In the past few weeks, Microsoft has slowly started to kill some features from SharePoint Online. Before we go on, here are some of the features that you will slowly see disappear from your SharePoint Online tenant:

Microsoft killing some features in Office 365 SharePoint Online

  • The “Tasks” link in your MySite
  • The “Sync to Outlook Button”
  • SharePoint Tags
  • SharePoint Notes


Here are the two announcements taken from the Microsoft Website.

The Tasks menu option will be removed from SharePoint Online during the next few weeks. Additionally, the Sync to Outlook button will be removed at a later date.
If you’re currently syncing a SharePoint tasks list to Microsoft Outlook, tasks will continue to sync for approximately one year following this announcement. The personal Tasks page will also continue to be available for one year. After that time, this functionality will be removed and will no longer be available or supported.

The Tags & Notes feature of SharePoint Online has been retired. Users can no longer create new tags and notes or access existing ones. For a limited time, all existing tags and notes will be archived into .csv files, which can be exported from the SharePoint admin center. Only SharePoint Online admins can export these files.

This change will affect users in the following ways:



Tags & Notes button on ribbon

Still visible but disabled.

Note Board and Tag Cloud web parts in the web part gallery

Still visible and enabled. The web parts will show up as blank when added to a page.

Note Board and Tag Cloud web parts embedded in a page

Page will display a blank space in the area previously occupied by the web parts. Edit the page to remove the web parts.

Social tags

Social tags will no longer appear in the tags refiner. The refiner will still display hashtags.

Tags and notes listed on personal sites

The area that previously listed tags and notes will be blank.

Microsoft didn’t specify why they are killing those features, however not all companies were ready for the change. For example a user on SharePoint Community started a discussion asking members for help following the discontinuing of the SharePoint Noteboard. Since his company was using the Webpart in certain page layouts, he now wonders if he should start using Yammer, as Microsoft recommends in the discontinuation note or put newsfeeds in place. However the problem is that, we all know, Newsfeed would be a temporary solution since Microsoft is heading towards Yammer all the way. However, diving into Yammer right away would take a while for user adoption and might cost more expensive for the business (depending on the O365 plan already in place).

Also, I personally don’t understand why Microsoft is killing the “Tasks” in the MySites. I showed off the new Task Aggregation in MySites at a few SharePoint Saturdays, and everybody loved it! We finally had the ability to see all our tasks from Exchange, SharePoint & Project Server in one place!

You can read the discontinuation notices yourself over here:

I was wondering what do you think of this move by Microsoft. Do you think that disabling features with a short notice is ok? I do understand that this is how the cloud works, and companies that sign up for it already knew that features will be added and retired every day. But what happens when a feature you loved in the cloud goes away. Or you create custom development based on existing webparts which now disappear and you have to rethink it all over.

Do you think moves like this will make companies delay their move to the cloud? Let me know in the comments!


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With Office 365 gaining a lot of visibility, Microsoft just announced that they will go on a world tour in order to increase visibility and educated IT Pros, Developers, Salesperson as well as Adoption specialists on Office 365. Here is the official description from Microsoft:

FREE Office 365 Conference

Office 365 Summit is traveling around the world and delivering technical and sales training direct from the source with Microsoft experts. These 2 day workshops provide deep technical and sales readiness on all our productivity workloads for IT Professional, Developers, Sales, Adoption and Education. Check out the full event calendar below and register now to take advantage of this opportunity in a city near you!

The conference is 100% free, and you will learn from quite a few sessions! Here is a sample session schedule:


