How Can I Help?

Thanks for visiting my blog.

Over the years, I’ve come to love the SharePoint community. The people are great, and I depend upon the vast resources available to help me get the job done.

Now I want to give back!

When you post to the forums at, I’m committed to helping out whenever I can.

Additionally, I like to use my blog (which you’re reading right now) to share nuggets of the valuable SharePoint knowledge I’ve picked up over the years. If you have a topic that you would like me to discuss — even if I have to do some research — just leave a comment here and I’ll take a look.

If you’re looking for help, please check your dev tool bar for scripting errors and send them along. Chances are I’ll ask you, anyway ;)

67 thoughts on “How Can I Help?

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  1. Hi, I have some code that highlights tha status filed on a list. It workd in 2010 but not in 2013. Can you suggest changes that will make it work in 2013?

    This is code I used for 2010:

    var x = document.getElementsByTagName(“TD”) // find all of the TDs
    var i=0;
    for (i=0;i<x.length;i++)

    if (x[i].className=="ms-vb2") //find the TDs styled for lists

    if (x[i].innerHTML=="Not Started") //find the data to use to determine the color
    x[i]'white'; // set the color

    //repeat the above for each data value

    if (x[i].innerHTML=="In Progress")
    x[i]'lightgreen'; // set the color

    if (x[i].innerHTML=="Completed")
    x[i]'lightblue'; // set the color

    if (x[i].innerHTML=="Deferred")
    x[i]'lightgrey'; // set the color

    if (x[i].innerHTML=="Waiting on someone else")
    x[i]'orange'; // set the color



  2. hi David – I learned alot from your blog already – especially on how to pretty up my Sharepoint site so it doesn’t look like Sharepoint! Anyhow, I have an employee list (Sharepoint 2013) that I would also like to “pretty up” somehow (I checked out your color coding calendar) and I also cannot figure out how to get all of the employee photos from the drop off library into an image library and also to have them show up as thumbnails in my “list”………..any help would be appreciated! Thank you! :)

    1. Hi JoAnn, thanks for the feedback! Using a PeoplePicker field you can show a person’s profile picture in list view. I’ll see about getting a post up shortly :)

  3. I love my new color coded calendar!!! Thank you so much. I do have one issue though. My original calendar was a calendar with Content Approval. All the new calendars I made for the Overlay are also Content Approval. However when I add a new event it shows up immediately in the calendar even though it’s status is Pending. Would you know what i need to do to have the event not appear until it’s approved? Thanks David!

      1. Hi David,
        Have you had a chance to find a solution to the entries showing immediately in the color coded calendar when the calendar is Content Approval? Thanks Mary Lou

  4. David,
    Hope you can help. I have actually two questions. First – I need to add the code so I can force my SP site to be viewed in IE 8 document mode instead of IE9. There is some interoperabitliy issue with SP2010 and IE9. But I also need to make sure to change it on subsites. My issue is I don’t know where or how to modify my default master for the main site, or site template for the other subsites. How do I modify the templates?
    Second – Do you know of anyway to move docs from a library into a doc center without losing its associated metadata and changing the created by info? Dragging and dropping and send to are no goes.
    Any ideas on either?
    Thanks Tammy

    1. Hi Tammy,

      You can modify the MasterPages in Site Settings. You’ll see MasterPages under Galleries. I’m not sure I understand what you’re trying to do, unless you have custom MasterPages? SP2010 already forces IE8 Standards mode, even in IE10.

      Moving documents to include the version history and metadata has to be done via code, or a 3rd party solution. Code does include PowerShell ;) Check out


      1. SP2010 must not forces IE8 standards (not on any of the sites hosted from where my site is). I’ve seen Galleries but there are a ton of things in there. Not sure which to choose, I assumed it was defaultmaster, but could be wrong. Also, There is a custom site template that was built, and that shows up in Galleries – Solutions, but those each show up as a .wsp file, and I can not find a program to open these. How do I modify a site template? Sorry to be such a bother, but I don’t understand why changing the templates are such a pain…

        V/R, Tammy Crist CONTRACTOR JS J2 Enterprise Assessment SME 757-836-6040 (DSN 836) NSTS: 9844859

        1. Hi Tammy,

          The Solutions list contains compiled WSP files, it’s bad practice to edit these guys directly, these are created either via Visual Studio projects or saving a site/list as a template.

          You’ll want to focus on the Master Pages gallery. If your site is using the default master page, it should be v4.master. You can confirm that by using SharePoint Designer, go to the Master Pages list and click on the page. The ribbon should then grey out the buttons to set it as default master page indicating it already is. I’m not sure if there’s an easier way.


