Category Archives: OnePlaceMail

Light up your Outlook Mailboxes with advanced Email Tracking features

I’m preparing to head down to Melbourne for the The Digital Workplace Conference (the new Australian SharePoint Conference). This will be the first conference since the 7.3 release of OnePlaceMail and OnePlaceLive. I’m pretty excited about the new Email Tracking features which goes well beyond simply allowing users to transfer email and attachment from Outlook to SharePoint. This goes to a whole new level. Save an email to SharePoint (or Office 365) and all other recipients of the email can see in real time that you have file it to SharePoint and can open up the location in SharePoint. No more having multiple people trying the file the same email to SharePoint to find that someone has already save it there. Or worse, people saving it to different locations in SharePoint and having the files duplicated.

If you haven’t checked out the OnePlace Solutions suite in the last few months you may have also missed the suggested and predictive email filing capabilities that analyze the filing patterns of users and will suggest or predict locations in SharePoint that are likely locations you would want to save the email. If you’re not going to make it to see us at the Melbourne conference (or simply can’t wait that long to see what I’m talking about) here’s a short video on the Email Tracking feature. See for yourself how just one feature can make the Digital Workplace so much easier for a user, then imagine a whole suite of products packed with features like this, then come and see me at the conference!



Photos from Microsoft Ignite Australia (Gold Coast)

New OnePlaceLive Scenarios Blog Series

imageWith the recent launch of the OnePlaceLive product, I’ve commenced writing a series of articles on the OnePlace Solutions website. This series of articles is designed to introduce the OnePlaceLive product and show to power that Solution Profiles can deliver in real world business scenarios such as using SharePoint/Office 365 for Projects Management, Legal Matter Management, Property/Asset Systems.

What are OnePlaceLive Solution Profiles?

Solution Profiles provide an intelligent way to look at SharePoint from the perspective of the different business systems (or solutions as we like to call them) that have been built in SharePoint (e.g. Project Management, Legal Matter Management, HR Business Processes, Helpdesk) and to dynamically identify the different SharePoint artefacts that make up those systems (e.g. site collections, sites, lists, libraries, document sets, folders, content). Solution Profiles then provide the power to organize those artefacts in many different ways that make sense to the end users of the business solutions, and then deliver those SharePoint artefacts to the users in personalized ways (and in context of the business solution) directly within core user applications where the user needs them (Outlook, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Adobe Reader, Adobe Acrobat, and the Windows Desktop via OnePlaceDocs Explorer).


The OnePlaceLive Client application provides a graphical UI for creating, maintaining and publishing Solution Profiles which are then consumed by end users of OnePlaceMail and OnePlaceDocs.

Read the full OnePlaceLive Solution Profiles article and the first Project Management scenario

Preparing for Microsoft Ignite 2015

office-graph-ignite-sharepoint-office365-cameron-dwyerThe excitement is starting to build as the Microsoft technology conference of the year is almost upon us. I feel this year is going to be a first time experience for all attendees. We’ve got many individual conferences combined into one, even the old timers that have been attending these individual conferences year after year may be feeling some renewed excitement and feelings of trepidation of just how this conference is going to play out.

It’s certainly going to get started with a bang as Satya Nadella takes the stage for the keynote to an event that sold out weeks ago. I think the last time we saw a Microsoft CEO take the stage at a SharePoint conference was 5 years ago at SPC2010 when Steve Ballmer was at the helm.

Although Microsoft has gone (almost) all in on the cloud and been pushing cloud at us from every angle over the last few years, I think we will be hearing the word HYBRID quite a bit at this conference. We can also expect to hear a lot more about what SharePoint 2016 will look like and the feature set we can expect out of SharePoint 2016 on premises installations.

During the conference you’ll be able to find me at the OnePlace Solutions booth #537 in the Exhibition Hall. We will be running live, interactive demos of OnePlaceMail, as well as two new products that we are launching at the conference OnePlaceDocs and OnePlaceLive. Email management, Document management, and driving a solution focused, end user engagement for systems built on the SharePoint/Office 365 platform is what we’re about – if that sounds interesting then come by and meet the OnePlace Solutions Team. We will have plenty of giveaways as well so make sure you stop by to claim yours.


If you want to get the most out of mingling and networking then be sure to check out these two great resources for all those official and unofficial parties (great work guys on compiling these lists as they are quite extensive):

Vlad Catrinescu’s Blog – The Ultimate Microsoft ignite Party List

Jonathan McKinney’s Blog – The Unofficial Microsoft Ignite Party and Contest/Giveaway List

The Microsoft Ignite Countdown show is also well worth a watch to get a feel for how the conference will run, things to do in Chicago and it’s a bit of a laugh at the same time.

