In the form of Extranets and Intranets, portals provide users with a single place for accessing information. The source of this can come from a variety of places – within and outside the organization. MOSS provides a number of ways to facilitate corporate communication – some of them provided by web based components called – Web parts. These include:
The blog template provides a way to create a blog on each user’s My Site within SharePoint, enabling people to share new discoveries or initiatives
The Content Editor allows business users to easily type content directly in the context of a web page.
SharePoint supports creation of announcements and event listings (such as a calendar). Announcements are used to share news (short and extended versions), can have an expiration dates, and Event Listings provide a calendar view of time sensitive meetings.
MOSS includes native support for news – News Web parts. News items can be published to the home page and can also be managed by an approval workflow. News can be targeted to specific user audience
MOSS supports the use of Web parts to consume and display RSS feeds.
MOSS enables the mapping of externally located structured data for easy display and search of the external data, without writing any code, through Business Data Catalog (BDC).
Portals provide an environment to collect and share information. This sharing is at the core of collaboration. The centralization for storing and managing content helps in incremental creation of corporate data. MOSS handles the key aspects of collaboration – accessibility, security, auditing and retrieval. MOSS provides a number of features and functionality to provide a robust collaboration environment. These include:
Team Sites and Workspaces provide a web based location for all virtual team content, including both – structured and unstructured data.
SharePoint document libraries provide a key storage mechanism for unstructured content, enabling version control, metadata, apply business rule based work-flow, and sharing features including control item-level accessibility. Additionally, the enterprise search feature of MOSS provides a way to quickly locate these documents.
MOSS enables properly authorized users to control the visibility of content. This accessibility can be associated with a list of specific users from Active Directory, LDAP or another authorization source.
MOSS provides a framework to store critical information in a single, authoritative location. This ensures that all users access the same version of the document. MOSS facilitates the consolidation process by providing a number of ways to reference a single document. These include:
Enterprise search of MOSS is perhaps the simplest way to quickly aggregate disparate information.
The MOSS site directory helps organize a set of team sites and workspaces under a single searchable and browsable interface. It is a simple way to organize both SharePoint sites, as well as internal and external Websites, complete with metadata.
MOSS is a good place to provide business insight to users that will enable them to make better decisions. The report center template enables giving users a place within the portal to view reports, spot trends, and review scorecards.
RSS feeds enable publishing of announcements and news, as well as publishing of any data residing in SharePoint lists. This helps in reuse of list content.
This displays a dynamic of content obtained from the SharePoint site. Items from single or multiple lists can be aggregated in to a single view.
This enables end-users to integrate back-end databases in to the SharePoint user experience using the Business Data Catalog. It is a powerful way to create a single view of data that is scattered in many databases and web-services enabled data sources throughout the organization.
It allows a page designer to consume structured data (XML, SharePoint, Web-service or a Database) and presented the formatted results, filtered or grouped, in a standard web part interface.
MOSS provides a predictable structure so users can reliably navigate and search to find the authoritative information that was consolidated. This makes it easier to distribute new functionality, and ensure consistency in data collection and communication. MOSS provides several ways to distribute functionality and ensure consistency. These include:
A set of standard master pages to ensure consistent look and feel across content managed web pages
Self service collaboration tools (to increase productivity) in the form of a controlled set of templates to create team or project based sites
The MOSS feature of ‘Content Types’ enables an organization to create a pre-defined set of site columns and document templates for a given purpose – making it easier to maintain consistent document formats and storage locations. Content types can include – associated document template, required metadata columns, and consistent workflow and retention policies.
Define document retention policies on document libraries and lists, allowing automatic deletion or archiving of content