SharePoint 2013 Public Beta is Live

Office-2013-LogoUnless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve probably already heard that the Office 15 Public Preview Beta went live YESTERDAY at about 3:30 PM. I thought it might be haelpful to put a list of useful links in one web post for everyone who is trying to find things.  Here are links to a number of sites that I visited last night to download either bits, documentation or training.

Download Links

SharePoint Server 2013 Preview Download – SharePoint Server 2013 Preview is designed to bring people together to get work done. Whether you’re using it to manage your enterprise content, make it easy for business end users to share ideas and information, or help developers build innovative new applications, SharePoint Server 2013’s improvements in scale, security, and flexibility have you covered.

Office 365 ProPlus Preview Download – Office 365 ProPlus Preview is your new Office delivered fast to all your Windows devices. Office 365 ProPlus Preview includes Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Outlook, OneNote, Access, Publisher, and Lync. You will be able to preview Office 365 ProPlus applications and manage up to 25 users with a preview account.

SharePoint Foundation 2013 Preview Download – SharePoint Foundation 2013 is the essential solution for organizations that need a secure, manageable, web-based collaboration platform.

Office Web Apps Server Preview Download – Office Web Apps Server Preview is a new Office server product that delivers browser-based versions of Word, PowerPoint, Excel, and OneNote. A single Office Web Apps Server farm can support users who access Office files through SharePoint 2013 Preview, Lync Server 2013 Preview, Exchange Server 2013 Preview, shared folders, and web sites.

Office 365 Small Business Premium Preview – Welcome to the next generation of Office 365, a powerful service that transforms the way you get things done. Office 365 is the smart choice for managing your business efficiently and professionally—without the need for technical expertise.

Office 365 Enterprise Preview – Create professional content more easily than ever, securely connect with customers and partners, and take advantage of powerful tools for more effective management, control and compliance with enterprise-grade security, data loss prevention, and rights management.

Office 365 Home Premium Preview – Best for families who want Office on up to 5 household PCs or tablets.

Other Office 2013 Downloads – On this page you can get other office products like Exchange, Visio, Project, etc.


Developer documentation on MSDN – Find how-tos, overviews, training, and API references, and other documentation for SharePoint 2013 Preview

Setup a SharePoint 2013 Dev Environment – Learn the steps to set up a SharePoint 2013 Preview development environment by installing SharePoint 2013 Preview and Visual Studio 2012.


Developer Training Videos – Developer-focused how to training and walkthrough videos about Office 2013 and SharePoint 2013 including changes and new features for search, social, ECM, WCM, and REST. Learn about apps for Office and SharePoint.

IT Pro Training – Download walkthroughs, training, and reviews of new features, changes and options in Office 2013 for ITPros.

Keep watching this space.  I have more information about SharePoint 2013 to come.

SharePoint MVP for the 5th Year!

Last weekend was really exciting for two reasons.  First, because my eldest daughter got married on Saturday.  We were so busy getting ready for the wedding that I almost forgot about my MVP award date on July 1st.  But soon enough the wedding was over and things started to get back to normal on Sunday and there was my the email announcing my MVP award again this year for SharePoint. This is my fifth year and I get more EXCITED about the program every year. Every year I make more friends and contacts through the program.  Their help and support is invaluable when it comes to learning all the nooks and crannies in this product.  I often wonder how I learned as much as I did before I gained access to the resources and contacts available to me as an MVP.  And every year brings more opportunities for learning and sharing that knowledge with others in the community.

But the bottom line is still that I wouldn’t be an MVP if it weren’t for all of you out there in the community. In the last year I’ve begun to run into a number of people who recognize my name from the MSDN Forums. Its been great to meet all of you in person and thanks for all the questions that you’ve asked.  Some of them provide an easy outlet for sharing what I already know.  But others provide challenges to learn new things so I can help answer questions.  Without your stimulating questions I wouldn’t be receiving this award. I hope to continue to live up to the honor and hope that I never get complacent about what its really about: Helping to support the SharePoint community.

Fix for “PDF iFilter Doesn’t Crawl Contents”

searchPDFI was working at a client this last week where we were having trouble getting SharePoint search to crawl the contents of PDF files.  My client said they followed this Microsoft installation guide (KB Article #2293357)  but the iFilter still wasn’t being used to crawl the contents of PDF files.  When I checked their installation I couldn’t find anything wrong either.  I was even more surprised that when I followed the same steps in my virtual dev environment I got the same results.  PDFs were searchable but only by title or other metadata.  The contents were not being indexed.  At that point I started searching the Internet for a solution and although I found lots of people with the same problem I didn’t find any solutions that would work.  For most people the solution was to make sure they added a registry key they missed or make sure it was installed on the correct server.  But there were some people, like my client and I, who followed the instructions correctly and still couldn’t get it to work.  At this point we opened a support ticket with Microsoft and were immediately provided with a solution that worked.  But since I haven’t been able to find this documented anywhere I thought I would record it in my BLOG.  So if you have tried setting up the 64 bit Adobe PDF iFilter and still can’t get it to work, then read on and try the following.  To be thorough I included all the steps required to install the iFilter, but highlighted the additional step that we took which made the difference.

