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Posts Tagged ‘List’

Reminder about List Views

Posted by sharepoinTony on August 2, 2010

Maybe it is my perspective and not really true, but it seems like a lot of people seem to forget that they can change the default view that appears when navigating to a SharePoint list.  Additionally, I seem to have to point out the simple steps to create an alternate view Style.

So for anyone out there that hasn’t realized it, take this post as your reminder…look at your list views and think of what the default “should” be; then consider using an alternate style when it improves usability.

Quick refresher points on List Views:

  • When creating a view you can select to “Make this the default view” right under the View Name.  Change the default view when it is more convenient for the majority of people viewing the data to see it this way.
  • Scrolling down and expanding the Style section of the Edit View page will allow you to change the appearance of the view and the data in your list.
  • Group By will allow you to create groupings of the data in your list based upon one of the columns in your list.
  • Totals will allow you to present column totals to your users.
  • Filters let you manage the data presented in the view.


Browse out to one of your lists and explore the resulting view after changing the style.

  • One thing I like to do is use the Preview Pane style for some lists where the default view needs to display many columns.  This may require the user to scroll down to see all of the data, but it usually is better than scrolling over to the right to see all of the columns.
  • Choosing the Shaded style might make a vast collection of data easier to read.
  • The Boxed style might be handy when you are displaying a small set of data in a web part, rather than displaying all of the data in the list.  Refine your display with filters and sorting.
  • Filter tip: you can use “[Today]” in your filter when filtering against a date column.  I often use it to get “recent” items by filtering with a target date column.
  • Don’t display a column that you are using in Group By.  The grouped column will display in the grouping, save screen space and remove the column from your view, un-check “Display” in the Columns section.  This isn’t a rule, it is only a tip to save space and avoid duplication of data in the display of your data.
  • If you have a list that is capturing numbers of something, people generally want to see the total of one of those columns. Give them a view that includes totals right from the start, expand the Totals section and select the appropriate column.  Don’t remove the column from your display like I suggested for Grouping – people usually want to see the details that make up a total.
  • Another ‘forgotten’ view is the Calendar View.  You can create a calendar view of any list that has a date …and they all have the Created and Modified dates.  Those dates aren’t always relevant however there are many task and other lists that have content and dates which are often compatible with a calendar view.  You can provide list users with both standard and calendar views to improve usability.


Posted in Lists, Views | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

SP 2007 Audience Limitations

Posted by sharepoinTony on December 28, 2009

Using Audiences in SharePoint 2007 helps you to provide content in a more customized manner.  Your defined audience will see the content while others that are outside of that audience may not see the content.   As the SharePoint 2007 “Help and How-to” puts it:

By using target audiences, you can display content such as list or library items, navigation links, and entire Web Parts to specific groups of people. This is useful when you want to present information that is relevant only to a particular group of people.  For example, you can add a Web Part to the legal department’s portal site that contains a list of legal contracts that is visible only to that department.


Targeting specific list or library items to audiences works in a slightly different manner than when targeting entire lists or libraries.   To target a web part to an audience you simply Edit the page, Modify the Shared Web Part and specify the Target Audience under the Advanced section.  Only members of the specified audience will see the web part on the page.


To target a list item for example, you must enable audience targeting on the list, specify the audience on the item and then present the item in a web part, usually a Content Query Web Part.  Displaying the content in this way will allow filtering to occur.  If you complete all of these steps except the last, presenting the item in a web part, then the specified audience will not filter the view of the item in the list.  SharePoint list and library views do not allow filtering by Audience, and the list or library will display all items in the view regardless of the specified audience


So be cautious, if your users have access to a list or library you will have to control visibility through permissions and obscurity rather than the use of audience targeting.  That is, hide the list from common users and always display the content via web parts.  Presenting content in this way is not always feasible, especially when you may have people from different audiences updating the list or library.  The best option is to simply segregate the items into different lists or libraries by audience.


Posted in Document Library, Lists, SharePoint 2007 | Tagged: , , , | 2 Comments »

List View Filtering

Posted by sharepoinTony on September 10, 2009

Here is something that I had to figure out that may help others…

Looking for NULL’s:
In your view, for the filter choose:

“Show items only when the following is true:”
then “Show the items when column”
Select from the dropdown [name of your column that can be blank]”
choose “is equal to”
then leave the text box blank.

  See my example using a blank Due Date:

 Filter within a List View

Filter within a List View





Going back to your list, if you now use this view, it’ll only return results where the column is empty.


Filtering a View for a SharePoint List

Posted in Lists, SharePoint 2007, Views | Tagged: , , | Comments Off on List View Filtering

Change List in Designer Form

Posted by sharepoinTony on March 10, 2009

Recently I created a request form in SharePoint Designer 2007 which was to be used to create a new item in a SharePoint List on one of  my MOSS 2007 sites.  I worked to get the appropriate look and feel, layout, etc. on the form so that the form would be pleasing to the users.  Normal stuff, right?

Then I tested my form out.  Worked great, so I added a 3-state workflow to the list.

This workflow needed to simply notify someone when the first step occurred: after a user submitted the form, creating the new list item.  For this step I thought it would be nice if the user got an email automatically, telling them we recieved their request.   To accomplish this I wanted to use OOTB tools, so I simply selected the CreatedBy  for my Task Assigned To selection in the Task Details within my worklfow.  This allowed me to check the Include Task Assigned To checkbox under E-mail Message Details.  In the Body I placed a nice and friendly message to the user saying we got the request.  Dandy, this is quick and easy.

Not so much.

The first thing testing brought to light was that the URL link included in the email was broken.  My list name contained a space and the automatically generated url in the email stopped at the space, with the remainder of the url following the link in plain text.  Users would have to copy and paste the whole url in the browser to go check the list.   Since they might want to look at the status of the request by going to the list, I felt this needed to be remedied.

Hey, Change the list name…Settings, List Settings, Title, description and navigation.  Won’t work.  The name will appear to the user but the url stays the same.

Ok, just create a new list with a name that doesn’t have spaces.  I saved the list as a template, created a new list using the template and now we have a list that won’t generate a broken URL.  Solved.

Wrong.  Of course the Form is using the original list.  I searched to learn how to detach the list in Designer.   You may have better luck than me, but I couldn’t find a way to do it.  It would have been nice of Microsoft to include the capability for swapping out one list for another on a form, but they didn’t.  Or if they didn’t they didn’t make it easy to find.  I know, I know there would likely be column differences which would require some management and resolution.  Still, it seems like this would be used by more than me and more than once.

I finally went to the code and changed the List ID from the old list to the new list’s ID using Replace in Designer.  This worked fine.  Now my effort on the form didn’t have to be repeated just because I needed to change the name of the list.

Testing proved my point…but another issue came up.  Now my user is getting email’s from the Workflow Tasks list as well.  Since they are the Assigned To person for the task, they get an email…and wonder what task they have to complete.  So I have to modify the workflow to stop using Created By as the Assigned To in the Workflow Task.  That is easy enough, but now I am back at square one.  I still want to generate an email to the requestor, but that will wait until tomorrow.  🙂

Posted in Lists, SharePoint 2007 | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »