Saturday, April 11, 2015

New SharePoint CSOM update for Office 365

Wow. This is such a great build. Loving the new additions added in the new SharePoint CSOM for Office 365. Since a year, was submitting the feedback and waiting for some features has to be included in the CSOM API and here they are. You can do even more with the new API methods and classed added. The package will be available via Nuget.

Version: 16.1.3912.1204.

The major feature I really impressed are:
  • Manage regional settings of a site
  • Manage language settings of a site
  • Manage auditing settings of a site
  • Support for upcoming enhanced migration APIs
  • Secondary contact in site collection level
  • Sharing settings
  • Tenant
The auditing settings API is a major help for me along with the Sharing settings. There are over 50 methods added across and the major ones which might help you are:
  • Accessing document set properties, documents
  • Added classes related to Search PushTenant
  • Additional properties for Publishing classes
  • Accessing AppCatalog
  • Audit information
  • File, Folder methods and properties
  • Many Web and Site properties and methods. 
If you are feeling like you are unable to implement just because of product limitation then it's for you. Go and have a look at the new update and start building the examples. 

Get more details about complete CSOM methods and properties here.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Show user profile pictures in SharePoint Hosted Apps

This is the issue which killed more than a week of my time. Many users are facing it too and I see the same question in almost all the forums. Proud to tell that the solution which I have found is the most usable one for SharePoint Hosted App world.

In SharePoint Hosted Apps the cross-domain calls are limited. The issue I am facing in SharePoint Online Hosted Apps was:

I have created a SharePoint hosted app which has the code to show the user profile picture. I have tried below options for it:

  1. Queried the REST API user profile and then 
    1. used the "PictureUrl" from user profile metadata. But, no luck with this. Then,
    2. used the "UserProfileProperties -> PictureURL attribute in the results. Still, there is no luck. 
  2. Used the Outlook Office 365 profile picture link: 
    1. But, the url is an external site link the picture failed to load.
  3.  Used the UserPhoto.aspx page in the _layouts folder: /_layouts/15/userphoto.aspx?size=L&accountname=encodeduseraccountname.
    1. I have tried with both hosted web url and app web url. But, no luck. 
    2. But, if I create a App Part and in the app part the same image path shows perfectly. So, the issue is only in the App landing page. 
Published the issue in all social networking sites, forums for help, but no luck. Many people come up with different ideas, but nothing worked. 

After spending the good amount of time in analyzing the UserPhoto.aspx, and how it works, I was able to find a way to download the image. 

UserPhoto.aspx accepts many parameters. We always use the AccountName querystring to download the image of the user. But, it also accepts other paramters like "url". 

So, the solution I used here is: 

Note: You must query the User profile REST API for the user to get the user profile picture url and then encode that picture url and then replace the string {encodeduserprofilepictureurl} with that.

This one given me the output I wanted. Now, the pictures are showing everywhere, inside the app and also in app part... 

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Download Visual Studio 2015 Technical Preview

Visual Studio 2015 has plenty of UI improvements and UI debugging features. It has a great Javascript editor and Visual Studio emulator for Android. Many more other features which I also need to dig into.

Go and get it here: Download Visual Studio 2015 CTP 6

See the Visual Studio Features Timeline here:

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

C# is allowed in Office 365 API's Sandbox

So far in Office 365 API Sandbox we have written only javascript to call the API's and deploy the changes. It is very limited in terms of achieving the goals and against some complex requirements. So, after some additional good work from Office 365 team, there is a release of C# code support in API sandbox. This is a brilliant idea and good help for developers to quickly write code and check on the fly. I will update you more findings on it soon.

Read more details here Office 365 API Sandbox now allowing C# Code

Friday, February 20, 2015

Office 365 roadmap

Dear technology enthusiast, how many of you are actually updated with the new technologies / implementations around? Are you one of the person who first get to know and learn things and keep up to date yourself in this technology world? I follow the blogs and roadmap to know everything what's happening around to me.

If you also like me, then you must bookmark the link

Get your OneNote for free

OneNote is my best and preferred application to take notes since years. I personally recommend to everyone of my readers. It's now available for free with plenty of options and it has the apps in every device Desktop, Mobile, Tablets. So, get one and sync all your notes everywhere.

Get your free download copy at Download.

SharePoint Product updates are now part of Windows updates

Uhh.. I am not liking it. Why SharePoint product should be a part of Windows Updates? Windows is Operating System, SharePoint is a product from Microsoft. I am not sure how they merge the updates into one. I think this way because, consider below scenarios:

  1. I have enabled the auto updates on my server and enabled the scheduled updates installed at some specific time. Now, along with Windows updates, all my SharePoint Patches also installed. But, if I am on FARM then I have to make sure the patches are installed in all servers in the FARM.. It's a big dependency. 
  2. Now, if all servers installed the SharePoint updates/patches then we have to make sure the PSConfig should be run in all SharePoint Servers. 
The only advantage I see is, the updates install automatically and my SharePoint server is upto date. But, this will not impress me anywhere. If needed I can download and install on servers I needed as a Product upgrade. 

