Something I always forget and scramble around to find:
<xsl:template name="Debug" match="Row[@Style='Debug']" mode="itemstyle">
Property Name: <xsl:value-of select="name()"/>
Value: <xsl:value-of select="." /> <br/>
Original blog post is here:
I will be posting more stuff on the blog soon. Things are a bit manic at the moment
As per my previous post, in my current project we are starting to migrate the whole solution to live.
The project I am working on is a global solution with locations in UK, USA, India, China + others. As a result of this, like many global projects, we suffer from the available connections.
To do this, I have used the Yahoo compressor which is a java applet where you can pass in the file and output the minimised version.
Download Link: http://yuilibrary.com/downloads/#yuicompressor
How To Documentation: http://developer.yahoo.com/yui/compressor/#using
Example Command Line: java -jar yuicompressor-2.4.6.jar –nomunge –preserve-semi –disable-optimizations <input file> -o <output file>
So it has been a while since I have posted anything on the blog.
As I am sure many of you can relate, there comes a time in all projects when you have to concentrate solely on them to ensure that all factors play out as expected. One of those times would be go live time.
The project I have been working on for the last year is about to go into trial with its first division, so it has been heads down to ensure that all bug fixes and business intelligence data is correct.
As of today, we are officially at a code freeze and we are clearing down the databases to rid them of test data ready for migration to the Production environment and the final integration testing process.
As a result, we can commence blogging again, of which I have a few topics stored up.
First up is…
Project Scenario: I created a generic function to contact the User Profile service and set some default global variables when the page loads for the current logged in user.
So the basic mechanism was there already.
- I was passing the current user as a variable
- User Profile Service was already being queried
- Set the global variables for the current user
I wanted to extend this to take any user, but not upset the other functions that relied on the global variables I was setting in the function.
So essentially I added a setGlobal flag parameter and provided a default to the function so that existing code could work (surrounded by the newly created flag of course) and then implemented what I needed to.
This allowed my existing code to continue to function without issue, but also allowed me to reuse my User Profile functionalities for another purpose.
The original idea came from the following blog post:
In my code, I implemented the first method. In future however I shall certainly use the second approach.
A common thing I do for most clients is to create a unique alphanumeric ID that is consistent in length with pre-filled zeros.
Risk list alphanumeric ID example:
However, as has been documented many times (link); you cannot use the ID column of a list in a calculated column. To get over this issue I use a simple SharePoint Designer workflow to copy the ID value to another column (Unique Reference) and then base my calculation on the Unique Reference column.
Step One: Create a common site column for use across the Site Collection
- Column Name: Unique Reference
- Column Type: Single Line Of Text
Step Two: Create a calculated column for the alphanumeric ID
- Column Name: Risk ID
- Column Type: Calculated Column
- Formula: =”RSK” & TEXT([Unique Reference], “0000”)
NB: The TEXT function will prefill the ID with zeros
- Step Three: Add the Unique Reference and Risk ID column to your List or Content Type
Step Four: Create the SharePoint Designer Workflow
- Create a list or content type (SP2010 only) workflow
- Workflow should fire on Creation only (disable Manual and Edit)
- Use the following steps:
- Publish the workflow (list workflow)
- Assign the workflow to the content type (if you have created a redistributable workflow in SPD 2010) and assign the content type to the list (content type workflow)
Step Five: Hide the Unique Reference column in the list / content type
- This will stop the Unique Reference column from showing to the end user.
NB: You must hide the Unique Reference column after you have created and published the workflow otherwise it will not appear in SharePoint Designer
You list items will now have a unique alpha numeric ID
NB: Please remember that automatic workflows will not fire if you are logged in as the farm account (link)
Calculated Column Formula: Probability and impact analysis for risks #SharePoint #SP2010 #ProjectServer #PS2010 #EPM #MSProject #in
Many project managers like to do risk analysis in terms of probability and impact, ultimately creating a heat map when data is rolled up at the project or programme level.
