Office 365 Internet Zone Settings

This is a follow-up to my 2015 post about the recommended IE Internet Security Zone settings for maximum user authentication happiness.

On the post http://www.tuomi.ca/2014/06/23/overcoming-sticky-logouts-office-365-azure-windows-intune-web-browser/, I tried to rationalize IE security settings relating to Office 365.

Here’s a good explanation of why we should care, as quoted from the more recent MSFT post:
“Starting with Windows Vista , Internet Explorer has a new security zone protection feature, called protected mode, and that is set up by default for Internet, Intranet and Restricted Security zones.

Understanding and Working in Protected Mode Internet Explorer

The effect of the protected mode is that the sites in these zones will not have access to the folders available to other application (i.e. data available in other zones). This means the cookies available for one session for a site in a Protected mode zone will not be accessible to a site that resides in a separate zone (and the other way around), which will trigger behind the scene repeated authentication attempts.”

Net result: persistent login prompts, hair pulling, annoyances. The fix? Either manually or through group policy, apply the following settings to your Windows workstations:

Trusted Sites Zone:
https://*.microsoftonline.com
https://*.sharepoint.com
https://*.sharepointonline.com
https://*.outlook.com
https://*.lync.com
https://*.office365.com
https://*.office.com
https://*.microsoftstream.com
https://*.sway.com
https://*.powerapps.com
https://*.yammer.com

Intranet Zone:

*.microsoftonline.com
*.sharepoint.com
*.sharepointonline.com
*.outlook.com
*.lync.com
*.office365.com
*.office.com
*.microsoftstream.com
*.sway.com
*.powerapps.com

 

 

References:
https://blogs.technet.microsoft.com/victorbutuza/2016/06/20/o365-internet-explorer-protected-mode-and-security-zones/
– Latest new URL’s added e.g. PowerApps.com
https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/2507767/problems-when-signing-out-of-office-365–azure–or-intune-in-a-web-bro – Original official reference.

 

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SharePoint Online Search Word Breaking

Recently I was asked if search in SharePoint Online would return two results for words separated by hyphens, dashes, or other characters. For example, we’d like to know if  entering the search phrase “committal” will return both “noncommittal” and “non-committal”

The answer is, it depends on the specific Search scenario and configuration. It’s indeed an under-documented topic so I thought I’d try and give you good context here.

  • SharePoint Online search “verticals” (Result Sources) determines the source of the search and characteristics of the query logic. We can also create Custom Result Sources.
  • Out of the box Result Sources, are mapped to Managed Properties, which are in essence “columns” of search data. As with Result Sources, there are out of the box managed properties, and we also can create our own.
  • The Search Query component tokenization process splits the stream of text retrieved from the managed properties into individual words (tokens) at the time of a query which includes word breaking, stemming, query spellchecking and the native thesaurus capabilities.
    • This tokenization will only take place if the following setting on the specific Managed Property being searched is turned off:
    • Since we cannot directly modify the out of the box Managed Properties, we are bound to whatever those properties have set for Complete Matching, as the first factor in Word Breaking being applied or not.

Here’s the inventory of the special characters used for tokenization in the context of using SharePoint Document Libraries as the Search Result source:

Character Is Wordbreaker?
– hyphen Yes
_ underscore Yes
. period Yes
& ampersand Invalid
% percent Invalid
+ plus Yes
# pound Invalid

There are other possible root content source types as well: File Share, Exchange and Open Search, and they have their own idiosyncrasies regarding word breaking. For example, ampersand would work as a word breaker in the context of a File Share search.

So, in conclusion, yes, a search of OOTB SP Document Libraries for “committal” will return both “noncommittal” and “non-committal”, with higher relevance given to an item with both portions of the string present.

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Use Microsoft Flow to grab image of the day for SharePoint

The default Search Center in SharePoint is quite minimalist- just an empty page layout with a search box. This post will show you how to use the workflow logic of Microsoft Flow to grab a reference to the Bing image of the day, copy it’s URL to a SharePoint list, and then use clientside scripting to set the image as a background to your search center or use elsewhere in your portal.

