Missing Patches and Updates in SharePoint

I drafted this post quite a while ago, but I’ve only just got around to completing it and posting it.

Recently, I was completing some out of hours work to apply the August 2012 Cumulative Update to our production SharePoint 2010 SP1 environment.

After completing the installation of the SharePoint 2010 Foundation and SharePoint Server 2010 update packages, I tried to run the SharePoint Products and Technologies Wizard to initiate the timer job that upgrades the database schema, and it wouldn’t run, reporting that one of the servers was missing the updates that I had just installed.

When searching for the answer, I came across SharePoint Management Shell Cmdlet Get-SPProduct -Local. This useful little Cmdlet for PowerShell forces the local installation of SharePoint to rescan all of it’s installed components and by the looks of it, where needed, updates the SharePoint_Config database with the installed updates for the server. Before running the Cmdlet, I did an iisreset /noforce. Doing this ensures that the web applications are in a suitable state and reloaded with all the latest files.

After running these two commands, running the SharePoint Products and Technologies Wizard successfully validated the servers and allowed the wizard to complete.

HTML Webpart to Hide Quick Launch in SharePoint

I’m currently running a test lab for the purposes of development of a Version 4 Master Page and CSS Stylesheet for SharePoint 2010 to replace the legacy Version 3 UI we are using at work. Whilst developing my flash new fixed width master page and layout I wanted to be able to hide the quick launch on the homepage so that I had the full width of the layout to give the site an eye-catching look.

Using the HTML Webpart we are able to inject some inline CSS Styles which do this for us.

Add the HTML Webpart anywhere on the page that you want to hide the Quick Launch on and add the following source code to it:

<style type=”text/css”>
/* Hide Quick Launch on Homepage */
#s4-leftpanel {
display:none;
}
.s4-ca {
margin-left:0px;
}
</style>

Make sure you configure the Webpart as Modeless so that the users don’t see the title of what is essentially a blank Webpart shown in the interface, and that’s it.

Error Opening Excel 2007 and 2010 Documents in SharePoint 2010

Last night we completed a SharePoint 2010 at work and after all the testing, we deemed the upgrade a success, however coming into the office this morning, we received reports from some users that they were unable to open some of their Excel spreadsheets stored in various Document Libraries.

After some diagnosis, it turned out that the problem only effected Office 2007 and Office 2010 XML format documents and that original format Excel documents from Office 2003 and documents saved in the 2003 format were unaffected.

After initially suspecting the problem to be linked to the new Excel Services Application in SharePoint 2010, I worked to resolve the configuration of the Excel Services Application which we had left previous un-configured due to it not being required currently, however the problem persisted.

Whilst searching TechNet for the error code we were receiving I encountered a page entitled “Configure the Default Behaviour for Browser-Enabled Documents” (http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ee837425.aspx) which details how to manage the behaviour of SharePoint for launching web compatible documents.

SharePoint 2010 features various web-enabled services and can be configured to use Office Web Apps, which is a hosted version of the applications available via Office Live WebApps. The default behaviour for SharePoint 2010 is to attempt to launch web compatible formats using the web based application, however as this is not configured in our environment the error appeared.

The resolution to the problem was simply enabling the Site Collection Feature Open Documents in Client Applications by Default. Once enabled on the Site Collection to apply the setting to all child sites, SharePoint began prompting the users to open the file with their client side installations of Excel as per the SharePoint 2007 behaviour.

PDF Icon in SharePoint 2010

After successfully upgrading from SharePoint 2007 to SharePoint 2010, I noticed that the icon for PDF documents was missing from my Document Libraries. As part of the installation process, SharePoint 2010 installs itself to a folder called 14 to designate its version number as SharePoint 2007 used a folder number of 12. It was apparent that nothing was migrated from the 12 folder as as a result any modifications will be lost.

  1. Download the PDF icon. Visit http://www.adobe.com/misc/linking.html and download a copy of the small 17×17 PDF icon.
  2. Copy the icon to Drive:Program FilesCommon FilesMicrosoft SharedWeb Server Extensions14TEMPLATEIMAGES
  3. Open the DOCICON.XML file in Drive:Program FilesCommon FilesMicrosoft SharedWeb Server Extensions14TEMPLATEXML
  4. Add the following line to the DOCICON.XML file:
    <Mapping Key="pdf" Value="pdf16.gif"/>
  5. Save DOCICON.XML
  6. Open a Command Prompt and type iisreset to reset the IIS Application Pools

You will now have beautiful looking PDF icons in your document libraries in SharePoint 2010.

Installing SharePoint Server 2007 Updates

As a SharePoint Administrator, you will see a plethora of updates released overtime to resolve numerous issues as well as add new functionality, however SharePoint does not make patching very easy or intuitive for a newcomer.

Patches for SharePoint Server 2007 are actually two-fold although you will find it hard to locate a source which tells you this definitively. SharePoint Server 2007 is a combination of Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 (WSS) and Microsoft Office SharePoint Server (MOSS). When you come to patch SharePoint installations, you need to install updates for both components, and you need to install the WSS updates first.

The second thing to note is that all SharePoint updates of late are cumulative – You can jump straight to the latest and greatest without needing to install previous updates, so long as you have a service pack installed. All of the recent Cumulative Update packages from Microsoft have a minimum requirement of Service Pack 2 for WSS and MOSS.

You can download Service Pack 2 for WSS and MOSS from the following links:
Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 (WSS) Service Pack 2
Microsoft Office Servers Service Pack 2

At the time of writing, the most recent Cumulative Update for SharePoint 2007 and WSS 3.0 is the June 2010 updates which you can download as follows:
Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 (WSS) June 2010 Cumulative Update
SharePoint Server 2007 June 2010 Cumulative Update

As a side note, for those planning an installation of SharePoint 2007 on Windows Server 2008 R2, you must slipstream the Service Pack 2 components of WSS and MOSS into the DVD media to be able to complete the installation otherwise you will receive reports of an unsupported operating system and will not be able to proceed with the installation.

This time next week, I will hopefully be blogging about my experiences performing a SharePoint 2010 upgrade, so keep yourself posted.