If you haven’t already then make sure you are keeping an eye on the #msignite hashtag on Twitter and the Ignite Event group in the Office 365 Yammer Network.

I hope to see you at the conference and above all have fun and despite what you were told as a child, talk to strangers (as long as they have an Ignite badge!)


Running Fiddler with OnePlaceMail – Fixing “The requested site does not appear to have claims enabled or the Login Url has not been set” message

Here’s a workaround to get Fiddler working with OnePlaceMail and SharePoint 2013 where you normally get the following error message in OnePlaceMail as soon as Fiddler is enabled and capturing traffic:

“The requested site does not appear to have claims enabled or the Login Url has not been set”


I went investigating why introducing Fiddler breaks OnePlaceMail and was able to track the problem down to a single call to the native SharePoint 2013 People web service and in particular the IsClaimsMode method of the People web service. Under the default SharePoint 2013 install (Claims mode with integrated Windows NTLM or Kerberos Authentication) this web method return False without Fiddler and True with Fiddler running.

Using Fiddlers AutoResponder feature we can set up a rule to listen for calls to the IsClaimsMode method of the People web service and return a fixed response from a local file instead of getting it from the SharePoint server.

The particular Fiddler AutoResponder rule matching I used requires one of the later versions of Fiddler, here’s the version I was using: v4.4.9.2


First you need to get the following “response” file onto your computer so Fiddler can use it to respond to any calls made to the IsClaimsMode web service. Here’s the contents of the response file:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<soap:Envelope xmlns:soap="<a href=""></a>" xmlns:xsi="<a href=""></a>" xmlns:xsd="<a href=""></a>">
      <IsClaimsModeResponse xmlns="<a href=""></a>">

It’s pretty simple, the web service really only returns a value of true or false. The condition the problem occurs is when the real web service gives back a true when it should be false.

In my example I’ve placed the file on the following path:


Now start up Fiddler and select the AutoResponder tab and check the following options:

– Enable automatic responses

– Unmatched requests passthrough


Click Add Rule and put the following match rule in (this will identify any web service calls to the IsClaimsMode method:



Now in the action to execute line choose Find a file… from the drop down


Select the AutoResponder file we created in the earlier step


The AutoResponder tab should now look like this


Using OnePlaceMail with Fiddler running should now work without raising the error.

A remote SharePoint Navigation tree control designed to scale to large Enterprise environments

The SharePoint Navigation tree (for remotely browsing/navigating SharePoint) is a central component in the OnePlaceMail product. It is used in all major operations such as Save to SharePoint, Open from/Insert from SharePoint, Preview SharePoint content, Managing favorite SharePoint locations. Being able to quickly find the right location in SharePoint, directly from desktop applications, is one of the key reasons OnePlaceMail has been adopted so openly into organizations. Core to this capability is the OnePlaceMail Navigation tree.

Dynamic browsing

The primary purpose of the tree is to allow you to browse your SharePoint environments.


Here’s the features we baked into the tree at a low level to ensure we could build a scalable tree for enterprises.

  • Support multiple SharePoint servers in the same tree (accessing them all at the same time)
  • Support any mix of SharePoint servers at the same time (2007, 2010, 2013, SharePoint Online, Office 365, on-premises or hosted)
  • Zero configuration – just give the tree a URL to SharePoint. The tree will figure out what type of server it is and the best way to communicate with it. Those irritating things like security are also hidden away (if possible you just don’t see any security prompts). Worst case the tree will ask you to login if it needs credentials.
  • What a user see’s in the tree is driven 100% dynamically by SharePoint security.
  • All communication with SharePoint is done asynchronously (in the background). This means the tree is silky smooth and responsive, even if the SharePoint server isn’t.
  • Optimized client/server communication – minimum data payload and real-time loading at each level of the tree as nodes are expanded
  • Large SharePoint environments sooner or later come up against SharePoint throttling and threshold limits. We designed with these in mind (think libraries with thousands of folders or document sets)
  • Support for browsing over sites/libraries/folders where user only has read only access to allow saving of content into a lower level folder where user has contribute access

Advanced node filtering

As the SharePoint environment grows it is quite typical for a certain level of the tree structure to grow in line with some business process being modelled. Here are some examples:

If you create a site per project (or client) you end up with a lot of sites at a particular level in your SharePoint environment. Similarly you may end up with lots of libraries in a site, or the one we come across most frequently, a large number of document sets within a library.