There’s been plenty of tutorials posted over the years in terms of SP image rotaters, jazzing up search centers, etc. – the focus of this post is really more about using Flow to parse external RSS data into a SharePoint list on an ongoing basis, and then do something with that data.

1. Create the SharePoint List

In order to not have to query an external RSS feed every time a user hits a page where we want to display referenced images, we’re going to use a SharePoint list as a repository for the image links as they come in each day.

  • In your SharePoint site collection of choice (in this case, i’m using the root site collection), create a new Custom List with the name “Daily Images”. There’s no extra columns or tweaks needed for this List, we’re just going to be using the OOTB Title field to store our daily image URL and that’s it.
    Need help creating a List?:
    -If you’re using the new SharePoint UI style (Lists, Libraries & Subsites listed on “Site Contents” page are text links), these are the instructions.
    -If you’re using the legacy SharePoint UI style (Lists, Libraries & Subsites listed on “Site Contents” page are square, “metro”-style icons), follow these steps.

2. Create the Flow

  • You haven’t checked out Microsoft Flow yet? Come on, get on it – it’s the future of workflow! Head on over and sign up with your Microsoft or organizational Office 365 account.
  • Browse the Templates and locate the “RSS to SharePoint” template by Craig Stanley (thanks Craig!). Click “Use this template”.
  • For the “When a feed item is published” URL, input your image RSS feed URL, e.g. http://feeds.feedburner.com/bingimageswhen-a-feed-item-is-published-microsoft-flow
  • A particularity of this specific RSS feed, is that some image URL’s it was outputting (with “feedproxy” in the URL) we’re not rendering when linked to, so I used the “Add a Condition” link to create a Flow Condition that only registered image links in the RSS feed, that do not contain the string “feedproxy”. For the true part of the Condition, you’re going to have it run the Create SharePoint List Item action, using the URL of the image from the RSS feed for the Title field:
    add-a-condition-create-list-item-microsoft-flow
  • It’ll take the flow a bit to pick up some data, so if it’s a daily RSS feed check back the next day. When it’s working and there’s no problems reported in the log, you should see some RSS image URL links showing up like so:
    daily-images-list-items

3. Add some script to render the images

We’re going to use Jquery and some of the SharePoint REST API to query our Daily Images list, and grab the latest image. We’re going to run with the assumption you already have your Jquery reference set up. If you don’t have Jquery in there already, you can either bake it into your page layouts (if you’re using custom branding) like this, or add a one-off reference on the page where you’re embedding this Daily Image code, like in this example.

Go to your Search Center homepage (https://yourTenant.SharePoint.com/Search by default), Edit the page, and add a Script Editor web part with the following code. It renders the latest image of the day as the CSS background image of the #DeltaPlaceHolderMain div. Note that we are doing a string replace to change the original image URL’s provided via the RSS feed, which just happened to be non-SSL http://. Since we’re displaying this image on a secure SharePoint Online page, we’re changing the http:// to https://. Bing, in this case, serves both versions happily- not all image sources may play along like this so double-check they can render https:// before committing.

<script type="text/javascript">
var Module = {} || Module;

Module.GetImages = (function () {
    var pub = {},
        _images = [],      
        _options = {
            listName: "Daily Images"
        };

    pub.init = function () {
        var url = "https://yourTenant.sharepoint.com/_api/lists/getbytitle('" + listName + "')/items?$top=1&$orderby=Created desc"
        $.ajax({
            url: url,
            type: "GET",
            headers: {
                "accept": "application/json;odata=verbose",
            },
            success: function (results) { createImageView(results, listName); },
            error: function (error) { 
                console.log("Error in getting List: " + listName); 
                $(_options.container).html("Error retrieving your " + listName + ".");
            }
        });   
    };

    function createImageView(results, listName) {
        _images = results.d.results;

        $.each(_images, function (index, task) {
			var imageURL = task.Title;
			imageURL = imageURL.replace("http:","https:");
			$('#DeltaPlaceHolderMain').css('background-image', 'url(' + imageURL + ')');
			$('#DeltaPlaceHolderMain').css('background-repeat', 'no-repeat');
			$('#DeltaPlaceHolderMain').css('background-position', 'center');	
        });
    }

    function _onQueryFailed(sender, args) {
        alert('Request failed. \nError: ' + args.get_message() + '\nStackTrace: ' + args.get_stackTrace());
    }

    return pub;
}());

$(document).ready(function () {
    SP.SOD.executeFunc('sp.js', 'SP.ClientContext', function () {
        Module.GetImages.init();
    });
});
</script>

When all is working, you’re going to get a new Bing image of the day each day, as the background to your search center page:
search-center

This technique could be applied to any instance where there’s a list of images delivered by an RSS feed, for example:
NASA Image of the Day
Flickr daily interesting image
Wikimedia Image of the Day
..etc.

