This is the first in what I intend will be a series of posts on various verytactical aspects of implementing workflow in MOSS 2007. What will be talking about is code, not the strategic, big picture things like planning, requirements, usability, governance, etc. I will talk about those in other posts, but not this series.
So, why write about this at all? I mean, there should be lots of content out there in blog posts, MS documentation, tutorials, etc., right? Well there is content out there, but I found I had problems figuring things out, for a few reasons:
- Much of the documentation and examples are written referring to Visual Studio 2005 with the appropriate addons. While this is useful, and is pretty close to using VS2008, there are enough differences that it is a pain trying figure out what they are, when you are also trying to figure out what you are doing in MOSS, WF, and InfoPath.
- Many of the tutorials try to cover too many things at once. I like to have tutorials and examples that show one thing, in a very limited context, so that I can see exactly what is happening. I appreciate the need for and value of end-to-end examples, but I tend to need both.
- This is purely selfish – I am notoriously bad at losing things (actually, I am very good at losing things), including links to stuff I find useful. So, these posts are at least partially for my own benefit – if I write down the instructions in my own blog, then I should be able to find them (if not, I probably have much more serious issues to deal with).
So, to start off, I am going to describe my base environment, which will serve as the starting point for most of my examples. I like to always start from a known baseline for these kind of examples. I have a base environment, and if I am using Microsoft Virtual PC, I make a copy of it to work through a given example. If I am using VMWare, I use snapshots.
My environment consists of the following (all fully patched):
- A Microsoft VPC running Windows Server 2003 R2
- MOSS 2007 (Enterprise – need Forms Server)
- InfoPath 2007
- Visual Studio 2008
- Visual Studio 2008 extensions for Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 (version 1.2)
In this environment, I have created a simple Team Site. Within this, I will add lists and libraries as required for my different examples.
In my next post, I will walk through creating a very simple workflow with a custom Association form developed in InfoPath (I will do a custom ASPX Association form later if I get time.)