Reader for SharePoint, but it offers update and sync back functionality that the Reader doesn't have. Contributor, just like Reader, can synchronize not only with WSS 3.0 and MOSS 2007 but also WSS 2.0 and SPS 2003! Contributor also includes an Outlook Add-in that provides true 2-way synchronization between SharePoint document libraries and Outlook 2003 or 2007 folders, which is a very often asked for improvement over Outlook 2007's native 1-way synchronization with SharePoint document libraries. The Outlook Add-in also provides drag-and-drop archival functionality for relevant e-mails that are copied or moved to an Outlook folder that is then synchronized with a SharePoint document library. The Outlook Add-in automatically captures standard e-mail fields and maps them to metadata in the document library! Here's a screencast of how the Outlook Add-in can be used to significantly enhanced the Sales Lead Pipeline application template for WSS 3.0. For more information about Contributor for SharePoint, go to"

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Tuning my virtual machines

I do a lot of demos of MOSS to clients, and have a pair of VMWare virtual machines with lots of software installed including Windows 2003 Server, Exchange 2003, LCS, MOSS, SQL Server, Office 2007, Visual Studio 2005, Outlook 2007,Sharepoint Designer, Office Communicator, Groove etc.

I have been having a lot of performance problems with them recently, they seem to be getting 'too big'. The VMs total about 26GB now....

I spent some time today 'tuning' them and have dramatically improved the performance of these so they are now quite usable again.

Some of the things I have done are;

Looked at the document on the VMWare site about Performance Tuning VMWare -

From this, I reconfigured my VMs to use a single processor (I have a dual core machine), reduced the amount of RAM allocated to the main VM to 1640MB, changed the priority of the VMs so that the Domain Controller VM with Exchange and LCS runs with Low priority and the main MOSS VM runs with High priority (when input grabbed). I have also backed up and shrunk all of the databases in SQL.

One of the biggest improvements comes from some advice from one of my colleagues – David Marsh – who suggested turning on IIS compression. This has made a huge improvement to the performance of SharePoint as the page sizes have reduced dramatically.

In addition to all of these things, I have turned on Disk caching and Page Output caching in SharePoint 2007.

My VMs seem to be humming along nicely at the moment and I hope it stays that way.

(I run a Lenovo T60p, dual core with a 100GB 7200 RPM drive, 3GB of RAM with Vista as the host operating system.)

Thursday, June 7, 2007

Microsoft Office Interactive Developer Map

Check out this tool to help you navigate to the information you need for different technologies and solutions.

The Microsoft Office Interactive Developer Map is a Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF) application that helps developers visualize the different programs, servers, services, and tools that will help them build solutions. It allows them to drill down to each product and technology and learn about new features, objects, Web services, namespaces, and schemas required to extend Microsoft Office and build custom Office Business Applications (OBAs).


Monday, April 16, 2007

Simplify Digital Content Life Cycle

Microsoft Introduces Interactive Media Manager to Simplify Digital Content Life Cycle by Connecting People, Processes and Rich Content

Solution combines the collaborative features of a portal solution, the streamlining features of a workflow engine and the rich media capabilities of an editing tool.

Creating a Training Portal Using Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007

Michale Gannotti has done a nice "How To" video of using MOSS to create a training portal. He utilises the template from the 'Fantastic 40' to configure it.

Check it out here

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Samples with the ECM Starter Kit

If you have not yet downloaded the MOSS SDK and ECM Starter Kit, it is definately worth looking at.

The ECM starter kit includes a number of code samples;

Sample Summaries

Document Management and Content Processing

  • Term Replacement Document Inspector Module: A document inspector that replaces terms in a document with a term that can be used publicly.
  • Document Converters:
    • Server-side Custom Property Remover: A simple docx to docx converter that removes custom properties.
    • Docm to Docx Converter: A converter that will remove macros, and change the document from the docm format to the docx format.

Records Management and Policy:

  • De-Duplication Router: A records repository router that prevents duplicate files from being submitted to the records repository.
  • Document Integrity Verifier: A policy feature that verifies that the document content does not change.
  • Submit to Records Repository Console Application: An application that uses SOAP to submit files to the records repository.
  • Search, Collect, and Hold Tool: A console application that allows users to place litigation hold orders on SharePoint content being managed outside of a Records Center site.
  • Sample Barcode Generator: A custom barcode generator that plugs into the "Barcode" policy feature to create barcodes for items.
  • Default Site Policy: A console application that sets a site collection policy for all lists in a site collection.


