Sharepoint Event – 29th April 2008

I had such a busy day yesterday I didn’t get around to posting about this.

I spent Tuesday afternoon travelling down to Microsoft’s offices in London (Victoria) with Vijay to attend an event he had organised with Combined Knowledge

The idea behind the event is to help educate more about WSS (Windows SharePoint Services) as opposed to full blown MOSS (Microsoft Office SharePoint Server). Especially in the SBS area as it’s already installed with your SBS server!

Something I certainly found out when first exploring SharePoint was finding WSS specific information wasn’t easy due to the fact that SharePoint – as a whole – generally means MOSS (or SharePoint Portal Server as it was!)

This is understandable as SharePoint experts will be dealing with MOSS more on a day-to-day basis (and from a Microsoft perspective it’s the product that makes licensing money!)

The event was kicked off by Craig Carpenter from Combined Knowledge who gave a demonstration of Search Server Express (eventually…as is always the way at these events someone’s demo usually does something unexpected and this time it happened to Craig but he managed to sort it out and do the full demo)

I’d read about Search Server Express (specifically over on Dave Overton’s blog) but not looked into any further than that.

The demo Craig gave showed how I do need to go back at look at it. The ability to ramp up WSS search capabilities is very compelling and features such as federated search (imagine including technet search results within your SharePoint results), custom search scopes and complete control over what is and isn’t crawled is all very cool

After this Steve Smith, also from Combined Knowledge talked about Content Types and document management. Since content types is something I only recently get my head around it was good to reinforce some of the things I’d been working with and also also show me some things I hadn’t given enough consideration to

The final speaker was Bill English. He’d flown in from the US to do a little bit of site seeing and speak at a couple of events about his product

I was really looking forward to hearing Bill speak. When I first started looking at SharePoint the first book I picked up was one of his books (Microsoft SharePoint Products and Technologies Resource Kit). I learnt awful lot from this book so this was like seeing a SharePoint celebrity speak to me

Bill was there to talk about his DeliverPoint product. The idea of the software is to give you a central location for managing SharePoint permissions. I can see on large installations how this could get out of hand so the product is certainly worth a look as it’s very easy to use and the feature list is very impressive. Take a look at the site for more information as I won’t do it just here!

As well as the usual networking opportunities we also got some great pizza! On the whole I really enjoyed the event and even though I didn’t get home until 1am it was thoroughly worth the trip

 Their is a SharePoint user group in the Midlands so I’ll be looking out for upcoming events in the Midlands!

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Andy Parkes is Technical Director at Coventry based IT support company IBIT Solutions. Formerly, coordinator of AMITPRO and Microsoft Partner Area Lead for 2012-2013. He also isn't a fan of describing himself in the third person.

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