Each unit that uses a SharePoint site has a Site Administrator (often called a “site admin”) and this individual is responsible for granting and revoking access. You may have a different level of access to your SharePoint site than others in your department, and your site administrator will be able to tell you what you have access to.
After you get confirmation from your site admin that you have access, they will send a link to your site. Please bookmark this, and consider making it your homepage.
If you don’t know who your site admin is, or your area doesn’t have one, please contact us for assistance.
There are a variety of ways to use SharePoint, and the first step is to see how SharePoint is used through a web browser. You will be able to do almost everything through a web browser, even while traveling, so it’s good to have a good understanding of how to get around in a web browser.
Your site admin can send you a link to your site. If you don’t know where to begin, have a look at https://share.usask.ca/default.aspx and find your department, or ask your local IT support which URL to use.
You will use your NSID and password to get access to your site. You may not need to type your NSID and password if you use Internet Explorer while on-campus. If you don’t have Internet Explorer, you can use Firefox. Please check further in this FAQ for a more detailed explanation on which web browsers work best with SharePoint.
Site Administrators have the ability to grant and revoke permissions. If you are a site admin, there are two typical ways to grant access:
Using either Active Directory or SharePoint security groups are the best way to add and remove people’s access to SharePoint. It is possible to grant someone access to a site (or a portion of a site) without using a security group, but we strongly suggest you use security groups to make management easier (and less susceptible to mistakes).
It is possible to allow people that aren't affiliated with the university to access SharePoint. Please contact your site admin, or contact us for information about extending your site to people that are external to the university.
There are many ways to use SharePoint, and each has their strengths and weaknesses. Most people on-campus will use Internet Explorer and Microsoft Office 2010.
SharePoint is designed to work on most web browsers, but works best in Internet Explorer 7 (32 bit) or higher. Firefox 3.6 (or higher), Safari 4.04 (or higher) work with some limitations. Please check this Microsoft article that details the differences between web browsers.
To access a SharePoint site, type the URL to the site as you would on site at the University of Saskatchewan. However, your U of S computer is configured to prompt you for your NSID and password when you log on. This information is saved in your computer's settings. Therefore if you are using Internet Explorer, it will pass your NSID on to SharePoint when you log onto a site and you will not have to type it again. This is not true for your home or other off-campus computer. When you access the SharePoint site, your computer does not have the NSID and password stored and cannot pass them to SharePoint. You will be prompted to enter them. Because your off-campus computer is not connected to the U of S campus network, you also have to supply the network domain name. The format to follow is "usask\NSID" for the NSID and the password as usual.
If you want to access files on Jade, Cabinet or other file servers in addition to logging onto SharePoint, you may need to use the Virtual Private Network or VPN service. VPN allows you to access services that are restricted to on-campus use as though you are physically located on campus.
Since using SharePoint 2010 is dependent on which browser you are using, you must have the correct operating system to run the desired browser:
If you are planning to install SharePoint 2010 locally for development purposes, the recommended operating system is the 64-bit version of Windows Server 2008 R2. It is possible to run SharePoint 2010 under Windows 7 but it requires a number of tweaks so this configuration is not recommended. As well, the production SharePoint 2010 server is running on Windows 2008 Server R2. It is advantageous to have the same environment in development as in production.
You can set up a document library or list in SharePoint to automatically send an e-mail message when changes occur. When you create the alert, you set which types of changes will trigger the e-mail message (e.g. new item added, document created by you is modified, item deleted, task assigned to you). It is possible to add more than one alert to the same library.
To add an alert:
To change or delete an already existing alert:
When you use a web browser, SharePoint will keep track of when you log in and automatically flag new items with a green "New" icon for most items. If you use SharePoint with Office (particularly Outlook), new items (unread items) are usually Bold while read items are normal text.
For a summary of the differences between the two versions, please refer to:
You should verify that Office knows your name and initials so it can add this information to documents you make. This information is stored in documents as metadata, and SharePoint will use this information to keep track of documents created and modified by multiple people.
To verify your name and initials are correct, open Word 2010, click the File Menu and choose Options. Click the General option (at the top left), and review the User Name and Initials text boxes. If you need to make a change, update the User name field to your first and last name ("Susan A. Smith"), and your initials ("SS").
Follow the same steps to configure Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and any other Office 2010 application you normally use.
