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Fernando Felman’s thoughts on software development

Archive for the ‘Moss’ Category

Understanding performance considerations in SharePoint OM

Posted by Fernando Felman on March 5, 2009

If you haven’t already, go read this article by Andreas Grabner explaining some technical details around the usage of the SharePoint Object Model and their impact on performance. I don’t expect nothing will be of great surprise for experienced MOSS developers, but the clarity in which the information is presented makes it a good source of information for any level professional.

This is also a good opportunity to recommend the hosting site, InfoQ, which has a very good combination of articles, videos and other assets. The site focuses on everything software development: project management, architecture and development. I especially like the e-books and the videos from the QCon sessions (oh, I do hope to be able to attend next year!).

Posted in Moss | 1 Comment »

SharePoint integration in Visual Studio 10 (and my thoughts around their implied concepts)

Posted by Fernando Felman on November 27, 2008

Visual Studio General Manager, Jason Zander’s, revealed some very interesting announcements around the expected capabilities of Visual Studio 2010 and MOSS at TechEd EMEA 2008. I think this is very much in alignment to an implicit approach Microsoft is shifting to: enabling software development at an architecture and enterprise level, both in more general “tradition” areas but also specifically in SharePoint.

Microsoft launched the Patterns & Practices group for quite a while ago and this group is doing an excellent job enabling architects to develop repeatable-successful solutions using the Microsoft.NET Framework. The group provides reusable artifacts such as the application blocks and design patterns to leverage collective knowledge in order to enable predictable outcomes. In my opinion, this is essential when dealing with enterprise-level applications.

Relying on this managed knowledge means that architects can adhere to successful patterns when handling the overarching concerns of the solutions: we get answers on how to plan for a solution, what products to use, how to provide a build-cycle and what not. And, and this is most important, we are used to this richness of information. We depend on it.

However, when we leave the world of “traditional” technology, RIA, Web Site, Rich Client, Service, etc and we enter the world of Knowledge Management through SharePoint, we suddenly lose out trusty partner. We no longer use application blocks for developing web parts, we do not know how to make our solution testable, and we have to create our own methodology. In essence, we no longer leverage the collective knowledge. Now, you might argue that we have many reusable web parts and heaps of self-proclaimed “best practices” books but almost all of them deal with the technicality of SharePoint solutions, not the bigger picture of solution architecture.

Or at least that was the case in the past. Not so long ago the P&P group released the SharePoint Guidance presumably to bridge that gap, and that’s a good starting. Though I see there are many gaps and holes, especially when you try to bind it with the current Architecture Guide, I think this demonstrates a shift in the approach Microsoft is taking for SharePoint, an approach whose goal is to enable software development at an architecture and enterprise level, especially for SharePoint.

So, going back to the announcements Jason did – I think that these new capabilities in Visual Studio 10 is just another such effort from Microsoft to enable a full software development lifecycle and the VS tool aims to cover the development aspects of it e.g. these capabilities enable multi-members teams working on the same SharePoint solution.

Posted in Architecture, Moss | Leave a Comment »

Unit Testing ShrePoint-Based Solutions Made Easy

Posted by Fernando Felman on November 24, 2008

This is a real candy: Typemock released a mockup solution for SharePoint enabling unit test while removing the SharePoint dependency. Go check it out!

Or using their own word….

Typemock are offering their new product for unit testing SharePoint called Isolator For SharePoint, for a special introduction price. it is the only tool that allows you to unit test SharePoint without a SharePoint server. To learn more click here. The first 50 bloggers who blog this text in their blog and tell us about it, will get a Full Isolator license, Free. for rules and info click here.

I know from my experience unit testing in SharePoint-based solution is a pain so I’ll be difinitely checking it out.

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Visual Studio extensions for Windows SharePoint Services v1.1

Posted by Fernando Felman on February 12, 2008

Funny, just as I publish the how to install VSeWSS on a workstation, the good guys from Redmond announced the new version. Main changes that I’m keen to investigate: bug fixes and features support. You can download the new version from here which now also comes with a user guide. Just like the previous version, you should install this new extensions on a local SharePoint machine. That is, unless you feel like hacking it. 🙂

And while we’re on the subject of MOSS, check out Javed Sikander’s video on OBA Composition Reference Toolkit on Channel 9. I’d really like to see where this thing is going to be in, say, another 2-3 months. I think it really has the potential of bringing forward the biggest advantage of MOSS which, in opinion, is a rich platform for custom collaboration solutions. This toolkit is a huge step towards implementing the concepts I’m used to see from the patterns & practices group to match the SharePoint development world. Very cool.

Posted in Moss, VS2005 | Leave a Comment »

How to install the SharePoint 2007 VS 2005 Extensions on a Workstation

Posted by Fernando Felman on February 11, 2008

SharePoint 2007, or MOSS, is a server product and as such it can only be installed on the Windows Server family platform. I can understand that, it makes sense. What I can’t understand and doesn’t make any sense at all is that I’m not allowed to install the development tools on my new shiny Vista.

The recommendation for MOSS development was always to get a VM to run W2k3 with MOSS and Visual Studio. That’s all fine when you’ve to develop and do cycles of compile-deploy-debug, but what if you want to load an existing web part project with the visual studio installed on your workstation?

If you try to install the Visual Studio 2005 Extensions for Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 Tools (VSeWSS) on a workstation you’d probably fail and get the following error: “This product can only be installed if Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 has been installed first”. So the only thing we’ve to do is to hack the installer into thinking MOSS is installed. How difficult can it be, right?

Before continuing into opening the Regedit tool, be aware that mocking around with the Windows registry is not supported, not recommended and generally considered bad manners.

Now open the regedit and create the following keys and the string value:

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Shared Tools\Web Server Extensions\12.0]

"Sharepoint"="Installed"

That’s it! You have fooled the installer into running on a workstation. Easy. I also recommend adding the core SharePoint assemblies into the CAG using gacutil. Those assemblies can be found by default in any ShaerPoint machine under the folder: C:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\web server extensions\12\ISAPI.

If you’re feeling adventurous enough and want to get the full remote debugging experience, try out this excellent Martin Vollmer’s post.

Posted in .Net v2, Moss, VS2005 | 33 Comments »