      2. Hi David,
        I found my master, it was v4, but it was hiding when i was in SPD, but finally got it and the page is forced to IE8. As for the wsp files or such, how do I go about editing lists and sites that are set as templates? I want to remove somethings from a template that was built. And add a few things. I don’t want to have to start from scratch. And I don’t have Visual Studio on my computer, only SPD. Is It possible? If not, no worries. What about trying to save a list or library as a web part to display on child sites? I would like to create one Contact list that we can upload onto all child sites. How would I do that?

        1. You can create a new site using the template, modify as needed, then save that site as a template. It’s a clunky method but it works. You can deactivate and delete remove the old solution (download it first just in case ;).

          You can’t take a list web part and simply save it down to child sites. You can use the Content Query Web Part to query and aggregate the data. SP2013 introduces more search web parts which can help with this as well.


  5. Hi David,
    Your post on the easy dashboard has helped an awful lot so thank you for that! (Though you’re going to regret opening the door to my questions!)
    I am trying to autopopulate a lookup field (I did mention it on StackExchange.) but I am having trouble. The process I’m attempting to automate is the following:
    1) Upload a document to a drop box
    2) Item is created in “Job Directory” list using the field “Job Name” from the Drop Box (field type = “string”)
    3) Document is copied from drop box to a relevant library.Where the “Job Name” column looks up values from the “Jobs Directory”. Job Name should match the job name in “Jobs Directory”.

    How would I go about the naming of it in stage 3? I have googled this over and over and have been struggling.
    Any help you could offer would be greatly appreciated.
    Have a great day :)

    1. Just spotted your second reply on Stack Exchange! Its the lookup in the workflow I cant seem to find the answer to.
      I was simply copying the job name from list to list as a string, but the guys Im designing it for want more control than that because not all documents will be copied. Some may be added straight to the relevant library.

  6. Hello Dave,

    Wanted to update you regarding the joining lists among different sites project. Ended up using the following app/plug-in which is really great Much cheaper ($800-$1200) than Axceler which priced at $5000+ yearly, and that’s just for a handful of users. Ofcourse the List Collection app/plug-in is for a specific need whereas Axceler is more broad like you mentioned, focusing on things like security, data management, etc. Hope all is well. Thanks for all your help :)

    1. Excellent, I’m glad you found the best solution for your needs. Also, thanks for sharing your findings!

  7. Hi Dave,

    Thanks for the info with the site content and management, definitely a very useful approach. Unfortunately when I copy and paste items from 1 list into another list, those items won’t update if I change the original. For example, item A in List A copied over to List B. If I change Item A in List B, it doesn’t also update in List A. Basically, the problem I see is that the 2 lists aren’t connected.

    I was reading your last post on “Creating an Item Detail Dashboard View of Joined Lists…” and you mention having 3 lists tha have lookup fields to the parent list. Can you go into more depth about look-up fields; this sounds like the missing gap that isn’t connecting the lists together. I notice that towards the end of the post, you mention that with this new “joined list” containing other lists from other sites, the items will update when they are updated in another site. In a sense, they are all connected and are not “isolated.” Sounds like the lookup-field is the relationship that allows this. Am I right here? If so, can you direct me to a post on how do I create this look-up field? Thanks for all your help Dave, much appreciated!

  8. Can you go into more detail with moving items using the Site Content / Structure options. Because if moving a list is tough, in my case, moving all of the items/projects in a list to another list that I create, fits my goal too. I’m assuming ofcourse that you can move all of the items in a list at once. I did this using Excel and imported into a new list that I created, but I noticed that when I would go to edit items, the features like (Drop-down for changing status / priority) were no longer “activated.” Could this be because of a permissions b/c my permissions is limited with that particular list of items that I exported/imported. In addition, when using import/export, if I make a change is made to an item in the original list, will that item also be updated in my new list? In a sense, I think I’m asking as to how to connect lists so that they can interact with one another and I can pull information across the board and compile into 1 complete list. Thanks!

    1. Hi Stan, going to Site Actions > Site Settings, there is an option under Site Administration called Content and structure. Clicking that will provide a tree view of your data, and allows you to select items, then move them via the Actions menu.

  9. Hello Dave, got another question. I am looking to export a bunch of lists from different sites into a site that I created. What is the best way of doing so. And would a change to a task/project in the original site automatically be updated in the new site that I created? Thanks for your help!

