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Webucator's Free SharePoint 2013 Tutorial

Lesson: Participating in User Communities

Welcome to our free SharePoint 2013 tutorial. This tutorial is based on Webucator's SharePoint 2013 End User Training course.

SharePoint offers users a place for social collaboration in the form of personal sites. The experience and functionality is very similar to popular social media sites such as Facebook and LinkedIn. The main difference being that it is controlled by the SharePoint Farm and exposure is typically limited to internal networks.

Lesson Goals

  • Learn how to edit a personal profile.
  • Learn how manage newsfeeds.
  • Learn how to add people newsfeeds.
  • Learn how to add documents newsfeeds.
  • Learn how to add sites newsfeeds.
  • Learn how to follow tags.
  • Learn how to store personal content.

Configure User Profiles and My Sites

Information about people within a SharePoint organization comes primarily through SharePoint User Profiles. User Profiles are managed by the User Profile Service that comes with SharePoint Server, the pay version, but must be provisioned by the Farm administrator. As part of the provisioning process the Farm administrator creates a special Site Collection for hosting My Sites. In addition to creating the My Sites host the Farm administrator typically configures a synchronization connection with a directory system such as Active Directory. It is from this synchronization connection that User Profiles are populated with information such as email addresses and company information. Users have the ability to add and edit some information to their profiles as well as decide who can view the information. Profile fields that are imported from Active Directory default to read-only and that includes the Show To option. The Farm administrator can change the default edit ability of these fields as well as add new custom fields.

The following walk-through will show you how to edit the profile for the account. This walk-through uses an account named "SP_Admin" but any account will do.

These same steps are performed as part of the exercise with this lesson so unless you have a separate account you want to perform the walk-through steps on, you should wait to perform them in the exercise.

  1. Edit the profile for your user account.
    1. Click the Open Menu drop-down menu and select the About Me option. Open menu for SP_Admin
    2. Click the edit link on the About page. Edit link.
    3. Use the following list of information to fill in the fields for the Basic Information in your profile.
      • About me: "SharePoint Administrator."
      • Ask Me About: "Configuring SharePoint."
      Contact Information
    4. Click the Upload Picture button in the Picture: field for the profile.
    5. Click the Browse... button on the Choose a Picture dialog.
    6. Navigate to the folder you downloaded the class files to and select the pair-of-students.jpg file. Click the Open button of the Choose File to Upload dialog window.
    7. Click the Upload button of the Choose a picture dialog to save your selection.
    8. Click the Contact Information link and use the following list of information to fill in the fields.
      • Mobile phone: "950-852-5555"
      • Fax: "950-852-4444"
      • Home Phone: "950-864-1234"
      • Office Location: "Shangri-La"
      • Assistant: "Homer"
      Contact Information
    9. Click the Details link and use the following list of information to fill in the fields.
      • Past projects: "SharePoint 2010 installation"
      • Skills: "HTML, CSS, SharePoint Designer, Visual Studio and C#, Active Directory"
      • Schools: "University of Redmond"
      • Birthday: "November 05"
      • Interests: "Building bird houses."
      Contact Information
    10. Click the Save and Close link at the bottom of the form.
    11. Click the OK button on the Profile Changes dialog. Profile Changes dialog

Newsfeeds

Newsfeeds in SharePoint 2013 provide a way to track people, documents, sites, and interests (tags). Newsfeeds are accessed and managed through your user profile.

The following walk-through will explore creating and managing newsfeeds.

These same steps are performed as part of the exercise with this lesson, so, unless you have a separate account you want to perform the walk-through steps on, you should wait to perform them in the exercise.

  1. Click the Newsfeed link in the top-right corner of the browser. Newsfeed link.

    There is also a Newsfeed link in the Quick Launch of your user profile page. The link on your profile's Quick Launch navigates to the same location at the link in the upper-right corner of the browser.

  2. If prompted to "Get the most out of SharePoint" click the OK button. Social prompt.
  3. Note the options, people, documents, sites, and tags listed under the heading I'm following. I'm following list.
  4. Remain on the Newsfeed page for SP_Admin for the next walk-through.

People Newsfeeds

The people newsfeeds allow you to follow posting of other users in your organization. The following walk-through will explore how to follow users and post messages.