Day 1
8:00AM – 9:00AM Breakfast Attendee Breakfast
9:00AM – 11:00AM Keynote Keynote Address. Abstract coming soon!
11:00AM – 12:00PM Lunch Attendee Lunch
12:00PM – 1:15PM Getting started with Office 365 deployment FastTrack for Office 365 is a service benefit that provides enhanced onboarding assistance, delivered by Microsoft. FastTrack enables you to get started quickly with Microsoft Office 365 and easily move to widespread use. The Onboarding Center provides direct remote assistance by an Office 365 onboarding expert who will assist with various onboarding activities using a combination of tools, documentation, guidance, and carrying out configuration tasks where applicable. In this session learn about the approach, new automation investments for current state assessment, identity management, and domain configuration. Understand how to use the Onboarding Center to enable onboarding to Office 365 quickly and efficiently.
12:00PM – 1:15PM Securing Lync Deployments With the sunsetting of Threat Management Gateway 2010, many Lync administrators are looking for answers to the Reverse Proxy requirements of Lync Server. In this session, Windows Server Internet Information Services Application Request Routing is described and explained as a simple replacement, helping to maintain your security requirements. Two-Factor Authentication has been introduced in a Cumulative Update for Lync Sever and the feature and limitations are explored as well. Edge Server role will also be covered deeper emphasis.
1:30PM – 2:45PM Office 365 security, privacy, and compliance Security, Privacy and Compliance are top of mind for customers considering the cloud or moving to the cloud. – Do you want to learn about how you can keep your data safe in Office 365? – Do you want to understand the fundamentals that guide Office 365 to ensure customers data is kept secure, private and compliant with industry standards and regulations? – Do you want to know what controls you have as a customer to tune up or tune down security within your environment in Office 365? In this session you will learn about the service level aspects of security, privacy and compliance in Office 365 and customer controls that we provide to enable customers to tailor your environment in Office 365. Compliance with industry standards and regulations are key for customers large and small to move to the cloud. Compliance is especially critical for customers in verticals like financial services, healthcare, government etc.
1:30PM – 3:45PM Office 365 ProPlus Introduction to Office 365 ProPlus Learn about the features and benefits of Office 365 ProPlus and the click-to-run technology. In this sessions you’ll get a firsthand view on what it takes to get started with Office 365 ProPlus, as well as, define the infrastructure pre-requisites, including the need for Azure ADSync & Active Directory Federation Services. The session will be followed by a lab.
3:00PM – 4:15PM Office 365 Service Management Excellence: Managing Change and Service Incidents Service Management excellence is at the core of the Office 365 experience. This session is designed to give you the Office 365 Service Management knowledge and insight of change management, service incidents and support. As cloud service, Office 365 continues to evolve as we develop new innovations in productivity and enhance existing services. Learn about how we deploy and communicate updates in the Office 365 service. We will discuss the Office 365 roadmap disclosure process, service change communications, review the key channels for you to stay ahead of change and discuss a bit of the behind the scenes on how we develop, track and deploy updates to the service.
3:00PM – 4:15PM Office 365 ProPlus Planning & Deployment – Part 1 In the first, of a two part planning and deployment series, we will discuss several deployment methodologies, including how to install on behalf of the user like a normal Office deployment, fully-automated and completely offline. We will go over how to use the Office Deployment Toolkit (ODT) and setup options to deploy Office on shared computers using shared computer activation. Finally we will wrap up by talking what you need to consider if you are planning on installing Office 365 ProPlus with pre-defined OS image. The session will be followed by a lab.
4:30PM – 6:30PM Ask the Experts Reception Join us at the Ask the Experts reception for the opportunity to interact and learn from your industry peers and representatives from Microsoft. Light refreshments will be served.