Microsoft releases updates to Office 2010 from time to time. You may want to check with your site administrator to see that you have the latest release of Office 2010. Most workstations receive Office updates automatically.
The process for setting your name and initials are similar to that of Office 2010. Open Word 2007, click the Office Button, and choose Word Options. You will find your User Name and Initials in the Popular section. Repeat these steps for Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and any other Office 2007 applications you normally use.
There are limitations with using Office 2007 with SharePoint 2010. Please review this section to decide which version of Office will work best for you.
If your SharePoint site uses a shared Contacts list, you can integrate this within Outlook and can be searched when you type addresses in Outlook.
To integrate it with Outlook 2010, open your SharePoint site in a web browser, click on the Contacts list, and at the top of your web browser, find the List tab. Click on the List tab, then click on Connect to Outlook. If it asks you which application to open, choose Microsoft Outlook then check the box that says “Remember my choice for stssync links.”
Depending on your security settings, Internet Explorer may ask if you want to allow this website to open a program on your computer. Click "Allow". It will then ask if Outlook should be given access to the website. Click "Allow" again.
Outlook will ask if it should connect to the Contacts List, choose Yes.
This contact list should show up in your Contacts screen in Outlook. Any changes you make will immediately update the Contacts list in SharePoint.
SharePoint Workspace 2010 is the replacement for Office Groove 2007. It allows the contents of a document library or list to be downloaded onto a person's local hard drive. The person can take the computer offline (e.g. to home or while travelling) and work on the documents. When the computer is reconnected to the network, the items on the hard drive are synchronized with the items in the document library or list on SharePoint.
SharePoint Workspace will be phased out in favour of Folder Syncronization within Office 2013.
Viewing a SharePoint site through a web browser is nearly identical between a Windows and Macintosh based computers. Please review the list of supported Operating Systems.
Microsoft Office for the Mac 2011 has somewhat limited connectivity with SharePoint. Please review this Microsoft article for a breakdown of features.
Office Live is a hosted solution provided by Microsoft. If you are interested in learning more, go to http://www.officelive.com/en-us/.
Office Web Apps is a local installation of similar functionality that can be installed on SharePoint 2010. Microsoft does not allow the installation of MS Office Web Apps on Sharepoint installations with the Internet license. The University of Saskatchewan SharePoint 2010 service has the Internet license installed since it is required to allow off-campus and student access to SharePoint. Therefore we have no plans to install Office Web Apps. We are trying to clarify the situation with Microsoft to see if there is a way to allow use of Office Web Apps in our environment.
See more information on Office Web Apps.
There are many ways to use SharePoint on your mobile device. The basic method (which may not be the most convenient) is to use Safari. Your SharePoint site may use a mobile view to display its content, or it may show your entire site in the web browser. Check with your site administrator to have the mobile view enabled for your site.
There are apps you can download that offer a better interface to SharePoint (both paid and free).
The most feature rich App for iOS devices is SharePlus (Lite and Pro). Please download and configure the Lite version before purchasing the Pro version.
The Site URL is the same as the one you use within your web browser.
PAWS Community groups are a good choice for departments who need a file repository. SharePoint has additional features that assist in document collaboration. Please see PAWS Community Groups and SharePoint 2010 - Comparison for a more detailed comparison.
Each document library in SharePoint can be set up to require check in and check out of documents. If checkout is enabled on the library, you must check out each document before you can edit it. Once you have checked out the document, others can view the previous version of the document but they will not be allowed to change it, nor will they see your changes until you check the document back in. When you are finished editing, you must check the document in to allow others to edit it and view your changes.
If a document is checked out, you can use the Type icon to get information about the checkout:
The icon changes to show a small arrow in the bottom right corner
Put the mouse cursor on the icon; a pop-up will show the NSID of the person who has checked out the document
To check a document in:
When a person uploads a document to a library with check out enabled, the document is automatically checked out to that person. Only administrators and the person that uploaded the document can see it. To make the document visible to others, check it in.
There are two ways to get a document into a Document Library:
Sometimes it is useful to group document together, so that they have the same metadata and can be moved as a unit. For example, a student's application for admission could contain the application form, letters of recommendation, and grades from a previous institution, but all of the documents pertain to the same application. SharePoint 2010 has a content type called a "Document Set" that allows this.
Document sets must be enabled in your site collection, so contact your site administrator if you don't have the capability. You will need to consider what documents you will store in the Document Set, and what type of information needs to be associated with it.
