Configuring Calendar Overlay to Display Different Color for each Category in SharePoint Online-Make the SharePoint Calendar More Delightful and Useful

Calendar being one of the most significant feature in SharePoint. Most of the time to use it in a meaningful way, you need a little bit of customization. This article describes the way of customizing the color code of Calendar items based on a specific category.

Scenario: I need my calendar to show different colors for each category such as Meeting, Business, etc.…Once we complete all the steps, you will see a calendar like this which has different color for each category. The filtering option can be used to either default “Category” Field or you may create your own column with multiple choices as you need.

I have used SharePoint Online In this Scenario but it will be the same for On-Premise SharePoint as well.

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So let’s get in to the scene. First to create Views on the Existing Calendar. Office 365 SharePoint will already have Calendar by default even for newly created sites.

Go ahead and Create a New View by Clicking on “Create View

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To Select the Calendar View, Click on it

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Give it a name and drag to bottom of the page. In this case its “Meeting” so I will see this name when I’m configuring the Overlay at next levels.

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Choose the Filtering Option as you need it to be. In this case I will use the Category Filed to Color up the events so each Category will have a different color. First lets create a View for the Meeting category. Once selected the field and given the Value which you want to filter, hit “ok” to save.

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Now to configure the Calendar Overlay. Simply Click on “Calendar Overlay” Icon on the Ribbon

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It will bring you up to this page. Hit on new Calendar here (Not to be confused. This doesn’t mean you need to have multiple calendars here. It simply means you can have multiple calendars as well. also you can have multiple views in a single Calendar too) so in this scenario, we will have multiple views in a single calendar in order to define different colors for each category.

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Let’s create the first Overlay for the Meeting Category first. URL will be automatically inserted. If your calendar on the root site, simply click Resolve to retrieve the List and View otherwise define the path for your calendar.

This is where you define the View you created earlier. From now on, All items created under Meeting Category will be shown in Purple Color.

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If you have many categories, repeat the same process for other category items as well (e.g.- Birthday, Business). When you complete everything, the final Calendar will look like this.

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Control/Hide SharePoint Top Ribbon to an Specific Audience

Mostly in SharePoint Public Sites Scenarios, You will look for a solution where to hide the Admin Ribbon of the SharePoint Site. Basically the site itself should not have the Admin panel shown to anonymous users accessing from outside which can be only shown up on the level of permissions of the user logged in to the Site (Mostly Internal Domain Users)

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If you have developed you own Masterpage, this has to be done there.

To do this, Simply open the Site using SharePoint Designer. Locate your Master Page (which has been set as the Default) Find below two Controls in MasterPage.

Dont forget to Keep a Copy of the Master page before you start editing.

Master

Then Edit the PermissionString from its defined value (ManageWeb) to the new value based on your permission requirements. In this sceanrio it defined to “AddListItems” Value which is the new permission Level. from now on, the Ribbon will be only Visible for thoese who has AddListItems permision Level. To any other level it will be hidden.

In Below sceanrio, Anonymous User wont be able to see the Ribbon as it defined to hide for everyone does not have “AddListItems” Permission level. However you have to carefully look at the list of permission levels supported in “SecurityTrimControl” which has been listed below.

———————————————— Grey Bar (Ribbon Row)

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<SharePoint:SPSecurityTrimmedControl ID=”HideRibbonRow” runat=”server” PermissionsString=”ManageWeb”>

document.getElementById(“s4-ribbonrow”).style.display = “block”;

</SharePoint:SPSecurityTrimmedControl>

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———————————————— Blue Bar (Suit bar)

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<SharePoint:SPSecurityTrimmedControl ID=”HideSuiteBar” runat=”server” PermissionsString=”ManageWeb”>

document.getElementById(“suiteBar”).style.display = “block”;

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Once edited the Permission, simply save and Publish the MasterPage and test it out. if you have defined permission peroperly to your users, it will work perfectly.