For the Bing Image and any other source, make sure to check that you’re obeying the copyright & author attribution & usage requirements of the image provider – the above technique implies nothing about such nuances, it’s only intended as a technical proof of concept/demo.

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Microsoft Ignite Conference 2015 Roundup

Here is my presentation from last weeks Victoria Office 365 User Group in Victoria, BC.

“Microsoft’s Ignite Conference in Chicago last month was a huge event- 23,000+ attendees -and a lot of genuinely interesting technology news came out of it . I’ll share with you here my take on the big items of the event, flavoured through my lens of SharePoint/Office 365.

The core concepts: Microsoft is taking a mobile-first, cloud-first approach with three top priorities: to usher in an era of more personal computing, to reshape work and productivity with enhanced products and processes, and to build trust in a reliable, extensible cloud service offering.

What’s more, for us here in Canada, a lot of these announcements take on huge new relevance as Microsoft just announced on June 2 (http://reimagine.microsoft.ca/en-ca/) that they are opening data centers located on our soil. This opens up the doors to a Government and Private industry base that previously had been not able to leverage these services.

I will talk a bit on the upcoming on premise version of SharePoint 2016, the latest in Office 365 (including Delve/Office Graph), and more. ”

Speaker:  Keith Tuomi, FCV Interactive
Duration: 30 minutes
Audience: Business Professionals (Managers, Project Managers, etc.)
Technical Level: 200

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best practices,deep dive,multi device,multi generational,people experience,SharePoint hybrid,team collaboration,upgrade

Microsoft Ignite Conference: Day 3 Round-Up

I’ll kick off Day 3’s post with another imprint of pure experience. Scale- On-premise, Cloud, Global, Local. The rush/distraction/tunnel vision of being one of 23,000+ people moving through the Microsoft Ignite conference, contrasted with simple but essential logistics like bio-breaks and food, are a big parallel for me to the distinct juncture we are at in technology:  empower everyone at a mass scale, but make sure the human details are taken care of, and that everyone has a voice.

The entrance hall may resemble a slightly above average shopping mall scene for most, but in context, on the ground, it was more like the entrance to a spaceship waiting to take off:
Entrance

Existential experiences aside, I waited a full 5 minutes for cell phone guy to abandon his hostile takeover of Microsoft (pleading eye contact included), and finally realized that was 5 minutes I would never get back, so I snapped my obligatory “largest Expo Hall ever” pic:
Microsoft
Really, words don’t help much with describing the scale of this event. 23,000 of the world’s finest Microsoft-oriented IT professionals in not one, but two Conference centers daisy-chained together. Being from Canada, the SCALE of business in America is always impressive-  this time it was the hammer of Thor (axe of Abe Lincoln?). There were numerous, well-attended core educational/interactive groups with all the best of the Microsoft team providing direct interaction with attendees. These were no tradeshow stunt doubles, but really the actual program leads and people who make things move at Microsoft. Super high quality interactions all over the floor.

Office 365

TechNet is my bible, which would make Joanne & KC here (Senior Content Writers for Microsoft), pretty high up in the toga-wearing department:
TechNet Rocks

Aside from the separate, colossal pool of core Microsoft and Partner & Vendor talent present in the Expo Hall, here’s the top sessions from day 3, on the SharePoint/Office 365 tip (with some guest appearances from OneNote & Visio, as I love both):

Whats New for IT Professionals in SharePoint Server 2016
What's New for IT Professionals in SharePoint Server 2016

“Engineering paths directly influenced by SP Uservoice” See: https://sharepoint.uservoice.com/forums/282887-customer-feedback-for-sharepoint-server
“Durable Links- permalinks based on resource ID. Move Docs freely, URL stays the same”
“No downtime CU patching”
“OneDrive integration big priority for Engineering team”

