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Book Review: SharePoint Designer 2010 Unleashed

Everything about SharePoint Designer 2010 and much much more

When I first saw this book was coming out I completely ignored it. The SharePoint Designer ? Who uses that I thought? Then I noticed it starting to get some good reviews and I decided to read them. One of them mentioned 1600 pages. That threw me for a loop and also convinced me I had to check it out. I had to see what was in 1600 pages worth of content about SharePoint Designer and I am really glad I did.

This book is about so much more than just the SharePoint Designer. It gives a great overview of SharePoint 2010's architecture, covers how to make modifications in the browser, goes deep into security details, covers new and depreciated site templates, working with the ribbon, CSS, XSLT, Business Connectivity Services, data controls, workflows, InfoPath, and more!!!

The timing of me getting my hands on this book was perfect. I seem to be needing it everyday lately. I am just finishing a 2007 to 2010 SharePoint upgrade process and there are a ton of new features available in 2010. In the past I have done a lot of web part programming and Silverlight web part programming. In my current position I got drafted to figure out how to do the 2010 upgrade. Now with the help of the book I am able to learn more about creating solutions without programming them.

The book has four parts. The first part is a really nice in-depth overview of SharePoint's architecture, an introduction to SharePoint 2010 features, and how to make in-browser customizations. The second part introduces using the SharePoint Designer 2010 to design and modify web user interfaces, site templates, content types, lists, and libraries. Part three is all about styling and designing SharePoint sites using CSS, page layouts, content pages, web part zones, and themes. The last part is all about working with different data sources and data views.

I have listed each part and the chapters they include below.

Part I: Welcome to SharePoint Server 2010
1. SharePoint 2010 Overview
2. SharePoint 2010 Architectural Overview
3. Introduction to the SharePoint 2010 Fluid Interface
4. Design Administrative Tasks: Site Settings, Permissions and Creating Sites
5. In-Browser Customization: Navigation, Content Pages and Content
6. In-Browser Customization: Branding with Web Parts, Themes and Master Pages

Part II: Enhancing Sites with SharePoint Designer 2010
7. Web Interface Design with SharePoint Designer 2010
8. Creating Sites with Site Templates
9. Working with Content Types and Columns in SharePoint Designer
10. Creating and Configuring Lists and Libraries

Part III: Styling and Designing SharePoint 2010 Sites
11. Understanding SharePoint Designer Editing Features
12. Working with Content Pages in SharePoint Designer
13. Building New Content Pages and Configuring Web Parts and Web Part Zones
14. Extending Content Pages with Media and Dialogs
15. Creating New Publishing Page Layouts
16. Working with and Creating New SharePoint Cascading Style Sheets (CSS)
17. Creating New SharePoint 2010 Master Pages
18. SharePoint Themes and Themable CSS: The Icing on the Cake

Part IV: Data Manipulation and Business Processes
19. Configuring Data Sources (Non-BCS)
20. External Content Types and External Lists (BCS)
21. Manipulating Data with ASP.NET Data Controls
22. Overview of XSLT List View and Data View Web Parts in SharePoint 2010
23. Working with XSLT List View Web Parts (XLVs)
24. Working with the Data View and Data Form Web Parts
25. Configuring and Customizing List Forms
26. Customizing List Forms with InfoPath 2010 Forms
27. Using Workflows and Creating Custom Workflows
28. Creating Custom List Actions: Adding Buttons to the Ribbon and List Item Menus

The author has a download on the publisher's site of all the resources used throughout the book.

The author's writing style makes things easy to understand and the book's material an easy read. One of the things I liked about the book is that the author points out cool extra stuff along the way. One of the things I thought was cool was how to make it snow on the SharePoint site.

This book will definitely remain by my side. The massive amount of information makes it a great reference. You will not find information on SharePoint Designer 2010 this in-depth anywhere else.

I highly recommend this book to anyone involved with SharePoint development and design.

SharePoint Designer 2010 Unleashed

More Stories By Tad Anderson

Tad Anderson has been doing Software Architecture for 18 years and Enterprise Architecture for the past few.

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