SharePoint offers Enterprise-Level Info Sharing Platform

sharepoint development company , sharepoint custom solutions development , hire sharepoint developer The rich platform of SharePoint helps in the construction of web applications that are ‘multi-tiered’. There are three characteristics that define this development platform- reliability which means its ability for consistent performance, extensibility which enables consolidation with other applications as well as systems and scalability which enables the proper handling of growing work amount. For web application development several frameworks, languages, tools as well as object models can be used. The person who is new to this platform may find it difficult to know what to implement and where. So a developer should first understand his choices and then select the options accordingly to meet his design and architectural goals.

Capabilities

The system of SharePoint Server is equipped with the following capabilities:

  • Communities- Collaborating through blogs, wikis, etc.
  • Sites- Websites both outside as well as inside the firewall.
  • Search- The technologies as well as products include search engines that can be customized according to your needs.
  • Content- Web content management, publishing along with enterprise content management systems.
  • Composite applications- Includes infrastructure, processes, user interface as well as data access.
  • Insights- Business intelligence.

Scalable architecture can be provided by the relevant technologies along with products making it absolutely perfect for several users like employees of a huge corporation. Flexible, scalable websites can be built by its virtue; they can be maintained with ease. When building applications you can customize several capabilities for specific vertical markets.

Role in Application development strategy

While considering the role, three basic strategies are there- enterprise portal, application and intranet along with application. Among these SharePoint viewed as application is the simplest approach. In this, deployment of SharePoint is as it is. Customizations are limited to either no-code customizations or configuring through web browser.

SharePoint may also be utilized as intranet platform as well as application. According to this model, the platform is used for building of intranet applications. This often includes remarkable customizations and partners can be included as well for initial deployment. After completing the deployment, in-house customizations can be limited to configuration through browser or no-code solutions with help of SharePoint Designer.

SharePoint can be adopted as an enterprise portal, acting as a core component of the application development strategy. This model will allow you to have an experienced as well as full-fledged software development team. You along with your development partner can also experience close relationship by virtue of this platform. Other considerations additionally associated with this approach are:

  • Maintaining the skills necessary within the development team.
  • Enforcement as well as development of coding standards specific to SharePoint for external development partners along with internal developers.
  • Robust approach needs to be established for ALM or Application Lifecycle Management like defining the standards, process as well as procedures for creation of SharePoint solutions. They can then be moved through production environments, UAT, integration as well as development.
  • In case of regional SharePoint farms engaged in global deployment, standards and efforts must be coordinated across diverse development teams.

Right applications for SharePoint

To use SharePoint for application development platform, you should try and determine when SharePoint can be used and when it cannot be used. Every problem can be solved by this platform but it may increase complexities in maintenance along with application development and cost as well. Things may become tricky in case of upgradation to SharePoint’s latest release due to heavy customizations. So some key considerations are:

  • Management of unstructured information is best suited by SharePoint.
  • There is no point in using this if things like content, search, insights, communities, composites or sites are not used.
  • It is best for creation of multiple examples of websites based on common templates.

Thus, in short this platform is not only great for enterprise level information sharing but for lots of features like file-sharing, web-publishing and collaborating, all under a single server. Business efficiency and productivity can be improved with the help of the easy to use and powerful infrastructure which boasts of capabilities for the development of websites, portals, content management systems, intranets and such other business intelligence implementations. You can hire developers from top SharePoint development company in India who can help you build mobile apps within allocated budgets and time schedules.

We provide SharePoint custom solutions development services. If you need to hire SharePoint developer from us, we would be glad to assist you at Mindfire Solutions.

SharePoint Development: Why it is not always smooth sailing

Microsoft has launched SharePoint 2013 with a set of innovative features to complement the requirements of all types of enterprises. Along with developing a variety of solutions, organizations now have option to build customized SharePoint apps according to their specific needs. However, an organization must consider some key factors while migrating to the new technology. In addition to providing adequate training to its employees, an enterprise also needs to identify the important challenges associated with SharePoint development. The understanding of these challenges will further make it easier for the business to migrate to the latest version of the content management system.

Most Challenging Aspects of SharePoint Development

custom sharepoint development, sharepoint webparts development, sharepoint developers1. Adequate Product Knowledge and Planning: Often SharePoint development projects are affected negatively due to lack of adequate product knowledge and planning. Along with being too large and bulky, the technology is also complex. Microsoft has further included features to make it usable for a number of purposes like a rapid web application development framework or content management system. So the developers must understand all aspects of the product deeply to become experts. So an organization must be ready to allow adequate time to the developers and SharePoint site administrators to gain in depth knowledge of the technology.

2. Enhanced and Specialized Skill: Unlike other application development, SharePoint development requires specialized and extended skills. Along with understanding various aspects of the distinct platform, the developers also need to be proficient in C#, Visual Basic or similar standard managed-code languages. At the same time, the programmers must understand HTML, CSS and XML, along with ASP.NET and other web languages ad frameworks. When the developer understand a wide variety of web technologies, it will be easier for him to write the exact code or assemble the features to achieve predefined objectives of the organization.

