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Manage the Health of your Microsoft SharePoint Environment: Best Practice Reports in DocAve 6 Service Pack 1

By: Edward C.
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The Microsoft TechNet article, SharePoint 2010 capacity management: Software boundaries and limits, clearly points out the reality that exceeding supported limits may cause unexpected results, significant decrease in performance, or other harmful effects. In most cases, even operating at or near an established limit is not a best practice, as acceptable performance and reliable targets are best achieved when a farm’s design provides for a reasonable balance of limit values. Further, as Microsoft describes with its ‘equalizer metaphor’, increasing the value of one limit may decrease the effective value of one or more other limits.

To sum it up – there’s a lot to take into account when assessing the health and performance of your SharePoint environment. With Best Practice Reports in DocAve Report Center, IT administrators can understand the ‘As-Is’ state of their environment as compared to Microsoft best practices, proactively address concerns before they become a performance implication, and allow for setting up of organization specific best practices that utilize more than 20 various metrics at different SharePoint object levels.

Key functionality in Best Practice Reports in DocAve 6 Service Pack 1 includes:

• Report on limits and thresholds reached based on Microsoft best practices
• Create location- and organization-specific profiles to manage quotas
• Get alerted when threshold or near threshold values are reached

DocAve Report Center Key Functionality Diagram.png
As SharePoint deployments serve the business in a variety of ways, it is important to be able to adjust best practices for specific applications, content, or sites. For example, with content database size limits increasing last year from 200 gigabytes to 4 terabytes, it is essential to truly understand what the SharePoint deployment is being utilized for – whether it’s a general usage scenario with considerable activity and collaboration, or a document archiving scenario where there is virtually no activity, a handful of users, and contents are read only.

DocAve Report Center Threshold Profile Report Level Screen Shot.png

The threshold profile enables customers to set best practices according to organizational use at different report levels – including farm, web application, content database, site collection, and list/library. For each metric, the limit recommended by Microsoft is set as the default with the ability to set a threshold as a percentage of the limit or as a specific count as seen in the next image.
DocAve Report Center Threshold Profile Settings Screen Shot.png

Metrics include, but are not limited to maximum number and size of:
· Content Databases
· Zones
· Managed Paths
· Solution Cache
· Site Collections
· Application Pools per Web Server
· List Row Size
· File Size
· Total Documents
· Major Versions
· Number of Items
· Maximum Row Size
· List View Threshold
· Total Subsites
· Security Scope
· Total Users per Group & Site Collection
· Maximum Number of Groups to Which a User can Belong
· Maximum User Profiles, Social Tags, Notes, and Ratings

So now, this is where the fun begins. Why? You now have the data points you need to make intelligent infrastructure improvements to your SharePoint environment, and the muscle of the DocAve Software Platform to enact those changes. Are your content databases getting too large? Well then split out the site collections into separate content databases. Is your security model not aligning with the most current needs of your organization? Report on and change permissions in bulk. What if your site collections are getting bloated? Set up some archiving plans to thin them out.

So going back to the ‘equalizer metaphor’, in monitoring and actively managing the thresholds across multiple limits, you can increase the effectiveness and performance of the system.

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Date: 10/24/2012 Comments: 0

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