Just in case anyone was wondering, it looks like the SharePoint 2013 App Web has been locked down. No poking around in there via SharePoint Designer!
SharePoint 2010 introduced basic digital asset management features by allowing you to upload and manage videos, images, and audio files. SharePoint 2013 greatly augments these features sets, and in this post I am going to dive into these features from and end-user’s point of view. Specifically, I will explain the following features as well as describe how to use them:
Figure 1: Managing Video is much richer in SharePoint 2013
SharePoint provides a lot of great new video functionality, but in order to use that functionality, you will need to use a type of document library called an Asset Library. This type of document library comes configured with all the necessary functionality including the new Video
content type, which is based on a Document Set. Using a document set to store videos may be confusing at first to an end-user, but it makes perfect sense in order to support the Video Renditions feature.
Note: A SharePoint 2013 Asset Library also comes pre-configured with the Image and Audio content types. More information on Asset Libraries can be found at http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/sharepoint-server-help/set-up-an-asset-library-to-store-image-audio-or-video-files-HA102785730.aspx.
Figure 3: Video Processing and Playback Settings
One of the most useful features in SharePoint 2013 is the ability to have SharePoint create thumbnail images automatically for you
SharePoint 2013 does NOT generated the thumbnail for you automatically when you upload a video. Rather, you have to perform this manually for each video you upload. To change the thumbnail, simply navigate to Edit Properties -> Change Thumbnail, and choose the Capture Thumbnail from Video option. This will allow you to navigate through the frames of the video using Switch to the Next Frame/Switch to the Previous Frame (denoted by the next and previous icons). To set the thumbnail, simply click Capture Thumbnail (denoted by the camera icon).
Figure 4: Missing the option to have SharePoint 2013 capture the thumbnail from video? Make sure you are setup correctly!
Important! The option to have SharePoint capture the thumbnail from video may not appear for you. Video Thumbnails may not show up depending on a couple of things. There is a browser requirement as well as a server-side dependency. See the following list for the necessary prerequisites for video thumbnail generation.
If you do not have a capable browser, or your server administrator has not enabled the Desktop Experience feature on the server, you can still manually specify a thumbnail for the video (very similar to the experience in SharePoint 2010).
Video Renditions in SharePoint 2013 give you the ability to specify more than one rendition of a video for a user to select from. For example, users that have a fast internet connection can select to view the “Full” rendition, and users that have a slower internet connection (or a mobile device) can select to view the “Small” rendition.
Video renditions can be configured by clicking the Manage Renditions link on the Edit Properties form for a Video. From this screen, content authors can upload multiple video renditions of a particular video. SharePoint will detect the certain properties (such as frame width, frame height, and bit rate) and automatically fill in the backing columns for the rendition.
Figure 5: Managing Video Renditions
By default, SharePoint 2013 plays the video rendition with the lowest bitrate, but you can override this by selecting a rendition from the drop down menu. In addition, end-users can choose their desired rendition by clicking anywhere in the player and then clicking the Switch Rendition icon. Note: the name of each rendition is taken from the value of the Label column for each rendition. SharePoint insert a default value when the rendition is uploaded. To change this value, simply choose Edit Properties -> Manage Renditions, then select the rendition and change the value of the Label column.
Figure 6: Choosing a Video Rendition
SharePoint provides the ability to disable the download link for the user. This doesn’t necessarily prevent the user from downloading the file if they have the “know how”, but it does a make it more difficult. The user interface doesn’t give very many clues as to the internal structure of how the video is stored (remember, it is a Document Set), so it would take a user with knowledge of HTTP inspection tools to ascertain how to download the video.
Update: While playing around, I discovered that the video player control will allow you to download the video simply by right clicking and choosing the Save Video As menu item regardless of the download settings for the video. Oops…
Figure 7: Disabling the download link doesn’t really prevent an end-user from grabbing the file, but it does make it a little more difficult.
SharePoint 2013 introduces the concept of Embeds, which are small snippets of HTML code that can quickly be inserted into a page. Many content types within SharePoint 2013 support the use of embeds (Word Documents, PowerPoint Documents, etc.), and Videos are no exception. However, some content authors may not wish to allow users to embed their videos, and SharePoint 2013 provides a way to hide the embed information from users. Selecting this option in the video’s Edit Properties screen hides all embed details from end users.
SharePoint 2013 also provides the ability to “tag” people in the video via the “People in Video” column. This column is implemented as a field of type Person or Group, which will resolve account names, display names, email addresses against the backing directory provider. Note: if you try to enter a value that does not resolve, you will get an error like the image below when you try to save the properties. If you need to enter an external email address or name, you will need to create another column to do this (you can use Single Line of Text or Multiple Lines of Text).
If your video is hosted elsewhere and you don’t want to upload it to SharePoint 2013, no problem. You can now easily embed videos within SharePoint. This is a great way to include content from social video sources such as YouTube, Bing, and even other videos hosted in SharePoint.