3. Extended Development Time: Most developers consider SharePoint 2013 to be innovative and out of box. But the outcome of several surveys have also highlighted that additional development time is required to develop the ideas. In addition to implementing exact ideas, additional time is also required for customizing the solution according to the specific requirements of the enterprise. However, an organization can overcome this challenge by active planning and encouraging collaboration among IT and other departments. An active plan will further help enterprises in reducing the amount of time and funds required to build a tailor-made SharePoint solution or application.

4. Performance of Customized Solutions: The complex and highly customizable nature of the platform further makes it difficult for programmers to debug custom SharePoint solutions. Along with deciding the performance problems, a project leader also needs to identify the interactions and components responsible for such problems. The reason behind the poor performance of the SharePoint solution can be tracked down by checking application, web server traffic, SQL Server and similar logs. At the same time, the developers also need to consider the indexing time and performance counters to track down the issue. So there are chances that the Unified Logging System (ULS) provided by the framework may not track down the performance issues due to the large number of moving parts and components.

5. Post-Development Requirements: Most organizations ignore the post-development task associated with SharePoint development. In addition to building a robust and customized solution, an enterprise also needs to ensure that the system is managed and administered effectively. The custom solution needs to be supported with adequate documentation. At the same time, it is also essential for the organization to implement a strategy to maintain hardware and databases, and restore or backup procedure. An organization can also consider setting application deployment guidelines and infrastructure policy. The rules will make it easier for the staff to understand the support and maintenance required to optimize the performance of the SharePoint solution.

An enterprise also has several options to address the issues associated with SharePoint development. It can always adopt some widely used SharePoint development best practices, along with considering outsourcing the project to a competent development company. Custom SharePoint development teams can help you build projects within allocated budgets and time schedules.

We provide SharePoint webparts development services. If you would like to talk to one of our certified SharePoint developers, please get in touch with us at Mindfire Solutions.

Comparing SharePoint 2013 with previous versions

SharePoint can be an extremely powerful tool, a well-designed solution for content, document and information management – a well-designed solution. SharePoint 2013 is an excellent improvisation which is increasingly mobile, increasingly social and all that promotes a greater collaborative atmosphere within the organization. With SP2013, it is possible to integrate social capabilities, organize, share and synchronize content properly. Now users can share their ideas and opinion with their colleagues continuously. SharePoint has been very popular technology in the web world which can be beneficial for enterprises and excellent platform for sharing content with others.

custom sharepoint development, Sharepoint 2013 development, hire sharepoint developersWith the release of SP2013, there is a wide range of new features at disposal such as stronger search features, better cloud integration and infrastructure as well as content management. The 2013 release is an important one as the 2007 edition will no longer be supported, users have been upgrading to 2010 or 2013 versions nowadays. The SharePoint Connector supports SharePoint 2007, SharePoint 2010 and SharePoint 2013. SharePoint Connector 1.8 supports all the above three versions.

Microsoft thinking beyond 2013

Microsoft is happy about SharePoint 2013 to get a better understanding of what’s new. In developing the product, it has taken care of the main obstacles for organisations deploying the 2010 version. SP2013 is specially designed keeping in mind app scalability for large business enterprises. It has been targeting all knds of business sectors with its new features and functionalities.

Comparison with SharePoint 2010:

  • No Internet Explorer 7 support.
  • With the purchase of Yammer, there is more emphasis on social media.
  • Licensing: Internet sites no longer require an expensive licence, the cheaper standard server licence means that customers can host their internet and intranet on the same platform, reducing costs and providing more flexibility.
  • Records and document management: no real change.
  • Greater adoption of internet and open standards, enabling broader device support and integration with other services.
  • Users can have SharePoint on premise, in the cloud, or a hybrid of both.
  • The core ‘Search’ capability, based on FAST technology, is much richer.

Striking Features of SharePoint2013 which makes it stand apart:

Support for mobile devices

Mobility adoption is increasing within organizations and it is the topmost trend. The new version of SharePoint offers a rich platform for mobile development. Contemporary view which is HTML coded view provides a quick access across various mobile platforms like iPhone, Android, and Blackberry.

Improved BI Capabilities

SharePoint 2013 offers extended capabilities to generate business intelligence reports. Its ability to provide big data reports and BI solutions has been expanded with the new version. Also, the integration between SharePoint and Excel has also been improved for a smooth functioning. It offers a better Power Pivot program that makes it possible to work with plenty of rows and columns in memory, making it convenient for use. It is used to generate extensive reports that reflect the organizations growth and provides insights into the business.