  1. Click the number 1 link listed above people.
  2. Note that Homer Simpson was added because of the previous walk-through when his account was specified as the assistant for SP_Admin. SP_Admin's following list.
  3. Add a follow for Wilbur Whipple.
    1. Click the follow link on the People I'm following page. Follow link.
    2. Type "Wilbur Whipple" in the Follow people to get updates about them in your newsfeed field of the Follow People dialog and click the Follow button. Follow people
    3. Wilbur Whipple now displays as a person you are following. Note that you can remove a following by clicking the ellipsis link nest to their name, do not remove Wilbur at this time. stop following.
  4. Add a newsfeed entry logged in as Wilbur Whipple.
    1. While holding down the Shift key, right-click your browser icon and choose the Run as different user option. Run as different user.
    2. In the Widows Security dialog window, enter "Wilbur" for the account name and "Pa$$w0rd" for the password. Click the OK button to complete the logon.
    3. Try to navigate to root of your team site. Root site url
    4. Click the Newsfeed link in the upper-right corner of the browser for Wilbur Whipple. Wilbur Whipple newsfeed.
    5. If prompted for credentials enter "Wilbur" for the account name and "Pa$$w0rd".
    6. If prompted to "Get the most out of SharePoint" click the OK button. Social prompt.
    7. Type "Hello from Wilbur!" in the Share with everyone field and click the Post button. Hello from wilbur.
  5. View the newsfeed from Wilbur as SP_Admin.
    1. Switch back to the browser window logged in as SP_Admin and click the Newsfeed link. Newsfeed link.
    2. Note the new entry under the Following heading posted by Wilbur Whipple. Wilburs post.

Documents Newsfeed

The documents newsfeed allows you to track changes to documents that you are interested in. The following walk-through will demonstrate how to configure a documents newsfeed.

  1. In the browser window logged in as SP_Admin navigate back to the home page of the team site. Root site url
  2. Create a new document in the Documents library.
    1. Click the Documents link in the sites Quick Launch menu.
    2. Click the FILES tab to open the toolbar. Files tab.
    3. Click the New Document button on the FILES tab toolbar. New Document button.
    4. Type "Demo document for newsfeed" in the body of the document.
    5. Click the Save icon in the upper-left corner of the Word window. Word save icon.
    6. Click Shared Documents under the Other Web Locations of the Save As page. Word Save As.
    7. Leave the file name at its default value and click the Save button on the Save As dialog window.
    8. Close Microsoft Word.
  3. Add a document to your personal newsfeed.
    1. Click the Documents link in the sites Quick Launch menu to refresh the contents.
    2. Click the ellipsis button next the Demo document for newsfeed document. Demo document
    3. From the item menu balloon pop-up click the FOLLOW link. Follow document.
    4. Note the pop-up message confirming you are now following the document. Following notice.
  4. Verify the document is now tracked as part of your personal newsfeed.
    1. Click the Newsfeed link in the top-right corner of the browser. Newsfeed link.
    2. Note the new entry under the Following list and the number has increased for documents. Newsfeed list.
    3. Click the number 1 link above the documents label to view followed documents.
    4. Note the list of Docs I'm following and the link that allows you to Stop following. Docs I'm following.

Sites Newsfeed

The sites newsfeed tracks changes to a site such as new posts, new lists, new libraries etc. The following walk-through will demonstrate how to follow a site in your personal newsfeed.

  1. In the browser window logged in as SP_Admin navigate back to the home page of the team site. Root site url
  2. Follow the Contoso Home Site.
    1. Click the FOLLOW link in the upper-right corner of the browser window. Follow site.
    2. Note the confirmation pop-up notifying you are now following the site. Follow site confirmed.
  3. Verify the site is now listed under your personal newsfeeds.
    1. Click the Newsfeed link in the top-right corner of the browser. Newsfeed link.
    2. Note the new entry under the Following list and the number has increased for sites. Newsfeed list.
    3. Click the number 1 link above the sites label to view followed sites.
    4. Note the list of Sites I'm following and the link that allows you to Stop following. Docs I'm following.

Tags Newsfeed

The tags news feed allows you to track keywords posted in site newsfeeds in your own personal newsfeed. Any time a post is made and a word is prefixed with a "#" that word can be used as a tag. The following walk-through will demonstrate how to add tags to your personal newsfeeds.

