Sunday, June 27, 2010


Have you ever been confused? I mean confused in the sense of taking a decision to do something or not. Well I am right now. Punching these keys on the keyboard right now and I'm wondering if I should just stop...stretch and get out of here...I mean get out of this blog post...stop trying to ramble on Sharing the Point (as one of my office friend puts it).

You don't want to blog on SharePoint? Cool...who cares? That's exactly the point. No one cares, right? Yeah, it's that easy to say truly. I didn't care once before but now I do. The funny thing with SharePoint is that it looks like it isn't popular, it isn't known, no one is using it and all of that...THEN...BOOOOOM! your face, you check with the major multinationals (oil, finance, telecoms, automobile, health, name it) and they are using it like crazy!...and you're like you want to take your words back. That's how crazy SharePoint is. It is one of Microsoft's most subtle product, a whole new world of logic and programming altogether.

Another "shadaBANG" (explosive) of SharePoint is it's comparative ease of use and surprises. I mean you want to do something and you get into a "what-da heck" kind of situation. As a professional and as all professionals do (you know what I mean right?...the and no way out stuff), then you throw your hands in the air and ..."phew!" it out, the community (technet, msdn, techrepublic, and all kinds of forums) is your place of call. This is where you meet the next BANG tons of them out there!!!
This the reason I didn't want to blog on SharePoint. I feel we have enough out there. BUT THEN...sometimes when a problem presents itself, you find out that you don't have all the time in the world to solve it, you are fighting against time;you've got all these people, clients, customers, users who are breathing down your neck, sometimes asking for close-to-impossible stuffs. If you are lucky to have an organized environment where SLAs and ticketing are logged...hold on a minute...did I just say if you are lucky to be in an organized environment? Well that might as well be unlucky!...then you have to deliver. That's when someone's blog or forum saves your day with a solution or something close to it that you work with. I've been there and I know what it feels like.

That's why I am blogging on SharePoint Espada right now. I will definitely be helping someone out there who will soon enough find himself in where I have been before. So, for the sake of the community of professionals...and also not to get rusty...I will blog on SharePoint.

The blog name? Well I could have used SharePoint Arrancar or SharePoint Zampaktou...y'know... something very Ichigo-ic, or Bleach-like (I am a Bleach apologies!)...but I had to settle for the Spanish word for sword (espada).
Let's see where we can get started.

Microsoft Site Server, first released in 1996, was Microsoft's solution to the growing difficulty of managing complex websites which included multiple technologies, such as user management and authentication/authorization, content management, analysis, indexing and search. Site Server 2.0, released in early 1997, incorporated electronic commerce technology from Microsoft Merchant Server, Microsoft's first effort at providing a solution to the growing business of Internet-based commerce (or e-commerce). During the course of its evolution (culminating with Site Server 3.0), Site Server expanded on Merchant Server's functionality by annexing content management tools; which would typically be involved, it was thought, in facilitating the management of Web-facing content. Consequently, Site Server became not only a solution for businesses wanting to sell products online, but companies who had corporate intranet servers hosting documents. Site Server felt less like a product, more a collection of tools that didn't have a home any where else. At the time, there weren't too many servers to choose from. King of the range was Exchange Server (version 5.5), the messaging platform. SQL Server 6.5 was paddling around in the nursery pool.

Although Site Server went through several iterations by mid-2000, the portal market was taking centre stage Windows Server 2000 (upgrade from NT 4.0, introducing Active Directory) and SQL Server 2000 (upgrade from SQL Server 6.5). Exchange Server 2000 was completed and also released. Early in 2001, SPS 2001 was finally released. Having started life as a document management and indexing application, its new focus was on targeting the growing portal market. Whilst its features were basically good, it was saddled with two major problems - the web store and the digital dashboard. 2001 Microsoft acquired content management vendor nCompass, and re-branded the product Content Management Server 2001 (CMS 2001). Initially the product was targeted with providing CMS capabilities for Commerce Server (re-completing the feature set that existed back in Site Server days). However, as the portal market continued to grow and overlap with the existing web content management market, CMS 2001 began to compete with SPS 2001. And to further confuse customers, Microsoft also released a free add-on to Office 2000 called SharePoint Team Services (STS) that provided web-based team collaboration features. Confused? Plenty of customers were.

Development options for the next version of SharePoint were relatively simple - replace the Web Store with SQL Server as the storage back-end, and replace Digital Dasboard with ASP.NET for the front-end. As always, the devil was in the details - easy choices don't necessarily lead to easy development. The focus was on improving scalability and improving portal features and that meant some of the document management features were going to struggle to be included. In October 2003, Microsoft released a new version of Office - Office 2003 - and included the new upgraded SharePoint range within the Office brand. STS was renamed Windows SharePoint Services (WSS), and became part of Windows Server 2003. It provided a collaboration store and a web part user interface built using ASP.NET. SPS v2 was built on top of WSS and named Microsoft Office SharePoint Portal Server 2003 (SPS 2003). SPS contained indexing/search, personalisation and enhanced management/taxonomy. So we now had a portal product with a bit more scale than its predecessor that used Microsoft's common developer tools (well, pretty much). Microsoft began to creep up Gartner's magic quadrant for portals, and all would have been well if it hadn't been for Enron and WorldCom...

Just as SharePoint moved away from document management and focused on portal capabilities, Sarbannes-Oxley was born and, all of a sudden, document and records management moved back up the agenda. Simultaneously, the continued growth of the portal market made it clear that portals and web content management were on a collision course, with document and records management joining the party. Windows SharePoint Services 2.0 was marketed as an upgrade to SharePoint Team Services, but was in fact a completely redesigned application.

Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 was released on November 16, 2006 as part of the Microsoft Office 2007 suite and Windows Server 2003. WSS 3.0 is built using .NET Framework 2.0 and .NET Framework 3.0 Windows Workflow Foundation to add workflow capabilities to the basic suite. By the beginning of 2007 WSS 3.0 was made available to the public. Windows 2000 Server is not supported by WSS 3.0.

WSS version 3 marked a significant maturation of the product. Version 3 supported more features commonly used in Web 2.0 solutions like Blogs, Wikis and RSS feeds. Microsoft has changed the name beginning with version 4.0 to SharePoint Foundation 2010.

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