Cloud reality

SharePoint 2013 is geared for the cloud, which is great, but there are still a few things to watch for. Cloud apps reduce infrastructure costs and risks. Now users can spend more time in quality management and performance improvement. With this new version, it is easy for the users to keep a track of updated technologies. Now you can deal with complex and long programs quickly.

On premise

Running SharePoint onsite means that one can add more functionality or have better integration with other line of business systems. It also means that it has more flexibility over compliance features such as Public Records Act requirements.

Private cloud

Using a private cloud means that one can have predictable bandwidth and performance, but it also means that storage and disaster recovery costs are more obvious. This means that one can have a clear separation between infrastructure and application administration.

Search

Search on SharePoint 2013 is a real highlight. It is much richer than internet or Google-type results.It also provides a facility wherein it is possible to view the outline of a document while scanning through the search results. And the fact that Search has now been integrated with the ‘Term Store’, which helps standardise company language across documents, means one can now refine search results even more. Other great features include the ability to preview content whenever its hovered, meaning that one can preview a PowerPoint presentation without opening it. The ‘bad’ is that Search requires more server resources and requires an enterprise licence for certain advanced Search features.

New content features

The ability to drag and drop files into a webpage

  • End users can “share” files with others more simply
  • Better developer support
  • New database storage reduces the overhead of versioned documents
  • With Office Web Apps one can now edit documents on iOS devices
  • Much more flexibility around images
  • Video support improvements.

Infrastructure management

You can now take a more flexible approach to infrastructure management with SharePoint 2013. This means that you can take a hybrid on-premise and cloud approach. This is great for small to medium businesses that might not have the beefy bandwidth that you would need to run SharePoint completely over the internet, but by purchasing “Apps” hosted in the cloud these “Apps” will appear to be running on your server.

There are some technical traps to be aware of however:

  • Most customers will want to virtualise the SharePoint servers but they are resource intensive so should not be run on over committed hosts
  • Beware of remote access requirements, which can cause slow access
  • There’s no need to keep scanned and read-only files in SharePoint – it’s an expensive form of storage – it’s better to have a link to these resources in SharePoint
  • Don’t underestimate the technical skills that SharePoint needs.
  • Some of the SharePoint features require that other infrastructure and client components are all on the 2013 version. Fortunately SharePoint 2013 still allows to run 2010 sites, which means that one can leverage some new features like search, while continuing to use 2010 document libraries for Office 2010 users. This ability to run both in parallel is a key feature introduced in 2013 to help reduce the upgrade pain.

The new version SharePoint 2013 customizations helps control and manage all the different aspects of the web portals in a splendid way. SharePoint webparts enables to add dynamic functionality to the site, and enables to create different layouts for the mobile platform. Microsoft has already started receiving good vibes about SharePoint 2013 because businesses have started adopting to the new version. Custom SharePoint development teams are can help you migrate from older versions of SharePoint to SP2013 within allocated budgets and time schedules.

We provide SharePoint 2013 development services. We are glad to share that all our SharePoint developers are Microsoft certified. If you would like to talk to one of our developers before you take the decision to hire SharePoint developers from us, we would be glad to assist you at Mindfire Solutions.

Design Tips for SharePoint 2013 Apps on Tablets

With the growth of technology, the world is getting smaller day by day. Bigger desktops becoming bulky laptops. And these bulky laptops changing to Notebooks. Then these stylish Notebooks became Ultra books. And now the trend is moving towards Smart phones and tablets. With this modern shift of electronic gadgets applications too are getting customized. Web applications becoming Apps, “Apps” are marketing strategy to increase use of SharePoint and other technologies in wider IT markets gaining its demand for development, deployment and usage. SharePoint was first launched in 2001 for both home and at work. Now with its customized features and advance versions catering the needs of customer today. SharePoint apps going mobile and are in huge demand across the globe.

sharepoint 2013 mobile development, sharepoint portal development, hire sharepoint developerDesigning for mobile apps in SharePoint has evolved dramatically. Users now expect faster, pertaining longer to mobile experiences and catering to this is increasingly difficult. With the release of SharePoint 2013 a powerful tool has taken birth which deals with content, document and information management only when it is correctly used. SharePoint apps provide well-designed solution with its wide range of new features such as stronger search features, better cloud integration and some good developments in content and infrastructure management. The 2013 release is an important one as the 2007 version will no longer be supported, which means that users have to upgrade current versions for better use of applications and building it with more richer usability.

Richer Features of today’s Mobile Apps

  • End users can “share” files with others more simply.
  • Better developer support.
  • The overhead of versioned documents is reduced with the new database storage.
  • With Office Web Apps can now edit documents on iOS devices.
  • Much more flexibility around images.
  • Video support improvements.

Design Tips for a successful Mobile App

1. Responsive Design: Presenting large amounts of information on the limited real estate of a mobile screen is difficult. While there are other more-detailed interface design techniques, such as responsive tables. SharePoint deploys applications in varied screen sizes with a better and responsive design.