  1. In the browser window logged in as SP_Admin navigate back to the home page of the team site. Root site url
  2. Click the SubSite A link to navigate to the home page of the site. SubSite A link.
  3. Create a Newsfeed post using a "#" to tag a keyword.
    1. Click the Start a conversation text inside the Newsfeed field on the home page of SubSite A. Start a conversation.
    2. Type "The #Labrador Retriever is one of the smartest dogs" in the Newsfeed field and click the Post button. Lab post.
  4. Add the #Labrador tag to the personal newsfeed for SP_Admin and verify the new tag.
    1. Click the Follow #Labrador link below the new post. Follow labrador link.
    2. Click the Newsfeed link in the top-right corner of the browser. Newsfeed link.
    3. Note the number has increased for tags. Newsfeed list.
    4. Click the number 1 link above the tags label to view followed sites.
    5. Note the previous step takes you to the Newsfeed Settings page where you can add or remove Followed #Tags. Docs I'm following.

Managing Personal Sites

In addition to storing user in formation in the form of a profile SharePoint offers users their own personal SharePoint site collection. This site is like any other SharePoint site in that users can create lists and libraries and edit the home page.

The default content of a users personal site can be accesses through the three links Blog, Apps, and Tasks listed under their profiles Quick Launch menu. Personal site links.

A users personal site includes a Documents library that can easily be accessed through the SkyDrive link. Skydrive link

The following walk-through will show you how to edit your personal site and add documents and a blog post.

These same steps are performed as part of the exercise with this lesson so unless you have a separate account you want to perform the walk-through steps on, you should wait to perform them in the exercise.

  1. Add a new file to your personal Documents library.
    1. Click the SkyDrive located at the top-right corner of any SharePoint page you are currently on. Skydrive link
    2. Click the FILES tab to open toolbar and then click the New Document button.
    3. Type "This document is where I keep my personal secrets!" in the body of the Word document.
    4. Click the Save icon button in the upper-left corner of the Word window to save the document to SharePoint.
    5. Click the Documents link listed under Other Web Locations in the Save As page. Save As
    6. Keep the default file name for the new document and click the Save button on the Save As dialog.
    7. Close Microsoft Word.
    8. Click the My Documents link from the Quick Launch menu to refresh the view.
  2. Create a personal blog post.
    1. Click the SP_Admin link in the Quick Launch menu to navigate back the users profile home page. Home link.
    2. Click the Blog link in the Quick Launch of your personal site.
    3. Click the Create a post link under the Blog Tools group located on the right side of your blog's home page. Create post link
    4. Use the following information to fill in the new blog post.
      • Title: "Learning SharePoint"
      • Body: "SharePoint is full of features including personal sites."
      • Category: Select Opinions and click the Add> button.
    5. Click the Publish button to save the new blog post.

Managing and Viewing Personal Information and Content

Duration: 15 to 25 minutes.

In this exercise, you will configure your SharePoint profile. You will also test the view of your profile and view another user's profile.

  1. Edit your profile.
    1. Click the Open Menu and select the About Me option.Open menu
    2. If you are prompted for credentials enter your account name and password.
    3. Click the edit link located at the top of your profile home page.Edit My Profile link
    4. Use the following list of information to fill in the fields for the Basic Information in your profile.
      • About me: "Master of all things SharePoint."
      • Ask Me About: "Managing SharePoint."
      Contact Information
    5. Click the Upload Picture button in the Picture: field for the profile.
    6. Click the Browse... button on the Choose a Picture dialog.
    7. Navigate to the folder you downloaded the class files to and select the pair-of-students.jpg file. Click the Open button of the Choose File to Upload dialog window.
    8. Click the Upload button of the Choose a picture dialog to save your selection.
    9. Click the Contact Information link and use the following list of information to fill in the fields.
      • Mobile phone: "950-867-5309".
      • Fax: "950-555-4444".
      • Home Phone: "950-544-1234".
      • Office Location: "Shangri-La".
      • Assistant: "Wilbur"
      Contact Information
    10. Click the Details link and use the following list of information to fill in the fields.
      • Past projects: "SharePoint 2010 installation".
      • Skills: "HTML, CSS, SharePoint Designer".
      • Schools: "University of Redmond".
      • Birthday: "June 01".
      • Interests: "Soap carving."
      Contact Information
    11. Click the Save and Close link at the bottom of the form.
    12. Click the OK button on the Profile Changes dialog. Profile Changes dialog
  2. Click the Newsfeed link in the top-right corner of the browser. Newsfeed link.