 

This article describes initial investments made in installation and deployment of SharePoint Server 2016: http://blogs.technet.com/b/wbaer/archive/2015/05/12/what-s-new-in-sharepoint-server-2016-installation-and-deployment.aspx

MinRole for the win!!
image10_00727E0C

Embrace the BYOD Revolution: Effectively Manage a Multi-Device, Multi-Generational Workforce


A major business transformation is brewing in the enterprise today. Mobile technologies, business velocity, geographically dispersed and multi-generational workforce are converging to deliver the promise of responsive organizations. Organizations that miss this paradigm shift will face dire consequences. How can you effectively manage this shift, ensure that it will be sustainable and reap the benefits of being a responsive organization? In this session, learn how to apply practical steps and effective techniques to manage your multi-device and multi-generational workforce.

MVP Panel: Sample Apps and Intelligent Solutions Showcasing Office Graph and Delve Extensibility

Preparing for a meeting, but not sure what documents are relevant? Writing a proposal and looking for similar documents to help you out? Interested in what your colleagues are working on to stay updated? With the new Office Graph, answers to those questions are within your reach. In this demo-packed session, we show you how the Office Graph works and how it can be used when building custom apps and enriching existing solutions and portals. All scenarios are backed up by real-life solutions that you could use in your organization.

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Microsoft Ignite Session Catalog is now live

Microsoft Ignite
The Microsoft Ignite Session Catalog is here!

http://ignite.microsoft.com/Sessions?WT.mc_id=IG15W5BL09127#fbid=gylT_kORi_X

Be sure to take a look at the hundreds of sessions covering cloud infrastructure and management, big data and analytics, productivity, unified communications, operating systems, and mobile devices at the biggest enterprise technology event of the year! You’ll find sessions that provide deep technical detail on specific products, as well sessions that provide strategy, guidance and best practices on security and topics including deployment, operations and usage. We will be adding more sessions and labs in the coming weeks, so please check back often for updates.

Get more out of Ignite with a Pre-Day Session
For an additional investment of $500, Pre-Day Sessions on Sunday, May 3, 9:00 am – 5:00 pm. offer a unique opportunity to extend your learning experience with a full day of focused training the day before the conference opens. These sessions are designed to provide you with a deep knowledge base and skills that you can apply as soon as you’re back in the office. You’ll be able to tap into the knowledge and insights of the people who, in many cases, literally wrote the book on their subject.

Network and network, then network some more
There is something special about the connections you make at events. That’s why we’re making it easy for you to find and connect with others interested in similar topics. There will be meet ups in lounges; fire-starter and birds-of-a-feather community-led sessions in theaters; regional, industry and technology-focused meal-time mashups; and after hour networking events with Microsoft tech and business leaders to add to your agenda to unwind, kick back, and truly enjoy the scene. You can talk tech all day and night.

Mark your calendars for #IgniteJam on Twitter
On February 3rd at 9:00 am PT, we’ll have the whole event team and lots of speakers ready to chat with you on Twitter. We’ll be ready to answer your questions about the event and hear what you’re excited about in terms of community experiences and things to do in Chicago. Add the event to your calendar with this link.

To participate in this #IgniteJam

1. Join us on Twitter (or for easier real-time participation join us on Twubs at:

http://twubs.com/ignitejam to participate (you’ll need to sign in, it’s free)

1. Log in to Twitter at 9:00 AM PT on February 3rd
2. Follow us on Twitter at @MS_Ignite
3. Start tweeting and include #IgniteJam in your tweets!

Feeling fired up? See where technology is headed and meet who’s fueling it—at Ignite. Register today, and add a Pre-Day Session to your Ignite agenda.

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Delve,Office 365 Public Websites

Office 365 Public Websites + Introducing Delve – Keith Tuomi, SharePoint MVP – vSharePoint / vOffice365 User Group Presentation

Here’s my presentation from today’s vSharePoint and vOffice365 user group in Victoria BC. Be sure to also check out our Office 365 hosted site at www.vsharepoint.com, which has all past Presentations available for download.
[field name=iframe]

NOVEMBER 2014 EDITION: We’re mixing things up this month!

