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This chapter is from the book

This chapter is from the book

Moving on from In-Browser Customization

In Part I of this book, we looked at the various forms of customization that can be achieved via the Web interface, such as adjusting the navigational display levels within a SharePoint Server 2010 site. In fact, the Web interface customization options in SharePoint 2010 are extensible. However, now that you've had a chance to review those options you also probably have a better idea which areas you need to promote and work with in SharePoint Designer 2010.

As part of the Web interface to SharePoint Designer 2010 journey, it's also useful to compare the value-add in terms of customizing sites. In addition, there are instances where you even need to go beyond SharePoint Designer 2010 to achieve a higher degree of customization, such as creating custom workflow activities in Visual Studio 2010. Table 7.3 compares the Web interface customizations discussed back in Part I to those discussed throughout Parts II through IV of this book to the equivalent in both SharePoint Designer 2010 and Visual Studio 2010.

Table 7.3. Extending Web Interface Customization Using SharePoint Designer 2010 and Visual Studio 2010

In-Browser Customization Scenario

SharePoint Designer Value-Add Example

Visual Studio 2010 Value-Add Example

Navigation: Modify top-level and Quick Launch menus, including removing, hiding, and adding new headings and links and adjusting the number of dynamic drop-down menu items; metadata-driven navigation in lists and libraries.

Reposition or remove navigational menus, customize dynamic top menu and left-hand menu item fly-outs, style the navigation.

Create new navigational and menu controls; integrate third-party navigation controls and extend.

Ribbon: Add the show or hide ribbon option in Site Actions drop-down.

Reposition ribbon on pages, add or remove ribbon scroll, remove ribbon entirely from master pages. Set a permission string around the ribbon to hide it from anonymous users.

Create Features to add custom ribbon commands or remove existing ribbon commands.

Master pages and page layouts: Change master pages, apply alternate CSS, and create new publishing pages in SharePoint Server 2010.

Create new SharePoint master pages and custom CSS files. Create new page layouts for publishing pages. Manipulate the ribbon and other features, such as the Developer Dashboard and navigation in custom master pages.

Build custom master pages and page layouts, add additional logic to master pages, and add custom navigational controls. Deploy as a solution to multiple site collections.

Forms: Replace existing list forms with InfoPath forms.

Create multiple ASPX and InfoPath forms for content types and lists.

Create custom solution including custom list forms for a multiple site collection deployment.

Workflows: Leverage the out-of-the-box workflows for document approval routing.

Customize the out-of-the-box workflows. Create new list, site, reusable, and globally (site collection) reusable workflows. Build in powerful logic and style workflow emails. Associate workflows with InfoPath forms and export workflows to Visual Studio 2010.

Import SharePoint Designer 2010 workflows for additional logic building and customization and deploy to SharePoint server.

Site Templates: Save a non-publishing site as a WSP file and reuse the template throughout a site collection.

Add additional customization and style to the site before saving it as a site template.

Import a site template (WSP) file from SharePoint for additional customization and re-deploy to one or more site collections using solutions and Features. Build custom site definitions.

Web parts: Leverage the Content Query Web Part for centralizing information and information roll-up, present data in the Silverlight Web Part, use the Content Editor Web Part for specific content presentation in Web part pages, leverage List View Web Parts in Web part pages, leverage Web part connections between Web parts on the same page.

Style the XSLT related to the Content Query Web Part, customize and style XSLT List View Web Parts, create DataView Web Parts, configure Web part connections across multiple pages within the same site.

Develop custom and functional Web parts.

Business intelligence: Leverage the business intelligence template in SharePoint Server to integrate and present PerformancePoint and SQL data, including KPIs and dashboards. Leverage Excel Services in SharePoint Server to publish and present Excel workbooks via the browser.

Create external data sources, including SQL, Representational State Transfer (REST), Web services, XML and linked data sources. Configure and create external content types and external lists to integrate with backend systems, including CRUD functions. Create custom dashboards.

Integrate SQL Integration Services, develop custom integration between SharePoint and Line of Business (LOB) systems such as SAP.

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