Long live the best SharePoint ULS Viewer

Update (15th June 2014): We may see a return of the SharePoint ULS Viewer very soon. Jeremy Thake and Office Dev indicated it is coming back to life very soon.

 

 

Community Discussion (9th June 2014): SharePoint Consultant and MVP Vlad Catrinescu has started a discussion about possible replacements for the ULS Viewer on the SharePoint Community site (http://sharepoint-community.net/forum/topics/what-is-the-best-replacement-for-ulsviewer).

After noticing a tweet from Brian Lalancette ‏(@brianlala, you might also know him through his AutoSPInstaller project), I gasped at the thought that the best ULS Viewer for SharePoint is no longer going to be available.

Along with many others in the SharePoint community, I was quite surprised by this news and started to consider what alternative was available. I’ve used the ULS Viewer from MSDN so many times I have lost count and don’t know where I would be without it.

The best ULS Viewer
The best ULS Viewer

For those who’ve found this post and just want to download a copy of the ULS Viewer tool, you’re in luck. I have preserved a copy of ULS Viewer as a .exe and a .zip archive – these are available here http://bit.ly/UlsViewer and http://bit.ly/UlsViewerzip.
You might receive a warning from the URL shortening service when using the .exe link warning against directly downloading an exe – this is why I have also provided a ZIP version.

Other SharePoint ULS Viewer tools…

As the ULS Viewer is no longer available I thought I shared some alternative tools or techniques to get access to the SharePoint ULS logs.

ULS Studio

A Codeplex project that I’ve used on several occasions and does somewhat come close to the features that the ULS Viewer tool had – ULS Studio (https://uls.codeplex.com).

ULS Studio
ULS Studio

CSOM for SharePoint Online

If you’re using SharePoint Online you could follow Vardhaman Deshpande’s blog post (http://www.vrdmn.com/2014/03/view-tenant-uls-logs-in-sharepoint.html) and access the ULS logs using the Client-Side Object Model (CSOM).

SPO ULS with CSOM - Vardhaman Deshpande
SPO ULS with CSOM – Vardhaman Deshpande

Developer Dashboard

There’s also the ULS tab within the Developer Dashboard, although this is limited to reviewing errors related to those requests where the Developer Dashboard is displayed or used.

The Developer Dashboard can be activated using PowerShell – SharePoint Developer Devendra Velegandla shares the PowerShell and reviews the Developer dashboard on his blog (http://www.sharepoint-journey.com/developer-dashboard-in-sharepoint-2013.html).

$svc = [Microsoft.SharePoint.Administration.SPWebService]::ContentService
$dds = $svc.DeveloperDashboardSettings
$dds.DisplayLevel = "On"
$dds.Update()
ULS errors displayed in the Developer Dashboard
ULS errors displayed in the Developer Dashboard

PowerShell

Use can even use PowerShell to get details about a correlation error. Wictor Wilén shares details about this method in an article on his blog (http://www.wictorwilen.se/Post/Working-with-SharePoint-2010-Correlation-ID-in-PowerShell-and-code.aspx).

Get-SPLogEvent | out-gridview
Get-SPLogEvent | Out-GridView
Get-SPLogEvent | Out-GridView

Summary

While I’m not going to stop using the ULS Viewer – I can only recommend you use something to help you view the SharePoint ULS logs. Troubleshooting SharePoint is not easy but you can help yourself, firstly by always checking the event log and secondly being comfortable with your method of doing.

Long live the best ULS Viewer.

Provide feedback directly to Microsoft about Office 365

I have just discovered that you can give feedback about your experiences using Office 365 directly to Microsoft using their online feedback form (http://msft.it/o365feedback) thanks to a Tweet from Jennifer Mason.

The Office 365 Twitter account shortly replied with a useful link to provide feedback.

It is a great tip for those working with Office 365, SharePoint Online and Yammer etc who want to pass on feedback to Microsoft about their experiences using Office 365.

The Deployment Guide of all SharePoint 2013 Deployment Guides

Let me introduce you to the Deployment guide for Microsoft SharePoint 2013. Anyone deploying, installing or configuring SharePoint 2013 absolutely must read this!