Day 2
8:00AM – 9:00AM Breakfast Attendee Breakfast
9:00AM – 10:15AM Lync On-Premise Troubleshooting and Call Quality Management Does your organization understand what the Support Map for a fully deployed on-premise enterprise voice solution on Lync Server might look like? Is everyone in your support team aware of the best tools to use for troubleshooting Lync Server to help diagnose and resolve issues in the most efficient way? Have you implemented the Lync Call Quality Methodology to systematically improve and maintain call quality? This session will arm you with the tools, knowledge, and skills, to help you maintain and optimize your Lync Enterprise Voice solution.
9:00AM – 10:15AM What’s new in Exchange Online In this session we will provide a view of the new Exchange futures resources – including early demos of a few of these new capabilities. We will cover Groups, Document Collaboration, Clutter, Compliance Center and much more!! Covers new features such as groups, doc collab, clutter, OWA for devices, and new security/compliance topics.
9:00AM – 10:15AM Office 365 internet connection planning and troubleshooting Office 365 has data centers all across the world and a global high speed network. When you connect your organization to Office 365 you will see a different Internet connection profile than with users doing regular transient web browsing. This session will provide guidance on planning for updates to your Internet connectivity as a result of onboarding to Office 365. We will talk about how the Office 365 datacenters connect to the Internet and why you would want to know that. And we will give you some guidance about troubleshooting performance issues that you may see when connecting to Office 365.
9:00AM – 10:15AM Office 365 ProPlus Planning & Deployment – Part 2 In Part 2 of the Office 365 Planning & Deployment series, we’ll continue to discuss deployment options including how to leverage System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM) 2012, Windows In-Tune and the Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT). The session will be followed by a lab.
10:30AM – 11:45AM Technical Overview of SharePoint Online In this session you’ll see how SharePoint Online provides powerful new controls that allow IT departments to manage cost, risk, and their time.
10:30AM – 11:45AM Lab: Troubleshooting On-Premise Microsoft Lync Server 2013 using Centralized Logging Service This is the lab that follows the Lync On-Premise Troubleshooting and Call Quality Management session. Attendees could also decide to work on a different Lync lab, with the help and guidance of the proctor.
10:30AM – 11:45AM Tools and tips for troubleshooting Office 365 Discuss tips and tricks for Office 365 troubleshooting, review tops issues and corresponding resolutions, learn how to use the diagnostic and troubleshooting tools provided in the Office 365 Admin center.
10:30AM – 11:45AM MDM for Office 365 Mobile Devices are the first and only connected device for a billion people, and there no question that workplaces are evolving to become more focused on mobile computing. As business adopt a BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) approach to mobile devices, it is critical for them to keep corporate data secure on personal devices. Traditional MDM solutions used for this purpose have a one-size fits all approach with a non-intuitive restricted application that challenges users. Come and explore our new Office 365 MDM solution we will be releasing soon that addresses these concerns and more.
11:45AM – 2:00PM Lunch Attendee Lunch
1:00PM – 2:15PM Your Office 365 compliance controls Want to learn more about different compliance controls available to you in Office 365? Join this session to learn how you can leverage different capabilities such as Data Loss Prevention, Encryption, Auditing , Archiving & E-Discovery to keep your data safe and secure and centrally manage all your compliance needs from Office 365 Compliance Center. We will provide an overview of individual capabilities and also show you how easily you can get started today setting up your compliance policies.
1:00PM – 2:15PM Lync Online / Hybrid Overview and Administration Curious how the cloud can help optimize your Lync environment? Wondering how to take advantage of Lync as a service? The new Lync Hybrid functionality in Lync Online can take your current Lync deployment to a whole new level. This session will provide you with an overview of Lync Online, including administration, data flows, networking requirements, and troubleshooting guidance. This session also discusses how to plan, deploy, and configure a Lync Hybrid environment to allow for Lync Server and Lync Online coexistence so you can migrate users seamlessly between environments.
1:00PM – 2:15PM Overview of SharePoint 2013 and Office 365 Hybrid and Coexistence Cloud computing has become a popular and successful computing model that enables organizations to reduce both their capital and operational expenditures, renew IT innovation, and gain the advantage of more rapid software delivery to meet their business needs. However, according to a recent Forrester study, “only 8% plan a full deployment in the Office 365 cloud, but an additional 26% will move to a hybrid cloud, on-premises deployment.” A hybrid environment that uses SharePoint Server 2013 and SharePoint Online enables solutions that integrate functionality between services and features such as Search, Microsoft Business Connectivity Services, and Duet Enterprise Online for Microsoft SharePoint and SAP in both environments. This session provides guidance for the initial phase of the hybrid environment deployment process, which describes how to configure the basic infrastructure for a hybrid environment using SharePoint Server 2013 and SharePoint Online, provides insight into new content, in addition to some announcements of upcoming solutions.
1:00PM – 2:15PM Office 365 ProPlus – Implementing a Monthly Staged Update Process Don’t want your users to receive monthly automatic updates? Here we will learn about the best ways to download, test and deploy using a staged update process. We’ll go over the options on how to turn off and control when and how your users will receive monthly updates through SCCM, Group Policies, and distribution points. The session will be followed by a lab.
2:30PM – 3:45PM Enterprise Mobility Suite: an overview The rapid growth in use of smart devices combined with ubiquitous access to cloud services like Office 365 is changing the way that people use their personal technology to get work done. The Consumerization of IT mega-trend brings with it a rich set of opportunities for organizations, as well as challenges to protect corporate information and other assets. In this session learn how Microsoft’s approach to empowering enterprise mobility is helping customers enable users to work on devices of their choosing with consistent experiences, and providing IT a unified infrastructure for managing and delivering applications and other resources, all while helping organizations protect what is important to them. See how innovations in Azure Active Directory, Windows Intune, and Azure Rights Management are providing IT with the necessary capabilities to empower enterprise mobility.
2:30PM – 3:45PM Identity management integration options for Office 365 User management and identity integration is easy in Office 365. In this talk we will explain identity management concepts and describe the three identity models that you can use. We will talk about the cloud identity model, the synchronized identity model, and the federated identity model. For cloud and synchronized identity we will tell you all you need to set these up and demo how to configure them. For federated identity we will show you some of the tooling and give you guidance on how to scope the integration project. We will describe how you can switch between identity models and also give clear guidance about how to choose the right identity model for a given scenario or customer.
2:30PM – 3:45PM Data Loss Prevention in Office 365 Accidently sent that important sensitive mail? Looking to save that Oops moment? Come get educated about how Office 365 Data Loss Prevention works and learn how Microsoft is committed to bringing this capability across the Office suite of services. DLP enables you to identify, monitor and protect sensitive information in the organization. Learn how the rich DLP functionality seamlessly integrates into Exchange, Outlook, OWA and SharePoint, providing context user education and information protection. In addition, we will also cover a wide range of topics such as Policy Tips, Policy rules , document fingerprinting, Incident Reporting, etc.
2:30PM – 3:45PM Office 365 ProPlus – Using Telemetry Dashboard for AppCompat Testing Learn how to install and use the Office Telemetry Dashboard to display compatibility and inventory data about Office files and add-ins that are used in your organization. The dashboard can quickly identify areas where add-ins can potential be an issue as you download and deploy monthly updates. The session will be followed by a lab.
4:00PM – 5:15PM Delve and the Office Graph In this session you’ll learn more about how we reimagined search and discovery across Office with Delve, powered by the Office Graph. Delve enables you to work like a network, by proactively surfacing the best and relevant information across Office, tailored just for you. Learn how Office Graph transforms Office, with suite wide insights and machine learning, and how to bring content and conversations to your users across Office.
4:00PM – 5:15PM Exchange hybrid deployment Are you planning to move to Exchange Online? Join this session to learn how Exchange hybrid can provide the capabilities to make a smooth transition to Office 365. In this session we dig into architecture of hybrid deployments, review the deployment options, and discuss the capabilities of the hybrid configuration wizard. The session will look at the very latest hybrid information including OAuth configuration, recommendations for public folders, and a lot more!
4:00PM – 5:15PM Office 365 ProPlus – Troubleshooting Installations & Updates Learn how to quickly troubleshoot installation and update problems. In this session we’ll go through the process of how to turn on verbose logging, parse logs and look for proxy errors.
4:00PM – 5:15PM Lab: Administering Users in a Lync Online and Hybrid Deployment This is the lab that follows the Lync Online / Hybrid Overview and Administration session.