Below are the full list of permission levels suported by the “SecurityTrimControl”

EmptyMask – Has no permissions on the Web site. Not available through the user interface.

ViewListItems – View items in lists, documents in document libraries, and view Web discussion comments.

AddListItems – Add items to lists, add documents to document libraries, and add Web discussion comments.

EditListItems – Edit items in lists, edit documents in document libraries, edit Web discussion comments in documents, and customize Web Part Pages in document libraries.

DeleteListItems – Delete items from a list, documents from a document library, and Web discussion comments in documents.

ApproveItems – Approve a minor version of a list item or document.

OpenItems – View the source of documents with server-side file handlers.
ViewVersions – View past versions of a list item or document.
DeleteVersions – Delete past versions of a list item or document.
CancelCheckout – Discard or check in a document which is checked out to another user.
ManagePersonalViews – Create, change, and delete personal views of lists.
ManageLists – Create and delete lists, add or remove columns in a list, and add or remove public views of a list.

ViewFormPages – View forms, views, and application pages, and enumerate lists.
Open – Allow users to open a Web site, list, or folder to access items inside that container.
ViewPages – View pages in a Web site.

AddAndCustomizePages – Add, change, or delete HTML pages or Web Part Pages, and edit the Web site using a SharePoint Foundation compatible editor.

ApplyThemeAndBorder – Apply a theme or borders to the entire Web site.
ApplyStyleSheets – Apply a style sheet (.css file) to the Web site.
ViewUsageData – View reports on Web site usage.
CreateSSCSite – Create a Web site using Self-Service Site Creation.
ManageSubwebs – Create subsites such as team sites, Meeting Workspace sites, and Document Workspace sites.

CreateGroups – Create a group of users that can be used anywhere within the site collection.

ManagePermissions – Create and change permission levels on the Web site and assign permissions to users and groups.

BrowseDirectories – Enumerate files and folders in a Web site using Microsoft Office SharePoint Designer 2007 and WebDAV interfaces.

BrowseUserInfo – View information about users of the Web site.
AddDelPrivateWebParts – Add or remove personal Web Parts on a Web Part Page.
UpdatePersonalWebParts – Update Web Parts to display personalized information.
ManageWeb – Grant the ability to perform all administration tasks for the Web site as well as manage content. Activate, deactivate, or edit properties of Web site scoped Features through the object model or through the user interface (UI). When granted on the root Web site of a site collection, activate, deactivate, or edit properties of site collection scoped Features through the object model. To browse to the Site Collection Features page and activate or deactivate site collection scoped Features through the UI, you must be a site collection administrator.

UseClientIntegration – Use features that launch client applications; otherwise, users must work on documents locally and upload changes.

UseRemoteAPIs – Use SOAP, WebDAV, or Microsoft Office SharePoint Designer 2007 interfaces to access the Web site.

ManageAlerts – Manage alerts for all users of the Web site.
CreateAlerts – Create e-mail alerts.
EditMyUserInfo – Allows a user to change his or her user information, such as adding a picture.
EnumeratePermissions – Enumerate permissions on the Web site, list, folder, document, or list item.

<

p align=”justify”>FullMask – Has all permissions on the Web site. Not available through the user interface.

Sorry Something went wrong, An Unexpected Error Occurred After Migrating SharePoint 2010 Site to 2013

The error itself describes nothing related as it is a common error. there will be scenarios where the SharePoint farms that you are planning to migrate having bunch of custmizations and third-party integrations. this is one example i’ve been facing recently.

The Site was migrated using DB attached method and whatever the Custom Solutions were sitting on the source farm wrere migrated to destination (2013) Farm too. there were many Web applications and many of them worked perfectly but not this one.

Prompts “Sorry Something went wrong, An Unexpected Error Occurred” when accessing the destination site URL.

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ULS Log is the god at this point.

