Welcome!

Java IoT Authors: Yeshim Deniz, Pat Romanski, Liz McMillan, Elizabeth White, Roger Strukhoff

Related Topics: Java IoT, Microsoft Cloud

Java IoT: Blog Feed Post

Deploying an External List via Feature Using CAML #sp2010

They are so easy to create with SharePoint Designer

SharePoint Archiving Journal on Ulitzer

I’ve been talking a lot about external lists lately as you may know.  They are so easy to create with SharePoint Designer, but you wouldn’t really deploy them to production that way would you?  Of course not!  We need a feature.  At first, you might think generating all of that CAML might be too difficult, but remember we can use the Save Site as Template page to generate a .wsp file for us.  Using this we can import it into Visual Studio and learn what CAML we need to use.

We’re going to start with the same external list from yesterday.  You can build your own using SharePoint Designer as described in my BCS post.

ExternalListFeatureList

Once you are happy with your list, go to Site Settings –> Save Site as Template.  Fill in the fields and it will save a solution package in your solution gallery of your site collection.  Save the .wsp file to disk and we’re ready to begin.  Once you have your solution package, open Visual Studio 2010, create a new project, and use the Import SharePoint Solution Package project template.  You will be prompted for what site to use and where the package file is.  On the next step, you will be prompted for what you want to import.

ExternalListSolutionImport

The solution package has every site column, content type, page, list, etc, on the site so there is a lot to sift through.  However, the only thing we really need is the list instance in question (in my case Products).  You will want to unselect everything else as it will take forever to import if you don’t.

Quick Tip: There isn’t a select all button, so press Ctrl+A, and then unclick a checkbox to deselect everything.

On the next step you will get a warning about dependencies.  Go ahead and just say yes and your project will import.  Your project will likely have a bunch of stuff you don’t really care about.  All that you really need is what it is created in List Instances.  Your list instance might look something like this.

ExternalListFeatureSolutionExplorer

At this point, I created a new project because I want to keep things clean.  Create a new project and create a new List Definition.  At this point, you will have a schema file and two new elements files.  The elements.xml file with the list template can be deleted since I don’t want users creating new versions of this list.  Before we start digging into the CAML that is required to make an external list work, let’s go back and look at SharePoint Designer so we can remember what our application definition looked like.

ExternalListFeatureApplicationDefinition

The reason I show you this is because these values we’re going to see when we take a look at our elements.xml file.  Here is the file that came from the site export.

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>

<Elements xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/sharepoint/">

<ListInstance FeatureId="{00bfea71-9549-43f8-b978-e47e54a10600}" TemplateType="600" Title="Products"

Description="" Url="Lists/Products" CustomSchema="Files\Lists\Products\Schema.xml"

HyperlinkBaseUrl="http://sp2010/Test" RootWebOnly="FALSE"

xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/sharepoint/">

<DataSource>

<Property Name="Entity" Value="Products" />

<Property Name="EntityNamespace" Value="http://sp2010/test" />

<Property Name="LobSystemInstance" Value="bcs_test" />

<Property Name="SpecificFinder" Value="Read Item" />

</DataSource>

</ListInstance>

</Elements>

A couple of things to note here.  First, the TemplateType is 600.  We can only presume this is the list template id for an external list.  The other thing of note is the new DataSource element.  This was not in previous versions of SharePoint.  As you might notice here, these values correspond to what we see on the external content type.  This is what you will change should you decide to rename the entity in or change the LobSystemInstance name.  This XML is highly useable in our own feature, but I am going to remove some of the unnecessary attributes such as FeatureId and CustomSchema.  I’m also going to give it a new Title so that we know this is a different list.  Here is what my new elements.xml looks like.

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>

<Elements xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/sharepoint/">

<ListInstance TemplateType="600" Title="Products - Deployed by Feature" Description=""

Url="Lists/ProductsDeployedByFeature" HyperlinkBaseUrl="http://sp2010/Test"

RootWebOnly="FALSE" xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/sharepoint/">

<DataSource>

<Property Name="Entity" Value="Products" />

<Property Name="EntityNamespace" Value="http://sp2010/test" />

<Property Name="LobSystemInstance" Value="bcs_test" />

<Property Name="SpecificFinder" Value="Read Item" />

</DataSource>

</ListInstance>

</Elements>

Honestly, I think I can get rid of HyperLinkBaseUrl as well.  It doesn’t seem to matter though, I deployed it to a few other sites and it seems to work fine.  Now let’s take a look schema.xml.  It’s actually pretty small which is nice compared to the files we were used to in the past.