Further information about the methodology can be found here: http://www.expertprogrammanagement.com/2010/06/project-risk-management/
To aid in the creation of these roll up dashboards, we need to evaluate each risk as it is entered (and updated) and assess the probability of the risk occurring against the impact it has against the project (normally in terms of Cost, Resource or Time).
The following chart details this analysis:
NB: Numeric values have been assigned for the formulas listed below
To implement this in SharePoint (either standalone or as an extension to the standard Risks list in Project Server) we need to translate what the Project Manager / Team Members would like to state in words regarding probability & impact into a numeric value for sorting and analysis.
The following Choice columns are added to the Risk form.
User Interface Columns:
|Probability of Risk||Choice||Very Low, Low, Medium, High, Very High|
|Impact of Risk||Choice||Very Low, Low, Medium, High, Very High|
Once we have the UI version of Probability and Impact, we need to use some hidden / calculated columns to convert these values in to numbers.
Once we have these values we then multiply them together:
Probability x Impact = Expected Outcome Value
|Risk Probability Value||Calculated Column||=IF([Probability of Risk]=”Very Low”,0.1,IF([Probability of Risk]=”Low”,0.3,IF([Probability of Risk]=”Medium”,0.5,IF([Probability of Risk]=”High”,0.7,IF([Probability of Risk]=”Very High”,0.9,0)))))|
|Risk Impact Value||Calculated Column||=IF([Impact of Risk]=”Very Low”,0.05,IF([Impact of Risk]=”Low”,0.1,IF([Impact of Risk]=”Medium”,0.2,IF([Impact of Risk]=”High”,0.4,IF([Impact of Risk]=”Very High”,0.8,0)))))|
|Expected Value Result||Calculated Column||=[Risk Probability Value]*[Risk Impact Value]|
Now that we have our Expected Outcome as a number, we can convert this back to a value the end user will understand, report and dashboard from.
|RAG||Calculated Column||=IF([Expected Value Result]<0.05,”Green”,IF([Expected Value Result]>0.14,”Red”,”Amber”))|
For each risk in the list we will now have a RAG value.
Further customisations I end up doing in clients include adding a RAG indicator column showing a graphical representation of the risk using jQuery.
|RAG Indicator||Calculated Column||=”<div class=’convertToHTML’><img src=’/pwa/customisation/images/RAG” & [RAG] & “Sml.gif’ alt=”‘ & [RAG] & ‘” title=”‘ & [RAG] & ‘”></div>”|
The above formula expects three images:
Images in the formula are stored in a document library called:
with a folder inside called:
Run the following jQuery function on the page with the list view on to convert the RAG Indicator calculated column string into rendered html:
Just a reminder for me really… At a client at the moment who wants to put the date in list web parts in the following format: dd-MMM-yyyy.
I found the following article suggesting using the TEXT function in a Calculated Column
So the first phase of the project I have been on for the last year is starting to move into the closing phases. The information architecture is in place, most of the custom development is complete and mapped to the project lifecycle / business processes of my client.
The project takes data from multiple places including:
- SAP (Resource, cost rate, metadata and product contract information)
- Project Server 2010 (Timesheets, Plans, Project / Task / Assignment data)
- SharePoint 2010 (Risks, Issues, Actions, Documents etc.)
- Custom database (Snapshot data)
I’ve learnt a lot about SharePoint 2010 and Project Server 2010 since I started this project (pre public beta). So now that we have all this data, the time has come to bring it all together with Business Intelligence dashboards and UI design.
Once of the main tools we are using for this is Reporting Services in SharePoint Integration mode and although I have lead projects involving SSRS in the past, actually getting my hands dirty and creating reports myself is something of a novelty.
However, time and resource pressures have meant that I have had to setup the SSRS infrastructure, development environments and test reports to ensure that the data can be utilised in the required way. As part of this setup I am also training my client on the business intelligence studio interface and deployment of reports in to SharePoint environment.
So getting to the point of this post, below is a list of useful links, findings and discoveries I have made during this setup process this week to serve as a reminder to me and will hopefully help others too.
