Microsoft Revamping Virtualization Strategy

According to the news wire, Microsoft is embracing virtualization full force in the coming months. This is great news for us SharePoint developers as we live in VM’s. Heres some quotes from the blurb: Microsoft also said it will expand an alliance with another virtual desktop computing company, Citrix Systems Inc., that will help their respective products work well together. Redmond-based Microsoft also announced it will cut the cost of licensing Windows for use on virtual machines to $23 from $78 per year for its big business customers. Microsoft Takes Virtual Step Forward

SharePoint Designer SP1 Released 6

I don’t normally like to repost stuff to death, but something that could be missed in the flurry of Office service pack 1’s that have been released today is the SPD SP1 release. I just installed it in my local SharePoint Designer instance and so far I haven’t had any problems (though I admittedly haven’t put it through the paces yet). It seems slightly more responsive though that may be just a placebo affect. If you have any remarkable positive or negative upgrade outcomes, post a reply here. Link to the SharePoint Designer SP1 Download for the lazy

Redirect: Upgrade 2010 Master Page

Lost Another One to Ditec (or should I say Apple)

The Mossman was swayed by the Mac store inside the Best Buy and is now the owner of a Macbook Pro. Don’t worry too much though as I’ve done the Boot Camp thing and installed Vista! It works really great and runs Vista surprisingly well. You can see from the photo that I got a Vista Experience rating of 4.8 and this is the low end Macbook Pro: I’ll post here if I have any problems living my Microsoft existence in a Mac world.

SharePoint 2007 Predicted by “Joel on Software” Back in 2004?

I was wikipedia’ing the word “Portal” today at work and stumbled across an interesting article from Joel on Software (if you have never read his blog, you might as well read up… because it full of pure gold) on how Microsoft has “Lost the API War”… written in 2004. Its interesting to see his points in this article and how they parallel with what Microsoft has done with SharePoint 2007. From what I can tell, he was “dead on” and Microsoft (despite being accused of often times being slow to market) was able to notice the same trends and create a viable contender for continuing its domination over the API through SharePoint 2007 and the web. If you don’t feel like reading the whole post I’ll sum it up with a quote: “None of this bodes well for Microsoft and the profits it enjoyed thanks to its API power. The new API is HTML, and ...

Using Firebug to Manage CSS Effectively

I often talk about the benefits of using Firebug for Firefox in the MSDN Design and Customization Forums. Rather than try to type out a long winded article on why it rules, I found a video that should help to convince non believers that it is truly superior to the IE Developers Toolbar: Firebug 1.0 Beta Screencast by Jesse Newland  Takes a little bit of time to download the video, but its worth it.

Fixing the name.dll ActiveX Problem the Mossman Way 5

UPDATE: Are you using SharePoint 2010? See my newer post about the name ActiveX message in SharePoint 2010. Have you seen this message on public facing SharePoint sites: The Web site wants to run the following add-on: ‘Name ActiveX Control’ from ‘Microsoft Corporation’. If you trust the Web site and the add-on and want to allow it to run, click here… For an example of one (at least until they fix it), check out: There are quite a few nice examples of internet facing SharePoint 2007 sites on the interwebs these days, however many of them seem to be plagued by this minor annoyance that seems to have slipped through the Microsoft cracks. The problem is compounded by the fact that most developers won’t even notice the issue until their portal is available to internet users. This is due to the fact that the problem is seen only in Internet Explorer 7 and only ...

Adding Prompt Text Inside of a Search Text Box 1

I had a client need today to make the out of the box SharePoint search box have the prompt text actually inside the box instead of before the box. I’m not sure what you call this pattern exactly but you can find it on many modern websites including on Amazon’s homepage in the A9 search box in the top right corner. The boxes I’m referring to usually have the text “Website Search” or something similar inside them and when you click the box to add your search terms, javascript usually clears them out for you. So, I set out to make this work in the MOSS search box, and found some difficulty at first, my immediate thought was to add it with a “value” property, but SharePoint pretty much ignored that. So, I then thought I could do it in javascript, but SharePoint gives the search box a dynamic ID name like: “ctl00_PlaceHolderSearchArea_SearchBox_SD06736D6_InputKeywords” At the ...

Virtual Machine Settings and Performance (my non scientific tests) 1

I recently performed some very subjective non scientific benchmark results for how my new pc runs MOSS in a VMWare virtual machine. The pc is a Dell Dimension 9200 Dual Core with 3 gigs of memory, and unless I mention it specifically the tests will have both cpu’s turned on (you can turn one off in the vmware settings), 1.5 gigs of memory for the vm, a 20 gig hd pre-allocated to the vm, and will have hardware virtualization enabled in the bios of the host machine. I used PassMark Performance Test v6.1 trial edition to do the testing. I mainly just wanted to learn a little more about how VM performance works, since I’m fairly new to the concept. Hopefully someone else can learn something useful from my homework. Based on my readings of the test (and perhaps should have been obvious from the start) its best to run with both cpu’s on, hardware ...

New SharePoint 2007 Publishing Portal

As my friends John Ross (on Moss) and Andrew Connell have mentioned already today, the new web portal for Orange County Public Schools has just gone live. The team I work for was responsible for transitioning their website from a loose confederation of around 50 department managed websites into one unified Microsoft SharePoint 2007 publishing portal. I think the key differentiator for the site (compared to many other public SharePoint sites) is that it is maintaned not by a central team, but instead by these 50 departments and their respective employees. As for the initiative, I was primarily responsible for all of the public facing UI elements of the portal. This included several customized masterpages, layouts, tons of css, custom webparts, custom XSL transformations, and restyling of several out of the box webparts. We had a lot of fun working on the project, but there was also considerable pain as well. Our team owes a ...