    There is also a Newsfeed link in the Quick Launch of your user profile page. The link on your profile's Quick Launch navigates to the same location at the link in the upper-right corner of the browser.

  3. If prompted to "Get the most out of SharePoint" click the OK button. Social prompt.
  4. Note the options, people, documents, sites and tags listed under the heading I'm following. I'm following list.
  5. Add a follow for Wilbur Whipple.
    1. Click the 0 link above the people heading under the I'm following list. people i'm following link.
    2. Click the follow link on the People I'm following page. Follow link.
    3. Type "Wilbur Whipple" in the Follow people to get updates about them in your newsfeed field of the Follow People dialog and click the Follow button. Follow people
    4. Wilbur Whipple now displays as a person you are following. Note that you can remove a following by clicking the ellipsis link nest to their name, do not remove Wilbur at this time. stop following.
  6. Add a newsfeed entry logged in as Wilbur Whipple.
    1. While holding down the Shift key right-click your browser icon and choose the Run as different user option. Run as different user.
    2. In the Widows Security dialog window, enter "Wilbur" for the account name and "Pa$$w0rd" for the password. Click the OK button to complete the logon.
    3. Try to navigate to root of your team site. Root site url
    4. Click the Newsfeed link in the upper-right corner of the browser for Wilbur Whipple. Wilbur Whipple newsfeed.
    5. If prompted for credentials enter "Wilbur" for the account name and "Pa$$w0rd".
    6. If prompted to "Get the most out of SharePoint" click the OK button. Social prompt.
    7. Type "Lunch is on me this Friday!" in the Share with everyone field and click the Post button. Hello from wilbur.
  7. View the newsfeed from Wilbur with your student account.
    1. Switch back to the browser window logged in as StudentXX and click the Newsfeed link. Newsfeed link.
    2. Note the new entry under the Following heading posted by Wilbur Whipple. Wilburs post.
  8. You can close the browser window running under Wilbur's credentials.
  9. In the browser window logged in as StudentXX navigate back to the home page of your team site. Root site url
  10. Follow the Contoso Home Site.
    1. Click the FOLLOW link in the upper-right corner of the browser window. Follow site.
    2. Note the confirmation pop-up notifying you are now following the site. Follow site confirmed.
  11. Verify the site is now listed under your personal newsfeeds.
    1. Click the Newsfeed link in the top-right corner of the browser. Newsfeed link.
    2. Note the new entry under the Following list and the number has increased for sites. Newsfeed list.
    3. Click the number 1 link above the sites label to view followed sites.
    4. Note the list of Sites I'm following and the link that allows you to Stop following. Docs I'm following.
  12. Add a new files to your personal Documents library.
    1. Click the SkyDrive located at the top-right corner of any SharePoint page you are currently on. Skydrive link
    2. Click the FILES tab to open toolbar and then click the New Document button.
    3. Type "This document is where I keep my personal secrets!" in the body of the Word document.
    4. Click the Save icon button in the upper-left corner of the Word window to save the document to SharePoint.
    5. Click the Documents link listed under Other Web Locations in the Save As page. Save As
    6. Keep the default file name for the new document and click the Save button on the Save As dialog.
    7. Close Microsoft Word.
    8. Click the My Documents link from the Quick Launch menu to refresh the view.
  13. Create a personal blog post.
    1. Click the StudentXX link in the Quick Launch menu to navigate back the users profile home page. Home link.
    2. Click the Blog link in the Quick Launch of your personal site.
    3. Click the Create a post link under the Blog Tools group located on the right side of your blog's home page. Create post link
    4. Use the following information to fill in the new blog post.
      • Title: "Learning SharePoint"
      • Body: "SharePoint is full of features including personal sites."
      • Category: SelectOpinions and click the Add> button.
    5. Click the Publish button to save the new blog post.