Video can even be embedded within SharePoint 2013 Rich Text content as well. The following blog post has a video that shows you how to do this: http://blog.sharepointedutech.com/2013/02/16/embed-a-video-in-sharepoint-2013/.
The _api JSON Viewer app for SharePoint by Carsten Keutmann and Anders Dissing is a good way to navigate the REST endpoints exposed by the _api endpoint in SharePoint 2013. If you are developing apps for SharePoint, than this is a tool you will want in your toolbox. Once installed from the SharePoint Store, the app provides a simple interface for entering a REST endpoint and seeing the JSON results in an easy to read format.
While the app does not seem to allow POST methods, it is a valuable tool for examining JSON results returned from SharePoint.
Details about the app and its developers can be found at http://www.sharepointfriends.com/#!/p/jsonviewer.html. The app can be downloaded here.
Free with ads, $1.49 without.
Very Good: 4 out of 5 Stars
Download: Get the app here.
I am a huge fan of the Roku player. In rooms where I don’t have an Xbox, I have a Roku. It’s a wonderful device: small, easy to use, and powerful.
If you are like me, you may misplace the provided remote control for your Roku from time to time. If this sounds like you, you will probably be pleased to discover there is an app from TreeTen that will allow you to control your Roku player from your Windows 8 or Windows RT device, and it is simply called Remote for Roku Player.
Once you download and install from the Window Store, run the app from the Start screen. You should see a screen similar to Figure 1. This screen allows you to discover and connect to your Roku devices. There is an option to enter the manually IP address of your Roku device along with a friendly name, but I could not get this to work. I received a “could not connect” error each time I clicked the “add” button. Not sure if this was user error or a bug.
The good news is that the software automatically discovered my two Roku players very quickly, so my only dilemma now was to determine which one was the one I wanted. For non-technical end users, this might present a challenge, as the only information you are given is the IP Address, the Model number, and some sort of serial number for each device. You could find the IP address of your Roku player from its network setting, but I think the easiest way is probably to just test through trial and error. If you connect to one of the Rokus, and it responds to your commands, you have selected the correct one.
Figure 1: Discovering Roku Players – If you have more than one, you’ll need to figure out which one you want to use.
Once you have connected to your Roku player, you will get a tiled list of all major Roku channels. These tiles are always visible, so this makes changing channels very easy. You will also get an virtual representation of the familiar Roku remote, and the good news here is that all the buttons work. In my testing, clicking on the ‘dedicated’ Netflix and Pandora buttons immediately switched to those channels.
Clicking buttons on the virtual remote even causes the Roku device to emit the familar ‘da-dunk’ sound.
I really like having all my Roku channels as tiles, as this makes it possible to rapdily switch channels – no having to navigate using the ‘back’ button. The ‘virtual’ remote functions executed so quickly, I originally wondered if some sort of IR was being used. Of course, after switching my WiFi off, I was able to see that device-to-device communication was achieved over good ole TCP/IP.
The SmartGlass team might want to take note: While not as powerful and feature rich, Remote for Roku Player does make SmartGlass feel a little “laggy”.
Figure 2: Connected to my Roku Player
With this release, the options for configuring are rather limited. Aside from the typical options for any Modern app (Rate and Review, About, etc.), there are only options to discover Roku players and reset settings to their defaults. As previously mentioned, you can only connect with one player at a time, but it is pretty easy to discover other Roku players and connect to them. A nice option to be able to customize the dedicated buttons on the ‘virtual remote’ would have been cool… but I think I am being a little picky here.
Figure 3: Configuration options are limited
This is a very nice app. I have been using it quite a bit. I was impressed enough that I went ahead and purchased it. If you can live with ads, then it is a great free alternative when you misplace your Roku remote or the batteries run down. Users with only one Roku device on their network should not have any issue connecting, but if TreeTen works out the kinks with discovering and connecting to multiple Roku players, I will easily be able to give it 5 stars.
Getting ready to start an ECM project in SharePoint? Check out this collection of articles, training, and videos I have collected over the last two years. Much will apply to SharePoint 2007 and SharePoint 2013.
SharePoint Document Libraries
SharePoint document libraries enable you to store and manage documents. Document libraries can be configured with many features to facilitate creation, management, and security.
SharePoint document libraries I: An introduction
Wondering how to use Word with SharePoint? Excel with SharePoint? How about PowerPoint and OneNote with SharePoint? Use a SharePoint document library. This course will show you the basics.
Located at <http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/sharepoint-server-help/sharepoint-document-libraries-i-an-introduction-RZ101930528.aspx>
SharePoint document libraries II: Organize and configure a library
Organize a SharePoint document library with folders and columns. Plus, learn how to set up SharePoint version history, and how to give people permissions to a SharePoint site.
Located at <http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/sharepoint-server-help/sharepoint-document-libraries-ii-organize-and-configure-a-library-RZ102410290.aspx?CTT=1>
Collaborate on documents and projects more efficiently
Learn how to make the most out of SharePoint calendars, how to allow multiple people to author a document simultaneously, take your documents offline and then reconnect by using SharePoint Workspace, and how to manage a project in SharePoint and by using Project Task lists.
