Document management with SharePoint - part 4
Written By: Knox Cameron -- 10/6/2011 --
(78) comments --
Categories: Configurations, Design, Document Management, Programming and Customizations, Search, SharePoint 2010, SharePoint Foundation 2010
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Creating a parent content type
Once we have an inventory of the documents used in the product proposal, and
the templates used to create them, we can define content types for them in
SharePoint. We will create them under a "parent" content type, to take advantage
of SharePoint's metadata management and content query capabilities.
We will create the parent content type based from the built-in "document"
type, so it can be used in document libraries. To do this, select Create from
the toolbar in the content types gallery.
Enter a name for the parent content type (in this case "Product proposal")
and an appropriate description. Users will not be creating items of this content
type, so the description is not so important. However, when we create the child
content types, users will see the description on the new item menu in document
For the parent content type, select the Document content type from the
Document Content Types group. For easy administration, create a new group for
the content type, called "Product proposal content types".
SharePoint creates the new content type, and shows you a summary screen for
it. Here you can see that it has inherited two columns from its parent content
types: (file) Name from Document, and Title from Document's parent content type
Item. You can also see links to edit various settings associated with the
content type, such as workflows, information management policies, Document
Information Panel (the metadata summary panel that appears in Office) and
In this case, we will be assigning general metadata about the product proposal
to the document set later. Here, we only want metadata specific to the
individual item. In this case, we want to be able to show the responsible author
for each document, since different people will work on documents for a single
product proposal. So, let's add an author field. Let's also make both author and
title required so that we can use them in views. (The number of required fields
should always be kept to a minimum, but these ones are very important!)
To make Title required, click on its name in the Columns list. SharePoint will
show you some information about the column, and allow you to change it to
required, optional or hidden for this content type. To make any other changes to
the column you would need to use the link to edit the column itself. Select the
Required radio button.
Note that you also have the option whether or not to apply this setting to child
content types. In this case, we haven't created any yet. Select OK to apply the
setting and return to the content type summary.
Note that Title is now shown as required. Author is also a built-in column, so
select the link to Add from existing site columns. Select Author from the list
of available columns and click Add. Note that you can add multiple columns in
one go here.
Again, we have the option to update child content types. Select OK to apply the
By default, the new column is added as optional. To make it required, click the
link for the Author column and make it required, as we did with Title.
Both the Title and Author site columns are linked to the Office document
properties of the same name. Changes to their values in the document properties
in a document will be reflected in the document library, and vice versa.
Now we will return to the site content type gallery to create a child content
type for the first proposal element. The quickest way to do this is to click on
the breadcrumb control and select Site Content Types.
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