Working with Share Point

The fastest growing business software product in the Microsoft family, Windows SharePoint Services is one of the hottest technologies for digital team site management available today. Flexible and easy to use, SharePoint provides users with simple site creation and design, robust content management, and powerful security for business data. Microsoft Office 2007 contains a myriad of new features that integrate with SharePoint to help users communicate information, and one of the pillars of the Access 2007 release is to provide seamless integration with SharePoint.

Access has added new features that fit into two basic categories: features that work from the server and features that work from within the Access client. Starting with the 2003 release, the Microsoft Office teams began a campaign to support content management on SharePoint for site design, online documents, and list data. In many cases, that could be done directly from within the Office application, such as from an Access database, a Word document, or an Excel workbook. Users of Office System 2003 may remember some of the features that Access offered to users, such as Edit in Datasheet or Access Linked Tables. While both of these features are powerful, they pale in comparison to the new features in Microsoft Office Access 2007.

This chapter describes how features of Microsoft Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 integrate with Access 2007. Interestingly, most of the features are so tightly coupled with SharePoint that you do not even need code to leverage them within your Access database solution. All of the SharePoint features in Access 2003 are still available in 2007. While there is not a lot of new VBA code available for working with the SharePoint features programmatically, a number of method and property additions and a few updates to existing OM methods are of interest.

If you don't already have access to a Windows Server with SharePoint Services 3.0, get access to one! SharePoint 3.0 has a number of system requirements, the heaviest of which is that it can be deployed only on Windows Server 2003 or Windows Vista Server. If you do not have a copy of either version of Windows Server, evaluation copies are available at http://microsoft.com/ windows/default.mspx; those will allow full access to the product for evaluation purposes for 180 days. Once you have access to a Windows Server machine, Windows SharePoint Services can be deployed. Note that Microsoft Office Server System 2007 is a different product, which provides rich server features and additional enterprise-level applications that are built on top of the SharePoint technology. For more information and content downloads for SharePoint, go to: http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/sharepointtechnology/default.aspx and

http://microsoft.com/technet/windowsserver/sharepoint/default.mspx. This chapter focuses on the base SharePoint product features and how they relate to Access. Fortunately, all of the Access 2007 features work just as well with other applications built on top of other SharePoint technologies.

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