Monday, March 22, 2010

SharePoint Variations

Lots of bad things can happen with variations. The main point is: you can, for some reason, move or delete a site/page in one of the labels and the system will get corrupted.

The most typical cases I found were: deleting a site in a secondary label, then later trying to recreate that label variation of the site (which has subsites). Some of the subsites wouldn't be created, since there was still some garbage in the Relationships List from the previous entries (that got deleted).

Be very careful when messing with this hidden list. After deleting some wrong entries of the subsite/pages, I managed to recreate it. A tip: look for the name of the page specifically, since I found entries that were misplaced in the Pages library of the parent site. Apparently because of the first failure, when the procedure failed to create the variation of the subsite (I'm not sure about this one, but I doubt the page was ever created in that place).

There is also a great program, by Tim Dobrinski, called Variations Editor, available here on CodePlex and described here by him. It will check for problems with variations through your portal. It seems very efective. After detecting the errors, it also makes suggestions on how to fix it and can directly apply the fixes on your portal. It doesn't seem to detect the above situation (list entries of pages that no longer exist), but it will detect any incoherent behaviour in the data found about existent pages.

Great tool!

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the compliment on my app. It is appreciated. And while you are correct that the Variations Editor doesn't correct the deleted items in the Relationships List, it does note if an entry is marked as "deleted". Not a true solution, but it may help give a start in finding a potential problem.

    Hopefully, though, I will be able to do a v3.0 and add some of the new items that have come up and need to be addressed. I've been waiting to see if Variations have been improved in SP 2010 before I looked into making a new version.