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Thursday, July 7, 2011

Sandboxed Solutions and Form Solutions in Sharepoint 2010

SandBox Solutions 
Although SharePoint enables end users to customize their SharePoint sites to a certain degree, some customizations can only be made by deploying custom code and custom assets to the server via a solution. However, only a farm administrator has the ability to deploy a solution to the farm. In some cases, farm administrators don ’ t have the available time to deploy solutions in a timely manner, leaving end users frustrated that their solutions are not being

deployed as quickly as they would like. Furthermore, if a solution is deployed globally, particular features could become available to all site collections across the farm. This could be undesirable, especially in environments with hundreds or thousands of site collections, and especially in hosted environments in which one site - collection owner should be unaware of any activity in any other site collection on the server.

 
What Are Sandboxed Solutions?

SharePoint 2010 has introduced the concept of sandboxed solutions. A sandboxed solution is one  that can be uploaded to a specifi c site collection by a site - collection administrator using a browser.

By providing this functionality, site administrators are no longer required to wait for their farm administrator to deploy their solution because they can do it themselves. In addition, sandboxed solutions are applied only to the site collection to which they have been uploaded. 

No other site collection has any knowledge of the solution ’ s existence, just as another site collection would not be aware that a document had been uploaded to a document library in another site collection.

As great an idea as this might seem, because solutions deployed this way are not required to go through a thorough vetting process this approach could cause havoc in a farm for several reasons:

A single solution deployed to a single site collection could potentially consume so many server resources that it bogs down the entire server. Because the farm administrator isn ’ t necessarily aware of the sandboxed solution ’ s existence (it was uploaded without his knowledge), he would not immediately know why his server was performing slowly. It could potentially take some time to fi gure out the source of the problem.

A malicious or clumsy programmer could write code inside a solution that accesses objects in the farm, such as other site collections or even web applications. 

A sandboxed solution deployed without a farm administrator ’ s consent could potentially delete web applications and otherwise bring down the farm.
Microsoft has provided a solution to each of these problems:

Farm administrators can specify a threshold of server resources (a combined value that takes into account things like CPU and memory usage) that a site collection ’ s sandbox can use. 

Once that threshold has been met in a particular site collection, all the sandboxed solutions in that site will be turned off for the rest of day. (Clearly, this is a stop - gap measure to protect the server. The goal is for your solutions to not consume so many resources that they exceed that quota in a day.)

Sandboxed solutions do not run with full trust in the web application; instead, they run with a custom code access policy that grants them minimal permissions.

A limited API is available to sandboxed solutions, eliminating the ability for sandboxed solutions to access anything in the object model above the site collection (such as the web application or farm objects), or allowing code in sandboxed solutions to run with elevated privileges. 

Sandboxed solutions cannot deploy any files to the SharePoint root folder, and they cannot deploy objects such as site definitions and workflows.

Note: It is possible to get around some of the limitations of a sandboxed solution by writing a custom full trust proxy, then consuming that proxy using the SPUtility.ExecuteRegisteredProxyOperation method.

 
When a sandboxed solution is deployed, any features associated with it are automatically activated.


A Comparison of Farm and Sandboxed Solutions



FARM
SANDBOXED
Assemblies are placed in the GAC or in the Bin directory of a SharePoint web application.
Assemblies placed in the GAC are fully trusted, whereas assemblies placed in the bin directory of a web application can be partially trusted.
Assembly execution takes place in the webServer process (w3wp.exe).
Any assemblies associated with a solution are extracted, kept in memory, and executed within a special worker process called
SPUCWorkerProcess.exe.
This isolates the execution of sandboxed solutions from the
Operations of the underlying web process.
Solutions must be installed and deployed by a farm administrator
Solutions can be installed and  deployed by asite administrator
There are no limitations on which SharePoint classes and objects can be used in farm solution Assemblies.
Developers must leverage a subset of theSharePoint API when developing sandboxedSolutions.
Solutions will use however many server resources are necessary
Farm administrators have the ability to throttleThe server resources used by a given solution.



Sandboxed solutions are deployed to the Solution gallery in a given site collection. You can view the Solution gallery by navigating to the Site Settings page in the root site of the site collection, then clicking the Solutions link under the Galleries heading.


SandboxedSolutions.ps1 using Powershell


Add-SPUserSolution -LiteralPath C:\Solutions\MySolution.wsp

-Site http://sitename


Install-SPUserSolution -Identity MySolution.wsp

-Site http://sitename


Uninstall-SPUserSolution -Identity MySolution.wsp

-Site http://sitename


Remove-SPUserSolution -Identity MySolution.wsp

-Site http://sitename


Update-SPUserSolution -Identity MySolution.wsp

-Site http://sitename -ToSolution MySolutionV2.wsp

Get-SPUserSolution -Identity MySolution.wsp -Site http://sitename

Form Solutions

Farm solutions cannot be installed using a browser the way that sandboxed solutions can be.

Instead, PowerShell is needed. To install a farm solution, use the Install - SPSolution PowerShell command. This will add the solution to the solution store in Central Administration.To find the solution store, navigate to the Central Administration website and click the System Settings link in the navigation on the left side of the page. Under the heading Farm Management,click the link that says Manage Farm Solutions. This will take you to the Solution Management page.Clicking a solution in the list brings up a page for managing the solution properties. This page shows when and where the solution was deployed (if at all). In addition, the toolbar has buttons for deploying or retracting the solution. If the solution deploys globally, no confi guration is required beyond simply deploying the solution. Otherwise, the Deploy To? section will have a drop - down list containing the web applications in the farm. By selecting an item from the list, a user can select the web application to which the solution will be deployed. In the same way, the user can choose the web application from which the solution should be retracted, when applicable. Once a solution has been completely retracted from every location in the farm, it can be removed by clicking the Remove Solution button in the toolbar.As with sandboxed solutions, PowerShell can be used to add, deploy, retract, remove, and upgrade solutions.

Farm Solutions Using Powershell

Add-SPSolution -LiteralPath C:\Solutions\MySolution.wsp

Install-SPSolution -Identity MySolution.wsp -GACDeployment

Install-SPSolution -Identity MySolution.wsp

-WebApplication IntranetSite

Uninstall-SPSolution -Identity MySolution.wsp

Uninstall-SPSolution -Identity MySolution.wsp

-AllWebApplications

Remove-SPSolution -Identity MySolution.wsp

Update-SPSolution -Identity MySolution.wsp

-LitearlPath C:\Solutions\MySolutionV2.wsp -GACDeployment

Get-SPSolution -Identity MySolution.wsp

-Identity MySolution.wsp -Site http://sitename




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