2. Color theme: SharePoint designs apps with a consistent look and feel of any website or brand by choosing a matching color theme. Giving it a professional look with a logo image for app’s header rather than adding it as a text-based title. So that users should be able to recognize its brand at first glance of the app.

3. Splash screen: Splash screen gives users the first impression of classy apps with creative ideas. High-resolution images give applications that wow factor it deserves. It can all happen with this new SharePoint 2013 version. It gives life to its applications and satisfies customers by meeting what they crave for.

4. Home screen navigation: This platform offers four types of navigation. Experiment with different navigation settings until you find the most suitable one for background image and icons. For example, if background contains a special texture or image at the bottom and want to emphasize the icons a grid navigation helps to achieve that. Alternatively, if an image of a real person is there it should be placed in the on the right and list navigation must be used.

5. Mobile Social Networks: Social networking use mobile apps to allow a whole new platform of communication for example Facebook and Twitter have gone mobile. Thus SkyDrive Pro is cloud storage that organizations provides for employees as part of their SharePoint 2013 on-premises and/or Office 365 SharePoint Online deployments. SkyDrive Pro access is also a capability of the new Office Mobile for iPhone as well as Android phones. One can use these apps to create new documents and edit existing ones from any smartphone directly into SkyDrive Pro folder. SharePoint is all about building various business solutions and dynamic websites with its new out-of-the-box templates. The new SharePoint user interface gives higher usability with a clean experience with easy drag and drop, quicker page loads and a focus on true accessibility to make SharePoint understandable and operable.

6. New Push Notification Feature integration: SharePoint 2013 now supports the mobile apps that aid users to receive notifications from a SharePoint based website. Any number of events happening on the SharePoint site is notified on the mobile device with new Push notification feature. One time registration with the website is required by mobile device apps. The Push notification service can be started by which mobile users receive notifications directly from the server where the app is hosted for the registered mobile device app. Also, it is vital that the Push Notification feature is activated on the site automatically changing the settings.

7. Device Channels: Use of mobile devices is the most these days, they keep running on multiple mobile operating systems. SharePoint builds optimized websites which has rich readability and easily used on all mobile devices. With Device channels integrated in SharePoint 2013, mobile users can deliver a single website in multiple views by using different preferable designs that target different devices.

8. Location: SharePoint 2013 supports new Geolocation field type that can be used in a list particularly for mobile application development. Now, it is possible to create lists location aware and display latitude and longitude coordinates via Bing Maps. Its tools are useful for building enhanced customized mobile applications. Microsoft has included all useful mobile related features in SharePoint 2013 making it a mobile-friendly platform.

SharePoint 2013 has developed new capabilities in web hosting section with its new version comprises such as serving up pages to different electronic gadgets such as tablets and smartphones based on their characteristics. It also includes several features for search engine optimization, including XML based sitemaps, user-friendly URLs and robots.txt support to define out of bounds areas for search engine crawlers.

Tablets and Smartphones are here to stay and make our lives smarter and more mobile. SharePoint being the home for every sort of business, Microsoft has addressed the problem of the poor SharePoint experience for mobile devices in previous versions, very effectively. With the new SharePoint version HTML5 coded view known as the “contemporary” view that is optimized for speedy access across various smart devices and multiple browsers. SharePoint 2013 mobile development can work wonders for you – It can help you build apps to reach out and push a message to the mobile device based on various factors with its new push notification feature. Mobile Apps designed today are more convenient and easily portable and can suffice basic business needs.

We provide SharePoint portal development services. The entire 100% of our SharePoint team is certified by Microsoft. To hire SharePoint developer from us, please reach out to us at Mindfire Solutions.

Why Executives Are Resisting SharePoint’s Social Tools?

The social tools of SharePoint have lately faced a lot of criticism from executives. It is a fact that these social tools are considered as a major distraction and well as productivity hindrance. Moreover, many executives might also believe that these tools can usher in the threats of loss of intellectual property, cyber-attacks as well as corporate embarrassment. From their point of view, these tools are probable disasters which should better be completely done away with.

top companies in sharepoint, sharepoint development india, sharepoint development company, hire sharepoint developer, sharepoint development companies, sharepoint development services, sharepoint 2013 mobile development, sharepoint portal development, sharepoint cms customization, offshore sharepoint developerMany of these concerns might be legitimate, but that should not be the reason to shun SP social tools totally. Globally acclaimed SharePoint expert Richard Harbridge, has worked with a number of companies helping them to cope up with this problem. According to him, once the executives’ concerns are understood and acknowledged, ways to reduce the risks can be demonstrated.

Major concerns of executives and means to alleviate them

1. Fear of negative comments: One of the things that executives worry about most is the situation wherein a dissatisfied employee might say something negative on the blog. Such corporate embarrassment can be avoided by adopting certain simple measures such as the addition of an approval feature within the blogs. Here the main issue is that executive or other supporting staff might not properly understand how these features can be used effectively. In that case, some amount of education will help.