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>

<List Title="Products" Direction="none" Url="Lists/Products" BaseType="0" Type="600"

FolderCreation="FALSE" DisableAttachments="TRUE" Catalog="FALSE" RootWebOnly="FALSE"

SendToLocation="|" ImageUrl="/_layouts/images/itgen.gif" xmlns:ows="Microsoft SharePoint"

xmlns:spctf="http://schemas.microsoft.com/sharepoint/v3/contenttype/forms"

xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/sharepoint/">

<MetaData>

<ContentTypes>

<ContentType ID="0x01" Name="Item" Group="List Content Types" Description="Create a new list item." FeatureId="{695b6570-a48b-4a8e-8ea5-26ea7fc1d162}">

<Folder TargetName="Item" />

<FieldRefs>

<FieldRef ID="{c042a256-787d-4a6f-8a8a-cf6ab767f12d}" Name="ContentType" />

<FieldRef ID="{fa564e0f-0c70-4ab9-b863-0177e6ddd247}" Name="Title" Required="TRUE" ShowInNewForm="TRUE" ShowInEditForm="TRUE" />

</FieldRefs>

<XmlDocuments>

<XmlDocument NamespaceURI="http://schemas.microsoft.com/sharepoint/v3/contenttype/forms">

<FormTemplates xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/sharepoint/v3/contenttype/forms">

<Display>ListForm</Display>

<Edit>ListForm</Edit>

<New>ListForm</New>

</FormTemplates>

</XmlDocument>

</XmlDocuments>

</ContentType>

</ContentTypes>

<Fields>

<Field DisplayName="BDC Identity" Hidden="FALSE" Name="BdcIdentity" SourceID="http://schemas.microsoft.com/sharepoint/v3" StaticName="BdcIdentity" Type="Text" />

<Field DisplayName="Name" Hidden="FALSE" Name="Name" SourceID="http://schemas.microsoft.com/sharepoint/v3" StaticName="Name" Type="Text" />

<Field DisplayName="Id" Hidden="FALSE" Name="Id" SourceID="http://schemas.microsoft.com/sharepoint/v3" StaticName="Id" Type="Integer" />

<Field DisplayName="Color" Hidden="FALSE" Name="Color" SourceID="http://schemas.microsoft.com/sharepoint/v3" StaticName="Color" Type="Text" />

<Field DisplayName="Description" Hidden="FALSE" Name="Description" SourceID="http://schemas.microsoft.com/sharepoint/v3" StaticName="Description" Type="Text" />

<Field DisplayName="Price" Hidden="FALSE" Name="Price" SourceID="http://schemas.microsoft.com/sharepoint/v3" StaticName="Price" Type="Decimal" />

</Fields>

<Forms />

<Views>

<View DisplayName="Products Read List" DefaultView="TRUE" BaseViewID="1" Type="HTML" MobileView="TRUE" MobileDefaultView="TRUE" ImageUrl="/_layouts/images/generic.png" XslLink="main.xsl" WebPartZoneID="Main" WebPartOrder="1" Url="Read List.aspx" SetupPath="pages\viewpage.aspx">

<XslLink>main.xsl</XslLink>

<Method Name="Read List" />

<Query>

<OrderBy>

<FieldRef Name="Name" />

</OrderBy>

</Query>

<ViewFields>

<FieldRef Name="Name" ListItemMenu="TRUE" LinkToItem="TRUE" />

<FieldRef Name="Id" />

<FieldRef Name="Color" />

<FieldRef Name="Description" />

<FieldRef Name="Price" />

</ViewFields>

<RowLimit Paged="TRUE">30</RowLimit>

<Aggregations Value="Off" />

</View>

</Views>

</MetaData>

</List>

As you can see it’s pretty clean.  It again uses the Type of 600.  In the ContentTypes section, it does define a regular list item, but it doesn’t actually add any of the fields from the external list there.  The Fields element has a field defined for each field in my external content type.  As you can see there is nothing special about the way they are defined.  The only one of note is the BdcIdentity field which I assume is required to keep track of the ID that ties back to the BCS itself.  The View is surprisingly clean as well.  The XslLink and Method elements are new.  I assume we can use XslLink to customize how the view is rendered, but I didn’t actually see a main.xsl file generated in the solution package anywhere.  The Method element I can only assume corresponds to the name of the finder method Read List which we have seen above.  The rest is pretty simple.  It just has a FieldRef for each column in my external content type.

