Information | Business | Technology

PerformancePoint Services for SharePoint

In January Microsoft announced that PerformancePoint Server 2007 would be bundled in SharePoint 14, the much-anticipated next release of SharePoint. They have plans of releasing SP3 for PerformancePoint in mid-2009, but this will be the last major software update for PerformancePoint as a standalone product.

PerformancePoint is Microsoft’s BI platform that is built on the familiar SharePoint framework. It’s basically a customized version of SharePoint that is tailored for customers who need more advanced BI solutions for their organization. PPS generally has two major functions, Monitoring & Analytics and Planning. The M&A piece allows us to create dashboards with any number of analytics for scorecards and charts. The Planning portion is related to budgeting and financial forecasting. The main problem with this product is that it isn’t utilized by that many companies with MOSS 2007 licenses. The added expense for another server product is not practical for most organizations in this economic climate. To make matters worse, MOSS 2007 has a very basic set of BI tools builtin that often makes it hard to upsell on the more useful tools since they are a standalone product.

Microsoft has realized this shortcoming and has decided to combine both products in the next iteration of SharePoint. Unfortunately, this has led to the axing of the integration of the Planning portion of PPS into MOSS. You can still get support from Microsoft on this if you already have PPS standalone, but it will not be integrated into SharePoint 14.

The Bottomline:

This is a logical step for Microsoft’s BI group as PPS and MOSS seemed to have similar goals with competing platforms. If all goes as announced, the next version of MOSS will have even greater BI capabilities […]

By |March 13th, 2009|Categories: Business Intelligence, SharePoint|Tags: , , , |2 Comments

Windows 7 Beta: First Looks

Earlier last week Microsoft opened the public beta for Windows 7, although I’m sure most of you have already been beta testing this for some time. I will be testing this extensively in the months to come, but I’d like to post some of the new features that Microsoft is aiming for. I’m hoping that these new features will be stable enough to test, but obviously that may not be the case just yet.

New features for desktop users

  • Improved Taskbar
  • Jump Lists
  • Libraries
  • IE8
  • Windows Live
  • Better device management
  • HomeGroup
  • Theme Packages
  • Battery Life enhancement

You can look at a few official screenshots here from Microsoft showcasing some of these features.

New features for Admins and Devs

  • Removal of kernel dispatcher lock – This should increase performance significantly for larger SQL-based and other resource-intensive systems as it will reduce constraints on available hardware and resources.
  • Logical processor groups – Now will allow for 256 processors with each process thread belonging to a logical processor group.
  • Faster booting – Here is a good article from MSDN about the engineering work being put into this. A couple of the mentionable new features would be boot times under 15 seconds and plug and play support during boot.
  • DirectX 11 API bundled on disc
  • MinWin – This is arguably one of the most important changes to Windows 7. Effectively […]
By |January 23rd, 2009|Categories: Windows|Tags: , , , , |1 Comment

Sharepoint Update Log – Part 2

Part 1 Part 2

In Part 1 of this article I compared and contrasted the various methods that we could use for our Sharepoint update log application. I’ve chosen the custom aspx site/SQL table method as it is the most effective solution for what I currently need. I don’t intend to design a full-fledged application with reporting features, logins, AJAX menus(well.. maybe a little AJAX would be cool!), etc. I need a custom site that is independent of Sharepoint, so developers/admins can log their updates to the database. If Sharepoint breaks, then we should be able to access this data as it might help us determine the point of failure. Simple and effective.

My aspx site is uber-simple to the point to where you might question why I even spent time writing this article. Well, I’m glad you’re that concerned about my free time! I’m writing this, because I see a lot of IT shops without something like this. Keeping an update log for live servers should be a non-negotiable in your environment. I hope that this example will either offer you a solution that you can use immediately or provide you with a catalyst to design your own solution based on your needs. You don’t have to be a VB.NET guru to get this done. For this article, I’ll show you some screenshots, so you can laugh at see how simple this is.

sp_update_log1

  • As you can see I have a few drop down boxes and text boxes that match the table layout from the
By |December 18th, 2008|Categories: SharePoint|Tags: , , , , , |1 Comment

Sharepoint and Search Server 2008

The amazingly kind and helpful folks over at Bamboo Solutions, a leading SharePoint web part/solutions developer, has allowed me to write guest articles on their Bamboo Team Blog. The subject of this post, Sharepoint and Search Server 2008, is my first post there.

Please read the full post here.

While you’re there, I strongly suggest spending some extra time browsing. Bamboo Nation, their community site, is a hidden treasure in the SharePoint community. They have a very active team of content writers that will keep you going back for more.

By |October 14th, 2008|Categories: Search, SharePoint|Tags: , , , |0 Comments

Google Chrome and Sharepoint

You’ve no doubt downloaded or at least heard of Google Chrome already. If you haven’t click here to download it and click here to view Google’s creative comic about the browser. I recommend reading the comic as its very informative and will get you up to speed on why Google’s browser will make every web developer rethink their apps.

But the purpose of this post is to just get some screenshots out there of Google Chrome in action with Sharepoint. I can’t really find that much information currently on browsing Sharepoint sites in Google Chrome, so hopefully some of you will post your thoughts/information on this below.

Let’s also keep in mind that this is obviously a beta, albeit pretty stable, release of a brand-new web browser. There will be new internal builds everyday, so anything in this article could be dated within 30 minutes. With that said, let’s look at how Chrome renders Sharepoint.

Figure 1 – Chrome’s omnibox will attempt to grab related results across the web and locally based on what you type. My testing site is pretty basic, so it didn’t return much.

Figure 2 – As you can see I’m prompted with a login box similar to what is seen when browsing Sharepoint with Firefox.

Figure 3 – A basic Sharepoint site with no customizations. There are some display flaws here, but I will say this. It displays the page much quicker than even IE7, and generally looks better than what I’m used to seeing in Firefox. Firefox still hasn’t been able […]

By |September 2nd, 2008|Categories: SharePoint, Web|Tags: , |8 Comments

How to: Hide the title column from Sharepoint lists

A frequent request from end-users is the ability to remove the “title” column from Sharepoint lists and document libraries. You can rename this column to something else, but I do not recommend this for various reasons. “Title” is a reserved Sharepoint word and renaming it has been known to break things. Generally this only occurs if you change it in the Site Content Type Gallery, but I tend to err on the side of caution here. You can read about that particular limitation here.

But you can hide the title column from the default content types already built in to Sharepoint with a few easy steps. I’ve posted ample screenshots below for the visually stimulated!

Step 1. Navigate to the desired list that needs to be configured. I am starting with an out-of-the-box Sharepoint task list that has not been configured in any way. You can do the same or start with a custom list.

Step 2. Click on Settings and then List Settings. Once on the settings page for your list, click on the advanced settings link as shown below.

Step 3. The advanced settings page is not all that advanced as there are some common settings here, but you will need to set “Allow management of content types” to yes before proceeding. Click OK to continue.

Step 4. You should see the Content Types section now which will allow you to edit all settings pertaining to the content type that […]

By |August 27th, 2008|Categories: SharePoint|Tags: , , , , , |11 Comments