2. Fear of wrong information usage: With SharePoint’s social tools, executives often dread the fact that information might fall in the wrong hands. In the executives’ opinion, loss of trade secrets and intellectual property is a huge risk. This can be addressed by amending or appending the existing policies pertaining to intellectual property, that are present in employee agreements or employee manuals. Any social technology including the intranet should not be exempt from respectful and ethical employee behavior as well as acceptable technology use practices.

3. Fear of wastage of time: According to many executives, once SharePoint social tools are introduced, a large number of people would be wasting time on what can be called as a ‘Corporate Facebook’. But it should be noted that the tools have some substantial business value which most executives do not know. For instance, each time a user shares, rates or tags a piece of content, the same is noted by SharePoint and its search relevancy is increased. This enables people to easily locate what they are looking for, thereby mitigating the risk of obsolete or incorrect content being used.

In case executives are still concerned about productivity loss, setting the employees’ expectation that, like their web browser or email, this is also a work technology, can do the desired job. In order to make the use of these SP tools by employees more effective, guidance, training or illustrations may be given on the means to utilize the technology within a work setting. Often, making use of stories to elaborate this can help immensely, particularly if the stories revolve around corporate culture or things like any practical use of the tool specific to the business.

4. Fear of viruses and cyber-attacks: Many are of the opinion that using SP social tools will make the systems vulnerable to cyber-attacks and viruses. These can be conveniently reduced by implementation of an enterprise ready social technology. A plethora of them have constraints imposed for preventing people from adding scripts as an instance to discussion boards, tags, status updates or embedded in any other social content.

5. Fear of employee harassment: Many feel that enhanced collaboration paves the way to increased employee harassment. It is significant to consider the matter of employee harassment, hence ensure that you append or amend the existing policies related to sexual harassment within employee agreements or manuals. Moreover, so far as ethical employee behavior or acceptable technology use is concerned, all social technologies including the intranet should not be exempt from the same.

The concern of your executives is valid, and cannot be denied. However, once these concerns are addressed through implementation of effective and simple safeguards, these types of situations can be done away with. And once accepted with open arms, SharePoint application development would help you leverage the power of social media.

We provide SharePoint webparts development services. If you would like to talk to one of our certified SharePoint developers, please get in touch with us at Mindfire Solutions.

7 Steps to Selecting the Right SharePoint Support Partner

A consistent increase is noted in the number of companies investing in SharePoint application development. However, each organization also explores option to optimize the performance of the SharePoint application. In addition to developing and deploying the application properly, it is also important for a company to provide consistent and quality support. If you are planning to outsource the SharePoint application support, it is important to select the right partner. Along with comparing the cost of support services, you also need to consider on a number of important points to ensure that your SharePoint application gets consistent and customized support.

How to Choose the Right SharePoint Support Partner?

SharePoint bespoke development, certified sharepoint developers, SharePoint site migration1. Skills and Innovation: Similar to other tech support partners, your SharePoint support partner also needs to possess adequate knowledge, skills and platforms. At the same time, you must evaluate the nature and type of the services offered by the company to ensure that these are effective in optimizing the performance of your application. In addition to adding value to your existing team of developers, the company must be effective in providing fresh and innovative ideas to the overall IT functionality.

2. Solid Working Relationship: When you are hiring a SharePoint support partner, the company will work with your team over a longer period of time. Therefore, it is important to check the services offered by the company to ensure that a solid working relationship can be built. Along with checking the compatibility of the company with your existing team, you also need to check if the company is ready to offer customized support according to the needs and objectives of your organization.

3. Professional Accreditations: When you are outsourcing SharePoint support, it becomes essential to hire the best professionals. Along with the qualification and experience of the members of the support team, you also need to check if they are Microsoft certified. As each professional has to work hard to obtain Microsoft certification exam, the team consisting of such accredited developers can provide higher level of service by identifying your specific requirements.

4. Location of the Company: You have option to choose from several local and offshore SharePoint support service providers. Similar to other companies, you can avail high quality yet cost-effective support for your application by outsourcing the project. But the offshore company will require you to work with a distributed team. Also, there are chances that you have to implement a comprehensive strategy to overcome the constraints related to language and time zone. It is also a good idea to discuss with your in-house team about their willingness to work with an offshore company.

5. A Concrete Service Level Agreement: Once you decide to hire an offshore company, it becomes essential to ensure that it will assist your team in resolving any problem without causing any delay. At the same time, you must hire a service provider who agrees to sign a concrete service level agreement drafted according to your specific business needs. The service level agreement will make it easier for you to avail consistent and high quality SharePoint support, in addition to evaluating the service based on key performance indicators.