Reporting Services Web Part – Firefox Compatibility (Windows, Linux – 3.6.13)
- Turn off Asynchronous data (Edit Web Part Settings > View Section)
NB: If this setting is left to its default, the loading screen does not go away until you hit the refresh button on the Web Part toolbar.
SharePoint Integration Mode – Linking to pages within SharePoint
It would appear that the Reporting Services web part in SP2010 disables links where the target URL is within SharePoint itself (“/pages/default.aspx” for example).
This blog post suggested a useful workaround:
However the suggested approach was good if you had a definitive URL such as default.aspx, but if you wanted to add a query string parameter based on the data returned, adding as action directly to the image did not allow me to select the appropriate date.
To get round this, I added a calculated field to the data set using the same process suggested in the post:
Then for the action on the image I was able to select “Go to URL” and select my calculated field.
This doesn’t work in the designer preview (or any exports of the report), however it works a treat when you are using the report as part of a dashboard with drill down features.
Interactive Column Sorting
Another useful blog post:
Although the instructions are for SSRS 2005, it is still relevant today.
- Right click on the column header field
- Select Properties
- Interactive Sort Tab
- Select the appropriate sort field
- Click OK
Alternating Row Colours
Always a popular choice for tabular based reports.
Highlight the data row and under the properties pane for the background color, use the following expression:
MSDN Documentation Links
- Support Features for SharePoint Integration Mode: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb326290(v=SQL.100).aspx
- Reporting Services Features: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms159273(v=SQL.100).aspx
- Tutorials: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb522859(v=SQL.100).aspx
- Design Guidance: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms159734(v=SQL.100).aspx
- Designing and Implementing Reports Using Report Designer: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms159253(v=SQL.100).aspx
- Development Topics (High Level): http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb522683(v=SQL.100).aspx
- Report Builder Information: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/ff657833.aspx
- How to publish a report to a SharePoint Library: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb283155.aspx
NB: Although a lot of the above links are for SSRS 2008, there is an option at the top of the page to make the content relevant for SSRS 2008 R2 also.
In my current project I have the need to determine the current users personal preferences based on favourites stored in a list.
These personal preferences then drive various web parts on the page.
Using this the Enterprise Edition of SharePoint Server 2010 makes this very easy with the use of the Query String Filter Web Part and various other web parts that support connections including:
- Reporting Services Web Part
- Excel Services Web Part
- List Web Parts
Using the combination of parameters and the above web parts it makes it a lot easier to create dashboard pages that are specific to a users:
- Job Role
Now in most of my projects, I have found that dashboard pages tend to be buried under a 2nd or 3rd level of navigation, which makes it very easy to create links with parameters already in them.
However, in this case, I have to create various dashboard pages at the root of the site, whilst using standard SharePoint Publishing Navigation (Global Navigation). The parameters being passed are user selectable based on favourites stored in a list.
Given that the SharePoint Site Map Provider doesn’t know about this random favourites list I have created, I need to improvise to ensure that the end user is presented with dashboard pages personalised to them, as soon as they hit the root site URL.
Essentially the following happens:
- The page load to a certain point
- We determine if we have the query string parameter(s) we are looking for
- If we don’t, we stop the page from rendering using document.execCommand(“stop”)
- Go get our require parameter(s)
- Determine if any previous parameters existed on the page currently (to make the code more generic)
- Reload the page with the new parameter(s)
Although this is certainly one method of achieving my goal and seems to currently fit my clients requirements, I would certainly be interested to hear from others on how to achieve my goal without drastically changing standard SharePoint components.
Just a quick post as a reminder for myself in future projects.
At a client recently, my development colleague was struggling to find out how to set a field attached to a custom Content Type in a list to be hidden to aid in document management (so it is not shown in the Document Properties panel in Microsoft Word).
The following post seemed to suggest an unofficial way:
However, we try to keep things in a supported model if possible.
Through further looking he came across the following property:
- After further playing in code, he managed to crack it with the “.hidden” method.
- Code Example:
This code will set the Hidden flag (same as you can through the UI) against the document library. The above iterates through a List of strings which contains the fields i want to hide.
NB: Please not that this works because we are using our own content type attached to the library.