As someone who is fortunate enough to work with our customers each and every day, I’m always fielding questions about hosted SharePoint, about my company, Fpweb.net, and about the value of both. I try to take note of particular questions that I encounter more than others and then create a blog that answers them all in one place.
So, let’s take a look at a few of those questions and hopefully my answers will help in your quest for superior SharePoint solutions and service!
My Top Five Common SharePoint Questions
1. How do I create new users in SharePoint?
Since there is no quick answer to this one – especially given that it may depend on the release of SharePoint (SharePoint 2010 has an AD account creation mode that SharePoint 2013 does not) – I’ll defer to the teachings of some of our great SharePoint resources here at Fpweb.net:
VIDEO: Creating a User in SharePoint 2010 (this also applies to creating a user in SharePoint 2013)
2. What is a SharePoint FIS and do I need it?
SharePoint FIS stands for SharePoint for Internet Sites. FIS is generally referred to in connection with SharePoint 2010 Server. A FIS provides unlimited non-employee access to SharePoint. If you are using SharePoint 2010 Server and using it as a public facing site, you definitely will need it.
If you are utilizing SharePoint as an internal solution, it is unlikely that a FIS is necessary. When in doubt, go directly to the source of Microsoft Licensing: http://www.microsoft.com/licensing/
3. What do I get with SharePoint 2013 that I can’t get with SharePoint 2010?
There are a number of enhancements to 2013, but the two items that I hear talked about the most are the integration of FAST search into 2013 and improvements to the underlying server architecture.
With FAST being built into SharePoint, the crawl is constant and users will see content much sooner than in SharePoint 2010, where scheduled crawls are needed for content update. The architectural enhancements allow for increased efficiencies, most notably the new Distributed Cache Service that can handle requests much faster.
InfoWorld has a good article from last fall with some additional details entitled SharePoint 2013: A low-key update you’ll love. And for a full view comparison, check out our Comparing SharePoint 2010 and SharePoint 2013 matrix.
4. If I need additional resources added to my SharePoint farm, how much is it and how soon can it be implemented?
Hmmm, pricing is difficult to state as it really depends on quantity and duration. As with most things, there are always discounts available for contract terms and potentially additional discounts for the quantity of resources. So, for the first part of the question, call me directly. I will always ensure you get the best pricing we can offer!
As for the second half of the question, the beauty of hosting SharePoint is the flexibility to make changes rapidly. If you need additional RAM because your SQL is hogging all of the memory, how much RAM do you need and when can you sustain a short outage? You have decided to store the entire works of Edgar Allan Poe as read by a very tired Anthony Hopkins in your SQL database and need another terabyte of storage. Call me in the morning and we could have the SAN storage setup and configured to best practices by the afternoon. That really is how quick we can care for the adding of resources. No waiting, go directly to the head of the line!
5. What does Fpweb.net do as the SharePoint hosting provider?
While SharePoint Hosting may seem broad or vague, the process is simple: Fpweb.net will build a SharePoint farm to your specifications. We have a number of resources that work with you to identify exactly what SharePoint plan works for your business and can be customized to meet your needs.
Once we’ve delivered the farm to you, Mr. or Ms. Customer, we continue to maintain the infrastructure of that environment. We care for all necessary OS patching, as well as regular patching of the hardware. We monitor the network to ensure availability. We also monitor the server and notify you when we see cause for concern with items such as low disk space, and/or increased memory usage. We have 24x7x365 customer support for system down issues and can be reached via phone, 1-866-780-4678, or through our Online Support Portal.
While our role as a hosting provider is to maintain that infrastructure, we are also always here to give our best effort in assisting with SharePoint problems. If at any point we feel it is outside our area of expertise, we also have terrific partners we work with on a regular basis!
I hope you found some of this information useful in your SharePoint hosting research. And, for those questions that are still unanswered, give me a ring at 636-600-8959! Thanks for reading.