Day 2


The events are truly worldwide and in the rest of 2014, there will be an Office365 Summit in Miami, New York, Moscow, Kuala Lumpur, and Houston! With a lot more coming in 2015! In order to sign up, just click here:

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Back in September last year I have created a Windows Forms based tool that allowed you to create Host Named Site Collections (HNSC) without necessarily having to go through PowerShell. The tool worked perfectly and it had a lot of options, however, it wasn’t the prettiest and necessary best option.

Host Named Site Collection Creator

In the past month, I teamed up with an expert SharePoint Developer called Joseph Henry Passineau which is also a member of and we took my idea to the next level. In the latest update for the SharePoint HNSC Creator we have now made available a SharePoint 2013 farm solution that allows you to create HNSC directly from the Central Administration with a native SharePoint 2013 experience!

To give you a brief overview:

  • You can find it at the same place as the normal Site Collection create links!

Host Named Site Collection Creator

  • The Create a new HNSC page is exactly the same as your normal Site Collection creation page, however you have a new field to enter the URL of the HNSC!




And you also have an OOTB looking confirmation page!

You can read this Blog Post by Joseph himself on how he used Reflection to make this project possible: Creating host named site collection by code

If you want to know more about the project and start using it, you can access the codeplex project over here:

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I was at a client today and I got a very interesting question about how should users name their files. There were many rumors that underscores were the best, since SharePoint knows to split the words up after an underscore. I didn’t have an immediate answer about it, but let’s test it out!

I have uploaded three files to SharePoint with content that makes no sense, so the search only searches on the title of the file. Here are the names of the three files:

  • Vlad is the best SharePoint Administrator ever
  • Vlad_is_the_best_SharePoint_Administrator_Ever
  • vlad-is-the-best-sharepoint-administrator-ever


So, after 30 minutes, I decided to search “SharePoint Administrator” without the quotes! Here is the result:

best SharePoint Search

As you can see, all 3 results have been returned, however the only difference is that SharePoint was able to find the two words in the URL as well for the “Space” and “underscore” options!