To create a new document set, click on the Document ribbon. On the "New Document" button, there is a down arrow. Click on that to see the options; one is labeled "Document Set". Choose this option to create and name the Document Set. Once the Document Set is created, you can add documents to it in the same way as you add them to a document library.
Document Sets offer some advantages over folders. For more information, please view the article:
By default, a SharePoint document library keeps only the most recent version of each document. It is possible to turn on versioning for a document library. With versioning turned on, SharePoint will keep the most recent version plus a number of previous versions (the number is settable by the site administrator). This allows you to revert to an earlier version if an inadvertent change is made. The document library can be set up to save only major versions, with the version numbers 1.0, 2.0, 3.0, etc. Or it can be set up to save both major and minor (1.1, 1.2, etc) versions. Major versions are final and minor versions are draft. Draft versions can be visible to everybody or only visible to the author and site administrators, thus preventing others from seeing the changes until they are finalized and the document has been saved as a major version.
To publish a minor (draft) version as a major (final) version, check the document in. You will be asked whether you want to publish it as a minor or major version. Select the desired option and click OK.
To revert to a previous version, select the document and click on "Version History". Locate the previous version and choose "Restore" from the drop-down.
It can be useful to assign a unique identifier to a document, especially if the document will be moved between locations at a future point. A unique identifier allows you to locate that document regardless of where it is currently stored.
SharePoint 2010 has a new feature called Document ID. If this feature is turned on in a site collection, each document in the site collection, regardless of which document library it is stored in, will be assigned a unique identifier. The document will always keep this Document ID even if it is moved to a different document library. Document IDs start with a string of letters. There are two numbers appended to the string, one for the document library and one for the document number within the document library.
The Document ID feature assigns a random string as the starting string when it is enabled for the site collection. SharePoint 2010 allows each site collection to assign its own starting string. It is important that each site collection at the University of Saskatchewan has a unique starting string. Therefore the string must be the unique college code (e.g. KIN, ENG, HSC) . If the college has or plans to have more than one site collection, the starting string must be the college code plus a unique code for each site collection (e.g. a code for the department using the site collection). This will ensure that the document IDs will be unique even if the document is moved between site collections.
Note that Document IDs only get assigned to documents in document libraries. Items in lists do not receive document IDs.
Yes, SharePoint 2010 can set up a site collection to automatically route submitted documents to the correct location. This is done through the feature called the Content Organizer. The site administrator sets up a series of "Content Organizer Rules". These rules specify where a document should be routed when it is uploaded based on its content type or values in metadata columns.
When a document is uploaded to the site collection, by default it gets placed into a special document library called "Drop Off Library". The Content Organizer Rules get applied to the document one by one until one is found that can route the document to the correct location. If none of the Content Organizer Rules are able to route the document, it stays in the Drop Off Library until somebody reviews it and routes it manually. The site administrator receives a notification if a document remains in the Drop Off Library past a set time period.
If the Content Organizer is not turned on in your site collection, please contact your site administrator. You will need to consider what types of documents will be submitted, by whom, and what Content Organizer Rules will be required.
Yes, it is possible, but the client machines and document library must be configured properly to allow it to happen.
There is a good page that describes this feature:
For a more technical article:
Yes, it is possible to attach documents to list items, such as a calendar entry, announcement or discussion board post. However, this capability must be turned on for the list. The site administrator can turn this feature on by using the Advanced Settings in the Site Settings.
In records management terms, a "record" is any document that is finalized and must be retained unchanged for a specified period of time. The document is any record of activity undertaken by the organization that produced it.
In SharePoint 2010, a site collection can be set up to allow documents to be declared as records right in the site collection, as opposed to moving them to a special records centre. Once a document is declared to be a record, it cannot be updated. This protects it from being accidentally changed, but leaves it available for consultation.
If your site collection is set up to allow in-place record declaration, there is a button in the Document ribbon called "Declare Record".
If you have accidentally declared a document as a record, it is possible to undeclare it. To do this, select the record and choose "Compliance Details" from the drop-down list beside the document's name. In the resulting dialogue box, there is a link called "Undeclare Record". Click this link to change the record back to an updatable document.
