How to retrieve all deployed solutions using PowerShell

One of the quickest ways to find out information about your installed solutions is to use PowerShell.  To do this, login to one of your WFE’s and open SharePoint Management Shell.  Then, type in the following command: Get-SPSolution | Export-Csv C:\DeployedSolutions.csv.  Open this file on your local machine (or whichever has Excel installed) and dissect as needed.

This will return a fairly good amount of detail regarding your current solutions including but not limited to:

  • Solution Name
  • When/where deployed
  • Version
  • Status


SharePoint – Retrive the internal column name for lists/libraries using PowerShell

I have been using this method for some time now and decided to make a slight change to it.  I have been using the PowerShell method found here to find the internal column names for my lists and libraries.  It works great.  The only problem with this is that I have to modify the script each time I need to change the value of the list or site.  This is usually not a big deal since I generally am only looking at one list.  This was not the case the other day.  I needed to look at many different lists in the same site.  Instead of having to modify the script each time, I added a set of parameters to prompt me at the command line.  The code looks like this:

  1. Download Get Column Names Script
  2. Save the script to a directory on your SharePoint server
  3. Open the SharePoint Management Shell for PowerShell
  4. Navigate to the directory where you downloaded the script
    example:  d:\scripts
  5. Run the script: getColumnName.ps1
  6. Enter in the variables
    ***To include hidden fields, change {$_Hidden -eq $false} to {$_Hidden -eq $true}***

Your screen should resemble the following before the command runs


Mike Smith has a lot of great tips on his site.  I suggest that you check it out:

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InfoPath – Multiple attachments in one web based form

Attachments in InfoPath are great.  The only issue with this, is that you can only attach one file to your form at a time.  In order to get a around this, you will need to add a handy dandy repeating section.  I have also added a count box to show how many attachments have been added to your form.  You also will have the ability to hide all of your attachments.  That’s where the count comes in handy.

I like to use this hide function for my attachments especially when I have a form that goes through an approval process.  I have attached a starter form using these controls.  The ‘attCount’ field has a default value set to count how many controls have been added to your form.  There is one rule set for the repeating section to hide it the ‘hideAttachments’ is set to ‘TRUE’.

I saved the form in a 2007 web based format.  You should be able to open in all versions of InfoPath 2007 – 2013.

Download Multiple Attachments Form

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Add or remove a site collection administrator from all sites using PowerShell

This is an issue I recently faced.  I needed to add myself as a site collection administrator to 100+ site collections.  I did not want to do this manually because it would have taken too much time.  So what did I do, I put it off until I got fed up with having to add myself manually each time I needed access.  I started searching for posts and found and excellent article on how to achieve this via PowerShell.

Here is the link to the original post:
This worked perfectly except for one minor detail….no progress indicator.  This is usually not that big of a deal since PowerShell takes care of business so quickly, but this time, I wanted to know where I was during each step of the process.  To do this, I added a loop counter to display the current percentage of operation.  Once the script has run, it will write back to your screen the exact number of site collections modified.

Thanks to Henry Ong over at The SharePoint Swiss Army Knife for the main script.

To remove someone from the site collection admins, simply change the variable $add = 1 to $add = 0.  What I did was create a separate script for removing and updated the verbage in the write progress to indicate that I was removing a user.

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Cannot find the FAST site template

By default, the FAST search site template is missing.  It has to be enabled via PowerShell.  Luckily, this is a very simple process.

Perform the following steps to enable the template:

  1. Login to one of the web front ends
  2. Open the SharePoint Management Shell (PowerShell for SharePoint)
  3. Type or Copy/Paste in the following making sure to change the “Identity” to your site collection:

Your output should look like the below screenshot


Cannot publish InfoPath custom list form

Today, I ran across an issue when I went to customize a list with InfoPath.  I clicked on the ‘Customize Form’ button and it opened the item view in InfoPath as expected.  After I made my changes I went to publish my form.  I received the following error message:

“InfoPath cannot connect to the server.  The server may be offline, your computer might not be connected to the network, or InfoPath Forms Services 2010 might not be enabled on the server.  To fix this problem, start by checking your network connection, and then try again.”


After going through my normal rounds of troubleshooting (permissions, InfoPath, SharePoint logs, Event Viewer), I came across another blog that had the solution (at least, it worked for my issue)

Here is the link to the blog:

Basically, all that needs to happen is that you need to reset InfoPath Form Services for that particular site collection.  To do that, just run the following PowerShell scripts from your SharePoint server:

PS C:\> Disable-SPFeature “IPFSSiteFeatures” -url “http://Server/Sites/SiteCollection”
PS C:\> Enable-SPFeature “IPFSSiteFeatures” -url “http://Server/Sites/SiteCollection”

Enjoy and remember to Stay Salty!

Hiding the Search Bar – SharePoint 2010

Have you ever needed to hide the search bar on your site?  Me neither until the other day.  The page needed to be plain Jane and this was one of the requests.  Turns out, this is very simple to do.  All that you need to do is add a Content Editor Web Part (CEWP) to your page and add the following lines of code to it:

This code will hide both the search bar and the search icon.  It’s that simple!  Try it for yourself.

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InfoPath – Shorten url for browser based forms

In the world of InfoPath, you may have noticed the the url for an open form is crazy big!  I ran into a problem in the past when I ran out of space in the url.  Sometimes this happens if the form is nested a couple of levels down in a site.  Whenever you open a new form in the browser, your url will look like the following:

You can shorten the above by removing all of the items in bold.  It will look like this once you have finished:

As a best practice, I do this each time I have to setup a link to an InfoPath form.   This way, I keep my urls short and will not have any issues of running out of url space.


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InfoPath form library tries adding new documents instead of opening form

Our current migration from MOSS to SP2013 has been interesting, needless to say.  Because I am an administrator I never see these little issues.  This is one of the latest fires I had to put out.  This popped up for different users whenever they would click on new document.   At first, I thought it was s permission issue, but that was not it.

ie8 and infopath

Turns out that this is an issue with Internet Explorer 8 (of course).  The new document +  calls a javascript function that ie8 cannot recognize.  Instead of opening the web based InfoPath form, it tries to add a document.  After testing on other systems using ie9 +, Firefox, and Chrome this is the only logical explanation.

To address this issue, I had to add a Page Viewer web part to a page and link to the opened view of the form.  Not the most elegant approach, but it works.

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SharePoint 2013 site in Read only

Have you ever seen this pop up at the top of your screen in 2013?


This was just one more thing to pop up during our migration from MOSS 2007 to 2013.  Fortunately, this is not a big deal.  Here is a link to another post explaining how to clear this message and remove the locks on your site.\

Turns out that a backup process was kicked off this morning and was not complete when we rebooted the farm.  This left us with this nice little pink bar at the top of certain sites.  Phew!  Not a crisis, just too much migration action.

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