Tag Archive: wss 3.0

Running the SBS 2008 BPA, you receive a warning item that states:

The log file for the Windows SharePoint Services configuration database is larger than 1 GB in size. For information about how to reduce the size of the log file, see the Knowledge Base at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=159745.

SQL Config Log Warning in BPA

SQL Config Log Warning in BPA

If you follow the link, Microsoft explains how to make a SQL script that will trim your database. My problem was that even after trimming the database, it was still over 1Gb in size- 1.4Gb actually. Let’s solve this.

This is not a permanent solution, but rather a solution to temporarily shrink the log files. They will eventually build back up- I plan to execute this plan when ever I get the warning.

Also note that doing this process will make the database temporarily “Full Recovery” only. which means that if you use differential backup and recovery, after this process takes place you can only do a full recovery untill the log files build back up over transactions.

Perform a full server backup.

Now check the size of the database.

Log into your Microsoft##SSEE Database (Windows Internal Database).

By entering \\.\pipe\MSSQL$MICROSOFT##SSEE\sql\query as your server name. Select Windows Authentication. Click Connect.

Connect to Microsoft##SSEE

Connect to Microsoft##SSEE

You will see several databases- we will be working with the one titled Sharepoint_Config_#########.



Right click on that database and select Properties. You will see two numbers for Size and Space Available. Look at the size. Mine was 1449 Mb. I ran the Microsoft suggested SQL script, and it was still the same size. So here is what to do.

Under the options tab of the database properties, change the Recovery Model dropdown from Full to Simple. This tells SQL to truncate the log files, meaning only a full recovery is available.

Recovery Model: Simple

Recovery Model: Simple

Click Ok.

Now Run the logshrink.sql to trim the database. You can do this through a command prompt by running command:

sqlcmd -S \\.\pipe\mssql$microsoft##ssee\sql\query -E -i
You can double-click logshrink.sql. It will ask you to log in, use the same information as above. Above the window that opens, click Execute.
Execute Script

Execute Script


Now go back into the Properties of the config database, click Options, and change Recovery Model back to Full.

Trimmed Database

Trimmed Database

You should see your file size WAY smaller now, happy shrinking.

So the search service that comes with SBS 2008 is not installed by default. Desktop Search is, but not Server Search, which lets you index shared files and the like. Out of the box, WSS Search SHOULD work. In all three of my SBS set-ups, it has not worked, and this has plagued me for ages, so I finally set about fixing it today. I can’t tell you the exact reason that it is broken for me, but it is most likely caused by an update, service pack, hardware change, or just plain old incorrect permissions or WSS set-up.

First thing I did was install Windows Search Service.
Open up Server Manager, and select File System. Click Add Services on the right.
Click to check Windows Search Service.

Windows Search Service

Windows Search Service

This took about 15 minutes, and at the end an error was displayed. Closing the windows, I noticed that Windows Search Service was installed and running, and the service was also running under the Services Console.

Hrmmph. At this point I go into Sharepoint Central Administration, and Search still will not work. So now I set about making two new accounts to run the search.

I created WSS_Search, set a password, and added it to the group Administrators.

I then created WSS_Content, and added it to two groups:

SQL Accounts

SQL Accounts

These two accounts might differ from what you have. What we need is an account that has READ access to the Sharepoint Content Database. It can not be an administrator account, or a system account, though I believe it can be Local Service.

Now I tried my search and it still would not work. As a matter of fact, I could not start the search service at all now. So I go to Services Console, scrolls down to Windows Search Service. Right click it and select Properties. Make sure Local System is selected under the Log On tab. Exit out, and go to Windows Sharepoint Services Search. For this Log On, select This Account: and enter the information you used for the WSS_Search account. Change type to automatic, and click apply and start.

Log On Properties

Log On Properties

You will receive a message about the account being granted run as a service privileges.

So far all is well, though Sharepoint still wont Search. Open up Sharepoint Central Administration 3.0 under Administrative Tools.

Click Operations Tab, and then Services on Server.

Services on Server

Services on Server

Click on Windows Sharepoint Services Search.

Now fill in the fields.