This particular Deployment Guide is 674 pages long and like no other. It was published by the Microsoft Office System and Servers Team at Microsoft back in October 2012.

It is such a great guide and is packed full of information. Reading through the deployment guide, I discovered some neat little tricks and refreshed myself on some pretty important best practices which are always a good exercise.

Download it now, get reading and share it!

SharePoint Site folders coming to SharePoint 2016

This post is part of SP14 Keynote highlights series where I provide some highlights of the next version of SharePoint. These highlights are from the SP24 Conference Keynote that Bill Baer delivered.

SharePoint Site Folders

How many occasions have you tried to access a document in SharePoint, but end up having to click through a long set of links to find it because you can’t remember the URL? OK, this is not an everyday issue, but we do use SharePoint to store documents and we use SharePoint sites to create contextual containers to store documents in. In someways, these SharePoint sites slow us down from accessing documents harder.

In the next version of SharePoint (SharePoint 2016) we might find a new method to access Document Libraries called Site Folders. Site Folders will provide a list of all Sites that we have access to that contain Document Libraries (a.k.a Site Folders or Site Libraries) and will be available from OneDrive for Business.

Site Folders coming to SharePoint 2016.
Site Folders coming to SharePoint 2016.

Users will be able to click-through into individual Sites from the Site Folders page to easily discover Document Libraries each site contains.

Libraries visible through the Site Folders area coming to SharePoint
Libraries visible through the new Site Folders area coming to SharePoint 2016.

I wonder how this will impact how with architect document management solutions. Search is becoming more and more powerful than we are shifting to an era where Information Architecture and Taxonomies become less relevant (or maybe more relevant behind the scenes), time will tell!

I have an idea what Microsoft is trying to do here, watch this space as I’ll provide my own mock-up with an example soon.

Discover more

Join me over the next year as I discover more news and information about the next version of SharePoint and Office 16 by following my #Office16 tag.

OneDrive for Business to store Outlook Attachments

This post is part of SP14 Keynote highlights series where I provide some highlights of the next version of SharePoint. These highlights are from the SP24 Conference Keynote that Bill Baer delivered.

OneDrive for Business to change the way we distribute and store Outlook attachments

We all do this. We need to send a file to someone via email and we just attach the file to the email and press send.

60% of mailbox storage is allocated to attachments.

What we should all be doing, of course, is saving the attachment to SharePoint and including a link to the attachment instead. Microsoft may be about to make this much easier in the next version of SharePoint and Office (SharePoint 2016 and Office16) by slipstreaming the entire process and integrating Outlook with OneDrive for Business in Office 365.

Send a link or attach a copy - integrating Outlook with OneDrive for Business
Send a link or attach a copy – integrating Outlook with OneDrive for Business

Attachments will be stored in a “Attachments” folder in the user’s personal library in SharePoint Online, known as OneDrive for Business.

Attachments folder in the next version of SharePoint - SharePoint 2016.
Attachments folder in the next version of SharePoint – SharePoint 2016.

Each attachment will be secured to those on the recipient list of the originating email.

Outlook attachment store in OneDrive for Business.
Outlook attachment store in OneDrive for Business.

Benefits of storing attachments in OneDrive for Business include reducing overall email storage requirement but what do users care…general they don’t, not about storage requirements anyway. But what about providing themselves and their recipients with the ability to collaborate on attachments centrally and even use Co-Authoring. Imagine how much email traffic will be reduced because everyone has access to the same attachment.

Outlook attachments stored centrally in OneDrive for Business.
Outlook attachments stored centrally in OneDrive for Business.

There are times when storing attachments centrally SharePoint 2016 or whatever it becomes will be useful but not in all examples. Most of us are fortunate to live in a very connected world but there are times when we’re not so connected. This exciting change would mean at the time an email attachment would not be accessible, even though the original email is available on mobile for example. I look forward to hearing what others think about this new feature.

Discover more

Join me over the next year as I discover more news and information about the next version of SharePoint and Office 16 by following my #Office16 tag.