Now let’s try with quotes around “SharePoint Administrator”. We can see that the results are similar to the one before, however only the result with a space was bolded by SharePoint. SharePoint found the word with a space in the URL, even if there was a space or underscore.

best for SharePoint Search

However, if we search for “SharePoint_Administrator” without the quotes, we only get the one that actually has the underscores in the title name!

However, I have never seen anyone actually use underscores when doing a search. But if your users do it, it’s a good to know!


After testing, I believe that spaces are the best option for your filenames, but if you really don’t want to use spaces in your filenames, use underscores! Never use hyphens!


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Last week, Holly Dickson from Microsoft Learning announced a huge change in the SharePoint 2013 Certification Path. In the past, a Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate (MCSA) Certification in Windows Server 2012 was required in order for anyone to get the MCSE SharePoint 2013 title. The Certification looked something like this:

SharePoint 2013 MCSE

However, with the latest change, SharePoint Admins can now take the MCSA Office 365 certification as a prerequisite for the SharePoint 2013 MCSE Certification. So, the new Certification Path looks something like this:

SharePoint 2013 MCSE

This further proves how much Microsoft is dedicated on the cloud and Office 365! Do you think Microsoft did a good move, or do you think they should have just created the MCSE Office 365 Certification?

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In this blog post I will show you how I was able to create a color coded calendar for a team that wanted to see all the team members and what they have for the next week. We all know that the Out of the box SharePoint Group Calendar in SharePoint 2013 is pretty incomplete, but by using some help from the internet and from rockstar Paul Choquette, I was able to create something cool for the business. Before I go on, here is what it’s going to look like at the end:

color coded group calendar

While hoping to do this the most out of the box possible, I encountered several problems that confirm what people have been saying for a while… The group calendar for SharePoint 2013 has the potential to be a great feature, but it isn’t complete! Here are some of the little problems I have been facing while trying to make this work:

  • The Group Calendar loses the people selection we have on every refresh!
  • No way to add multiple views to this view in order to add colors.

Luckily, it’s easy to add JavaScript to SharePoint to make it work for us! So, the first step I want to do is to create the Group Calendar, Create a SharePoint Page and then add the Group Calendar in it as a Webpart.

Creating the Calendar

  1. So first of all, click the wheel button at the top right of the screen and create a new Calendar App. When creating it, make sure you click on the Advanced Options button!

  1. On the Advanced Options Page, make sure you select the “Yes” Radio Button when asked if you want to “Use this calendar to share member’s schedule

  2. Now go in Site Contents > Site Pages and on the top Files tab , create a new document of type Web Part Page. Choose what layout you wish, I chose the Full Page, Vertical

  3. When you get on the new WebPart Page, click the “Add a WebPart” button, and in the Apps category, you will find the Name of your Team Calendar you created in Step 1!

  4. So now, you should have a page looking like this one:

    Now, try to add an event to yourself! Well… try is the good word because by default it will not appear in this view even if we told SharePoint we wanted a Group Sharing Calendar! In order to be able to see people on this Calendar, we will need to add the “Attendees” Column. This is also the good occasion to customize your columns. I will show you how to put up the attendees column, but the rest of the customizing is up to you!

  5. First, go in your Team Calendar and click on the List Settings button at the top right.

  6. In the List Settings page, you will have a Content Type Section with the Event Content Type in it. Click on the Event Content Type!

  7. At the bottom of the page, after all the columns, click on the “Add from existing site or list columns”

  8. Highlight the Attendees Column from the left list box and click on the Add Button! It will then transfer to the right and then click OK!

  9. Now go back to your Calendar, add a new event and put yourself as an attendee! You should now see your event appear in the calendar!

Automatically Adding Users

Good but now, I only see myself! I will add other persons using the “Add Person” on the button and then SharePoint will remember my choices and will display them to everyone right? Unfortunately notL. Every time you go to your page/Calendar, it will only show yourself and no one else. Fortunately, Mohamed M Malek from Microsoft posted a blog post on the solution. I will write the step by step here, which is mostly copied with 1 correction from his blog post, however all the credit for this approach and script go to him and not to me! If you want to see how he did it and how he engineered the script, make sure you read his blog post. If you just want to get it working, continue readingJ.

My advice: Before starting to do this section, I advise you to read the step by step entirely and see how it works. It will allow you to make wise decisions from the begging on how you want to add persons in the calendar. Personally, I created a SharePoint Group called “Team Calendar Members” that will contain all the members I want to add to the calendar. I created a new group with no permissions, since all my permissions are handled with AD Groups, and this calendar isn’t able to see inside AD GroupsL.