  • Service account is WSS_Search, and password.
  • Content Access Account is WSS_Content and password.
  • Database server is grayed out, but should me by default np:\\.\pipe\MSSQL$Microsoft##SSEE\sql\query
  • Database name is grayed out, but it will be your Search database, such as WSS_Search_WIN-EUGSO7LO7PY
  • Authentication is whatever method you use. Default, it is Windows Authentication. This must be left alone for Microsoft##SSEE. If your database is different, configure the login that would be used to access the database.
  • You can change the time if you wish, I set mine to default every 5 minutes, as we do not have a ton of content on the server.


Click ok. Close all browsers.

Open a command prompt and type iisreset.

Restart both Windows Search and Sharepoint Search Services. Good to go- your site should now be searchable.

So, you use OWA a lot, like me. I use it in and out of the office as my main email. It is so convenient, and much faster than running the program MS Outlook. Now if you are an admin, you know how to VPN and Remote Desktop to get access to files on the server. You can also use Sharepoints external access to get at Companyweb files. But why do all of this if you can have it all in OWA?

I will add file browsing capabilities to the entire Exchange Organization. Open up Exchange Management Console (EMC) and expand Server Configuration>Client Access. Click the OWA tab.

OWA Access

OWA Access


Right click it, and select Properties. Click Remote File Servers. You see several buttons. Block allows you to restrict locations from being accessed through OWA. Allow let’s you specify trusted locations to host file access. Unknown Servers should be left on Block.

Click Allow.

Now add your locations. for Sharepoint, I added http://companyweb

For the server, I added solaceserver.solace.local.

For my Workstation, I added C5.solace.local.

Make sure your resources are secured before adding them. I use least access rules, and only share out folders that are needed.

When you are done, click ok.

Remote File Server Allow List

Remote File Server Allow List

Now, log in to OWA.
In the bottom left hand corner, click Documents.
Documents Click Open Location. Type in http://companyweb.
Click add to favorites.
Click open location again.
Type in  the name of your workstation or file server.
Companyweb Favorite

Companyweb Favorite

 You now have access to companyweb files and computer files from within OWA anywhere. It adds some functionality such as right clicking on a file and sending to email, or displaying documents in a web page- useful for a computer without a word processor.
As a warning, I would suggest only enabling remote file serving if it is necessary. Do not enable server or computer access for convenience when VPN or Remote Desktop will work.
Sharepoint default can be boring- even with all of the color options they offer you. You can brand it yourself and create a custom theme if you know what your doing with CSS and HTML, or you can download and apply a pre made theme. A pack of 10 were released, and can be found here.

Install them into a folder you can remember- desktop even.

File Location for TopThemeForSharepoint

File Location for TopThemeForSharepoint

Navigate to this folder. TenThemesForSharepoint and you will be looking at all of the theme folders.

We will do the process with one, repeate with the one you wish. Open folder ConstructionSiteTheme. Enter subfolder ConstructionSiteTheme.. Enter Templates.

Your now looking at two folders, Layouts and Themes. Enter the THEMES folder and copy the folder CONSTRUC. Paste it here: C:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\Web Server Extensions\12\TEMPLATE\THEMES

Now go back and enter the LAYOUTS folder. Enter folders 1033 and IMAGES. Copy the folder named CONSTRUC.

Now navigate to C:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\Web Server Extensions\12\TEMPLATE\LAYOUTS\1033\IMAGES and paste the folder.

Almost done.

Go to C:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\Web Server Extensions\12\TEMPLATE\LAYOUTS\1033 and open SPTHEMES.XML by right clicking it and selecting edit.

You will see a list of templates like this:

		<Description>Classic has a white background with blue control areas and orange highlights.</Description>
		<Description>Simple has a white background with minimal blue highlights.</Description>

What you are going to do is copy one, starting with the opening <Templates> and ending with the </Templates>

Change the TemplateID to CONSTRUC.

Change the Display name to Construc.

Change the description if you wish.

I generally do not change the preview and thumbnail photos, but that can be done by copying the jpg file out of the TenThemesForSharepoint folder named Construction_Prieview.jpg and putting it into the folder C:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\Web Server Extensions\12\TEMPLATE\IMAGES

Rename the file thconstruc.jpg, and then change the <Thumbnail> and <Preview> tags to thconstruc.jpg.

Now enter Sharepoint, Edit Site Settings. Themes, and you will see your new theme construc listed in the list. Click it and the preview might be off, since it is huge, and click apply. Now your site is themed, takes about 5 minutes.

Construction Theme Preview

Construction Theme Preview

So you create a survey on Sharepoint, and sent out an email to all users. After a week only 5 people have taken it. This is because getting users to do something as simple as a survey if they feel it is not necessary can often be difficult. I will describe a simple way to make the survey much more noticeable, and then describe an alternate way as well.