For the user trying to find a location at this level, it creates a situation where they are forced to scroll through a long list to find the site/library/folder/document set they are looking for. What we have implemented in our navigation tree, is a type-ahead filter on any node in the tree. This will start filtering all nodes below by the characters as you continue typing. In the example below a document library is used to store legal matters. One document set is created for each legal matter, and this particular library has over 10,000 legal matters (document sets). As you can see in the screenshot, just by typing “77”, the legal matter document sets have been filtered from 10,000 to 10 (not bad for 2 keystrokes). We’ve also made the filter type configurable so it can perform a “starts with” filter or a “contains” filter. This filtering is available at all levels, on all node types in the tree so use it to filter a long list of sites or libraries as well and folders.



Recent locations

If you’ve been somewhere in SharePoint recently, then there is a good chance you’ll want to go back. The navigation tree will automatically remember recent locations so you can quickly get back to them. These recents aren’t just static locations, you can expand them and filter them just like any other node in the tree.



The organisation can only structure SharePoint in one single hierarchy (essentially in a tree). This one global structure of SharePoint rarely fits with how individuals see SharePoint. What we’ve done here is to allow a “My OnePlaceMail” area in the tree where a user can bookmark their own favorite locations from anywhere across any of their SharePoint environments. We’ve also given them the ability to create folders to organize and arrange these favorite SharePoint locations. What this delivers to users is the ability to setup a mini tree of SharePoint that reflects how they see SharePoint. This gives efficient access to just those areas of SharePoint that are relevant and removes the clutter of other areas of SharePoint. Similar to recents, these aren’t just static locations, you can expand them and filter them just like any other node in the tree.


Create New Folders and Document Sets

What good is a tree that doesn’t grow! Based on SharePoint settings and security you can simply create folders and/or document sets directly within the tree using the context menu on the tree node. This isn’t limited to a simple input for folder name. The screenshots below show the creation of a custom Legal Matter document set and completion of properties for the new document set (all dynamically read from SharePoint – zero configuration).



Search for locations rather than browsing

Sometimes the browse metaphor for navigating SharePoint just isn’t very efficient, rather than browse we have given the option to also use a search metaphor for finding locations in SharePoint, this works well in certain scenarios:

  • Large SharePoint environments
  • Areas of SharePoint where you are not familiar with the hierarchy structure
  • When you know the exact location in SharePoint and search is faster than navigating to it
  • Finding locations to save to
  • Finding a site collection (as site collections have different top level URLs you often cannot browse them, you have to know the top level URLs to begin with). If you create a new site collection per client/customer/project and therefore have a large number of site collection, being able to find the site collection quickly via search in the tree is brilliant
  • Finding locations across site collections

A key concept here is in the navigation tree we are searching for locations within SharePoint not content. To explain that a little bit, consider your conventional search via the SharePoint UI. This is designed for finding content e.g. documents, files. The navigation tree displays SharePoint hierarchy (or locations such as Sites, Libraries & Folders) not content. So unlike a normal SharePoint search for content, in the tree we are actually trying to find the location or container in which to store content or in SharePoint terms:

  • Site Collections
  • Sites
  • Lists
  • Libraries
  • Folders (within a list or library)
  • Document Sets (within a library)



Search scoping

The scope for the search is dynamic based on the selected location in the tree when the search is performed. For example, if you select the “Intranet” site collection in the tree, then only the “Intranet” site collection is searched. Likewise if you select a specific document library, then only that library is searched. This scoped searching works to restrict scope to a site collection, site, library, or folder/document set.

The converse of performing a search restricted to a scope is to perform a “farm wide search”. This performs a search across all site collections in the farm and as it returns locations it can be used to find site collections themselves.

Switch from search result to browse

The search feature for finding location works really well but what makes it simple awesome (just my opinion) is that we’ve allowed you to take a search result and then switch back to the browse navigation metaphor to explore that location further. This is really, really powerful. For example you may have a SharePoint environment where you create a new site per project and there are tons of these project sites scattered across multiple site collections. You can now do a simple search in the tree to find the site then drill down within the site to find a document library (which is actually where you would want to save or open files from).




The capabilities of the Navigation Tree make it scalable to fit any SharePoint environment from the very small to the very large and deliver a slick, modern, responsive interface to SharePoint. The tree control continues to evolve with each release of OnePlaceMail and we certainly have big plans to take it forward even further.

Download an evaluation of OnePlaceMail Enterprise and give the tree a go for yourself (it’s a client only 3 minute install)


This article was written based on OnePlaceMail Release 6.6 – read other highlights of this release

Leaving Las Vegas – SharePoint Conference 2014 (SPC14) Photos

As the SharePoint community disperses from Las Vegas after another awesome conference it’s time to digest the new information and figure out what that really means for you.

