Guidance for developing custom solutions with SharePoint 2007.

First let me start off by allaying all your fears, “No it’s not another factory”. :-) 

For a while we’ve been hearing a lot of requests from customers for patterns & practices to deliver guidance on SharePoint. For several weeks now we’ve been exploring this space, and evaluating where we might be able to deliver value.

With the new guidance, we want to focus on a specific set of scenarios which SharePoint is appropriate for. We then want to focus on what solution is appropriate for addressing those scenarios and why.

If you’ve been developing SharePoint solutions, then we need your help. Please take the following survey and let us know what your pain points are, where do YOU see the most need for guidance?

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    I have several reports published on my SharePoint 2007 Site. What I like to do is, when a user open’s a close a report give the user a pop-up page with a survey. Each report will have there own survey. Can I do this with the Survey feature in MOSS 2007 or Do I have to dig in the code???

  • Jeremy Thake

    I’ve just written a bit more about this on my blog and hopefully it’ll keep this flowing among the SharePoint developers out there…

  • Peter Seale

    I’d like to hear what is coming in SharePoint vNext, specifically how it will break any custom solutions I’m building today. I understand this information will be difficult to acquire, but that’s my #1 problem.

    Also, guidance as to how to choose the “appropriate solution” is my #2 huge issue. E.g. custom aspx form, or create site columns?

    Also Casey, while I’m beginning to lean the direction of building completely testable solutions in SharePoint (i.e. your way, I read your insaneworld blog :) ), I will say that no one else in the world leans that way, including 100% of the MVPs (I read their blogs too).

    The only reason I’m not switching to building testable solutions today is that most of the bugs I encounter are from interactions with the framework, e.g. my most recent bugs were a) a concurrency-type issue with the ItemAdded() event, and b) what looks to be a framework issue or a concurrency issue when changing the “Title” field of a document.

    Anyway, not to get too distracted, the point of all that is: unit testing wouldn’t have caught either of those problems.

    So unit testing, while I believe is important, would go #3 behind “am I wasting my time building something that will break in vNext” and “am I wasting my time building web parts when the better solution is ${BETTER_SOLUTION}.”

    Also, PowerShell is NOT just an admin tool, it is absolutely AWESOME for spelunking the object model. I need to blog about that, and soon, because my current PowerShell+SharePoint examples are lame, lame, lame.

  • gblock

    HI @Casey

    There’s only been around 10 respondents so far, so I wouldn’t worry too much.

  • Casey

    Having filled the survey in … and seen some of the results … I am a little concerned … people see “SharePoint development environment setup” (something that is trivial) as more important than “Unit testing” (something that is damned hard to do, and far more important) and see “Using PowerShell with SharePoint” as the most important thing in it’s class (when it is primarily an admin function) … /boggle … :)

  • Casey

    Wow … could I keep you busy for years about what isn’t useful/friendly/helpful/palatable/etc in SharePoint!!!!

    Where to start …. /sigh … oh yeah … how about Unit Testing and Separation of Concerns … (don’t say TypeMock at this point please :)

    I’ll go do that survey now …!

  • gblock

    Hi @Neil

    Thanks. I updated each page to remove the ambiguity. 1 is the highest.

  • Neil Mosafi

    Just on the first page and It’s not very clear if 1 is high priority or 10?