In addition to allowing record declaration, the site administrator can set up retention schedules. Retention schedules specify which actions are to be taken on a document after a defined period of time. Retention schedules are based on content types by default, but can be changed to schedules based on locations within each library. For example, a document could be declared as a record 1 year after creation, moved to a records centre after 2 years, then deleted after it has been in the records centre for 3 more years.
Different retention rules can be set on undeclared documents and on declared records.
A governance plan is a process that defines who is allowed to access your site and what they are allowed to do. Microsoft has done extensive research on why some SharePoint sites are successful, and what causes SharePoint sites to become abandoned. Sites that are actively managed by a governance plan are more successful than sites that are not managed. A governance plan defines a process by which changes occur, who can make them, and for what business purpose.
Please review this sample governance plan document from Microsoft and consider reviewing your needs before creating your first SharePoint site. If you need assistance in creating a governance plan, or don't know where to begin, please contact us.
Changes to the layout of SharePoint sites should be made in accordance with your governance plan. Once a change is approved, please consider the following points when making changes to the structure of a SharePoint site or an item within a site:
Most sites are restricted so that only site administrators can create structure (like calendars and document libraries).
If you are a site administrator, or have the ability to modify structure, choose Site Actions (at the top left), and choose More Options… Find the type of list you want to insert (like a Calendar, or Document Library). Provide a title, and a URL then choose Create.
Your SharePoint site should have a governance plan in place that specifies who can modify structure, for what purpose, and what permissions should be in place.
To integrate a calendar with Outlook 2010 or 2013, open your SharePoint site in a web browser, find the calendar you want to open in Outlook, and at the top of your web browser, Click on the Calendar tab. Click on Connect to Outlook. Depending on your security settings, you may receive a dialogue box asking if you want to allow this website to open a program on your computer; click "Allow". It will then ask if you want to allow Outlook to connect to this webpage; click "Allow" again. Finally, Outlook will ask if you want to connect this SharePoint Calendar to Outlook; click "Yes.
If it asks you which application to open, choose Microsoft Outlook then check the box that says “Remember my choice for stssync links.”
This calendar list should show up beside your other calendars n Outlook. Any changes you make will immediately update SharePoint.
It is possible to index a file share and have the results be included in a search on SharePoint. Please contact us to discuss your situation and receive more information.
ICT Training Services will be offering end-user SharePoint courses in the fall. Please check out their web site for SharePoint course availability.
Each business has a number of processes that are repeated to accomplish specific goals. These processes consist of a series of tasks undertaken by one or more people.
SharePoint 2010 allows the tasks around the routing, review, editing, and approval of electronic documents to be automated. These automated processes are called workflows. As the workflow progresses, tasks can be assigned to people at each stage with automatic e-mail reminders sent.
SharePoint contains the following workflows by default. However, the workflows have to be enabled for a site collection before they are available for use. If one of these workflow types is not available, please contact your site administrator.
If you have the correct privileges, you can click on the Library (or List) tab and then on Workflow Settings. The Workflow Settings page has an "Add a Workflow" link. Click this link, then fill out the workflow options; these differ depending on the workflow type that you choose. If "Add a Workflow" is not available, please contact your site administrator.
Once you have added the workflow to the document library or list, it is available for use. Select the document or item that needs to be included in the workflow, then click the Workflows icon. Choose the correct workflow from the "Start a new Workflow" section.
If the default workflows are not adequate, it is possible to create workflows using SharePoint Designer. This is a free program that can be downloaded from Microsoft. If you do not already have SharePoint Designer, choose "Edit in SharePoint Designer" from the Site Actions menu in your SharePoint site. SharePoint will ask you if you want to download SharePoint Designer. Click "Yes" and follew the instructions.
SharePoint Designer will allow you to create workflows that can take many actions, such as send e-mail, update metadata field values, copy, delete or move an item, declare items as records, or start another workflow. In SharePoint 2010, workflows can either be launched on a document or list item, or attached to the site collection itself and thus not associated with a specific document or list item.
Not everybody will have privileges to use SharePoint Designer in a site collection. If you cannot see the "Edit in SharePoint Designer" option in the Site Actions menu or if it will not allow you to run SharePoint Designer on your site, please contact your site administrator.
If the workflow actions in SharePoint Designer still don't meet your needs, it is possible to create custom actions or entire workflows using Visual Studio and .NET. This requires in-depth knowledge of both .NET programming and SharePoint configuration.
While SharePoint Designer makes the development of custem workflows easier, there are some features that it cannot implement and which would require programming using Visual Studio.