We will be inserting a content editor web part with an image for users to click. You want the image to be noticable. I picked a RED button, as my site is blue. It stands out like a sore thumb. First, download a picture for your button. I Google searched red button, and came up with a nice looking glossy button here.

Google Button

Google Button at Clker.Com

Now, I will go to a Sharepoint library and upload the image. You can put it in any directory you want.

Sharepoint Button

Sharepoint Button


Once it is uploaded, click the link untill you are at a page displaying just that image. Now, copy the internet address of that image.

Go to your home screen. Click Site Actions>Create. Click Survey. Customize the survey as you see fit- I will not describe this process here. For mine, I made a 3 question, radial choice survey asking which design users liked for our site, out of three themes we have recently used.

Now go to the home screen. Click Site Actions>Edit Page. This will make all of your web parts appear. Decide where you want this button to be, and click add web part (you can drag it around after). I replaced the default Image Web Part which is in the right hand column.

Add Content Editor

Add Content Editor


Add a Content Editor Web Part.

Content Editor Options

Content Editor Options

Now click the little arrow to modify the shared web part. The editor column appears on the right. Click Rich Text Editor. You are then presented with a blank box. On the toolbar, there is an Insert Picture icon. Click this.

Now paste the button address in the space for the address of your picture. For Alt text, I chose Push Me!

Now the picture is displayed in the text editor box. You can resize it, and add text under it if you wish. I added text saying “Take this one question survey about the design of our site!”.

Exit out of this for a moment. Now you will navigate to your created survey- it’s probably listed in the quick launch on the left. Click Respond To This Survey.

You will be looking at the first page of survey questions. Copy this web address from your browsers address bar.

Now hit home, and then again Site Settings>Edit Page>Modify Content Editor Web Part.

Then in the right column, click Source Editor. You will see the HTML code for your picture and text, it will look something like this:

&lt;a href=&quot;http://companyweb/Lists/Site%20Design/NewForm.aspx?Source=http%3A%2F%2Fcompanyweb%2FLists%2FSite%2520Design%2Foverview%2Easpx&quot;&gt;&lt;img style=&quot;width: 178px; height: 173px;&quot; src=&quot;http://companyweb/All%20IT%20Forms/Pictures/119498475589498995button-red_benji_park_01_svg_med.png&quot; alt=&quot;Push Me!&quot; width=&quot;190&quot; height=&quot;173&quot; /&gt;&lt;/a&gt;
&lt;div&gt; &lt;/div&gt;
&lt;div&gt;&lt;a href=&quot;http://companyweb/Lists/Site%20Design/NewForm.aspx?Source=http%3A%2F%2Fcompanyweb%2FLists%2FSite%2520Design%2Foverview%2Easpx&quot;&gt;Click the Red Button to take a&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/div&gt;
&lt;div&gt;&lt;a href=&quot;http://companyweb/Lists/Site%20Design/NewForm.aspx?Source=http%3A%2F%2Fcompanyweb%2FLists%2FSite%2520Design%2Foverview%2Easpx&quot;&gt;quick Survey about Site Design!&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/div&gt;

You are now going to add a link to the picture. Do this by adding an HTML link tag just before the beginning of the IMG tag. Remember we just copied it, so paste that address in between the “”.

Exit out of all of this, and you now have a bright red button on the side of your page, and when users click it they are taken directly to the survey.

Survey Look at Finish

Survey Look at Finish


Another method that I will briefly describe, is to use a splash page and redirection. Create a simple HTML page, and put a link in the middle. I did a white page with a red text link saying “Take Company Survey”. In the properties of that text link, aim it at the survey like we just did. Upload that site to companyweb using Sharepoint Designer or Visual Web. Now, I regulate users start page in the office, which is set to http://companyweb/default.aspx. Once I uploaded the new page as splash.html, I pointed their new home page at http://companyweb/splash.html.

When users logged in, they got that page with the link, which hinted at taking the survey. While it did not require they take the survey, it is a quick trick to get people attention. You could add validation controls that forced them to that site, and even add a fade page control that took them directly there. You could even set the company start page at the survey page if you wanted too- but this might be confusing.

Tons of options here to get the word out about a survey.

Credit to http://www.clker.com for providing me that image for internal use.

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