Are you ready for SharePoint 2013? Microsoft recently released the public beta of SharePoint 2013, and with so many changes it can be difficult to keep up. This is the first of a four-part series that provides a 35,000-foot overview of some expected updates and how they will affect various roles within your organization.
The series specifically focuses on major changes and how they will impact administrators, developers, designers and end users.
What’s New for Administrators?
SharePoint 2013 includes many new features, tools and functionality that every administrator will want to know about. Keep reading to learn more.
The software requirements for SharePoint 2013 are what you might expect. SharePoint 2013 requires the use of the latest OS and SQL Server software, which means no support for Windows Server 2003 or SQL Server 2005. You have to install SharePoint 2013 on Windows Server 2008 R2 Service Pack 1 (SP1) and must have SQL Server 2008 R2 with Service Pack 1 (SP1) or higher as the minimum version of SQL Server. And yes, SharePoint 2013 does support SQL Server 2012.
SharePoint 2013 has removed the In-Place Upgrades and only supports the Database Attach Upgrade process. Now, all Web Apps and even select Service Apps Databases can be upgraded using Database Attach Upgrades.
The Service Application databases that can be updated include the Business Data Catalog (BDC), Managed Metadata Service (MMS), User Profile Service (UPS), Search and Secure Store Service. This avoids the need for administrators to recreate and reconfigure these service applications when upgrading to SharePoint 2013.
Another new upgrade feature is the Site Collection Upgrade. Although the databases are upgraded during the database attach process, the site collections contained can remain in SharePoint 2010.
Previously, sites could be displayed in the SharePoint 2007 interface until the site owner or administrator upgraded the site to the new SharePoint 2010 user interface. Now, with Site Collection Upgrades, administrators and users can test the functionality of sites in a SharePoint 2013 site collection evaluation environment before completing an official upgrade of their production site collection.
There are a couple of SharePoint 2010 Service Apps that are not included in SharePoint 2013. For instance, there is no longer a Web Analytics Service Application; however, that doesn’t mean that the functionality of this app has been taken away. Instead, the functionality has been integrated into the Search Service App. Also, the Office Web Apps service application has been deprecated in SharePoint 2013, as it is now a separate product and no longer part of SharePoint 2013.
There are three new Service Applications expected in SharePoint 2013:
- App Management Service The App Management Service application allows administrators to manage SharePoint Apps. SharePoint Apps are mini apps that can be purchased if external to the organization, or downloaded if internal to the organization by end users. Each time a SharePoint App is accessed, the App Management Service verifies that permissions and licensing information is up-to-date before allowing users to access the app.
- Work Management Service The Work Management Service Application is another new service application that allows users to aggregate and synchronize tasks between multiple environments, such as Project Server, Exchange and SharePoint.
- Translation Service The Translation Service Application performs automated machine language translation. This makes it possible to create content in one language and automatically convert it to a different language. This service application works well with new cross-site publishing functionality when you need to propagate the translated content to a different site collection.
SQL Server 2012
SQL Server 2012 contains a new feature called AlwaysOn Availability, which is a high-availability, disaster recovery solution that can be used when using SharePoint 2013 with SQL Server 2012. In addition to the AlwaysOn Availability, SQL Server 2012 also has reduced input/output (I/O) when browsing libraries, which will improve performance in SharePoint 2013.
Seven SharePoint 2010 databases have been deprecated in SharePoint 2013, but there are five new databases added to SharePoint 2013. The databases that have been removed include four project related databases: Project Publish, Project Archive, Project Draft, and Project Reporting. These databases will be replaced by a single database called Project Service.