Tag Archives: SharePoint

SharePoint Service Pack 1 – Installation of this package failed

When installing SharePoint 2013 service pack 1 on a SharePoint farm, the extraction of the service pack kept failing on one web front end.

When clicking on the officeserversp2013-kb2880552-fullfile-x64-en-us.exe file, the User Account Control dialog appeared, then when I continued to extract the files, the process failed with “The installation of this package failed”.


Looking the service pack log file showed that some files were successfully extracted before the error.


In order to work around the error on this server I found I needed to open an administrative command prompt and then run the service pack.



SharePoint 2013 Content Search Web Part: One or more of the following resource files failed to load

When adding the Content Search Web Part to a site for the first time, the web part took a while to load, then displayed the error:

One or more of the following resource files failed to load: /_catalogs/masterpage/display templates/language files/en-GB/customstrings.js?ctag=322$$15.0.4569.1000


To look for the missing file I went to Site Settings, then Master page and page layouts, which is under the heading Web Designer Galleries.  On that page I navigated through Display Templates -> Language Files.  I could see that for some reason the en-GB folder was missing.


The fact that the folder was missing was odd because I’d used the Content Search Web Part before within the Site Collection.  Anyway, to resolve the error I created the en-gb folder and copied customstrings.js from the en-us folder and pasted it into en-gb.


Switching Language In SharePoint 2013

In SharePoint 2010 it was easy to switch between languages using the user menu within SharePoint.  To switch language In SharePoint 2013 open Control Panel -> Language and click Add a language.


Once you’ve added the required languages switch between them by moving the language you want to use to the top of the list.


Close and re-open your browser for the change to be recognised.


Re-Size The Distributed Cache Service In SharePoint 2013

When you install SharePoint Server 2013 the Distributed Cache service is configured to use 10% of the RAM on the server.  Half of the 10% is used for caching and the other half is used for memory management.  If you add RAM to the server you need to manually re-configure the Distributed Cache service to make use of the extra RAM.

To check the current RAM allocation run the command below from an elevated SharePoint 2013 Management Shell, replacing the server name as necessary.

Get-AFCacheHostConfiguration -ComputerName ServerName -CachePort “22233”

Distributed Cache Service 1

Calculate the new Distributed Cache service cache size for a 24 GB SharePoint Server as follows:

10% of 24 GB = 2.4 GB

Divide 2.4 GB by 2 = 1.2 GB

Convert 1.2 GB to MB = 1229 MB

Stop the Distributed Cache service on each host using Central Administration -> System Settings -> Manage services on server.

Run the command below from an elevated SharePoint 2013 Management Shell on one host at a time, replacing the cache size as necessary.

Update-SPDistributedCacheSize -CacheSizeInMB CacheSize

Start the Distributed Cache service on each host using Central Administration -> System Settings -> Manage services on server.



SharePoint 2013 Error User Settings Not Initialized

Following a migration to SharePoint 2013, one user had the error whereby every time they loaded SharePoint they were confronted with the error “Error: User Settings Not Initialized”.


In order to fix the error, open the User Profile Service Application from Central Administration.  Next, click on Manage User Profiles and search for the affected user.  Choose Edit My Profile.


Scroll down to the bottom of the profile screen and select Always use my personal settings and select the appropriate locale.  Next, tick Use language and regional settings.  Click save and close.


The error should now have been resolved.  You can go back into the user profile and reset the two options you just changed.

Resolving SharePoint 2013 VSS Errors With Veeam And SCDPM

Backing up a virtual SharePoint 2013 environment using Veeam and MS System Center Data Protection Manager 2012 SP1 (SCDPM) failed with VSS errors.  Veeam is being used to create VM image based backups and SCDPM is being used to provide SharePoint backups with item level recovery.

The Veeam backup failed with:

Unable to create snapshot (Dell EqualLogic VSS HW Provider) (mode: Veeam application-aware processing). Details: Writer ‘Microsoft Hyper-V VSS Writer’ is failed at ‘VSS_WS_FAILED_AT_PREPARE_SNAPSHOT’. The writer experienced a non-transient error. If the backup process is retried, the error is likely to reoccur. –tr:Failed to verify writers state. –tr:Failed to create VSS snapshot. –tr:Failed to perform pre-backup tasks.
Make sure VM does not have ‘iSCSI Software Target Storage Provider’ feature installed.

The SCDPM backup ran, but logged the warning:

Backup metadata enumeration failed

DPM could not obtain backup metadata information for SharePoint Farm Sharepoint Farm\%SQL_SERVER%\SharePoint_Config on %SHAREPOINT_SERVER%. If the data source is a SharePoint farm then a valid recovery point has been created. However, content databases from this recovery point can be recovered using the alternate location option only. (ID 3134)

The SharePoint web front end server had two VSS errors in the Windows Application Event Log:

Event ID 8194

Volume Shadow Copy Service error: Unexpected error querying for the IVssWriterCallback interface. hr = 0x80070005, Access is denied.
. This is often caused by incorrect security settings in either the writer or requestor process.

PrepareForSnapshot Event

Execution Context: Writer
Writer Class Id: {da452614-4858-5e53-a512-38aab25c61ad}
Writer Name: SharePoint Services Writer
Writer Instance ID: {e3f3a187-6600-4750-b96d-b5579dc09e9d}

Event ID 8193

Volume Shadow Copy Service error: Unexpected error calling routine RegOpenKeyExW(-2147483646,SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\VSS\Diag,…). hr = 0x80070005, Access is denied.

Initializing Writer

Writer Class Id: {da452614-4858-5e53-a512-38aab25c61ad}
Writer Name: SharePoint Services Writer
Writer Instance ID: {4d6e7cca-8810-41f2-a56f-ac87156c426f}

One of two SharePoint servers running SharePoint Search had one VSS error in the Windows Application Event Log:

Event ID 8213

Volume Shadow Copy Service error: The process that hosts the writer with name OSearch15 VSS Writer and ID {0ff1ce15-0201-0000-0000-000000000000} does not run under a user with sufficient access rights. Consider running this process under a local account which is either Local System, Administrator, Network Service, or Local Service.

Initializing Writer

Writer Class Id: {0ff1ce15-0201-0000-0000-000000000000}
Writer Name: OSearch15 VSS Writer
Writer Instance Name: OSearch15 Replication Service

When configuring SCDPM SharePoint protection you have to run the ConfigureSharePoint.exe command, see here for more details.  You provide this command with the SharePoint Farm Administrator account and this account is not normally an Windows Administrator on the server.  Event ID 8193 indicated that permissions were an issue.

In order to resolve the VSS errors, open registry editor on the web front end and search servers.  Navigate to HKLM\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\VSS\Diag right-click on the key and choose permissions.

On the web front end server I granted the SharePoint Farm Administrator account full control to the key.

On both SharePoint Search servers I granted the SharePoint Search and the SharePoint Farm Administrator accounts full control to the key.  On one of the search servers under HKLM\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\VSS\VssAccessControl, both the SharePoint Farm Administrator account and the the SharePoint Search were listed, but on the other only the SharePoint Search account was listed.  I added a REG_DWORD key under HKLM\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\VSS\VssAccessControl and set the value to 1 for the SharePoint Farm Administrator account.

Following a reboot of the servers the backups worked correctly in both Veeam and SCDPM and the Event Log errors disappeared.

SharePoint 2013 Certificate Error Causes Performance Issues

Whilst working with a SharePoint 2013 environment I experienced slow page load times and poor search performance.  After initial page loads performance was fine for several minutes before the performance issue returned.

Opening the Application log within Event Viewer showed the following critical error with the text

“A certificate validation operation took 30015.2428 milliseconds and has exceeded the execution time threshold.  If this continues to occur, it may represent a configuration issue.  Please see http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=246987 for more details.”

The fix for the problem is to export the SharePoint Root Authority certificate using PowerShell and import it into the Trusted Root Certificate store.  Open the SharePoint 2013 Management Shell as an administrator.

$SProotCert = (Get-SPCertificateAuthority).RootCertificate
$SProotCert.Export(“Cer”) | Set-Content C:\SProotCert.cer –Encoding Byte

Open the Certificates MMC by opening a Run command and type MMC.  Choose File -> Add/Remove Snap-in.  Select the Certificates Snap-in and click Add.  On the next screen select Computer account and click Next followed by Local computer and Ok.