  1. Download Fiddler over here > . Fiddler is a web debugging proxy that also allows you to record traffic! I know for some of the beginners in SharePoint this might sound like a scary and complicated tool, however, I will guide you through how to use it step by step.
  2. Open a new Internet explorer Window and go to your Calendar Page. Only have that site open in the internet explorer window. Also, Open Fiddler.
  3. In Fiddler, Click on the “Any Process” button, and drag the “target” on the Internet Explorer Window we just opened.

  4. In Internet Explorer, on the SharePoint Page, click on the “User Directory” Button in the “Add Person” section.

  5. In the “Add ->” Section at the button, add all the users you want to add that want to appear on the calendar. Add them all in there, but do not press ok yet! In my case, I added the Calendar Team Members SharePoint Group. Do not add Active Directory groups in it, it will not work!

  6. Before Pressing Ok, go in Fiddler and Remove All Past entries. This will make it easier for us to find the one we need!

  7. Now, click on the OK button! In the browser, you will see that all the users you selected will be added to the calendar. In Fiddler you will get a bunch of new entries!
  8. In Fiddler, go in the first result that has a “200” Result (second column) (1) . Then make sure on the top tab you are in the Inspectors tab (2) and then in the bottom tab, make sure you are in the TextView Tab (3). Afterwards, click on the “Response is encoded and may need to be decoded before inspection| yellow bar (4).

  1. You will now see actual text in that box. Copy all the text from that box starting from “var ret =” and ending at “u003e';” Like in the following picture. Save the text in a notepad!

  2. While still on the calendar page, open Internet Explorer Developer tools by pressing F12. On the left side, select the Dom Explorer (red circle and the select the “Select element” option (yellow highlight)

  3. Position your mouse at the top left of the calendar, until the whole calendar is in a blue highlighted color!

  4. Then go in the Source explorer in the bottom and expand the node you are in! You will see an ID that looks something like WPQ3. This ID will appear in a lot of places, so it shouldn’t be hard to find! Save that ID into a notepad file!

  5. Now, copy paste this script in a notepad file.

6. So, to give you an idea, this is how mine looks like:

  1. Now go to your Webpart page, edit the page and add a script Editor Webpart!

  2. Click on the Edit Snippet link, and add the script you created in Step 14!

  3. Then close it, save the page, and make sure you navigate to it again! (Site Content > Pages > your page). All the users you selected should now automatically load!

Color Coding the Calendar

Ok, now that we have all the users we want added to the calendar, we got to color code events, to make it easier for people to see items on a calendar! This whole section was made possible with the help of Paul Choquette. Paul is a JavaScript guru and most of all an important member of! He is often online and helping people with JavaScript questions! So, here is how we did it!

  1. First of all, I needed to get the category of my event in the title of the event! This was both for easy to see purposes, and the technical purpose in the background was to be able to get the category in the HTML tags on the calendar! So, what I did was create a Calculated Column in the Calendar called “CalendarTitle“. The Forumula I used for it was =Title&” ["&Category&"]“ . So for example if someone creates a event of type Meeting with the title “SharePoint Discussion” , the column will equal > “SharePoint Discussion [Meeting]

  2. Now we will go back to the Calendar and will click on the Modify View button!

  3. In the Calendar Columns Section, we will modify the Month,Week and Day view title to show our new column “CalendarTitle” instead of just the Title. The entries in the Calendar will now look something like this:

  4. Ok, so now it looks something like this:. You can see the Category in the title!

  5. But we still don’t got colors! That’s where Javascript comes in! We will insert this part of code between the place where we inserted our WebPart ID and the “ExecuteDelayUntil Script Loaded. To give you an idea of where it’s placed, it’s right here:

    You will notice that in the part I did, I setup Meetings to be in Red, and Holiday to be in Green. For more categories, you just copy paste those lines and edit the category and color! , Also, at the end of the script, add the following line:

    1. To make it a bit more clear for you, here is my final Javascript>

    1. Now go add this code in your Team Calendar Page! You might notice that the CalendarTitle column doesn’t show in the page, but you still see the old version! Edit the WebPart and select the Calendar view!

    2. So now when you go back to the page, it will look something like this:

    WSP-2014-06-12 037

Our Colors work!

While this isn’t the best way of doing this type of calendar and it has a lot of Javascript and client side coding, it gets the job done and it can easily be done by a power user!

On May 13th, Microsoft released security bulletin MS14-022 to protect your SharePoint 2007, 2010 and 2013 against Remote Code Execution. After chatting with multiple SharePointers on, I found out that the KB in this security bulletin get pushed out by Windows Update as critical.