This month we’re bringing the members of vSharePoint and vOffice 365 together under one roof.

Why? Why not! Better yet – ask vSP and vO365 founder Sean Wallbridge at the event.

===

Agenda: Arrive at 11:30 for networking & refreshments; presentations start promptly at noon.

===

Presentation #1: Project Management Neanderthal … to Social #metrosexual – Lesley Preston, Supervisor Business Solutions, City of Victoria
Presentation #2: Office 365 SharePoint Public Websites – Keith Tuomi, SharePoint Consultant and SharePoint MVP, itgroove Professional Services Ltd.
Quick Update – What’s New in Office 365 – Robert Dick, Technology Consultant and Office 365 MVP, itgroove Professional Services Ltd.
OneNote Quick TipKelly Marshall, Training Consultant and OneNote MVP, itgroove Professional Services Ltd.

===

Door Prize: Bag of Office 365 Swag – from the Microsoft Office 365 Team
Mini Prize: OneNote Water Bottle – from the Microsoft OneNote Product Team

Kelly Marshall, vO365 co-founder and co-host

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reddit,sharepoint mvp

Reddit Q&A with the SharePoint MVP Experts Chat On Oct 29th

From the MVP Community Program:

We are launching our SharePoint MVP Expert Chats again!  Have questions about SharePoint 2010 or 2013?  Or SharePoint Online? Office 365?  Please join us October 29th at 1pm EST or 10am PDT where you can have your questions answered live!  We will be using the Reddit Ask Me Anything format.  This is new to us but many of Microsoft teams are using this medium now.  Please create a Reddit account beforehand so you can be ready to ask questions.  More information on the chat and room location will be available on Oct 29th in the SharePoint forum.  Hope you can join us!

https://www.reddit.com/r/sharepoint

Hope you can join us!

MVP Experts Participating:

Gavin Barron Blog Twitter
Andrew Connell Blog Twitter
Cathy Dew Blog Twitter
Randy Drisgill Blog Twitter
Spencer Harbar Blog Twitter
Doug Hemminger Blog Twitter
Sahil Malik Blog Twitter
Sean McNeill Blog Twitter
John Ross Blog Twitter
Eric Shupps Blog Twitter
Melissa Travers Blog Twitter
Kris Wagner Blog Twitter
Doug Ware Blog Twitter
Wictor Wilen Blog Twitter
Shane Young Blog Twitter

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email address,SharePoint Online,Site Mailbox App

Workaround for Office 365 SharePoint Site Mailbox App mailbox name rewrite issue

Site Mailbox is an App available in SharePoint Online  that helps by providing a central place to file email and documents that can only be accessed and edited by those with the appropriate site permissions.

When creating a Site Mailbox in SharePoint Online, a client and I ran into a funny anomaly. We know that there is a limitation in that once you’ve created a site mailbox, you can’t change its email address. Since the email address for a site mailbox is the display name of the site, when you name the site, you normally choose a name that will also work well as the email address. That’s all fine.

The expectation we had in my client’s scenario was to use SMO-###AAAAAA@site.microsoftonline.com with the 3 digit project number + Project Title.  An example of the desired address we wanted would be:

SMO-193MyProjectName@site.microsoftonline.com

..the bolded text being the SharePoint Site Title “193 My Project Name” with its spaces removed by the system.

The important part for the client was the project number. Problem is, if one makes a site title with just a number, or leading with a number, Office 365 inexplicitly strips it out, and replaces it with seemingly random characters:

SharePoint Site Title Used: “193” Generated Site Mailbox Address as created by SharePoint Online: SMO-14136KETL@site.microsoftonline.com

As explained, if we just go with their current Site Title, the leading digits (and space + dash + space) get removed- no good. There is no way to change the Site Mailbox address after creation (ref: http://community.office365.com/en-us/f/148/t/235624.aspx). It’s not an option in either the GUI or via PowerShell.

My Workaround

In my scenario, the Client already had an internal established notation to prefix projects with the letter “p”. Therefore it would acceptable to prefix the project number with a letter.

