SharePoint & OneDrive round-up from #msignite

When Ignite 2017 closed, like many others, I’m was blown away with all the updates…Its like they actually listened to most of my customers’ asks for the past 5 years and finally got around to implementing them.  The shear amount of updates is what is mind blowing!  SharePoint and OneDrive are almost a complete revamp after they finish with pushing out all these updates.  This isn’t to mention all the integration improvements with all the other O365 products, services, and apps.

Nick Brattoli from Collab365 has written a great round-up of all the updates.

Andrew Connell also wrote a great round-up of all the SharePoint Dev specific updates.

Below are some of the things that I found worth noting as major announcements:

  1. Greatly improved analytics (including file view)
  2. SharePoint Framework (SPFx) Web APIs & Permission Scope access
  3. SharePoint Framework (SPFx) ALM APIs & Permission Scopes
  4. Files on demand for OneDrive & SharePoint
  5. SharePoint HUB Sites
  6. Self-service OneDrive restore
  7. Universal Sharing interface, no matter which application you are in
  8. No Microsoft account needed for sharing securely
  9. Group enabled site collections will finally be listed in SharePoint Admin center
  10. SharePoint Framework (SPFx) tenant wide deployments
  11. SharePoint Site Collection App Catalog
  12. New SharePoint Admin center
  13. File preview for 270+ content types
  14. Page embedded Microsoft Forms & custom forms via PowerApps
  15. Microsoft built migration tool
  16. SharePoint Server 2019 – on premise (along with Office, Exchange, and SfB 2019)
    • Note that the SfB client is planned to be integrated with the Teams client…I therefore expect the branding of SfB Server 2019 will change before release
  17. General improvements and improved integration to many of the other O365 apps and capabilities (SPFx, Search, Groups, Teams, Planner, PowerApps/Flow, PowerBI, Reporting, Security/Privacy/Compliance, etc.)
  18. SharePoint Conference NA

Others have been voting on their favorite features.

Office 365 Usage Analytics

For usage reporting across the Office 365 platform, currently this is possible via the Office 365 Adoption Content Pack in PowerBI.  This content pack is a pre-release version.

NEWS from Ignite 2017

 

SharePoint 2013/Online Client Components SDK, are they the same thing???

I have been using the SharePoint 2013 Client Components SDK for more than two years now to develop console apps against both SharePoint 2013 and SharePoint Online.  This worked pretty well for me as then I could build a single console app that deploys solution assets to On-Prem Development environments and then deploy those same solution assets to Office 365 for integration, UAT, Staging, and Production environments.

As of September 2014, things changed!  All of a sudden there were two SDKs, a “SharePoint 2013 Client Component SDK” and a “SharePoint Online Client Component SDK”.  Both SDKs are named “sharepointclientcomponents_x64.msi” and sharepointclientcomponents_x86.msi” (x64 and x86 versions respectively for each SDK).  I was about to think that these are the same SDKs, but targeted for the On-Prem/Online environments only.  Then I looked at the file size and was confused…

SharePoint2013ClientComponentsSDKSharePointOnlineClientComponentsSDK

Why are these files named exactly the same name and published exactly the same date, but are different sizes???  So I started digging to find the answer…

After some searching, I found out that the version numbers of the SharePoint 2013 Client Components SDK is version 15.  This makes sense as this matches the version number of SharePoint 2013.  The publish date indicated to me that this SDK included all the changes from SharePoint 2013 Service Pack 1.  This is the same SDK I have been using all along for the past two years, but updated from Service Pack 1.

I also found out that the SharePoint Online Client Components SDK is version 16.  This is the version number for the next version of SharePoint On-Prem (SharePoint 2016 presumably).  At first I thought that was strange, but then after all the news and changes that Microsoft has been pumping out regarding the changes over the past year in Office 365 and the news that some (not all) of these changes will be pushed into the next On-Prem version, it started to make sense.

Here is what I think happened (only my perceptions from everything I could find out up to this point)…

SharePoint 2013 and SharePoint Online were using the same codebase (assemblies) up to the release of SharePoint 2013 Service Pack 1.  From that point on, SharePoint Online’s codebase version changed to 16 to reflect the new development in SharePoint Online only as promised by Microsoft when they beat us with their “Cloud First” strategy message.  The fact that the version number changed in SharePoint Online was first pointed out and documented by Gary Lapointe in his post “SharePoint 2013 Version 16.0.0.1810???”: http://blog.falchionconsulting.com/index.php/2013/08/sharepoint-2013-version-16-0-0-1810.

So what does this mean for developers and SharePoint ALM???

Well, in general we can no longer use the same codebase to deploy solutions for both SharePoint On-Prem and Online as they are likely to never be the same again (with On-Prem always lagging by a major version number).  Online development must start in a SharePoint Online development site and deployed/migrated to different tenants/site collections using the SharePoint Online Client Components SDK.

If we want to deploy the same codebase to both On-Prem and Online, then we will have to use the SharePoint 2013 Client Component SDK, but can not use any of the new capabilities of the Online version.  After reading “Evolution of SharePoint”: http://blogs.office.com/2015/02/02/evolution-sharepoint, this now makes sense.  Dan Holme did a great job explaining the news in detail on his post “The Evolution of Microsoft, SharePoint & Office 365”: http://www.itunity.com/article/evolution-sharepoint-office-365-856

Now if you do start with the SharePoint Online Client Component SDK and you want to target your solution to SharePoint 2013 (or vice versa), then you can follow “How do I run the Office 365 Developer Patterns and Practices against SharePoint 2013 On Premises”: https://github.com/OfficeDev/PnP/wiki/How-do-I-run-the-Office-365-Developer-Patterns-and-Practices-against-SharePoint-2013-On-Premises.

New Guidance from Microsoft for Packaging and Deploying SharePoint Solutions

Microsoft is recommending that developers stop using SharePoint’s Feature framework and list, web, and site templates in their solutions.  Now, instead of defining SharePoint content in CAML, Microsoft wants everyone to start creating content programmatically using the remote provisioning pattern.

http://blogs.msdn.com/b/bobgerman/archive/2015/01/31/new-guidance-from-microsoft-for-packaging-and-deploying-sharepoint-solutions.aspx

Office 365 News – Newly Introduced security feature in SPO hides the Web Designer Galleries

http://blog.blksthl.com/2015/02/02/office-365-news-newly-introduced-security-feature-in-spo-hides-the-web-designer-galleries