Searching ULS through this correlation ID won’t give you the exact point here. Instead search through URL. At this point the error was occurred due to the Nintex Workflow Solution which is a third party WSP deployed and not configured. Retracting the two WSPs related to Nintex from this particular web Application resolved the error.

Nintex

This is the ultimate reason behind this error. This Home page has been using a Task list associated to a third-Party Solution. Web Part remains fulty unless the connection and licensing configured properly.

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Wrap-up: Any Cutom Solution used (only the ones used within your target Web application) in the Source Farm has to be deployed to the Destination farm. not only deployed and enabled but conigured for Connections and Licensing. in above scenario, the third-party solution was not licensed and neither configured as required which cuased the error in destination.

Anonymous Users getting authentication prompt for SharePoint List and Library access

Public facing sites hosted in SharePoint commonly needs anonymous access and that’s been there for quite long now.

Generic configurations are done from Central Administration and Site Permission Level but these steps will not allow anonymous users to have read access to all the content unless you specify.

  • Enable anonymous access in “Authentication Providers” (Central Administration –> Application Management –> Select the target Web Application) – All Scenarios
  • Grant rights to anonymous users in “Site permissions” -All Scenarios
  • Grant rights to specific library (in some scenarios)

but you will get authentication prompted when anonymously accessing lists, libraries or items stored in.

To have read access to all lists and libraries across the site, you also need to Disable the “Limited-access user permission lockdown mode” Site Collection Features. Deactivating this feature will grant anonymous users to access all resources across the site (which are granted for anonymous access)

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Workflow History : The email message cannot be sent. Make sure the outgoing email settings for the server are configured properly. Error Ocurred for SharePoint Workflow based Email Notifications but General Librray and List Subcribers Receives Email Alerts

Its pretty common error in the SharePoint Environments and there are many blog articles covers the same but this scenario is quite different.

This error is a common output for many reasons so it needs some effort to drill down in to the exact cause of this. Its states clearly that your SharePoint Farm is not properly configured for Outgoing Email but you are sure that you did and basically the List and Library Based Subcribe Alerts and Functioning.

The most common way of testing Outgoing emails in a Newly Configured SharePoint Farm is, by subscribing to a SharePoint list or a Library.

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Many of you may use this method to verify the OutGoing Email functionality after configuring and yet end users may still complain that Workflow Alerts are not firing at all.

Below are the Key Points that you need to verify on SharePoint Farm side.

1. Outgoing Email Settings of your Target Web Application is inherited from the Farm configuration.

Outgoing Email Settings of Central Administration (Farm Level)

CA Email

Outgoing Email Settings of Target Web Application (Web App Level)

Central Administration –> Application management –> Select Target Web Application –> Under General Settings Tab –> Outgoing Email Settings

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2. You can reach the SMTP Server and send a Test Email via Telnet to Verify the Communication Between SMTP Srever and SharePoint Farm

Check the Port Status  (If this Fails, You might need to check your Widows Firewalls or Organization’s Firewall for related port opening)

Telnet <Mail Server IP/HostName> 25

Send a Test Email  (If this Fails, You might need to check your Widows Firewalls or Organization’s Firewall for related port opening)

Open up Powershell and Run the following lines. Press enter on each Step to go ahead

ehlo mail.domain.com

mail from: intranet-spfarm@domain.com

rcpt to: spadmin@domain.com

data

Subject: this is a test mail

Enter

.

Enter

3. Checking the TimerJob Settings for OutGoing Email Service.

Generally you define the Preferred Server for Timer Jobs under the Web Application Database in Central Administration and it is well known. but there is no way to define a dedicated Server for specific Timer Job.

If you have multiple Server Farm, There is a Chance that you have configured fireall Exceptions for SMTP to a one server and Timer Job is running in another. In this situation, SharePoint Timer Job trying to send email from APP2 (Which has not allowed from Firewall).

Check on Central Administration which Server You have defined to run Time Jobs, If nothing defined here, It will randomly run on all available servers.

