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  • Oct.26.2011

    Day One of TechDays 2011 in Toronto is wrapped, and my session on SharePoint Extranets went very well. Good feedback from the audience at the Congress Centre.

    Damir from Microsoft will be making the recorded sessions available, which I'll re-post as soon as we get them. In the meantime, here's the TechDays 2011 - CLB379 - SharePoint 2010 Extranets and Authentication presentation.

    More importantly for many, as promised I'm also including a copy of the LAB SQL FBA Configuration Checklist Excel that I demonstrated in the session. It helps organize the implementation of forms-based authentication in SharePoint 2010.

    For those of you in the Vancouver and Montreal areas, I will also be delivering this talk at those TechDays, on November 15-16, and 29-30, respectively.

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  • Oct.26.2011

    Day One of TechDays 2011 in Toronto is wrapped, and my session on Upgrading to SharePoint 2010 went very well. Good feedback from the audience at the Congress Centre.

    Damir from Microsoft will be making the recorded sessions available, which I'll re-post as soon as we get them. In the meantime, here's the TechDays 2011 - CLB376 - Upgrading and Migrating to SharePoint 2010, On-Premise and in the Cloud presentation.

    For those of you in the Vancouver and Montreal areas, I will also be delivering this talk at those TechDays, on November 15-16, and 29-30, respectively.

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  • Oct.21.2011

    I've attended all of the SharePoint Conferences over the years, but this year's conference in Anaheim was special on two fronts.  It was a first time for us to be exhibiting on the show floor as we launched out the new brand on our products side of the business, and I was speaking for the first time at the conference.

    I've spoken at numerous other events and confierences before, but SharePoint Conference was by far the biggest.  7,400 attendees from around the world is a big number, even if they are running up to 14 different tracks at the same time.  For the session the room was big, as was the crowd.

    I had the pleasure of co-presenting with Brad Freels, who is a Senior Collaboration Technology Specialist with Microsoft US.  The title of our talk was "With SharePoint Your Extranet is Easy".  Brad took the front part of the talk to walk through the different types of Extranets and the decision points related to their complexity, and presented a roadmap for determining what is involved in implementing an Extranet.  I then took over and focused on how you provision Extranet users, and walked through a case study of our Boys and Girls Clubs of Canada project.

    A copy of the presentation is available for viewing at SPC251 - With SharePoint Your Extranet is Easy.

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  • Oct.13.2011

    We've been doing a fair bit of research lately on how better to deal with sessions on a forms-based authentication site.  By default SharePoint creates a fixed 10 hour session using a permanent cookie that persists beyond the browser session.  This means that even if you close all your browser windows and re-open it, you session is persisted and you are still logged in.  The only way to logout is to explicitly do so.

    While session persistence has some benefits, particularly around single sign-on and Office integration (you don't need to re-athenticate as you launch Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc. from SharePoint), it has some drawbacks from a security perspective.  If your Extranet is more about providing a secure web experience than Office integration, you probably don't want the persistent session.  Thankfully there is an easy solution to the session persistence, in the form of a number of PowerShell  commands we'll get to in a minute.

    The other part of the problem is the 10 hour session.  Again this is convenient, but not neccessarily best practice for all secure Extranets.  You can shorten the session, but what we found was that it didn't slide.  What this means is if you shorten it to 10 minutes, at 10 minutes your session will expire and you'll be force to re-authenticate, even if you were constantly using the site throughout those 10 minutes.  What we wanted was for the session to expire after 10 minutes of inactivity.

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  • Oct.13.2011

    I'm sure many people have already installed SP1, but I thouoght it would be a good idea to put the file locations and steps down in one place, if only for our staff and customers to be able to refer to.  Bear in mind that these steps are for simple installations, typically with just a single web front end and a separate SQL Server.

    As with any update, this should be tested prior to applying to a production system.  These updates cannot be backed out, and they update not only the binaries on the disk, but also the structue and content of the content databases themselves.

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