Alternative Solutions to the Deprecated Features in SharePoint 2016

Bill Baer from Microsoft disclosed several deprecated features of SharePoint 2016. But have no fear! There are alternatives to still use these features. The following is a list of those deprecated features.

1. SharePoint Foundation
2. Stand-Alone Installation
3. ForeFront Identity Manager Client (FIM)
4. Excel Services in SharePoint
5. Tags and Notes
6. Sharepoint BI capabilities
7. Stsadm.exe

1. SharePoint Foundation

SharePoint foundation was included in SharePoint 2007, 2010, 2013. It is the free version of SharePoint with almost all of the basic and core functionalities. But it is not available in SharePoint 2016. As an alternative, for users with limited requirements, there is a version of SharePoint Online that provides a limited feature set with a small associated cost.

2. Stand-Alone Installation

SharePoint Release 2016 does not support a standalone installation. Therefore, the MinRole approach is introduced in SharePoint 2016. If you are working as a developer, in a demo or test environment then choose the “Single Server Farm” role during installation. One important thing to keep in mind, when you use this option, you must install SQL Server yourself and then run the SharePoint Server 2016 farm configuration wizard.

SharePoint 2016 Single Server Farm

3. ForeFront Identity Manager Client (FIM)

In earlier versions of SharePoint, ForeFront Identity Manager (FIM) Client was used to synchronize Active Directory and SharePoint. But SharePoint 2016 does not use FIM for synchronization. Instead, Active Directory Import is used for this purpose. You can also use a third party software or Microsoft Identity Manager 2016 (to be released) for identity synchronization.

4. SharePoint Designer?

Similarly, there will not be a new version of SharePoint Designer for SharePoint 2016. You must be wondering:

How will I write workflow?

How do I brand my stuff?

But don’t worry, it’s not DEAD.  You will still be able to use SharePoint Designer 2013 (don’t forget SP1) to open and configure/customize your SharePoint 2016 sites.  The core features around sites, lists, libraries, branding elements ( i.e. master pages, page layouts, BCS) and workflows aren’t changing.  Will this get replaced by functionality in a Visual Studio free edition?  At this point, we can’t be sure if there will be a service to provide some updates or something else entirely.

SharePoint Designer

5. Excel Services in SharePoint

Excel and its related services are no longer hosted on the SharePoint Server. The Excel Services functionality is now a part of Excel Online in the Office Online Server Preview. If anyone is using SharePoint 2013 and upgrades to SharePoint 2016 then he/she has to deploy Excel online services.

6. Tags and Notes

In SharePoint 2016, you cannot create new tags, notes or use the previous ones, however, administrators can still use tags and notes by Export-SPTagsAndNotesData cmdlet. Simply run this command “Export-SPTagsAndNotesData -Site <> -FilePath <”

<> is the URL of an existing SharePoint root site

is the name of file that you want to export

7. SharePoint BI Capabilities

SQL Server 2014 Power Pivot and Power View add-ins can no longer be used in SharePoint server 2016 unless they are the most up-to-date versions. To use these functionalities you have to upgrade to SQL Server 2016 CTP 3.1. The following features are available when you upgrade to SQL Server 2016 CTP 3.1

  • Scheduled Data Refresh
  • Using another workbook's Data Model as a data source
  • Power View reports (standalone or embedded in Excel workbooks)
  • Power View Subscriptions and Report Alerting Power Pivot Management Dashboard
  • BISM Link support

8. Stsadm.exe

Stsadm.exe will soon be removed by Microsoft as an effort to push Windows PowerShell for all command-line administrative tasks.

To learn more about any of these deprecated features or any of the new and exciting features included in SharePoint 2016, please feel free to contact us by filling out the form below.

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