Installing a PDF iFilter

  1. Download and Install the Adobe PDF iFilter 9 for 64-bit platforms
  2. Download a 16X16 PDF icon file from the Adobe web site and copy it to C:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\Web Server Extensions\14\TEMPLATE\IMAGES\
  3. Add the following entry in the docIcon.xml file, which can be found at: C:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\Web Server Extensions\14\TEMPLATE\XML
        <Mapping Key="pdf" Value="pdf16.gif" />
  4. Add the pdf file type to the Search Service Application’s File types
  5. Open regedit and navigate to the following location:
        HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Office Server\14.0\Search\Setup\ContentIndexCommon\Filters\Extension
  6. Right-click and select New > Key to create a new key called ‘.pdf
  7. Add the following GUID as the default value for the .pdf key 
  8. Open Windows Explorer and navigate to the following location:
        C:\Program Files\Adobe\Adobe PDF iFilter 9 for 64-bit platforms\bin
  9. Add your Search Service Application’s Content Access Account to the list of users and groups who have security access to this folder.  Make sure the account has Read, Read & Execute, and List Folder Contents permissions.
  10. Reboot the SharePoint servers in your Farm to restart the Search Service Application


Note:  The Adobe installation instructions also recommend adding the bin folder location to the server’s environmental path variable.  But this has not been required in any of my installations and is not included in the Microsoft instructions.

Last Day at Sharesquared

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Yesterday was my last day working for Sharesquared.  I’ve really enjoyed working with a wonderful group of consultants and clients for the last couple of years but it was time for a change.  Sharesquared is a virtual company that hires the best talent they can find wherever you happen to live.  The result is a virtual company where most of the work is done through “Telecommuting”.  The result is a company with some really talented people who are a pleasure to work with, but who you only have contact with electronically.  Although I enjoyed working from home it can lose its appeal after a while when all but one of your colleagues lives 2 to 3 time zones away and you only see people face to face at the annual company meeting.  So when an opportunity came up recently to work for a growing consulting firm headquartered here in Cleveland I decided it was time to make the move.  That company is the BlueChip Consulting Group.

Unlike Sharesquared, who focus completely on SharePoint, BlueChip views itself as an “Infrastructure Optimization Consulting Firm”.  They have several successful practices including a growing SharePoint practice.  My role at BlueChip will be similar to the role I had at Sharesquared.  I’ll be a Senior Solutions Architect serving as the chief technical architect within the Portals and Collaboration team at Blue Chip.  In that role it will be my job to help design new SharePoint implementations and provide technical mentoring to the other members of the team.  The difference is that I’ll see the other members of the team face to face on a regular basis.  I’m looking forward to getting to know the members of the team and starting work on some new projects.  I start work at BlueChip next Monday.

So to all my friends at Sharesquared, the best of luck and continued success.  And to all my future friends at BlueChip, I can’t wait to get started.  My new contact info is listed below.  If my email is in your address book please change it to:

Pittsburgh SharePoint User’s Group

I will be speaking at the Pittsburgh SharePoint User’s Group on Wednesday, January 18th. The meeting will start at 11:00 am and my topic will be "Users, Profiles, and MySites: Managing a Changing SharePoint User population”. Here’s a brief description of the talk:

Users, Profiles, and MySites: Managing a Changing SharePoint User population

Every organization has some level of personnel change and turnover.  The question is, in the midst of this fluid user population how can you manage a user’s access to SharePoint and retrieve important information stored in their personal site efficiently?  Updating existing user information is also often a problem and most people have questions about how security permissions work in SharePoint. In this talk we will examine how SharePoint stores information about users and the underlying processes controlling user accounts, permissions, profiles and personal MySites. We’ll look at what works, what doesn’t work, and possible workarounds.  Along the way we’ll discuss the Best Practices for managing users, their profiles, and MySites in a SharePoint environment. We’ll discuss how this works in both 2007 and 2010.

The group will meet at the Pittsburgh Technology Council.  You can get a map by clicking on the link below.

Pittsburgh Technology Council
2000 Technology Drive
Pittsburgh, PA 15219