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Designing Effective Logical Architectures and Site Taxonomies. Dan Usher 26 June 2009. Agenda. Introduction Logical Architecture Taxonomy Project Planning Technical Requirements Scenarios Conclusion. Introduction. Who am I? Dan Usher Booz Allen Hamilton, Associate

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Presentation Transcript
  • Introduction
  • Logical Architecture
  • Taxonomy
  • Project Planning
  • Technical Requirements
  • Scenarios
  • Conclusion
  • Who am I?

Dan Usher

Booz Allen Hamilton, Associate

SharePoint Architect and Implementation Engineer

MCP, Security+, MCTS

  • Who are you?
where i ve been
Where I’ve been…
  • What environments have I worked in?
  • What have I seen?
  • What is this talk about?
what could go wrong
What could go wrong?
  • Logical Architectures skipped…
  • Site Collections gone viral…
  • Site Permissions are confusing…
  • Where’d my admin access go….
  • Information can’t be found…
  • Search isn’t working right…
  • System seems to be dragging…

Was this system intended for users?

what s a vision look like
What’s a vision look like?
  • What’s the context of your use for SharePoint?
  • What are you trying to accomplish with SharePoint?
  • Do you need to be able to aggregate and roll up data to dashboards?
  • Do you have a defined organizational hierarchy?
vision components cont d
Vision components (cont’d)
  • Are Workflow or Business Process Management tools a need?
  • Consider the context of your environment and requirements
  • SharePoint as a Service?
    • Small order of document library
    • Large order of Business Intelligence and Excel Services
    • Medium order of collaboration
stepping into contextual thinking
Stepping into Contextual Thinking…
  • Considerations, Tradeoffs and Compromises to meet the Context
  • Assessing the context…

…every situation has its circumstances

logical architecture and users
Logical Architecture and Users
  • Defines the underlying information lifecycle management framework
  • Impacts usability of information and experience
  • Defines process flow
logical architecture
Logical Architecture
  • What defines a logical architecture?
  • Why is a logical architecture important?
  • How can you really make use of a logical architecture?
  • What does a logical architecture consist of and look like?
what technically makes up a logical architecture
What technically makes up a logical architecture?
  • Web Zones (Intranet, Extranet, Internet, etc.) and Zone Policies
  • Different Authentication Models
  • Content Databases
  • Application Pools
  • Web Applications
    • Multiple SSPs
    • My Sites
    • Collaborative Team Sites
    • Secure Content Authoring and Publishing
  • Site Collections
Windows SharePoint Services Example


Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 Logical Architecture Example


how is your logical architecture affected by your requirements
How is your logical architecture affected by your requirements?
  • Extranet / Public Facing Website
  • Permissions models
  • Authentication Schemes
  • Interoperability with other applications
    • Silverlight & WCF
  • How you anticipate your users interacting with your platform
what is a taxonomy
What is a taxonomy?
  • Taxonomy is the science (and art) of classifying a broad range of things. Originally used to classify plants and animals – phylum, genus, species, etc. – taxonomy is now applied to everything from product inventory to web sites.


sharepoint s site taxonomy
SharePoint’s Site Taxonomy
  • SharePoint Farms
    • Web Applications
      • Collections of Site Collections
        • Collections of Sites
    • Managed Paths
    • Nesting Paths / Excluding Paths
  • Reflection of the Organization
  • Requires out of the box thinking
  • Federated Search
  • Shared Services across Farms
but do i really need a taxonomy
But do I really need a taxonomy?
  • Why not just deposit everything in a single document library?
  • Search will solve all my problems…
    • What document is authoritative?
  • End User Impact
taxonomy limitations
Taxonomy Limitations
  • Cross Site Collection Navigation
    • – Shared Navigation Provider
  • Content Types & Site Columns
  • Workflows
  • Security Groups available through a Site Collection
what about permissions
What about permissions?
  • Well it depends on the site taxonomy…
  • Inheritance and Breaking it…
    • …and re-inheriting it
  • Web Application Policy
    • Overriding all your other policies…
  • Defined in a Governance Plan hopefully?
    • SharePoint Groups
    • AD / LDAP Groups
    • Single Users
taxonomy logical architecture what s the bridge
Taxonomy & Logical Architecture – What’s the Bridge?
  • Site collections and their web applications
    • Site Collections root container for sites
    • Web Applications tied to content databases and infrastructure
  • The design goals for site collections in the model are to satisfy requirements for URL design and to create logical divisions of content.*


project plans
Project Plans
  • How does a project plan fit into logical architectures and taxonomies?
  • Or rather…
  • How does a logical architecture and taxonomy fit into a project plan… 
project plans26
Project Plans