I can pretty much use the Schema.xml file as is.  I did change the Title and Url attributes at the top but that is it.  At this point my new feature to deploy this is ready to go.  Here is what it looks like in Visual Studio.

ExternalListNewSolutionExplorer

Deploy your solution and have it activate your feature.  The new list won’t show up automatically in the navigation on the side, but it will be there.  Just go to the URL directly or view the lists on your site to get there.  Here it is on my new site.

ExternalListOnNewSite

As you can see it’s really not that hard to deploy an external list to another site properly using a feature.  Now, you might have noticed there are a few other elements.xml files generated when we did the site export.  One stores specific values in the property bag of the list.  This we did not want because we don’t really want to copy those internal properties.  The other deals with the forms of the list.  It uses the BinarySerializedWebPart which scares me a bit, so I haven’t messed with it much.  If you are just using default forms you don’t need to worry about it.  In a future post, I’ll try seeing if I can deploy some InfoPath forms along with the list, but I figured that deserves its own post.

Also, one other thing to note.  If you are deploying your external content type to another server, you can do that in the same manner as you did in SharePoint 2007.  Just export the application definition and import it on the new server.  You can also use the Export Application Model button in SharePoint designer on the External Content Types list.

ExternalListExportApplicationModel

I hope this helps when you look to move lists into production.  This technique of exporting and importing will also work with regular lists of course.  Just remember, friends don’t let friends deploy lists without a feature.

More Stories By Corey Roth

Corey Roth, a SharePoint Server MVP, is a consultant at Hitachi Consulting specializing in SharePoint and Office 365 for clients in the energy sector. He has more than ten years of experience delivering solutions in the energy, travel, advertising and consumer electronics verticals.

Corey specializes in delivering ECM and search solutions to clients using SharePoint. Corey has always focused on rapid adoption of new Microsoft technologies including Visual Studio 2013, Office 365, and SharePoint.

He is a member of the .NET Mafia (www.dotnetmafia.com) where he blogs about the latest technology and SharePoint. He is dedicated to the community and speaks regularly at user groups and SharePoint Saturdays.