The takeaways for each person are probably different as we all use SharePoint in different ways, although there was one very prominent message being pushed…

Microsoft’s forecast: Very cloudy with a chance of on-prem meatballs

Microsoft was pushing the cloud first model very heavily, Office 365 will be getting all the new bells and whistles with on-prem maybe getting some of the new features down the track. Features that integrate the different services (e.g. Yammer/SharePoint/Exchange/OneDrive) would probably only be available in Office 365 where Microsoft can guarantee the compatible versions across the services and control passing user identity between the services and may never make there way to on-prem.

Attendee’s forecast: We are not ready/can’t move/don’t want to move to the cloud yet

This was the sentiment I was hearing on the booth. The reasons for not wanting to jump to the cloud (at the moment) were varied but most had understandable reasons. Microsoft has the potential to alienate a lot of the community and customers (possibly losing them to competitive products) if they take the big stick approach and try to force people into Office 365.

On a more positive note for on-prem customers, it was announced that there will be a new release of SharePoint (on-prem) in 2015.

The Venetian was an awesome location for the conference. Maybe it’s just me or maybe Vegas has slightly refined itself since the last conference but I thought the area of the strip near the Venetian had a better buzz about it and was just a nicer end of town. The Venetian itself was excellent with plenty of great options for eating and drinking. Anyone know a place that does a gourmet burger better than Vegas?

SPC14 was the conference that saw us announce the growth and re-positioning of our brand. OnePlaceMail has become one product of the larger OnePlaceEnterprise suite. Along with OnePlaceMail, the OnePlaceEnterprise suite contains the new products OnePlaceDocs and OnePlaceLive. This growth and shift was well received at the conference and I’m really looking forward to this new phase as OnePlaceEnterprise enters the market.

Thanks to all those who came up to see us at the conference and traded SharePoint stories. I hope you all enjoyed the conference and were able to walk away more knowledgeable at the end of the day.

Where and why to find me at the SharePoint Conference in Las Vegas (SPC14)




SPC is THE largest SharePoint Conference on earth, nowhere else will you find so many subject matter experts and people willing to talk SharePoint.

I encourage you to be brave and speak to the myriad of Exhibitors and Microsoft people at conference. The Exhibition Hall is a lot quieter outside of the peak lunch/break periods so if you’re in a session that’s not delivering what you hoped, head out and get an expert to yourself.

Why talk to me?
There’s only so many conversations you can squeeze in, my areas of interest include:

  • Overcoming user adoption issues with SharePoint deployments
  • Techniques for making SharePoint quicker and easier to work with from your desktop
  • Extending solutions you build on SharePoint to make them accessible from existing desktop applications without writing code!
  • Anything SharePoint and Mail related
  • SharePoint Site Mailboxes

Where to find me?
I’ll be presenting OnePlaceMail alongside 2 new products (OnePlaceEnterprise and OnePlaceLive) being launched at the conference. I’ll be spending most of the conference at the OnePlaceMail booth #2131 so please come up and say ‘Hi’.

Have a great conference and I hope to see you there.

OnePlaceMail 6.5 – The integration between Outlook and SharePoint that Microsoft should have built

OnePlaceMail 6.5 went into public release last week and represents the biggest user experience overhaul we have ever done to the product. This is no light statement, given that OnePlaceMail is already known in the market for it’s seamless, intuitive, and slick user interface.

We heard your pains in deploying SharePoint in your organization; Getting users to save content from their desktops into SharePoint and work on files in SharePoint was the main reason SharePoint deployments were failing or not succeeding as well as hoped.

Our major goal for the release was to drive better user adoption of SharePoint by delivering SharePoint content into Outlook in such a tightly integrated way that users could work with SharePoint content as quickly and easily as they could within their inbox or any other Outlook folder. We also wanted SharePoint content to just “feel” like Outlook content so that user’s stopped thinking about SharePoint as a system that was “out there in the browser” and rather think of it just as content that is “here and available on my desktop”.

So how have we delivered on such an ambitious goal?

Outlook Style View of SharePoint Locations

When a SharePoint location (Library, List, Folder, Document Set or Site) is selected on the left navigation of Outlook, the SharePoint content is presented in an ‘Outlook Style Interface’. This provides for a familiar Outlook experience for the end user when interacting with SharePoint.