I am not a fan for this new decision they have made. Make sure to turn off Windows updates automatically option on Windows Servers where SharePoint installed and run the updates when only you really need to. 

And starting this February 2015 CU they are part of Windows Updates. So, you might already got the updates. Please check once your Windows Updates. 

OneDrive delivers unlimited cloud storage for Office 365 subscribers

If you are a Office 365 subscriber then you must feel great about it. I feel great and very happy news for me. They already started rolling out and soon I am gaining unlimited storage to keep all my personal, organization related stuff there. So, wherever I go I don't feel like I lost something.

Thanks Microsoft for the wonderful thinking at low cost. We know you understand us well. Here you go OneDrive for everyone. Read more at: OneDrive and unlimited storage

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Free eBooks from Microsoft on Azure, Windows Server, Sql Server and Windows

Microsoft is giving many ebooks for free. If you are on below technical stack then please use the links below and download them for free.
  • Windows Azure
  • Sql Server 2014
  • Windows
  • Azure
  • App Development
  • Microsoft System Center
Enjoy reading and gain the extra knowledge for better career. :)

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Download CAML Query Designer

Recently I had some free time and implemented an utility for generating CAML query. It's implemented through Technovert with the great UX design ideas. This tool is not only just for generating the CAML Query but also to extract as much of information  related to a list or library which will help developers and administrators. This tool is using the technology stack:
  • WPF (Windows Presentation Foundation)
  • .NET Framework 4.5
  • SharePoint Managed Client Object Model.

This utility has the below features available:
  1. Supports SharePoint 2010/2013/Online. 
  2. Site Manager which remembers your settings and sites information, so you can use them for later time. (All the information is encrypted.). You can save as many connections as you want.
  3. This utility shows the all lists and libraries from the site you requested and also it will show all the subsites and lists in the site as well.
  4. Better UX design which will help users to better use the tool. Below are the modules available to configure and generate your query. 
    1. View Fields: To select what fields to show in the query results. 
    2. Order By: used for sorting the results. 
    3. Filters: To add where clauses. (Right now grouping support not available.)
    4. Query Options: To select any additional options for generating CAML Query.
  5. This tool also gives the below advantages other than simply generating query. 
    1. Gives CAML Query output
    2. Generates Server Side Object Model Code. So, you can simply hook the piece of code  directly. 
    3. Generates Managed Client Object Model Code. 
    4. Generates Java script (ECMAScript) Client Object Model Code. 
    5. Generates Webservices Code.
    6. Generates Powershell script code. 
  6. Export the query to text file. So, you can share it with others. 
  7. Export all languages generated syntax to text file. 
  8. Execute and see the results. So, you make sure your query is correct. 
  9. Export the results to Excel. 
  10. Along with the query generation, this tool also has the support of showing all list information. 
    1. List Metadata
    2. Export the list schema to xml file. 
    3. All fields in the list. 
    4. Export fields to the Excel. 
    5. Show all Content Types attached to the list. 
    6. Export content types to Excel. 
    7. See all workflows on the list. 
    8. Export workflow details to Excel. 
    9. See all Event Receivers on the list. 
    10. Export all event receiver details to Excel. 
  11. Log viewer is also available. So, users can see if anything is wrong in using the tool. 
  12. You can open the list, site, library or any other entity directly from tool. You will see "open in window" icon everywhere next to them.
Please let me know the feedback by going to Technovert / Contact Us or you can leave comments here.
Download CAML Query

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Download Office 2016 Technical Preview

So far Windows 10 is looking good and I am really enjoying with new UI and options available around. Especially the way Cortana implemented, the neat look of the new icons and text rendering is impressive. I recommend you to download the technical preview and use it. I didn't find any major issues so far in the past 2 weeks.

Now, it's the time to use Office 2016. After seen some videos and read some articles wanted to try new Office. But, the invitation link is not working currently. Even if you join in Microsoft Insider program or you registered in Microsoft Connect, you can't be able to download the new version as it is down currently.

If you want to try out the new office, the only way I found is through Windows 10 OS. The OS has the "Store (Beta)" app. Through this app you can download the new office for MS Word, Paint and Excel.

  1. Go to Store (Beta) in your Windows 10 OS. 
  2. Search for "Office Preview" and then download the 3 preview apps available. 
Enjoy the new office. it looks cool.