6. Credibility and Reputation of the Support Partner: The websites of the companies offering SharePoint support will help you in understanding the nature and type of services offered by them. However, you cannot hire a partner without checking his professional credibility and reputation. It is always a good idea to contact the existing clients of the company to gather information about the quality and promptness of the support service provided by the company. At the same time, you also need to evaluate the information gathered from various resources to ensure that the company has adequate manpower and financial strength to become a long-term support partner.

7. Cost: The hash economic conditions have made it essential for companies to avail high quality SharePoint support on a budget. So you must compare the prices charged by each shortlisted company. However, it is also important to do a cost and benefit analysis by keeping in mind the value the company will add to your existing IT system and functionality. As each service provider promises higher ROI, you can always ask the company to prove its claims. When a support partner agrees to deliver higher ROI, it will remain more committed to optimize the performance of your SharePoint application.

While selecting a SharePoint support partner, you cannot ignore the significance the feedback and recommendations of other users. It is a good idea to search the web to read the information shared by other companies related to the quality and reliability of SharePoint support provided by each of the shortlisted companies. If you are contemplating a SharePoint site migration project, you can put the points above into action to find a reliable development partner.

We provide SharePoint bespoke development services. If you would like to talk to one of our certified SharePoint developers, please get in touch with us at Mindfire Solutions.

7 Critical Quality Assurance Steps to Take in SharePoint Scanning

Each edition of Microsoft SharePoint comes with loads of innovative features and functionality. In addition to being a web publishing platform, SharePoint is also used widely by enterprises to manage content and documents stored on their intranet and the web. But each company has to make and implement a comprehensive strategy to migrate to SharePoint smoothly. An organization can easily migrate to the innovative content management system, if it does not have any paper record.

custom sharepoint development, sharepoint webparts development, sharepoint developersBut the companies with loads of paper records must implement a comprehensive SharePoint scanning strategy. Along with scanning each documents, file and folder, the strategy also needs to consider how to sort and store the scanned records logically. At the same time, the strategy must consider a number of quality assurance steps to optimize SharePoint scanning.

SharePoint Scanning Best Practices

1. Automate the Scanning Process: Similar to other manual process, SharePoint scanning is also prone to several types of errors. So you must use innovative technologies to automate the collection and storing of data. You also have option to choose from a variety of tools like Database Lookups and Advanced Data Extractions to make the data collection and entry process flawless. Along with eliminating errors, the tools will further make it easier for you to store the data at a much faster pace.

2. Check the Scanning Hardware: The documents can be scanned using several types of scanning hardware available in the market. But you must check the hardware to ensure that it is designed with double feed detection feature. The feature will ensure that the each page is scanned by eliminating the chances of pages getting struck while going through the feeder. As you have option to choose from several scanners, it is important to pick the right device after evaluating the pros and cons of each system.

3. Make the Scanning Task Specific: Many professionals do not understand the requirements and significance of SharePoint scanning. So they often ignore to check the quality of the scanned images and documents. You can always improve the quality of scanning by making the entire process task specific. Instead of deploying a dedicated employee to scan all documents, you can divide the task among several employees. When the task is assigned to specific employees, they will scan the documents properly while checking the quality of both data and images.

4. Check the Quality of Image and Data: You can always optimize the SharePoint scanning by introducing a QA system. Under the QA system, each image and information will be checked by an independent person, before storing these in the database. As an alternative, you can even consider using an interface that is designed with dual view feature to see each side of a document, folder batch or image structure. At the same time, the interface will also use a spreadsheet to ensure that the all each document is scanned and sorted in an exact and logical way.

5. Use Count Validation: When you are converting existing business data stored on papers into digital format, you must remember that there are always chances that some documents, pages and folders may remain non-scanned. So you must use a validation interface to ensure that each page, document and folder is scanned and counted properly. In addition to physical to digital validation, the interface will further ensure that the prepped or poorly stacked papers are scanned without skipping any record.

6. Check the Way Documents are Stored: Along with scanning each paper record, you also need to ensure that the digitalized records are sorted and stored logically. When the information are sorted and stored in a logical order, it will be easier to access the details immediately in future. Similarly doing QA while scanning the documents, you can further consider introducing QA of the end resting place. The second level of QA will ensure that the data are stored in the right rules. Also, the data will be stored according to the right rules, and in right data fields.

7. Improve Quality through Reporting: Many enterprises use a dual stream output to optimize the scanning and storing of paper record. Along with storing the images and metadata in the repository, you must feed the data and scanning statistics into a reporting DB. The reporting DB will make it easier for you to track the entire scanning process, and ensure that all documents are digitalized. The reporting will further help you in identifying the missing documents and exceptions.

Many organizations outsource SharePoint scanning to save time, effort and money. If you are planning to outsource the project, it becomes essential to keep the above mentioned factors in mind. It is also important to hire a company that has adequate experience in scanning, classifying and storing a wide variety of business records using SharePoint. Custom SharePoint development teams with proper experience in scanning can help immensely in this.