This interface provides access to both SharePoint public and private views for the selected location. This includes all SharePoint view capabilities such as:

  • Columns – including Managed Metadata, Enterprise keywords, External Data columns, Lookup Columns and all the standard column types
  • Grouping
  • Sorting



Find SharePoint Content Quickly – Filtering, Sorting, Searching

When viewing SharePoint content you can instantly filter (per character filtering as you type), advanced filtering operations, instant sort on columns.


Searching SharePoint content quick and easy, search within a library or across whole site collections directly within Outlook with hit highlighting and embedded preview.


Preview of SharePoint Content Embedded within Outlook

Providing SharePoint content in an “Outlook Style” that allows user to locate content quickly is awesome, but how do I know I’ve found the right file? PREVIEW. Yes, it’s worth shouting about.OnePlaceMail delivers Email and Document Previews within the ‘Outlook Style Interface’. Where available, OnePlaceMail utilises the Office Web Application Server preview capabilities provided by SharePoint 2010, SharePoint 2013 and Office 365 environments to deliver highly efficient previews. Where Office Web Apps are not available OnePlaceMail will perform local preview of files.





SharePoint Content Ribbon Actions

Access to the selected document Items Properties is available using the ‘View Properties’ action on the ribbon or by performing a ‘right-click’ on an item. The View Item Properties page allows you to further edit the item and initiate workflows.


The ‘Email as Link’ provides the ability to insert links direct to the document(s) or to the Item Properties. If the ‘Document ID’ feature has been enabled on SharePoint 2010 or SharePoint 2013, the links will be generated using the Document ID. This will minimise broken links in the event of a SharePoint restructure or items being moved as part of a records management solution.


There are circumstances where sending content from SharePoint as an attachment is required. OnePlaceMail allows you to use the ‘Email as Attachment’ for one or more selected items.


What about SharePoint/Outlook 2010 and 2007?

It takes time to upgrade to the latest and greatest so not only have we managed to deliver this awesome integration in Outlook 2013, but it is also available to Outlook 2010 and Outlook 2007. We’ve also made it compatible with Office 365, SharePoint 2013, 2010, and 2007 (hosted, on-premise, or hybrid)


My experience of using it over the last few weeks

The impact this release has on SharePoint usability is simply massive. At this start of this release, and even a long way into the development cycle, I was looking at each of the individual features in relative isolation. I underestimated the impact that the combination of all the features would bring to the user once they were delivered in a single package.

I now find it just as easy (and sometimes easier and faster) to work with files in SharePoint than I do with files on my local drive – seriously. I’m finding it’s faster to click through a few files and have Office Web Apps provide the preview embedded in Outlook than it is to fire up Word on my desktop.

Finding content in SharePoint is now simple and fast, I just start the search from the most specific container I think the file might be in (e.g. a site, sub site or library) enter a few keywords and I get hit highlighted results back immediately from the SharePoint search index. I can then do client side type ahead search within the search results as well as sorting and filtering on file type and size. With live preview happening on search results finding content is easy.

During a manual testing session I was trying out opening content from SharePoint (e.g. email messages) and continuing working on them (forwarding, replying etc). I’d run through about 20 minutes of test script when I realized I was in a folder under my inbox and not a OnePlaceMail SharePoint folder. To me, this was a moment of clarity, we had gone a long way to achieving our goal. For the user experience to be so integrated and seamless that you forget whether you are working with content in SharePoint or content in your local mail folders is a fantastic result.  As a user I’m not overly fussed about where the content is stored (that’s an IT/Governance decision), as long as it’s easy and intuitive to get to and work with, the back-end storage is somewhat irrelevant.



Release 6.5 is available to download immediately from the OnePlaceMail website.


Other Resources

Official OnePlaceMail Release 6.5 news article

Official OnePlaceMail Release 6.5 highlights document (PDF)

OnePlaceMail at the HP Autonomy Information Governance Forum 2013 (IGF2013)

The theme of IGF2013 in Melbourne Australia was “Addressing the cost, compliance and complexity of big data”.

The main news out of HP Autonomy was unveiling their new electronic document and records management solution HP Records Manager 8.0. This represents the merge of HP TRIM, Autonomy Records Manager and Meridio Records Manager into a single product.

OnePlaceMail has had a long relationship as a companion product for those using the HP Trim for SharePoint module. OnePlaceMail effectively adds drag/drop capture of email and attachments and also provides access to electronic document and records directly from Outlook and other Office desktop applications.

My favourite tweet during the conference came from @goodgord

@goodgord: OnePlaceMail seems to provide the integration between SharePoint and Outlook that Microsoft probably should have built. #hpigf

Here are some photos from James Fox presenting “Microsoft Outlook integration with SharePoint and HP TRIM – encourage end user adoption”.


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