Open Central Administration –> Application management –> Manage Content Databases –> Select Target Web Application.

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Drag Down to the Bottom of the Page and Check the below

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Next is to Check the TimerJob History to figure out which server its been using to Send Emails so far.

Open Central Administration –> Monitoring –> Timer Job Status

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if it uses the Same Server that you have configured Firewall and SMTP, Must be all good. if not you might need to define the correct server under the Database Settings as above Step and set the Job Execution Schedule to Every 1 Minute to see immediate results.

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4. If all above steps are succeeded means that you have properly configured everytihng from SharePoint Side but one Last but not least thing to check is ANTIVIRUS

It is Normal any Organization genrally having Antivius Deployed for all Servers in order to implement protection.

Go ahead and Check if there is an Antivirus Application or Agent has been deployed in your SharePoint Srever (Which Runs SMTP Relay Service). Most of the time this could be Symantec ,McAfee or Kasperky.

Disable the Antivus Agent temporary and try to Run a test Workflow with a Single Email Step.

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Simply Create a New Library/List in SharePoint Site and Create a Basic one Step Workflow to Test Email Firing.

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If the above Three Steps are successful, Notification Must Generate Immediately and you are a Happy SharePointer !

Unique Permissions are No longer works after Migrating SharePoint 2010 Web Application to 2013

It is well known that SharePoint 2013 by default uses Claims mode for Authentication and Whenever we create a Web Application it creates with Claims Auth. SharePoint 2010 also had Claims but was optional for us to choose whether we want to have Claims based or Classic. If you had a Classic Mode Web Application in SharePoint 2010 and then it migrated to SharePoint 2013, you also need to Migrate Users specifically from Classic to Claims because you can no longer user Classic mode in 2013.

I had a scenario where an Intranet Site was Hosted in SP2010 and Migrated to 2013 which had hundreds of Libraries and Folders inside them with Unique Permissions. After the Migration from 2010 to 2013 using DB attached method, everything worked well until users start complaining that they are unable to see any records with unique permissions.

Checked the permissions using “Check Permissions” Option and something seemed to be wrong as all the users are not having their relevant set of permissions in the new Destination. It just the Read permissions granted through “All Users” Group which is NT All Authenticated Users.

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Migrating Users from Classic to Claims using below PowerShell Script Rectified the issue and everyone was able to access their relevant records as expected. checked the permissions again and it appeared all set of permissions which is looked like everything back to normal. We also need to ask every individual to check their content and functions to verify this.

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You can run this in any Server in the Farm and once it’s done, cannot be reverted back so better test it out first in a POC Setup. this will completely switch your all users from Classic mode to Claims.

 
   1: Add-PSSnapin Microsoft.SharePoint.powershell -EA 0

   2: $webapp = Get-SPWebApplication -identity "http://intranet-poc.abc.local"

   3: $webapp.MigrateUsers($true)

Bottom Line: Claims Based Authentication is an Essential Component in order to enable SharePoint 2013 with Advanced functionalities. If you had a Classic mode Web Application in SharePoint 2010 and you are planning to Migrate it to SharePoint 2013, Migration of Users is a Critical part of the SharePoint Migration. It is important to test the same in a Test Environment prior to the Production.

Notes: There are lot more details and scenarios when it comes to Claims Authentication. will put it over here as an detailed article soon.

SharePoint Granular Backup Failed and Site Went Inaccessible (Locked)

So you was thinking that site backup has no Interruption to the running (live) system ? Yes it is. I ran in to an issue where an Granular backup was executed through SharePoint Management shell while users were accessing the portal in SharePoint 2010 production farm.

Backup was terminated due to lack of space in destination drive and users are prompted with "Error: Access Denied Massage" which was in an extremely critical peak hour.

