The SharePoint Connections conference in San Antonio was well-organized and the speakers were top-notch. I learned a LOT and I can’t put all of that in a blog post but I’ve narrowed it down to 7 things I wanted to pass along…

  1. How to insert sample text into a Microsoft Word document
    Great tip for testing and/or demo purposes when you just need some text, and maybe a LOT of it! Just type =rand(#) in the document where you want the text to appear, and then press ENTER. The number in the parentheses represents the number of paragraphs of text you’d like. Thanks to Matt McDermott over at for this great tip and see this Microsoft article for more details:

  2. How to use Microsoft Word to write and publish your blog posts to SharePoint
    Writing a blog post in Word is MUCH easier than using the "new blog post" option in SharePoint. Select a new document in Word using the Blog Post template – you will be prompted to register your blog site. When you’re done writing your post, just select "Publish". Here’s a short video that shows you what this process looks like:
  3. How to increase the maximum site template size
    This is something most Administrators have dealt with – a Site Owner creates a site and wants to clone it to be used as a template for other sites. Unfortunately, if the template is more than 10MB then you’ll get an error. Well, that can be fixed! Use this stsadm command to increase the size limit to 512MB or insert your own size if 512MB is too big: STSADM -o setproperty -pn max-template-document-size -pv 524288000. Thanks to Cornelius j. Van Dyk – here’s his blog post on the same topic:

  4. How to take advantage of the new logging features in SharePoint 2010 without going blind reading log files in Notepad J
    Jason Himmelstein of (Hook ’em, Jason!) and friends have developed and released a great tool called SPFLogger. SPFLogger is a Silverlight RIA Services application that can be hosted in an IIS Web Site on your SharePoint Server so with some minimal configuration, you’ll be able to review logging data right from your browser…very cool. Jason’s article about the release includes a link to CodePlex where you can download the code – FREE – and then get started reading and interpreting what’s going on in those log files!
  5. How to "surprise users" who are searching for inappropriate content on a SharePoint site
    So, let’s say a user puts an inappropriate term in the search box – like the word "Darn" – hoping to find something. But what they see in their search results instead is the official company policy on intranet usage. Okay, this one was not something I’ve ever thought about but Human Resource folks have and Matt McDermott has written a great post with step-by-step instructions for how to accomplish this using out-of-the-box features. Thanks, Matt!
  6. How to use federated search results to make your own life a little easier
    If you’re an Administrator, then you spend a great deal of time searching for information so why not use some out-of-the-box functionality to make your own life a little easier? Do you have your own test/evaluation environment? Create a Federated Search location for each of the sites you like to search – like TechNet, MSDN, Google, etc. To do this, go to Central Administration -> Manage Service Applications -> Search Service Application -> Federated Locations. Then on your site, create a search center and insert a web part on the page for each of these federated locations. With one search query, you will see results from all of your favorite sites on one page. Great time-saver!
  7. How incredible the SharePoint community is
    SharePoint is great and I love technology but at the end of the day, it’s really about people. And the SharePoint community is filled with some pretty great folks – people who not only have some sharp technical skills and real-world experience, but who are also willing to share their knowledge and experience with others. I definitely got to meet some great people and I look forward to more conferences like this one!