Metadata is information about a document or list item that is not contained within the document itself. Examples include the date that the document was created and when it was last modified; these values are set automatically by the operating system on every file. In SharePoint, it is possible to add custom metadata fields to any type of document. The metadata can assist in classifying the document for later sorting and retrieval.
This article describes metadata as:
“Imagine that you have a book, whose cover has been wrapped in wrapping paper. How much use is it to you currently? Not much. Now you start to peel off the top part of the cover and you see the title of the book. Now it is more useful but you don’t really know enough about the book as of yet. As you peel off more of the wrapping paper you start to find out the author, where the book was written, where it sits in the library, the date that it was published and finally a brief description about what the book is about.
Now just by looking at the cover you know what the book is about. Also there is one vital thing..you know a lot about the book but you haven’t even opened the book up yet to peek inside. This is metadata – telling you what you need to know, without the hassle of opening and reading the entire book.
Now imagine going into a library and being able to quickly find the information you are looking for! Instead of a mountain of books we have them nicely organized. This is the other side of metadata – organizing quantities of information to make it easy to find what we need.”
A content type is a classification scheme for documents or list items. Each document or list item that is defined to be a particular content type is expected to contain similar information and has the same metadata fields attached to it. SharePoint has many default content types but site administrators can define their own. For example, there could be a "Contracts" content type. Anything could be a Contract; a Word file, an Excel file, a PDF, etc. The content type Contract would have specific metadata fields attached, such as Contractor, Customer, Start Date, End Date, Renewed, Value. When a new document is created or uploaded and defined an a Contract, the person adding the document is prompted to enter information into the metadata fields.
The use of Content Types ensures that the right information is always added to each document or list item. The metadata values can be used in searching, sorting, and retention schedules.
When a document library or list is created, it shows a list of the documents or items in the list. It is possible to configure the library/list to use metadata to display subsets of the items. The site administrator can set up metadata navigation to display items based on content type or choice fields. Key filters can also be set up to limit the number of items displayed, using content types, choice, person or group, date/time or number fields. Please contact your site administrator if you are interested in metadata navigation or key filters.
Metadata fields are filled out when a document is created or uploaded, but it is possible to view and edit them later. Select the item in the document library or list, then click the "View properties" to see the metadata or "Edit Properties" to change metadata.
Note that you cannot change metadata for documents that have been declared as records (see Records Management for more information).
The official University of Saskatchewan guidelines govern how the U of S logo is to be used and the colours that can be used. For more information about these guidelines, please see:
The U of S logo files are available on all of the development, test and production SharePoint servers. They are in “/_layouts/images/logos”. The folders and files under this directory are:
To add the logos to a site, you will need to use a program called SharePoint Designer 2010. If you have authority to use SharePoint Designer, you will see an option "Edit in SharePoint Designer" under the Site Actions menu on your SharePoint site. It is a free program, and SharePoint will prompt you to download it the first time you choose this option. To add the logo to all pages on your site, you will need to edit the master page for your site. For more information on SharePoint Designer and master pages or to request assistance, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
ICT has chosen to not implement the My Site feature at this time, For an explanation of the reasons, please see My Site.
ICT has chosen to not implement the My Profile feature at this time, For an explanation of the reasons, please see My Profile.
SharePoint 2010 can store massive amounts of data, but there are limits imposed by the technology. Some limits are "hard" (that is, they cannot be exceeded) and some are "soft" (they can be exceeded, but there will be performance problems).
For more information, please read:
SharePoint 2010 boundaries, thresholds and supported limits (same info but formatted better; not official)
Just like Windows, SharePoint provides a Recycle Bin that contains deleted items. Each person has their own Recycle Bin which holds only the items that they have deleted. The link to the Recycle Bin is on the left hand side, at the bottom of the screen. Items are retained for 45 days after they have been deleted. During this time period, the person can go into the Recycle Bin and choose which items to restore to the original location.
After the 45 days are up, the items move into the site collection's Recycle Bin. At this point, the site administrator can view the deleted items and choose to restore them. The items remain in the site collection Recycle Bin until the bin contains 50% of the total disk space used by the site collection. As this is not a fixed amount, the amount of time that the item will be retained cannot be accurately predicted. If you need to recover an item that has been deleted for more than 45 days, please contact your local SharePoint site administrator.