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Viewing SharePoint on Android

October 31st, 2010

Since the release of Quick Browser for Android/SharePoint we got many comments. While many people were quite happy with it, other could not use it since they lack the SharePoint privileges needed and got 401 error.

For those people there a solution now – Firefox 4 for Android was released earlier this month. It’s in beta (and it feels that way) but at the moment but it’s better than nothing.

WARNING: On our Nexus One it took 42MB (but they’ve enabled ‘Moved To SD’).

SharePoint & Android

September 12th, 2010

Current version of Google Android does not support SharePoint since Android does not support NTLM (up to version 2.2 at least). To bypass this issue and to allow better browsing experience in the Android OS for SharePoint we created a native Android application which is available in the android market: Quick Browser for Android/SharePoint.

Remote Access to SharePoint Online

August 22nd, 2010

SPElement’s Remote Explorer for SP uses web services to access & view SharePoint internals. When accessing a local SharePoint instance knowing what’s the username/domain is simple, however finding out your SharePoint Online is a bit more tricky.

The username you are using to logon to SharePoint Online is not the real domain username that you should use. To find out the real user name:

1. Enter SharePoint Online

2.  “Site Actions” -> “Site Settings”

3. On the left, in “Users and Permissions” -> “People and Groups”

4. Select the desired user

5. The “true” user name is under “Account”, under the format [domain]\[username]

SharePoint 2010

May 6th, 2010

So far we did not test any of SPElements web-parts on sharePoint 2010. I just wonder, did anyone tried any product? which one?

SharePoint field format validation (regular expression)

September 13th, 2009

If you want to use regular expression to validate SharePoint field format, there are few solutions you can choose from (such as:  Regular Expression Validator, Regular Expression Validator Field and few commercial solutions). The existing solutions are based on custom field type, which works very good as long as you don’t use Office application to update metadata and don’t need to integrate any 3rd party tool with the list (or write your own). If you want to use any 3rd party tools you might be in trouble since the they might not work with the custom field type.

Another approach is to use a constraint on an existing field (a new feature in SPListConstraints): regular expression validation. When loading a new item, or changing item metadata, the metadata is validated with the regular expression the user (administrator) selected.

Here’s how the setting of the field format validation looks like in the SPListConstraints (version 1.0b1 and above):

Field format validation

Lightbox for SharePoint

August 30th, 2009

Few weeks ago a user posted a comment on the forum stating that a Lightbox webpart for SharePoint didn’t work with SPSlideShow. After some checking, it looked like there’s no go solution since Lightbox is based on a JavaScript which is incompatible with the one used in SPSlideShow. Our solution: a new, free, Lightbox clone (milkbox) based web part: SPElements Picture Gallery.

SPElements Picture Gallery works with Picture Library and displays clickable thumbnails gallery from the pictures in the library, which can either: (a) create lightbox-like popup, (b) open the image in the browser or (c) open the image item. All configurable by the SharePoint webpart administrator.

Picture Gallery WebPart

Advanced data validation

June 22nd, 2009

SharePoint out of the box data validation for fields usually restricts the range of values allowed. Frequent request is to compare between fields in the list, e.g. field A < field B. This is a good idea when field A is start date and field B is end date, in such a case we would expect StartDate <= EndDate. So far the way to implement such a constraint was by writing custom code. But no more.

SPListConstraint just got a new feature “Data Validation Contraint” which do just that – enforce relation between the values of two columns. The feature allows more than a single constraint set on a list so there’s not problem adding few rules (A <= B, B > C, etc..). The new feature is configured using the SPListConstraint settings page:

Field data validation settings

Free Mini & Color Calendar Web Parts for SharePoint

April 25th, 2009

Last few days we were developing 2 new web parts, both are calendar related, and use similar infrastructure:

Both web parts support coloring & multiple calendar sources. You can select several different calendar lists to show in a single web part and give a different color for each source list (or use multiple views from the same calendar list and color each view differently). Since the mini calendar is very small only one color is selected for each date in the case there are few events with different coloring in the same day.

minicalendarSPElements Mini Calendar is a small, resizable web part. When pointing on a specific date all the events in that date are displayed in a tooltip box. Clicking on an event in the opened box will open the view form of the item. Smallest recommended size is 180px*180px, although it’s possible to resize to even smaller size but scroll bars might appear on some browsers (Firefox).

Sample color calendar entries

SPElements Color Calendar integrates nicely into SharePoint calendar look and feel with a gradient filling of the events as shown in the image to the right.

Viewing SharePoint internals remotely

April 15th, 2009

From time to time I need to find information about SharePoint server internals for the various product developments. There’s one very popular product called SharePoint Manager 2007 which is very good but requires to be run from the SharePoint server. I was looking for a simple tool, without server installation, that will get the information. I found few tools:  without running on the server. I found few (free) tools such as SharePoint Explorer Client 2.0 add-in for IE (but I use Firefox).

After looking a bit I’ve decided to try and write something quickly, and so came SPElements Remote Explorer for SharePoint – a simple tree navigation tool thats uses SharePoint standard web services to browse SharePoint internals. As a side effect, it can also browse SharePoint Live since there’s no server side installation.

The privileges needed from the user are minimal (read access & remote interfaces access) with anyone with standard role as contributor or above got them (you can even add it to the ‘Read’ role). You can open the tree directly in a specific site so there’s no need to have the permission for the entire farm, just for a specific site.

Slide show web part for SharePoint

March 15th, 2009

It has been a while since the creation of the SPSlideShow web part, but I haven’t wrote the story behind it. At the time I was looking for a slide show web part, and I found few, even open source, but ALL of them were Flash or SilverLight based. SilverLight is good but not every enterprise got it installed, and Flash, well, I try to avoid Flash when I can, too many versions, with far too many unique problems (try using Flash 9.0.16 on IE6).

Anyhow I found this very good slide show JavaScript, and wrote a small wrapper web part around it (SPSlideShow). I think the end result is as good as good any Flash/SilverLight web parts, if not better.

p.s. use the forum for bug reports.

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