Exchange Online, SharePoint, SharePoint 2013, SharePoint Online

Overlay an Exchange Online calendar to a SharePoint Online Calendar

Back in SharePoint 2010 Microsoft introduced the capability to display an exchange calendar over the top of a SharePoint calendar.

The exchange calendar has always had it’s limitations. But here is another I recently discovered.

If you are looking to configure a SharePoint online calendar to consume an exchange online calendar as an overlay, the short answer is you can’t do it! Why?

It was not an easy explanation from Microsoft to find. But see below a snippet and link to a support article from Microsoft.

“This issue occurs because the ability to use the calendar overlay in a SharePoint Online calendar that is retrieved from Exchange Online isn’t supported.

If you were to try to complete the calendar overlay following microsoft’s support guide you would receive an error

“The HTTP request is unauthorized with client authentication scheme ‘Ntlm’. The authentication header received from the server was ‘Basic Realm=””

It is a little disappointing that this cannot be completed, perhaps the introduction of Office 365 Planner & Groups will see this change in the near future.

SharePoint 2010, SharePoint 2013

Removing a SharePoint Server that no longer exists.

I was recently tasked with removing a server from a farm where the virtual server no longer existed, I knew that the best practice was to Disconnect the Server and uninstall SharePoint on the server itself. But what happens if  there’s a catastrophic failure on the server and you can’t follow that process? Simple.

The following applies to SP 2010/SP 2013

Browse to Central Administration > System Settings > Manage Servers in this farm  On this page you will see a list of the servers in the farm ServersInFarmClick Remove Server You will receive a prompt but as the server is no longer available the only choice to remove the server is to click OK. What’s really important here is that Best Practice is not to do it via this method but because your server has been removed you have no choice but to remove the server in such a way. RemovalMessagePrompt

It is recommended that you uninstall SharePoint Products from the server, rather than removing the server from this page. Because the Remove Server operation does not delete information from the server, such as any registry keys that were set, use this operation only when the server is no longer available.

Click OK Refresh the page and the server will be removed. Voila done! Easy as.

Office 365, SharePoint 2013, SharePoint Online, Uncategorized

Bulk updating a column in SharePoint Online

Ever had this situation where you need to bulk update a specific column in a list or library, you have 100’s or even 1000’s of items and need to set the same information for all the items, although rare I’ve seen it needed and while there may be a couple of way’s to do it here is a little application I have put together to do so.

I have this test library in my site collection, I’d like to update the title column to all be the same, let’s now use the Bulk Updating Column Console App to do so.

You can find the Application uploaded to the TechNet Gallery here , which has the source code for those wanting to see the nuts and bolts to it all ( there isn’t whole lot to it!

Please note you will need the SharePoint Online Management Pack installed or else the App will error




1. Open the Console Application Executable;

2. Enter in the following info:

  • Your site collection URL
  • Your username
  • Your Password
  • The List Title you would like to interact with
  • The Column Name you would like to update
  • The columns new valueConsoleFirstScreen

The App will begin to run and update the specified column for all List Items,


The Application will run and  update the Column accordingly –


And we’re done 🙂

PowerShell, SharePoint, SharePoint 2007, SharePoint 2010, SharePoint 2013

Find your Application Pool username and password

In IIS when you select Application Pools, IIS will display all the application pools with their names and the Account associated to the Application Pool for those Engineers out there wanting to retrieve the application pool service accounts password follow these easy instructions… easy as 123

1. Open up Powershell as Administrator

2. type cd C:\Windows\System32\inetsrv

3. Type the following:

.\appcmd.exe list apppool “Application Pool Name” /text:*

be sure to change “Application Pool Name” to your Application pool you are after

This will give you a long list of output, scroll down a little and you will see the Password field.

Enjoy 🙂

SharePoint, SharePoint 2013, Uncategorized

How to Install SharePoint 2013 SP1

Recently Microsoft released SharePoint Server 2013 SP1(February 25th 2014 to be precise) full of new features and bug fixes SP1 will be a critical update to SharePoint Server Farms over the next coming months… so what exactly is fixed and new to SP1? Click here to find out the full list

Now that we know the changes and fixes involved with SP1, let’s install SP1.. this how to guide will cover end to end Installing and configuring SP1, but I strongly advise you to run the Service Pack on a dev environment first.