One thing to be very careful for is that this is not your usual Windows Update, as it requires you to run PSConfig (aka the SharePoint Configuration Wizard) after installing!

After you install this security update on all SharePoint servers, you have to run the PSconfig tool to complete the installation process. For more information about how to use the PSconfig tool, go to the following Microsoft TechNet webpage: ”

So, be very careful that you plan when you install the KB in security bulletin MS14-022 and that you run PSConfig right after!

For more information about security bulletin MS14-022, visit this link:

When trying to do any operations on the User Profile Service Application such as migrating users or groups (either PowerShell way or stsadm, you might get the “Value Cannot be Null. Parameter name: userProfileApplicationProxy” error like in the two screenshots right under:

Value cannot be null. Parameter name: userProfileApplicationProxy Fix

The problem is that the current user doesn’t have the rights on the User Profile Service Application. To fix the error, go in Central Administration> Manage Service Applications > Highlight the User Profile Service Application. In the top ribbon, go in the Permissions and add your current account with Full Control. Afterwards, with the User Profile Service Application still selected, select the Administrators button and add the current user account.

Everything should work afterwards.

Product analysis by Vlad Catrinescu – requested by BrightWork, but thoughts are my own.

SharePoint is an enterprise platform that aims to be the central point of information of every company. Even if at its core, SharePoint was built to be a central repository of documents, SharePoint is often used for a lot more thanks to its ability to be customized and adapted to each client. One of most common problems companies have and wish they could centralize in SharePoint is project tracking. Without a centralized way of tracking and managing projects, every new project manager coming in the company often use their own ways of dealing with projects, making it a mess to follow them and have an overview of all the projects happening in the enterprise. Furthermore, not only will your resources have to get used to the new way ways of the project manager and losing time and efficacy, but project information and history will often get lost on local drives, Excel spreadsheets and Outlook mailboxes.

When companies have to find a way to manage and track projects in SharePoint, there are mostly three choices that come to mind: Microsoft Project Server, develop fully custom code, or buy a third-party project management solution for SharePoint. In this Blog post, we are going to review a third party project management solution by BrightWork. Before we go into the review, here is the description of the product taken from the company website:

  • BrightWork is a best in class SharePoint solution for the management of projects, portfolios and work that is fast and inexpensive to deploy and simple to configure and evolve.
  • BrightWork enables any organization to instantly deploy an affordable amount of project, portfolio and everyday work management, delivering immediate visibility and control.
  • The unique best-practices templates approach, pioneered by BrightWork, allows organizations to start quickly and to gradually evolve by adding more templates and dashboards as needed and as ready.
  • BrightWork is available on premise and online for both SharePoint 2013 and 2010
    and on premise for SharePoint 2007.

The Review

For the purpose of the review, I used a free 30 day trial of BrightWork that is available on their website. I honestly have to say that having an online trial like BrightWork gave me allowed me to test the product without having to setup a VM to install the product. After requesting the trial, I received my login information, as well as a nice email from one of their reps that included free resources on how to use the product as well as his contact information if I have any questions.

Templates adapted to your needs

Brightwork is aware that not all projects require the same level of management and not all companies and project managers are ready and capable to start to manage projects with all the Project Management features available. Sometimes it’s better to start where they are ready and evolve as needed.

That’s why BrightWork includes 16 project templates with different features and objectives to allow Project Managers to start quickly with the amount of project management they need. Here is an overview of the available templates and where they fit on the Project and Portfolio Management Spectrum.

In the following screenshot we can see a quick difference between the Project Lite and Project Standard Template. The Project Lite template includes five items (Project Statement; Tasks; Documents; Issues; and Status Reports) to manage the project in a lightly structured manner. The Project Standard template contains everything in the Project Lite template and adds the following features:  Risks, Goals, Metrics and Resource Reporting. Furthermore,
all templates include the possibility to sync Tasks and other details with Microsoft Project.

Even if the 16 templates are already made, the BrightWork Templates Area allows you to modify the templates to fit your company’s processes and practices. You can add extra out of the box SharePoint features
as well as BrightWork configuration options. Furthermore, by using the Template Design Sync, you are able to push the template changes to all the active projects that currently use a certain template.

Business Intelligence (BI)

One of the important features for the business is probably Business Intelligence. Business Owners and Stakeholders want an easy way to see how their projects are going, if they are on schedule, late or in danger and if the budget is respected. Here are two screenshots that represent the Project by Status Reports as well as the Gantt

Furthermore, the reporting platform is configurable to allow you to create a personal view of what really matters to you in a way that you enjoy.