We provide SharePoint webparts development services. If you would like to talk to one of our certified SharePoint developers, please get in touch with us at Mindfire Solutions.

SharePoint performance sinks, swims with SQL Server throughput

When any kind of slowdown occurs within a SharePoint system, the immediate solution is to go for addition of more web servers in order to handle the load in a better fashion. However, these front-end servers are dependent upon the same back-end database server. Incidentally, it is the back end where most of the issues crop up. This is because it depends upon SQL as a file as well as a database system. The processing demands of SP brings to light the disk I/O as the most most common bottleneck. Let us discuss the steps that need to be taken for avoiding or mitigating the logjams that can hinder SQL Server throughput.

sharepoint development, sharepoint bespoke development, Sharepoint programmersIt is advisable to get the binary large objects such as the file attachments, out from the database. SQL Server as well as SharePoint render support to Microsoft’s RBS ( Remote BLOB Storage) technology. This conveniently allows putting all the Excel, Word or other documents back within the NTFS file system wherein they actually belong.

NTFS has the capability of writing and reading files rapidly. On the other hand, SQL Server needs to manage them along its database pages of 8KB, which can consume a great amount of disk space as well as server resources. To do away with this, files are kept by RBS in NTFS and pointers are also provided. This implies that the file attachments can be written to completely separate disks that the one which contains the chief database. This helps in maintaining speed by reducing disk contention.

Regular Maintenance and Premium Storage

One of the most significant performance management investments with respect to SharePoint is buying fast storage. Initially, it is good for organizations to focus on gaining momentum in planning the purchases since this constitutes one of the most costly aspects of storage. Rapid storage area networks coupled with robust drive caches are capable of rendering high quality storage performance, which is a great need of SharePoint. It is advisable to make sure that adequate amount of storage capacity is available for every data developed with respect to a SP installation.

Regular maintenance is extremely important for ensuring the efficiency of ongoing SQL server. The SP collaboration platform is able to generate considerable amount of data, especially in case of heavily used document stores wherein versioning occurs in order to track changes within documents. Moreover, manifold versions are maintained for reference purpose. Appropriate database maintenance, incorporating reorganizing or rebuilding indexes along with updating of statistics, allows SQL Server to remain clean-cut and suitable for quality performance. Moreover, database files can be defragmented as the fragmentation level starts to go beyond 7% or 8%.

Breaking it up

Owing to the inherent scalability of the web, SharePoint is able to scale without any major issues. SQL server is unable to do it in a similarly convenient manner. Because of this, managers of a number of big SharePoint environments develop manifold server farms, each having a dedicated back-end system. For instance, a company can possess a set of SharePoint servers as well as a related database for the document library across the company, for special projects, for users’ blogs and the like. This yields better results than putting everything into the same SQL Server database.

SharePoint administrators can also consider acquiring certain extra tools in addition to visiting Microsoft’s TechNet website, which presents solutions to particular performance problems and best practices to ensure speedy crawling of SharePoint environments.

Defined Performance Metrics

It is also a significant aspect to develop some measurable and reasonable performance expectations for SharePoint development. The basic formula is to try and base these upon the end-user experience. Simply speaking, acceptable performance can be defined by the maximum time a user has to wait during checking of a document accomplishing a task or accessing a blog. You can then break down these metrics into a number of prospective back-end performance metrics. This is a great means to assess the performance quality.

When user-experience metrics get defined, it is required to measure them regularly in order to identify the trends. In this way, it will be convenient to detect whenever a SharePoint system fails to live up to the organization’s expectations.

We provide SharePoint bespoke development services. If you would like to talk to one of our certified SharePoint programmers, please get in touch with us at Mindfire Solutions.

Extracting and Loading SharePoint Data in SQL Server Integration

Whenever it comes to the loading of SP Data in the server integration of SQL, the very first thing that developers of integration package services are bothered about is the best- possible ways in which the data can put in as well as brought out from the SharePoint list. The source of the list and the destination sample of the SharePoint offers an optimized solution with a user friendly interface. The sample also comes with an API for an efficient accomplishment of the tasks apart from the Integration Services.

Ways of Working with SP Data

sharepoint development, sharepoint bespoke development, Sharepoint programmersFollowing are some of the prominent ways in which the SharePoint data can be extracted or loaded:

  • Making use of the SharePoint APIs to add or remove items individually
  • Generating as well as submitting the XML by means of the use of the SharePoint Batch API
  • Using the Lists Web service that makes use of the same XML as the Batch API

The web services come up as great ways of transferring information to and from SharePoint without altering the platform server itself.

