SharePoint - service pack 2 thoughts

SharePoint service pack 2 came out a couple of days ago, for some reason I was really excited about it and even woke up checking twitter regarding any news…  It was surprisingly empty.

Anyway, over the last couple of days I’ve had a good whirl and here’s some thoughts – both mine, and heard over the grapevine.


Authentication — Improvements to forms-based authentication, authentication for Web applications, and the Business Data Catalog.

MSDN is saying that when Forms authentication is used SharePoint “should” do a better job at letting client (Browser) remember the password.

I’m hoping this means I don’t need to re-enter my password a billion times.


Database performance and integrity — Improved database performance and integrity by automatically rebuilding database indexes with a timer job. 

Self checks are good


Interoperability — Improved support for standards-based document formats and compatibility with a broader range of browsers level 1 and level 2 browser support.

IE8 enters level 1 browser support – the rich text editing should get fixed

FireFox2/3 enters level 2 browser support


Read-only content databases — Improved user experience by automatically configuring site collections as read-only when the content database is configured as read-only.

Again a good thing


Stsadm command-line tool — In addition to operations for pre-upgrade scanning and variations analysis and repair, several operations are improved and new operations added to better support farm administration.

stsadm –o backup will now issue a stsadm –o setsitelock prior to the backup, unless otherwise stated.

This means that sharepoint administrators no longer need to do this in two steps.

stsadm –o deletesite now supports a force argument that allows orphaned site collections or orphaned sites to be deleted.  Only time I’ve seen an orphan site is when we had a bad import that failed halfway.


Pre-upgrade scanning and reporting — An Stsadm operation that enables you to scan an existing farm and its servers to verify that they can be upgraded SharePoint Products and Technologies "14".

stsadm -o preupgradecheck

is only to check against future versions of SharePoint 2010.


Variations analysis and repair — An Stsadm operation that enables farm administrators to better manage and perform necessary operations against variations.

There’s a quite bit of work for variations.  This isn’t an area where I’ve had a lot of experience.


Merge Content DB bug fixed



Breaking Changes:

Areas web service removed

There’s some impact to Nintex Workflows – there’s an interim fix that they’ve released, as well as a patch coming out within a week.