Located at <http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/sharepoint-server-help/collaborate-on-documents-and-projects-more-efficiently-RZ101827937.aspx?CTT=1>
Approve or reject items or files in a site list or library
If someone submits an item or file to such a list or library, it is in Pending status until it is approved by someone who has the necessary permissions to do so. While it is waiting for approval, or after being rejected, it remains in Pending status. Usually, when an item or file is in Pending status, only the creator of the item or file and people who have permissions to manage lists and libraries can see it. It becomes visible to others only after its status changes from Pending to Approved.
Located at <http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/sharepoint-server-help/approve-or-reject-items-or-files-in-a-site-list-or-library-HA101852685.aspx?CTT=1>
Content types enable organizations to organize, manage, and handle content in a consistent way across a site collection. By defining content types for specific kinds of documents or information products, an organization can ensure that each of these groups of content is managed in a consistent way.
Use content types to manage content consistently on a site
This article provides an overview of SharePoint Content Types.
Located at <http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/sharepoint-foundation-help/use-content-types-to-manage-content-consistently-on-a-site-HA010375560.aspx>
Create or customize a site content type
This article explains how to create new site content types or modify existing site content types.
Located at <http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/sharepoint-foundation-help/create-or-customize-a-site-content-type-HA101884501.aspx?CTT=3>
Document IDs help you manage your documents by providing an easy way to track items regardless of their location. For example, if a legal contract gets moved from a document library on one site to a document library on another site, the contract would be easy to locate based on its Document ID. Document ID’s are automatically assigned to uploaded documents and this ID will follow the item throughout its entire life cycle. Document IDs can also be assigned to Document Sets.
Enable and configure unique Document IDs
In this article you will learn about the benefits of using Document IDs in document or record management. You will also learn how to enable the Document ID service for a site collection, and how to configure the Document ID options for custom file naming conventions.
Located at <http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/sharepoint-server-help/enable-and-configure-unique-document-ids-HA101790471.aspx?CTT=1>
The new managed metadata features in SharePoint Server 2010 are enabled by a new Managed Metadata Service application that provides support for two key things: Content Type Publishing and Taxonomies.
Introduction to managed metadata in SharePoint Server 2010
This article provides an overview of some of the key concepts related to working with the new managed metadata features in Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010. It discusses how the new managed metadata features provide support for the implementation of formal taxonomies through managed terms. It also explains how social tags work, and how they relate to managed metadata features such as managed terms and enterprise keywords.
Located at <http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/sharepoint-server-help/introduction-to-managed-metadata-in-sharepoint-server-2010-HA101859256.aspx?CTT=1>
Create and manage terms within term sets
The new managed metadata features in Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010 provide support for the implementation of formal taxonomies through managed terms. This article explains how to create and manage terms within term sets.
Located at <http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/sharepoint-server-help/create-and-manage-terms-within-term-sets-HA101631581.aspx?CTT=3>
Create a Managed Metadata column
A Managed Metadata column is a new column type that can be added to lists, libraries, or content types to enable site users to select values from a specific term set of managed terms and apply these values to their content. You can create and configure a Managed Metadata column to map to an existing term set or term, or you can create a new term set specifically for a Managed Metadata column.
Located at <http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/sharepoint-server-help/create-a-managed-metadata-column-HA101631602.aspx?CTT=1>
Business documents originate from many different sources and often need to be stored in a way that decreases vulnerability to regulatory compliance and litigation risks. After configuring the Content Organizer to route records, you can establish and program specific Content Organizer rules that enable you to automatically store records based on unique business rules and requirements.
Configure the Content Organizer to route documents
This article shows you how to perform initial configuration of the Content Organizer.
Located at <http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/sharepoint-server-help/configure-the-content-organizer-to-route-documents-HA010378237.aspx?CTT=3>
Create Content Organizer rules to route documents
Once the Content Organizer is configured, you need to create rules to route documents. This article shows you how to create Content Organizer rules.
Located at <http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/sharepoint-server-help/create-content-organizer-rules-to-route-documents-HA101807927.aspx?CTT=1>
Records Management and Compliance
Introduction to Records Management and Compliance
This training course will introduce you to some of the new and improved records management and compliance features in Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010. In the examples throughout the course, we will look at how a fictitious, medium-sized company, Contoso, uses SharePoint Server 2010 to manage records.
Located at <http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/sharepoint-server-help/introduction-to-records-management-and-compliance-RZ101825173.aspx?CTT=1>
Create a file plan to manage records in SharePoint Server 2010
Determining which active documents in your organization might be declarable as records requires the collaboration of records managers, lawyers, compliance officers, and content managers. Note that, even if your enterprise is not in a highly regulated industry, there are general laws that might obligate your enterprise to keep records. Along with general business laws, you must evaluate legal requirements that are specific to your enterprise.
Located at <http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc261708.aspx>