  • Microsoft has a project plan for planning…
there s no turning back
There’s no turning back???
  • Critical Mass has been reached…
  • SharePoint has gone viral…
course corrections
Course Corrections…
  • Never too late to pin down a way ahead
  • SharePoint’s flexibility provides for change
    • Third party management and migration tools
    • SharePoint Admin Toolkit
    • Moving to Features rather than WSS v2 webparts
  • Migrate to a clean environment
    • Utilize a proxy for access
technical requirement considerations
Technical Requirement Considerations
  • What’s the vision again? What will the platform provide for?
    • Heavy Collaboration?
    • WCM Publishing?
    • Workflow Application Development Platform?
  • How much content will there be?
  • How will it be accessed?
  • What will be the level of usage?
  • Are we dealing with a cross domain solution?
  • Do we have SLAs to meet?
what are your limitations technically
What are your limitations technically?
  • Surrounding Infrastructure
    • AD
    • Network Capacity
    • Boundaries
  • Offline Capability
  • System Memory
  • IIS
    • Number of Web Applications
    • Number of Identity Pools
  • Number of sites / site collections
technical limitations cont d
Technical limitations (cont’d)
  • DNS
  • Authentication Methods
  • PKI / SSL / Wildcard Certificates
  • Network Interfaces / IP Addresses
  • Storage

It all ends up impacting the end user experience…

what s a good reference
What’s a good reference?
  • Planning for Software Boundaries
    • Office SharePoint Server -
    • Windows SharePoint Services -
scenario 1 requirements
Scenario 1 – Requirements
  • Small Organization (250-300)
  • Document Management
  • Collaboration
  • Federation
  • Low Budget
  • Information Rollups
scenario 1 considerations
Scenario 1 – Considerations
  • Taxonomy may reflect the organization’s natural divisions
  • Single Site Collection Use Case
    • Allows for the roll up of information easily
    • Allows for the re-use of SharePoint Groups
    • Shared Information Architecture
  • Works well with small numbers of users
  • Out of the box method…
scenario 1 potential solution
Scenario 1 – Potential Solution
  • Small Farm Infrastructure
  • Use of SharePoint Designer for Customizations
  • User Management Tool (USPM 07, DeliverPoint, DocAve, Quest, etc.)
  • ADFS for partner federation
  • Taxonomy using…
    • Single Site Collection
      • Rolled Up Information
      • Security Group Madness
      • User Training
scenario 2 requirements
Scenario 2 Requirements
  • Collaboration
  • Document Management
  • Workflow
  • Records Management
  • Large User base - 100k users
scenario 2 requirements but wait there s more
Scenario 2 Requirements – But wait there’s more…
  • Complex Permissions
  • Extranet Access
  • Smartcard Authentication
  • High Availability
  • Integrity of Data
  • AD Infrastructure - Security Groups
scenario 2 potential solutions
Scenario 2 – Potential Solutions
  • Integration of 3rd Party Records Management Solution
  • Third Party Wiki Integration (Confluence, MediaWiki, etc.)
  • Windows Rights Management Server / Information Rights Management Server
  • Epok for Extranet
  • User Management through AD or Third Party Tools
  • Large Farm Infrastructure
scenario 2 potential solutions42
Scenario 2 – Potential Solutions
  • SQL Configuration
    • Mirroring - remove the complexity
    • Clustering - better scalability
    • Mirror the data of the cluster - best of both worlds
  • Log Shipping
  • Third Party Mirroring Tool
  • Split DNS for internal and external accessibility
  • WCM System
  • 3rd Party Workflow Tool (Captaris, K2, Nintex, etc.)
scenario 2 considerations
Scenario 2 – Considerations
  • Typically doesn’t get planned overnight
  • May or may not reflect what an organization actually looks like
  • Best to plan it out with time
  • Start small capability set wise and grow…
    • Discover functional capability needs during initial roll out…
  • Don’t forget about your end user 
conclusion i
Conclusion I

Each SharePoint implementation project requires that you examine the contextual considerations of the environment and define a vision.

Defining such a vision will provide goals to work toward, to make your implementation both successful and effective to end users.

conclusion ii
Conclusion II
  • Your requirements drive your taxonomy and logical architecture...
  • Which in turn drive your hardware requirements...
  • If you don't know what you're going to use SharePoint for, start off small and scale your farm up as you go...
  • Crawl… Walk… Run…
conclusion iii
Conclusion III
  • What you start with on Day One isn’t what you’re going to end up with in…
    • Six months…
    • A year…
    • Day 472…

Remain Flexible!!!

conclusion iv
Conclusion IV

User adoption in and of itself will cause your environment to change…

…adapt to the context as it changes.

and that s a wrap
Follow me on Twitter – that’s a wrap…