  • Custom Workflow Reports: A custom report query and injector to demonstrate how to create custom reports for workflow (concepts also apply to audit reports).
  • ECMActivities: Custom workflow activities that interact with enterprise content management features, and that can be used in other workflows.
  • Item Activities: Activities that wrap the IListItemService workflow service APIs.
  • Hello World Sequential: A basic sequential workflow that includes Microsoft® Office InfoPath® form integration.
  • State Based Approval: A basic state machine workflow with a two-level approval process.
  • Modification: A basic workflow that shows how to modify a workflow already in progress.
  • Replication and Contact Selector: A workflow that shows how to use the Contact Selector ActiveX control in InfoPath and the Replicator activity to create multiple tasks.
  • Intersystem Purchase Order: A solution that demonstrates how to use SharePoint workflow with external systems.
  • ASPX Collect Feedback: A basic "Collect Feedback" workflow that uses ASPX pages instead of InfoPath forms.
  • Confidential Approval: An approval workflow that uses item-level permissions to "lock down" a document, workflow tasks, and history items.
  • Group Approval: An extension of the East Asian SharePoint® Server 2007 Group Approval workflow.
  • Review Workflows: An extensible imitation of the SharePoint Server 2007 Approval workflow.
  • Multi-Stage: A workflow that assigns tasks set of serial stages that have tasks done in parallel. 
  • Server-side Collect Signatures: An imitation of the SharePoint Server 2007 Collect Signatures Workflow. Uses Office Open XML Formats Word document to pull out signature lines on the server and assign tasks to the owners.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

I Passed! (part 2)

"Congratulations on earning your Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist: Microsoft Windows SharePoint Services 3.0: Application Development certification!"

Friday, March 23, 2007

Comparing Lotus Notes and MOSS Features

I was thinking about how Lotus Notes features map to MOSS 2007 features. This is not intended to be a comprehensive list, but may provide some food for thought....


Lotus Notes Feature

MOSS 2007 Feature


Reader and Author names fields

Item level security

We have prototyped an implementation of this which allows the programmatic setting of the item security based on metadata values.


Forms Server (InfoPath) or SharePoint Lists

InfoPath 2007 and Forms Server allow the creation of sophisticated forms which can be published and used through the browser interface. For some applications the standard forms in a list may be adequate. It is also possible to hook customised ASPX pages into lists.


SharePoint Views, DataView Web Parts, Query View Web Parts

There are many powerful ways of representing views in MOSS. There are the native views, Query View web part and Data View web part (created in SharePoint Designer).

User Management (NAB)

Active Directory, LDAP, SQL authentication providers

MOSS uses AD and SharePoint groups to control access.


Sites and Libraries

Potentially the SharePoint site could be the container for what is currently represented by a Notes database. Also, it may be more appropriate to use Lists and Libraries in one site where an application is currently split across Lotus Notes databases.



MOSS search can index the content and will honour the security. Non SharePoint data sources can also be indexed for search, including Lotus Notes databases, SQL Server and many others using the Business Data Catalog.


Site Columns and BDC

MOSS has the concept of site columns which can be created at the top level site and then used in sub sites in the hierarchy. These columns can lookup data from other lists as well as external data sources via the Business Data Catalog


Workflow Foundation

MOSS has some out of the box workflows and can also host custom workflows built either with Office SharePoint Deesigner 2007 or Visual Studion 2005. There are also products that can be implemented with MOSS such as K2.Net.


Custom code attached to events or workflows

There are a number of alternatives for this. We can utilise workflow functionality to cause code to run. We can also attach code to the various SharePoint events.

Email agents

Workflow Foundation

Notifications to items can be performed utilising the SharePoint Workflow functionality.

Database Templates

Site Templates

In a similar way that you can create a Notes template and create databases from that template, you can also create a MOSS Site templates or definitions from which to create new sites

Thursday, March 22, 2007

I passed!

Congratulations on earning your Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist: Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 Application Development certification! We hope you enjoy the benefits of your certification and of membership in the Microsoft Certified Professional community.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Setting up a demo for Excel Services with connection to a data source

I was trying to find a good source of information on how to setup Excel services with access to an external Data Source.

My colleague Alain pointed me to this TechNet article which leads you through configuring External Data connections for Excel Services

Monday, March 12, 2007

Getting user information in an InfoPath Form

I was building a demonstration form in InfoPath last week, and it occured to me that if I wanted to get more info than just the user name, how would I go about that?

This article explains how to use the UserProfileService of MOSS 2007;

Want to know about SharePoint Client Access Licences?

Thanks to Serge Lenbet for pointing this out...!85C6ACD88A39D702!375.entry

Friday, March 9, 2007

Cascading dropdowns in Forms Server


One of the things that is not supported in the Browser version of InfoPath forms is Filtering of data sources. If you want to achieve the 'Cascading dropdown' effect of one selection filtering another, then you can use a web service and pass a parameter to it. See the following blog entry from Scott Heim for more details;

Collecting data with Microsoft Office Access 2007 and InfoPath 2007

Did you know that you can use Microsoft Access to generate InfoPath forms which can be used with Outlook to gather data from people and automatically collate the responses to the email back into Access?

From the Access Help;

Microsoft Office Access 2007 makes it easy to gather data from people who are located anywhere on the globe, such as members of your sales team, survey participants, or contacts. Office Access 2007 works with Microsoft Office Outlook 2007 to help you to generate and send an e-mail message that includes a data entry form. When the recipients fill out the forms and send them back to you, the replies are processed according to your specifications. For example, if you choose to have the replies automatically processed, the contents of the form are added to the appropriate table in your database as soon as the reply reaches your inbox. This new feature, the Collect data through e-mail messages Wizard, can save you hours that you might have otherwise spent entering data on behalf of your users.

