SharePoint For Dummies Cheat Sheet
Microsoft SharePoint provides a web-based platform that your organization can leverage to be more productive and more competitive. With SharePoint 2019, you can manage content, publish information, track processes, and manage your overall business activities. In addition, SharePoint provides deep integration with the rest of the Office 365 applications, such as Teams, PowerApps, Flow, Forms, OneDrive, Outlook, Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. This integration gets everyone in your organization on the same page and communicating effectively across Office 365 apps.
SharePoint Online versus SharePoint Server
You have two main choices when selecting a version of SharePoint. You can choose a version that resides on a local server or you can choose a cloud-based version.
SharePoint Server: SharePoint Server is installed at your local premises, including all the servers, databases, and operating systems, and it is managed and maintained by your company IT personnel. SharePoint “on premises” is a snapshot of the features available in SharePoint Online based on the release date. For example, the latest version is SharePoint Server 2019.
SharePoint Online: This is the cloud-based version of SharePoint that is offered as a stand-alone product or bundled with Office 365. Microsoft manages SharePoint in its data centers, and you access it over the Internet.
If you want to stay with the latest and greatest, then SharePoint Online is your best option.
Common SharePoint Templates
A site template is what you use when you create a new SharePoint site. A site template just provides you with a starting setup for SharePoint. For example, if you choose a Team Site template, the site you create will include SharePoint components designed for a team, such as a Documents App, Calendar App, Tasks App, and timeline visualization.
A number of site templates are available in SharePoint. Site templates are grouped into categories such as Collaboration, Enterprise, and Publishing.
The site templates that you have available depend on the SharePoint features you have activated. For example, the Publishing sites are only available when you have the SharePoint Server Publishing Infrastructure activated.
The site templates you should be familiar with include
- Team Site: A template designed for teams to collaborate, share documents, and stay in sync.
- Blog: A template that produces a blog site.
- Project Site: A template that creates a site for managing and collaborating on a specific project.
- Community Site: A template designed to create a site that allows community members to congregate and discuss common interests.
- Document Center: A template designed for managing common documents in a central location.
- Records Center: A template that creates a site to manage company records.
- Business Intelligence Center: A template with all of the functionality required for Business Intelligence in SharePoint.
- Enterprise Search Center: A template used to create a site for search. It includes a number of search results pages for specialized queries like searching people, conversations, and videos.
- Basic Search Center: A template used to create a general search center site. The Basic Search Center lacks the multiple results pages of the Enterprise Search Center.
- Visio Process Repository: A template that you can choose when creating a site for storing business processes in Microsoft Office Visio format.
- Publishing Site: A template that creates a blank publishing site. A Publishing Site is used to publish web pages for mass consumption.
- Publishing Site with Workflow: A template that provides the capabilities of the Publishing Site template and also includes approval workflows.
- Enterprise Wiki: A template for creating a site to capture and store information from a group collective.
Common SharePoint Apps
An app is a component in SharePoint that performs some duty. An app might be created to store accounting documents or track customer contacts. If you are familiar with the idea of lists and libraries, then you are familiar with SharePoint apps.
When you create an app, you choose the type of template it should use. There are templates for things like libraries, lists, calendars, tasks, and discussion boards. When you add an app to your site, you give it a name. For example, you might add a Calendar App and call it Company Holidays.
The apps you have available depend on the SharePoint edition you are using as well as the features you have activated. For example, the Report Library App is only available with the Enterprise license.
The following are common SharePoint apps you should be aware of:
- Document Library: Used to create apps that hold documents.
- Form Library: Creates an app that holds business forms. This library requires a compatible editor such as InfoPath.
- Wiki Page Library: Used to create apps that store wiki pages.
- Picture Library: Creates apps to store pictures.
- Links: Creates an app that contains HTML links.
- Announcements: Results in an app that can be used for announcements.
- Contacts: Creates an app to store contacts.
- Calendar: Used to create calendar apps.
- Discussion Board: Creates an app where users can discuss topics in a threaded forum.
- Promoted Links: Creates a place to store links to specific actions using a visual tile-based layout. When you create a new Team Site, it includes an app based on the Promoted Links template. When you move the mouse over a tile, information pops up to describe what will happen when the link is clicked.
- Tasks: Creates apps to store tasks.
- Issue Tracking: Used to create an app to track issues.
- Custom List: Creates a blank app based on a list.