Installing SP1 Binaries

First you will need to download the SharePoint Server 2013 Service Pack 1 package

What Servers should I Install Service Pack 1 on? Which Server(s) first?

This is a very important step and can be detrimental to your end result, make sure you run SP1 on your App Servers or the server(s) that run Central Administration first before installing on any other server, it is also important to note that Service Pack 1 will need to be installed on any Server that has SharePoint Installed and is connected to your farm or the consequences being that server will be no longer of use until it is upgraded.

Once downloaded and copied onto each SharePoint Server,

Accept the Microsoft Software License Terms & click Continue

Your Installation will to detect your current Installation & begin to install the Service Pack 1 files.

Once the Installation is complete on your SharePoint Servers I generally reboot each server, it’s something that I found has worked in the past but I do recognize it’s probably me over analyzing, so feel free not to reboot the servers.

If I check my Servers farm status now you will recognize my database version is still 15.0.4420.1017 (RTM SharePoint Server 2013)

You will also recognize that the Status of each of my SharePoint servers have a status of ‘Upgrade Required’ which brings us to the second part of the article… and the place where most Upgrades go wrong!

SharePoint Products Configuration

So now we are up to running the SharePoint Products Configuration Wizard to upgrade each SharePoint Server in the farm, again I suggest that the server running Central Administration is upgraded first and only run one sever upgrade at a time, this may be an old tale but it’s certainly a rule I apply.

If you receive a prompt around not being logged in as the right user you should use the account that was used for farm configuration originally.

Run ‘SharePoint Products Configuration Wizard’

Click Next

If you receive a prompt click Yes

Done, My Server has now been upgraded – now to rinse and repeat on the rest of my SharePoint Servers in the farm

Once Successful you will notice your Config Database version has now changed to 15.0.4569.1000 (SP1) and that all servers in the farm status is ‘no action required’… now you need to test, test, test every little bit of functionality in the farm J

SharePoint, SharePoint 2013, SharePoint Online

SharePoint 2013(Online) configuring Explorer View

How to configure SharePoint Explorer

A common question and a painful function to have consistently work for the SharePoint user is the ‘open with explorer’ functionality for a document library, a feature that isn’t new to SharePoint but a feature that has always proved troublesome, this blog article will take you through a few common configuration settings to have your users working with the explorer view again.

It’s key to note Open with Explorer functionality is fully supported only in Internet Explorer

So you’ve closed down Google Chrome & Firefox but you’re still having issues with open with explorer and IE? Follow these instructions J

For all versions of IE9/IE10/IE11 these following configuration must be completed to enable this function

  1. When first logging into Office 365 ( please check the ‘keep me signed in’ tick box

  2. Make sure the ‘WebClient’ windows service is started

    Start > Run > Services.msc

    This will open the Services MMC, Locate the WebClient and make sure if it’s running if it is not please right click the Service and Start

  3. Add the entry for your SharePoint site to the trusted site zone in Internet Explorer

    In Internet Explorer, Select the Tools menu and click Internet Options.

    Open the Security tab > Trusted sites zone > Sites

    And add the following entries to the list





So you’re running IE10 and still having issues?

A hotfix is required to use the open with explorer functionality for IE10 on Windows 7/Windows 8

Download the hotfix from the bellow link and install to your computer.

Office 365, SharePoint, SharePoint 2013, Uncategorized

A pat on my own back

Today I successfully passed the PRO: Microsoft SharePoint, Administrator (70-668) exam which gives me the fancy title of MCITP SharePoint 2010.. which I must admit I am more proud of then I let show…. although it’s taken me a few years to get the time to study and sit the exam it has been all worth it not only for the nice fancy new title but since I passed the SharePoint 2013  Core Solutions exams, I am now on an upgrade path to my MCSE leaving me two exams to go 🙂

Advice to all that are aiming to achieve the SharePoint Administrator PRO Certification before it’s discontinued… it’s worth it don’t let anyone stop you !