@ThingsExpo Stories
To get the most out of their data, successful companies are not focusing on queries and data lakes, they are actively integrating analytics into their operations with a data-first application development approach. Real-time adjustments to improve revenues, reduce costs, or mitigate risk rely on applications that minimize latency on a variety of data sources. In his session at @BigDataExpo, Jack Norris, Senior Vice President, Data and Applications at MapR Technologies, reviewed best practices to ...
"Evatronix provides design services to companies that need to integrate the IoT technology in their products but they don't necessarily have the expertise, knowledge and design team to do so," explained Adam Morawiec, VP of Business Development at Evatronix, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Digital Transformation (DX) is not a "one-size-fits all" strategy. Each organization needs to develop its own unique, long-term DX plan. It must do so by realizing that we now live in a data-driven age, and that technologies such as Cloud Computing, Big Data, the IoT, Cognitive Computing, and Blockchain are only tools. In her general session at 21st Cloud Expo, Rebecca Wanta explained how the strategy must focus on DX and include a commitment from top management to create great IT jobs, monitor ...
In his Opening Keynote at 21st Cloud Expo, John Considine, General Manager of IBM Cloud Infrastructure, led attendees through the exciting evolution of the cloud. He looked at this major disruption from the perspective of technology, business models, and what this means for enterprises of all sizes. John Considine is General Manager of Cloud Infrastructure Services at IBM. In that role he is responsible for leading IBM’s public cloud infrastructure including strategy, development, and offering m...
No hype cycles or predictions of a gazillion things here. IoT is here. You get it. You know your business and have great ideas for a business transformation strategy. What comes next? Time to make it happen. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jay Mason, an Associate Partner of Analytics, IoT & Cybersecurity at M&S Consulting, presented a step-by-step plan to develop your technology implementation strategy. He also discussed the evaluation of communication standards and IoT messaging protocols, data...
Recently, WebRTC has a lot of eyes from market. The use cases of WebRTC are expanding - video chat, online education, online health care etc. Not only for human-to-human communication, but also IoT use cases such as machine to human use cases can be seen recently. One of the typical use-case is remote camera monitoring. With WebRTC, people can have interoperability and flexibility for deploying monitoring service. However, the benefit of WebRTC for IoT is not only its convenience and interopera...
Product connectivity goes hand and hand these days with increased use of personal data. New IoT devices are becoming more personalized than ever before. In his session at 22nd Cloud Expo | DXWorld Expo, Nicolas Fierro, CEO of MIMIR Blockchain Solutions, will discuss how in order to protect your data and privacy, IoT applications need to embrace Blockchain technology for a new level of product security never before seen - or needed.
Recently, REAN Cloud built a digital concierge for a North Carolina hospital that had observed that most patient call button questions were repetitive. In addition, the paper-based process used to measure patient health metrics was laborious, not in real-time and sometimes error-prone. In their session at 21st Cloud Expo, Sean Finnerty, Executive Director, Practice Lead, Health Care & Life Science at REAN Cloud, and Dr. S.P.T. Krishnan, Principal Architect at REAN Cloud, discussed how they built...
Nordstrom is transforming the way that they do business and the cloud is the key to enabling speed and hyper personalized customer experiences. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Ken Schow, VP of Engineering at Nordstrom, discussed some of the key learnings and common pitfalls of large enterprises moving to the cloud. This includes strategies around choosing a cloud provider(s), architecture, and lessons learned. In addition, he covered some of the best practices for structured team migration an...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Synametrics Technologies will exhibit at SYS-CON's 22nd International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York, NY. Synametrics Technologies is a privately held company based in Plainsboro, New Jersey that has been providing solutions for the developer community since 1997. Based on the success of its initial product offerings such as WinSQL, Xeams, SynaMan and Syncrify, Synametrics continues to create and hone inn...
The 22nd International Cloud Expo | 1st DXWorld Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. Cloud Expo | DXWorld Expo, to be held June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York, NY, brings together Cloud Computing, Digital Transformation, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, Machine Learning and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding busin...
"Digital transformation - what we knew about it in the past has been redefined. Automation is going to play such a huge role in that because the culture, the technology, and the business operations are being shifted now," stated Brian Boeggeman, VP of Alliances & Partnerships at Ayehu, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Raju Shreewastava, founder of Big Data Trunk, provided a fun and simple way to introduce Machine Leaning to anyone and everyone. He solved a machine learning problem and demonstrated an easy way to be able to do machine learning without even coding. Raju Shreewastava is the founder of Big Data Trunk (www.BigDataTrunk.com), a Big Data Training and consulting firm with offices in the United States. He previously led the data warehouse/business intelligence and B...
Cloud Expo | DXWorld Expo have announced the conference tracks for Cloud Expo 2018. Cloud Expo will be held June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, and November 6-8, 2018, at the Santa Clara Convention Center, Santa Clara, CA. Digital Transformation (DX) is a major focus with the introduction of DX Expo within the program. Successful transformation requires a laser focus on being data-driven and on using all the tools available that enable transformation if they plan to survive ov...
A strange thing is happening along the way to the Internet of Things, namely far too many devices to work with and manage. It has become clear that we'll need much higher efficiency user experiences that can allow us to more easily and scalably work with the thousands of devices that will soon be in each of our lives. Enter the conversational interface revolution, combining bots we can literally talk with, gesture to, and even direct with our thoughts, with embedded artificial intelligence, whic...
Smart cities have the potential to change our lives at so many levels for citizens: less pollution, reduced parking obstacles, better health, education and more energy savings. Real-time data streaming and the Internet of Things (IoT) possess the power to turn this vision into a reality. However, most organizations today are building their data infrastructure to focus solely on addressing immediate business needs vs. a platform capable of quickly adapting emerging technologies to address future ...
With tough new regulations coming to Europe on data privacy in May 2018, Calligo will explain why in reality the effect is global and transforms how you consider critical data. EU GDPR fundamentally rewrites the rules for cloud, Big Data and IoT. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Adam Ryan, Vice President and General Manager EMEA at Calligo, examined the regulations and provided insight on how it affects technology, challenges the established rules and will usher in new levels of diligence arou...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Evatronix will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Evatronix SA offers comprehensive solutions in the design and implementation of electronic systems, in CAD / CAM deployment, and also is a designer and manufacturer of advanced 3D scanners for professional applications.
22nd International Cloud Expo, taking place June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and co-located with the 1st DXWorld Expo will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud ...
22nd International Cloud Expo, taking place June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and co-located with the 1st DXWorld Expo will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud ...