John Colasante

Hi,

I am fairly new to Sharepoint and I have a "conceptual" question. I want to set up a project management portal using WSS 3.0 (not portal server). I want to create a site where members of my company and outside contractors and clients can collaborate on projects using the basic features of WSS 3.0 such as document library, lists, discussions, etc. It's all there.

I understand it is possible to create a new WSS "site" for each project, with it's own URL, etc. But I'm going to have 10-20 concurrent projects with many of the same users on the same projects. It seems silly to have them log into different URLs for each project. I would prefer one login and a view to multiple projects.

It seems that WSS is designed for a project to be it's own WSS site. Does anyone have any suggestions how to architect my setup to allow users an experience of managing multiple projects using one WSS site

I understand this may be going against the "way of Sharepoint". But your comments are appreciated!

Thank you

JC



Re: SharePoint - Design and Customization Question about project management using sharepoint? Multiple projects.

andrew woodward

JC,
You are correct in you design however you need to distinguish between Web Application - which you authenticate against, and WSS Web Site which can have different permissions.

Create a new WSS application (which will create a Web Application in IIS).

http://mycompany.com

This application could have windows based authentication enabled.

Then create "Top Level Site Collections" for each of your projects from the central admin.

http://mycompany.com/project1
http://mycompany.com/project2
http://mycompany.com/project3

For each of the projects (via site administration) you can manage user rights, so for example user1 could be a member of project1 and project3.

When they first navigate to http://mycompany.com/project1 they will be asked to login, if they then navigate to project3 they will already be authenticated against the "Web Application" in IIS so will not be asked to login again. If they tried to access project2 SharePoint would detect that they have no rigths and would present an access denied page to them.

HTH.

Andrew





Re: SharePoint - Design and Customization Question about project management using sharepoint? Multiple projects.

John Colasante

Thank you Andrew.

I have a followup question.

If I wanted to have a login page that all users go to initially, say http://mycompany.com/projectmain and from there they could see a list of all projects, what would be the best way to achive that by "the Sharepoint way" Of course I still want only ONE login, not multiple logins for a given user. And a user will be able to access one or more project pages from the main page.

I have access to Sharepoint Designer.

Thank you.

JC





Re: SharePoint - Design and Customization Question about project management using sharepoint? Multiple projects.

immyj79

Hi John,

Not sure if you've looked into this yet or not, but another option would be to checkout the "Budgeting and Tracking Multiple Porjects" application template for WSS 3.0. It's a pre-built site template designed for use with managing multiple projects on one SharePoint site. You can also take this template and customize it to your own needs using SharePoint Designer. Here's some more info on it...

Template Name: Budgeting and Tracking Multiple Projects

Description: The Budgeting and Tracking Multiple Projects application template helps project teams track and budget multiple, interrelated sets of activities. The template provides project management tools such as project creation, assignment of new tasks, Gantt Charts and common status designators. It helps team members consolidate the status of multiple projects into a single view, tracking progress against a set project budget and timeline.

Links: Overview datasheet | Technical Datasheet | Download the Template

You can also checkout www.microsoft.com/sharepointapps to learn more about Application Templates for WSS 3.0 (there are 40 in all) and other templates for SharePoint.

Hope this helps!






Re: SharePoint - Design and Customization Question about project management using sharepoint? Multiple projects.

John Colasante

Jimmy,

I have seen that template and I will take a look at in more detail, but I have a hunch it is not really what we want.

I think it boils down to my requirement above. I want to have multiple project sites with a "main site menu" page that the users log into. And from there they can navigate to the individual projects.

I would be grateful if anyone can shed some light if this is a practical approach in Sharepoint.

Thank you.





Re: SharePoint - Design and Customization Question about project management using sharepoint? Multiple projects.

John Colasante

Anyone





Re: SharePoint - Design and Customization Question about project management using sharepoint? Multiple projects.

bmcmann

John,

It's tough to give you a good answer based on the brief description you provided - but here are some concepts I utilized for a client who needed a project management solution.

1. You'll need individual lists for the items you want to track on a project (team members, vendors, status, project, etc.) and you will turn these lists into site columns - so they are accessible across your site collection

2. You'll create a master projects list that pulls from these site columns. This list will act as your resource to create views specific to your business needs (by user, by project, by status, by vendor, etc.)

Note: I would enable content management on your lists as well so you can take advantage of alerting capabilites as well as workflow to let project managers know when users have updated information related to projects.

3. You then customize pages (web part pages) within SPD by combining normal web parts in web part zones with dataview web parts to provide a dashboard view of what projects individuals are working on, as well as views by any other colum you want to pivot on. Within the dataview web part you can also link the user to the display form or edit form where they can view more detail about the project they are interested in - or you can add in-line editing capability to the data view web part so users can make updates to a project from within the web part itself.

Basically, you need to identify what needs to be tracked per project, and who needs to see and interact with what information and in what ways, then you can go about building your solution. But the concepts I listed above do provide the capabilities for a user to go to one page and see all of the projects they are working on.

If you are going to do work with SharePoint, I would also recommend buying "Building Team Solutions with MOSS 2007" by Amanda Murphy and Shane Perran. They explain the differences between MOSS 2007 and WSS 3.0, and you get a better understanding of what you will be able to do with WSS 3.0 and SPD.