Creating projects and managing them was pretty easy and intuitive. Once you create a project, the template includes some easy steps to follow to get you started quickly and properly.

Project and Portfolio Management on SharePoint

Once you get everything up and going, you can take off the getting started tiles so you and the team see what’s important to you and work on the project.


As a SharePoint Consultant I have seen and worked with many Project Management solutions built on SharePoint, including third party solutions, Microsoft Project Server and custom built solutions. When clients evaluate which solution to choose, they often wonder which one would be the cheapest and the fastest to implement as well as which one integrates the best with their current processes. After creating and playing with quite a few projects in BrightWork, I have to say that I was extremely surprised with the number of features included out of the box and how easy it was to work with them. Even if I am not a very experienced PM, I was able to create my own project, assign tasks and find everything really easily, something I can’t always say about Project Server.

Another thing that I found amazing was how easy it was to configure the templates in BrightWork. Most third party solutions do not allow much place for template configurations, however BrightWork is not only allowing you to do it, but has tools in place to make it easy for you to adapt their built-in templates to your company. Furthermore the built-in Business Intelligence delivers the scorecards and project reports that executives want to see.

If you are looking for a Project Management solution running on SharePoint, I highly encourage you to request a free BrightWork trial and try them out for yourself. It will take you about 15 minutes and you will have your own environment in the cloud to play with!

You can also check out some out these free resources from BrightWork:

  1. Free SharePoint Project Management Templates to get started managing a project with out of the box SharePoint today.
  2. Collaborative Project Management eBook that delivers a simple and easy to follow guide to initiate, plan, track and close a project to success.

To find out more about BrightWork, visit their website

Hello SharePointers,

I wanted to share this amazing opportunity for you to win some cool swag from Microsoft Canada, by perfecting your knowledge and learning new skills. It will take you about 10 minutes to complete, and you will get an awesome t-shirt and maybe even more prizes! Read till the end of the post to find out all you can win!

From the Canadian Developer Connection:

Microsoft Virtual Academy has courses that cover the entire Microsoft developer platform. Complete two (2) or more modules from any one (1) of any of the below MVA courses and we’ll send you an awesomely geeky t-shirt that will help you share the knowledge achievement that you’ve unlocked!

To claim your “Achievement Unlocked” t-shirt:

  1. Start and complete two (2) more modules of any one of the courses listed below between 2/1/2014 and 3/31/2014. Courses started before 12/1/2013 cannot be submitted.
  2. Take a screenshot of the course page (as shown below) showing you logged in, Canada as your country, and at two (2) or more completed (green) modules.Microsoft Virtual Academy
  3. Send your screenshot to withYour first name
    Last name
    Mailing address.
    Shirt Size

Your transcript will be validated and your t-shirt will be sent to you! Simple as that!

All Eligible Courses (Note: I have highlighted the ones pertinent to SharePoint)

The following are courses that you may take to qualify for the offer above:

Terms and Conditions

The offer for a Microsoft Virtual Academy “Achievement Unlocked” t-shirt is good for residents of Canada. Offer good only to the first 500 MVA students (registered in Canada) that qualify for the offer. In order to qualify for the offer, each MVA student must complete two (2) or more MVA modules from one (1) of the eligible MVA courses listed above. Course transcript must be shown (in the form of a screenshot) like the image above and must then be sent via e-mail to by 11:59pm on March 31, 2014. The screenshot must include their name and clearly display the student’s country as Canada. Limit one submission/t-shirt per person. This offer is non-transferable and cannot be combined with any other offer. This offer expires at midnight on March 31, 2014 while supplies last, and is not redeemable for cash. Any gift returned as non-deliverable will not be re-sent. Please allow 4-6 weeks for delivery of your t-shirt. Microsoft Canada reserves the right to substitute the t-shirt with a gift of equal or greater value.



To reward those willing to learn, I would also like to offer you a personal gift. For the first 10 Canadians that finish 7 or more modules, I will send you a voucher for a free O’Reilly eBook! Please send me a screenshot of the MVA course you are doing before! (Showing your name, country and non-completed modules) and after (Showing your name, country and completed modules). I will then reply you if you won, and send you the voucher by email!

Don’t Keep all this cool Knowledge to yourself! Share it with your followers on twitter by clicking the big bird image right under or view the end of the post for more options!

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