SharePoint Source List and Destination: Features

A discussion on the prominent features of the list source as well as destination of SharePoint is essential in this regard. Now, these actually make use of the public web services of the platform. Here is a list of features that improve their level of performance and functionality:

  • The required fields are only returned from the web application development platform
  • The somewhat large lists are divided in batches with a batch size that can be configured
  • The information of column type is utilized for the purpose of mapping to Integration services data types
  • Addition of CAML queries to the query is facilitated to separate the rows that need to be returned
  • Simple updating as well as deleting of operations from the Integration Services package
  • Integration services expressions can be used to set the essential custom properties of the source and destination
  • Supports SQL Server as well as x64 and x86 processors

Process of Using the Destination and Source

Few steps need to be taken prior to using these parts of this SharePoint development platform. The foremost thing to be done is to download the right installer package from the codeplex site. Once downloaded, the installer needs to be run. It has to be kept in mind in this regard that Complete Install needs to be selected, as this allows the installer deploy connectors for each of the version of SSIS on the targeted machine. This is followed by the final step that involves addition of the source and destination to the Toolbox.

Extracting the Information from SharePoint with List Source

The extraction is usually done through the following steps:

  • Addition of the SP connections
  • Addition of components to the SSIS data flow
  • Setting the properties of the SharePoint list source’
  • Writing data to SP by means of the SP list destination

With regards to the extraction and loading of SP information, few more factors need to be considered apart from the above. For instance, if you are looking up for a value in a SP list, the Lookup transformation in the data flow can be used to load the lookup table. Again, if you are replacing values in the data with the values found in the loop, loading the altered data back to SP can be done by including the ID from the lookup column.

There is absolutely no doubt about the point that the SP list source as well as destination sample makes getting data into and out of a SharePoint list much hassle- free. What’s more, the sample also facilitates a utility library that makes working with SP lists out of integration services simpler.

We provide SharePoint bespoke development services. If you would like to talk to one of our certified SharePoint programmers, please get in touch with us at Mindfire Solutions.

Integrating Crystal Reports with SharePoint -Things to Keep in Mind

The popular business application, SharePoint, is now widely preferred by most software companies. With the newest versions coming up, this web application platform is used for a number of purposes, out of which the sharing of electronic documents and images of the scanned paper documents are the most prominent ones. SharePoint enables developers to create websites, which further allow an easy uploading as well as managing of documents. Even the communities can be formed around particular functions, necessitating access to the documents. These documents then become ready for searching, collaboration, management, updating or archiving.

The Need for Integration

sharepoint developers, sharepoint application development, custom sharepoint development, SharePoint Crystal reports integrationWhile SharePoint with its multiple functionalities is of immense use, it cannot be denied at the same time that it is not so useful when it comes to the business intelligence system. It is here that the integration of SharePoint with Crystal Reports becomes necessary. The integration largely helps in making the information accessible as well as ready to analyze from the organization. Once the integration is done, the data can be drilled into different sets, which makes the process of categorizing them easier. The integration supports accomplishment of the following tasks:

  • Analyzing data in thorough details
  • Identify the relationship between costs as well as revenues of your organization
  • Identify processes and products that are adding value as well as reducing the margins.

Now, there are few things to be considered to ensure that the integration of SharePoint and CR goes off well while also paving the way for the required benefits.

Points to Consider for Successful Integration

To begin with, a CR scheduler should be incorporated, which allows scheduling of reports that need to be sent at specific date and time to the particular business users in the desired format. The incorporation of the Crystal Reports scheduler offers the members of the organization with the required information without a wastage of time and efforts and they can, therefore, engage in quick decision making. The reports created by the business users can also be stored centrally with the help of SharePoint and accordingly, accessed by the staff members who are in need of the same. Crystal Reports pave the way for scheduling reports on the use of SharePoint to get an idea about how the web application platform is influencing the work of the staffs.

Yet another important factor that has to be considered in this regard is that of using the SharePoint system in the automation of business process. The newly integrated report scheduler, if used, on an event-driven basis, enables a rather process automation. Consequently, modification to files or databases lead to a chain of actions, saving the hard work that had to put into the task otherwise by an employee.

The events include receiving orders from customers and triggering an automatic sending of the packing slip to the warehouse, reducing of the inventory levels, ordering the new products along with materials to fill up for the lack of stock, scheduling delivery of the given order and also billing the customer. Earlier, these actions had to be not only performed by the individuals but also necessitated the inputs from several professionals belonging to the various departments of the organization. Now, the automation is done electronically, saving the transactions that seem to be lagging behind, cost of staffing and the obvious chances of human errors.

Considering the importance of the integration of SharePoint with Crystal Report, companies are now going for Crystal Reports Distribution or what is also known as CRD. CRD can actually work wonders in reducing costs while at the same time, increase the margins and efficiencies. Scheduling and automation of information across any organization is easier than ever before. Custom sharepoint development teams can help you build projects within allocated budgets and time schedules.

We provide SharePoint application development services. If you would like to talk to one of our certified SharePoint developers, please get in touch with us at Mindfire Solutions.