1. For each existing or new SharePoint site you intend to add a new Site Mailbox App, temporarily alter the site name (Site Settings > Title & Description) to begin with a single letter. In this case, we altered all their existing Project sites in the format (note the “p” prefixed on the site title):

Site Title: “p193 My Project Name

2. Deploy the Site Mailbox App. The email address generated will come out as in the style SMO-p193MyProjectName@site.onmicrosoft.com.

3. Once Site Mailbox App is fully deployed, change the Title of the site in Site Settings back to “197 My Project Name” (without the “p”), therefore avoiding inconsistencies elsewhere including in document tags, metadata & last but not least, leaving people wondering why there’s a wacky letter at the start of your site title. J 4. That’s it, you’ve somewhat hacked your way around this strange little behaviour of how email addresses are generated when creating a Site Mailbox. Conclusion As for why the SharePoint Online system really does not seem to like email addresses that start with numbers, I have no info at this time. Certainly an address of SMO-193MyProjectName@site.sharepoint.com would meet general email RFC specs. Why the address comes out as SMO + alphabet soup + @site.sharepoint.com is a mystery and seemingly undocumented. I suspect it would be part of a secret sauce that only a select few MS Engineers may know – or it’s a simple pattern that’s obvious from the output email addresses. If anyone knows the reasoning behind the email address rewriting in play with site mailboxe, please do share in the comments!

 

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Application Performance Monitoring,monitor SharePoint,SharePoint Optimization,SharePoint Performance

SharePoint Conference 2014 – SharePoint Performance Tuning Roundup

Here’s a selection of the key presentations at the recent SharePoint Conference 2014, focused on the topic of SharePoint Performance & Optimization:

Identifying performance bottlenecks can be cumbersome. From the individual machine, the local LAN, the WAN, Web Front Ends and SQL Server, this session will show you the strategies for identifying weak links and provide hard evidence to affect change. We’ll combine IIS, ULS, Performance Monitor, and Network Mapping to develop a complete health picture and empower admins to quickly answer the question “Why is SharePoint slow?”. From these strategies, objective measurements can be developed to show impact of code, infrastructure, or configuration changes.

SharePoint offers many choices to optimize database storage and performance using Remote BLOB Storage (RBS). However, the introduction of “Shredded Storage” adds an extra dimension of performance tuning and complexity. We’ve run through hundreds of test loads using a broad range of parameters to configure RBS and Shredded Storage in a wide variety of usage patterns and file sizes. There are HUGE performance gains to be realized by using non-default settings! So join us for a review of content database best practices and BLOB optimization in SQL with SharePoint.

SharePoint Online Performance – Designing your Pages to be Fast
Are your SharePoint Online pages slow? Do you understand what knobs you have to tune the performance of your own pages? Do you know how diagnose perf on your pages? Do you ever wonder what kind of load SharePoint online can handle? Come for an in-depth presentation on SharePoint page perf. We’ll take a look behind the curtain to understand what happens when pages get rendered, what factors contribute to bad perf and how we tune servers in SharePoint Online to handle everything that you can throw at us.

SharePoint 2013 introduces a new and highly flexible search topology. This gives more flexibility on how to scale a system, and allows search to tackle demanding requirements for query and indexing performance. In this session we will take you through the deployment of a multi-node search installation, provide best practices for common operational procedures, and give you tips and tricks on how to keep your search system healthy.

More than 90% of the content accessed via SharePoint is stored in SQL Server and without the correct configuration of SQL Server it can have a detrimental impact on the performance of SharePoint. Regardless of whether you have a dedicated Database Admin (DBA), or the SharePoint administrator is also the DBA, there are critical SQL Server configurations that can be made to help optimize SharePoint. Often DBA’s are familiar with how to manage SQL Server, but may not be familiar with some nuances that SQL Server has when integrated with SharePoint. In this session we will demonstrate how some default SQL Server settings negatively impact SharePoint and what changes can be made to improve the performance of SharePoint. These changes include database file settings and SQL Server instance settings. We’ll also examine how to properly install SQL Server and SharePoint so they work together as efficiently as possible. This discussion will introduce the Best Practices framework that will allow your SharePoint administrator and/or your DBA to configure SharePoint and SQL Server to provide optimal performance for your SharePoint implementation.

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