Right-click on Trusted Root Certificates and choose All Tasks -> Import

SP2013Certs 2Complete the wizard by loading the certificate you exported using PowerShell.  Repeat the process on all SharePoint servers experiencing the issue.

These steps fixed the error on most of our SharePoint servers, but it remained on two.  In order to fix the error on the two remaining servers I configured proxy access through Internet Explorer, then from an elevated command prompt ran “netsh winhttp import proxy source=ie”  This configures Windows to use the IE proxy configuration as a default.  The servers were then able to access the internet and verify the certificates.


SharePoint 2013 SP1

SharePoint 2013 SP1 has been released.  SP1 covers general stability, functionality and security fixes including compatibility fixes for Windows 8.1, Internet Explorer 11 and support for Windows Server 2012 R2.  Power Map for Excel 2013 has also been released for general availability.  For further information on what’s included and download links see below.

SharePoint Server 2013 SP1

SharePoint Designer 2013 SP1

Office Web Apps Server 2013 SP1

All other server products and language packs

If you’re using Power BI as part of SharePoint Enterprise you’re probably using Excel 2013.  Service Pack 1 for Microsoft Office 2013 is available here x32 / x64. Power Map for Excel is now native to Excel for Office 365 ProPlus users.  If you have Office 2013 Professional Plus or standalone Excel 2013 you can continue to use Power Map Preview until May 30th 2014.  More information is available here and here.

For information on how to apply updates to SharePoint see below.

SharePoint Server 2013 prepare to deploy software updates, install a software update.

Office Web Apps Server 2013

Using The SharePoint 2013 Search Query Tool With Search Refiners

The SharePoint 2013 Search Query Tool can be used to query, test and debug, both SharePoint 2013 on-premise and SharePoint online search queries.  It’s available free from CodePlex here.  In this post I’ll show how you can use the tool to view a document’s refineable properties within SharePoint 2013 search.

For the purpose of this post I’ve uploaded a pdf to a SharePoint document library and applied a metadata value using a column called Document Type.


I’ve configured the property to be refineable and it’s visible on the search results page through a managed property called DocumentType. To find out how to do this, see my post here.


The SharePoint 2013 Search Query Tool is useful when you need to see what values are held within the search index.  Open the tool and enter a search term in the Query Text box.  Next, click the push pin next to Select Properties.  The Path, Url, Title and Author properties will be automatically added.  To show values for DocumentType managed property I added “,DocumentType” to the list (values are comma delimited).  Click Run to execute the query, then open the Primary Results tab.  For my test document you can see that DocumentType values are now displayed.


RSS Viewer Web Part Stops Working After Installing SharePoint 2010 SP2

Following the installation of SharePoint 2010 SP2 (KB2687453) I found that the RSS viewer web part had stopped working; the web part continually showed the loading image.


After some research I discovered that the issue was introduced in SharePoint 2010 February 12, 2013 cumulative update (KB2767793).  Some suggested fixes are listed on the SharePoint forums.

The first option is to add a Content Editor Web Part to any page with the RSS viewer web part and paste the JavaScript below into the web part in HTML view.  Although this works it’s not a realistic work around if you have many pages with the RSS viewer web part.

<script type=”text/javascript”>
function CustomUpdateFormDigest()
if(window._spPageContextInfo != null)
var $v_2 = window._spPageContextInfo;
var $v_3 = $v_2.webServerRelativeUrl;
var $v_4 = window._spFormDigestRefreshInterval;
UpdateFormDigest($v_3, $v_4);

The second option is to add the above script to the SharePoint master page, but I couldn’t get this to work.

The third option is to turn off web page security validation for the web application from Central Administration -> Manage web applications.  Highlight the affected web application and select General Settings from the ribbon.



Turning off web page security validation worked, but I was then unable to create any new sites or lists because I received the error “An unhandled exception occured in the Silverlight application SharePoint 2010.

I have just finished testing the August 13, 2013 cumulative update for SharePoint 2010 (KB2817570) and it appears to fix the RSS viewer issue without any side affects.