- Custom List in Datasheet View: Similar to the Custom List template, but provides a datasheet view by default.
- External List: Used to create an app that connects to external data.
- Survey: Creates an app that is used to conduct surveys.
- Asset Library: Used to create an app that stores site assets such as images, audio, and video files.
- Data Connection Library: Creates an app that stores data connections.
- Report Library: Used to create an app to store reports.
- Access App: Used to create an app that is the Office Access web-based app.
- Import Spreadsheet: Used to import a spreadsheet. The result is an app that contains the data in the spreadsheet. The equivalent could be done manually by creating the app using the Custom List template, adding all of the columns in the spreadsheet, and then keying in all of the data.
Common Web Parts in SharePoint
Web Parts are reusable components that display content on web pages in SharePoint. Web Parts are a fundamental component in building SharePoint pages. There are a number of Web Parts that ship right out of the box with the different editions of SharePoint. You can also purchase third-party Web Parts that plug right into your SharePoint environment.
The Web Parts you have available depend on the SharePoint edition you are using as well as the features you have activated. For example, the PerformancePoint Web Parts are only available with the Enterprise license and when the PerformancePoint Services feature is activated. And the Project Web App Web Parts are only available when you have installed Project Server.
The following is a list of the common Web Part categories with which you should be familiar:
- Apps: Each app instance you have added to your site has an associated Web Part. The app Web Parts allow you to add a view into the data in your app to your web pages.
- Blog: Provides Web Parts for a blog site.
- Business Data: A grouping of Web Parts designed to display business information such as status, indicators, and other business data. This grouping also includes Web Parts for embedding Excel and Visio documents and for displaying data from Business Connectivity Services (BCS). BCS is a component of SharePoint that allows you to connect to data that is stored outside of SharePoint.
- Community: The Community grouping contains Web Parts for the community features of SharePoint. This includes things like membership, joining a community, and information about the community. In addition, there are tools for community administrators.
- Content Rollup: Contains Web Parts that are used to roll up (aggregate) content. There are Web Parts for rolling up search results, providing project summaries, displaying timelines, and showing relevant documents from throughout the site.
- Document Sets: Web Parts specifically designed for working with sets of documents.
- Filters: Web Parts that can be used to filter information. These Web Parts are designed to be connected with other Web Parts in order to provide a useful filtering mechanism. For example, you might have a list of content and want users to be able to filter based on certain criteria. You could use these Web Parts to provide the filter mechanism.
- Forms: Web Parts that allow you to embed HTML or InfoPath forms in a page.
- Media and Content: This category provides Web Parts that display media such as images, videos, and pages. In addition, there is also a Web Part for displaying Silverlight applications.
- PerformancePoint: Web Parts specifically designed for PerformancePoint services.
- Project Web App: Web Parts specifically designed for Project Server. These Web Parts include functionality for displaying information about a project such as issues, tasks, timesheets, and status.
- Search: Provides Web Parts for search functionality such as the search box for entering a query, search results, and refinement of results.
- Search-Driven Content: Provides Web Parts that display content based on search. For example, there are Web Parts to show items matching a certain tag, pages based on a search query, and recently changed items.
- Social Collaboration: This category contains Web Parts designed for the social components of SharePoint such as user contact details, shared note board, tag clouds, and user tasks.
Types of SharePoint Pages
A web page is a document that is displayed in your web browser. The only difference between a web page and a regular text document is that a web page has special markup that tells the web browser how to display it.
SharePoint takes the details of the special markup and throws it behind the scenes. What you are left with is a few different types of pages you can add to your SharePoint sites.
- Site Page: A Site Page is the Swiss army knife of SharePoint pages. It includes the ability to edit like a wiki page and also insert Web Parts. A site page is similar to creating a page using a Word document. It is very intuitive and easy to get started with.
- Wiki Page: A Wiki Page is also known as a Content Page. You can add content to a Wiki Page by typing and formatting text. In addition, you can insert images and Web Parts. Adding content to a Wiki Page is much like working with Office Word in that all of the capabilities for formatting content is contained at the top of the page in the Ribbon. And as the name implies, a Wiki Page handles all of the wiki commands such as the [ and ] characters.
- Web Part Page: A Web Part Page is specifically designed for Web Parts. A Web Part Page includes Web Part zones where you can add Web Parts. Using a Web Part Page, you can drag Web Parts between zones and connect them to each other. There are multiple Web Part zone layouts you can choose from when creating a Web Part Page.