I thought this would be easy

  • I should have known better.


    I am really as system admin/DBA type and not really a developer but I know enough to be dangerous. When a mini-project came in to make some minor tweaks on a SharePoint site publishing site, I figured I could handle that. They wanted some CSS changes, a new master page, a handful of page layouts, and a couple of site columns to categorize and sort things. It was pretty basic, classic, publishing portal.


    The master page and CSS stuff took a couple of days – mostly because of the back and forth e-mails but I got things looking the way I wanted them to. Then I combine their document libraries and add two site columns “Portal Topics” and “Portal Sub-Topics”. I used those two columns to sort everything on the site.


    I used a new content type with the two site columns to create a new landing page and top-level topic pages. I dropped in all the web parts, banner stuff, and filtered views. Even setup the submit/approval/publish workflow. Things are looking good.


    Then, I created a page layout for the sub-topics. Odd... the drop down control for “Portal Sub-topics” doesn’t render in my page when I go to “Edit Page”. I figure I must have missed something so I’m checking everything I can think of. The site column shows in every other object. I can even see it on the “Edit Properties” view of the page but I want this to show up right on the page so that people can find it.


    I do some Google searches, ask around to some of the real dev guys, and crack open some of the SharePoint books lying around. Nothing comes of that. I create a site column called “test” and it works perfectly. And then, the light dawns...


    The hyphen… something about the drop down control doesn’t like the f*uckin’ hyphen. Every other part of SharePoint can handle the hyphen but noooooo, the one part I want to use can’t handle the hyphen. I can handle spaces but can’t handle a goddamned hyphen. Now I have to figure out the best way to handle this... after a beer or two... or six or seven, actually...


    Why didn't I just say no when they asked if I could do this?

  •  Um...


  • If that does not work, using the unicode character 8208 (0x2010) (hyphen) as a replacement would be another thing to try (inserted literally by selecting from the character map or by escape sequence).

  • @Ex-Navy Dude said:

    “Portal Sub-topics”
    => "Portal Sub Topics" or "Portal Subtopics"?

  •  Ahhh... Sharepoint. In my friend's words, "the very best thing since Chinese water torture."

  • @bjolling said:

    @Ex-Navy Dude said:

    “Portal Sub-topics”
    => "Portal Sub Topics" or "Portal Subtopics"?

    I wish it was that simple, but I it won't let me change it via the stock admin pages. And of course, SharePoint buries all of it's configurations is several different databases so I'm not sure what I could break if I mess with it directly...

    I can add a new site column but can't delete the old one until I purge all references to it in all existing objects, then I have re-do all my views...

    Or I wait until someone with more experience on the team gets back from vaction.... yep... time for more beer. Should have just stayed away from this one.

Log in to reply

Looks like your connection to What the Daily WTF? was lost, please wait while we try to reconnect.