Check out this blog entry by Balamurali Balaji;

Monday, March 5, 2007

Printing Forms

When we recently did a Forms Server project, one of the things that impressed me was the feature Microsoft have added called the 'Print View'. Until we came to this project it had not really occurred to me the issues with printing a web based form. If you have ever tried it previously, the page would just break wherever, so that made it difficult to print a form which has to be physically signed.

With InfoPath 2007 and Forms Server, you can insert page breaks into your forms, and then from the form in your browser, you select 'Print View' and it installs what I assume is an ActiveX which allows it to be printed including the page breaks.

Some more info on this can be found here

Sunday, March 4, 2007

Fitting a boat window

It's time to try to reseal the windows on my boat again. One of the challenges of boating is the seemingly endless list of maintenance tasks to do. I have perspex windows which are screwed on to the side of the boat. I once attempted to do this task before. The logical thing seemed to be to get a power screw driver, take out the many screws. Clean all of the old sealant off, apply new sealant and screw it back on again (using the power screw driver). I have since learned that I did several things wrong... I found the following useful information at;


Fitting a frameless Perspex window

Warning - do not use a powered screwdriver when fitting a Perspex window!

As with the aluminium framed window above, the notes below refer to sealing the window with the non-setting bedding compound as supplied by Eagle Boat Windows which again is recommended for this application.

Check the fit of the window on the side of the boat and check the alignment of the fixing holes. It may help to carry out a "dry" fit of the window using all the fixings to make sure that there are no problems.

To fit the windows, cut the nozzle of the bedding compound at 45°, and apply a 6mm/¼" bead of bedding compound in line with the screw holes around the inside of the window that butts against the GRP/wood of your boat.

If your window is not being fitted to a flat surface (e.g. it is fitted to the side of your boat), then it may be helpful to insert a small plain stainless steel washer between the Perspex and your boat at each screw position. This will ensure that the thickness bedding compound is even over the whole length of the window and that there will be little or no migration of bedding compound in the middle area of the window.

Present the window to the aperture (remember orientation!) and press it against the boat. You will see a witness of bedding compound appear in the holes where the screws locate and this must be removed. Insert the screws and tighten very lightly around the window. Working your way around the window several times, tighten the screws so that there is an even gap of about 1 to 2mm between the Perspex and the boat. Always be aware of the torque you are applying to the screw and watch for any bowing of the window between the screws.

Leave the witness of bedding compound to harden for a few days and then, using the small plastic scraper supplied, peel off the excess compound. If there are any stubborn remnants of material, use a soft cloth and White Spirit to remove it.

Jan Tielens’ SmartPart for SharePoint – ASP.Net AJAX Support

Check out the newest SmartPart for SharePoint from Jan Tielens which allows you to host ASP.Net Web User Controls in SharePoint web parts.

In particular have a look at his screen cast which shows it being used with Asp.Net AJAX. It looks very cool.

Check out the rest of Jan's blog

Friday, March 2, 2007

When should I use Groove?

Microsoft has a pretty good product (IMO) in Groove which came as part of the acquisition of Groove Network. It is a 'thick' client application designed for peer to peer collaboration and sharing.

More information at

Some of the key features of Groove are;

  • Security – encrypted content on your hard drive and encrypted communications over http
  • Collaboration across firewalls – you can invite people outside your organisation to participate in a workspace. You don't need to involve IT and you can communicate through firewalls.
  • Efficient use of bandwidth – when Groove synchronises workspaces, it only ships the deltas (changes) to files across the network. So imagine you are collaborating on a document which is several MB in size, you don't want to be shipping that across low bandwidth connections whenever you change it. Groove ONLY sends the changes which makes it very effiecient.
  • Integration with SharePoint – You can take a Document Library offline from SharePoint, make changes to the documents and then resync them with SharePoint. (This does ship the whole document back and forth each time)

So people ask me, 'when should I use Groove and when should I use SharePoint?

My opinion on this is as follows;

Consider Groove for smallish teams of people who are highly mobile or work in different organisations to collaborate on projects and documents. As it has been explained to me, Groove is good for <50 people per workspace before the performance starts to degrade. If I need to communicate across firewall boundaries, I can securely exchange documents and files with other parties very easily. (Much more efficient and secure than email or ftp). If I need to collaborate on large files, Groove is excellent for its efficiency of data synchronisation. Once you finish, publish the completed documents and files into SharePoint for the broader audience.

For broader audiences within your organisation who are connected to your network, SharePoint may be a better solution. The data benefits from all of the features of SharePoint, is stored centrally, is searchable etc. Note that Outlook 2007 has some offline capabilities for SharePoint content. You can take a SharePoint list or library into Outlook, but this is really a one way sync (SharePoint to Outlook) Also, you need to consider if you want all of that data stored in your outlook data files.....