    1. You can use the Site Content and Structure feature in SP to move items from list to list. If you’re looking to move lists around, that gets more complex and isn’t directly supported in SP. One method you can do is save a list as a template and then import it back in the target site. You could explore moving lists using PowerShell, you might find some solutions online for this.

      Alternatively, there are some GREAT 3rd party offerings which do just this, check out my blog post I highly recommend Axceler’s ControlPoint, not only is it for security, but also general administration across the board including move lists and libraries.

      1. A question and answer in one. Perhaps a way around this could be to export the list into Excel, save a copy locally. Then create a new list, in your new site, from that spreadsheet.
        What would the drawbacks be to this? Assuming that you wouldnt mind re-created any lookups or validation you might have.
        I think I’ve just answered my own question haven’t I…

  10. Dave, I tested out the webparts and everything worked. Thanks a ton for your blog post, it’s extremely helpful.

  11. I think you’re probably right. I don’t think I’m a “site admin” even though I’m setting all of this up for an admin, not sure if permissions transferred over during this so I’ll have to follow-up on this. Thanks for pointing it out.

  12. Gotchya, I’m using 2010 SharePoint Server (Enterprise) so that isn’t the problem. Interestingly enough, in your most recent post on webparts, the “Connections” button isn’t an option for me either. I can see the “Edit Webparts” and click through it to edit the settings for the particular web part, but the “Connections” doesn’t appear in the drop-down. Could it really be a browser issue?

    1. IE8 should be working fine, and the connections menu would be there for Chrome as well. Might be a permissions issue, are you a site admin?

    1. Yeah, Foundation doesn’t have that option. What I have done is import the lists into Access 2010, then use that as my data source for PowerPivot. I feel another blog post coming ;)

  13. Hi David,

    Thanks for the post! Was curious about the PowerPivot walk through – I don’t have the option to “Export As Data Feed.” It doesn’t show up at all. And the “Sync to Sharepoint Workspace” option seems to be disabled. You are using SharePoint 2010 right? Do you think this might be an administrative power/role issue or do I somehow have to enable these options on my own?

    1. Export as Data Feed is in SharePoint Server 2010 (not Foundation). What browser are you using to view it?

      It might be a permissions thing, I can check that out. Let me know on the above.

  14. Can you go into more detail about using webparts? I tried following your PowerPivot walkthrough but the “Export As Data Feed” does not come up as an option – only “Export to Excel.” Is it safe to assume I haven’t installed PowerPivot for Excel properly..I may be using the 64bit but my Excel is 32bit. If so, do you have the link for the 32bit PowerPivot installation? Thanks for your help :)

    1. Absolutely, briefly: you can add list web parts to the display form on a list, then filter the web parts based on the current selected item. I will write up a post in the next day or two explaining how. Thanks!

  15. Thanks for your quick response! Unfortunately I am not a developer, but I do work with one; trying to see if other solutions exist besidse resorting to coding. I saw your post on the PowerPivot which is what led me to your blog. It does seem quite useful but I think my process/work-flow is more simple and at the moment does not require that level of analytics. Have you ever come across this before – (it’s probably more along the lines of what I am looking for).

    1. That looks similar to what I was thinking about the CAML and listview web part. Give that a whirl if that’ll fit!

  16. Hello,

    This may have already been asked/posted, but I am looking for the steps needed to join 2 or more custom lists together in SharePoint 2010 to create a view (or a joined list) where I can filter and sort data in whatever way works best for me. I basically have ~20 projects in a single list, and ~12 lists, and would like to “follow” specific projects more closely among the different lists. Ideally a single list where I can select/de-select projects to follow would work best. Any help is greatly appreciated!

    1. There are several ways you can do this:

      Are you a developer, C#, Visual Studio type developer? Doing it in C# is ‘easiest’ as you can use Linq to join your lists. But this requires experience and custom solutions.

      If not, you can use out of the box web parts, add the lists to your project display form, and connect/filter the web parts. Basically, when you click the link to view the project details, you can have additional web parts on the page which will show you the related data from other lists.

      Another option is to use PowerPivot for Excel to pull in your lists and create some real nice reports and tools for analyzing the data. That file can be served through PowerPivot services on SharePoint Server. I have a post on this already:

      You can pull lists into MS Access as well for some reporting capabilities. This will require additional knowledge of Access.

      You can explore using XSLT list views for your needs, but this can get pretty complex, with CAML and a list view web part.

      Find some third party solutions out there that will handle the joins for you.

      Let me know what you’d be interested in seeing and I’ll whip something up.

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