Thursday, February 10, 2011
How to learn SharePoint 2010
This is continuation to series of my previous post on “What to know before learning SharePoint 2010”. Once you know the basic concepts required you have to know what could be the easiest way to learn SharePoint.
First, check the Hardware/Software requirements of SharePoint 2010. From the list of available editions in SharePoint 2010, download the SharePoint Foundation 2010. Make sure, you should have valid Windows Server 2008 license to use SharePoint Foundation 2010. Once you downloaded and installed then you are ready to rock to play with SharePoint features. [I am assuming you have installed SharePoint Foundation 2010.]
Step 1: From the Central Administration create a site and play with the site[look all options available and features we discussed in earlier posts]. This way, you will cover content, search, sites, communities. You can change the themes, master pages, page layouts etc. Create how many lists and libraries you want etc. Note here, we are doing everything through browser, no code change or nothing. This is the main advantage. You do not need to know any technology or other code languages for solving many business problems.
The basic point here is, you will get a broader picture of What SharePoint and how it works. This will be a very good starting point to everyone to know about it.
After couple of days, after you feel good with these features then jump to step2.
Step2: Download SharePoint Designer 2010. And open the SharePoint site you created in SPD 2010. You will see all the folder structure of the site in designer. You can see all the content you have created like sites, list, libraries, pages etc in SPD 2010. [We have to use SharePoint Designer because all the data in SharePoint stores in the database. So, using general developer tools like Visual Studio etc. we cannot open the site and see content. Because, visual Studio useful if files are in the file system. But, SharePoint files stores in the database, we need some extra tool and that is nothing but SharePoint Designer.] View all the content how it is saving in database and see master pages, page layouts, style sheets, pages etc. You will get complete idea on how SharePoint save data in background.
Step 3: After you feel good with the SPD 2010 and did experiments then it’s time to go to coding. You know what is SharePoint and how it saves data. How to customize the data etc. now time to move to custom coding and deploy something to SharePoint. For this, we need developer tools. Before proceed download SharePoint 2010 SDK. Read the complete CHM file for the complete list of new features added in both SharePoint Foundation 2010 and SharePoint Server 2010. This gives you the details of what the new features and how they solve your problems or fulfill your requirements.
When comes to custom coding, you need to have Visual Studio 2010. VS 2010 has lot of SharePoint templates which helps to create projects easy and deploy easy. This is as easy as 2-3 clicks.
Will discuss more details on how we can develop or create a project in Visual Studio and deploy to SharePoint in later posts. Hope this helps to understand where to start to learn SharePoint 2010 without wasting so much of time and money. Good luck!!!