There were multiple set of backup jobs running parallel in SharePoint Shell and few of them were unable to complete due to lack of space. The person who was handling this closed all the SharePoint Shells and sites suddenly prompted this error to all users. Sites which are successfully backed up had no issues.

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Checked the Content DBs of particular Web Applications and they looks green as Database Read-only mode is "No".

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When Looking out for a possible reason, the "Lock" word came up to my mind and checked the "Quotas and Locks" in Central Administration (Application Management –> Site Collections –> Configure Quotas and Locks)

And Here we Go !. It was in the Read only Mode. Changing the status to the "Not Locked" Mode bought everything back to normal.

Site

It has put the site in to maintenance mode during the backup and since it was not properly completed, the status yet remains in Read-Only mode. So a good point to think before you execute any backups in SharePoint. Plan for a drive with enough space and off-peak hour.

This is the command line resolution for the same

stsadm -o setsitelock -url http://sitename -lock readonly

stsadm -o setsitelock -url http://sitename -lock none

Here are some good facts in terms of Backup and Restore Planning in SharePoint From Microsoft – https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/gg266384.aspx

SPSite Restore Fails with “InvalidData” Error (Restore-SPSite PowerShell Fails)

One of my friend came up with the Error on PowerShell during a Restoration of SharePoint Granular Backup to another Farm.

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————————————————————————————————————————————————————-

Restore-SPSite : <nativehr>0x80070003</nativehr><nativestack></nativestack>

At line:1 char:1

+ Restore-SPSite http://Source-Site -Path C:\bkp\SourceSite.bak

-HostHeade …

+ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

~~~

+ CategoryInfo : InvalidData: (Microsoft.Share…dletRestoreSite: SPCmdletRestoreSite) [Restore-SPSite], DirectoryNotFoundException + FullyQualifiedErrorId : Microsoft.SharePoint.PowerShell.SPCmdletRestoreSite

————————————————————————————————————————————————————-

After Checking all the Event Logs and Destination Databases etc.… realized that this cannot be an issue of the Destination Farm. Tried to backup the same Site Collection from source Farm via Central Admin Thrown an Failure at the end of the Backup job.

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I Always Prefer PowerShell for SharePoint Administration because that’s the ultimate tool to get almost anything done when we stuck on UI. before finding the root cause for this failure through UI, made it to PowerShell since the Destination restoration was a urgent thing to do. If You face the same, Use Below Shell Line to Execute a Granular Site Collection Backup.

Backup-SPSite http://SourceSiteURL -Path "C:\site.bak"

This Ran very well and realized the size of the .bak file is pretty large than the one came out with errors through UI.

Used the New backup file to Restore and it went like a Charm. Making sure on the success result at the end of a backup job will save your day…

Extract Farm Solutions from SharePoint

Seems you are directed to here from a Search Engine!

Yes you can simply use PowerShell to extract your Farm solutions a bulk. there were some .exe s also does the same but for me it was more easy to use this smart little Shell Script. Every SharePoint Guy one day will face an Migration, this little guy is a very useful and reliable one.

Run PowerShell ISE as Admin and run below Lines. use first three Lines to Extract from the source Farm and last few lines are for Destination Farm use.

   1: #Extract Solutions from Source farm 

   2: Add-PSSnapin Microsoft.SharePoint.PowerShell

   3: $farm = Get-SPFarm

   4: $farm.Solutions | ForEach-Object{$_.SolutionFile.SaveAs("c:\export\" + $_.SolutionFile.name)}</p>

   5:  

   6: #Add Solution to Another Farm 

   7: <p style="padding-left: 30px;">Add-PSSnapin Microsoft.SharePoint.PowerShell

   8: $files = Get-ChildItem "c:\install\"

   9: ForEach ($file in $files) {Add-SPSolution $file.FullName}

Sample (Change the ‘Save as’ Folder as you wish)

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Configuring Outgoing Email for Various SharePoint Environments

Configuring Outgoing email for a SharePoint Farm is one of the core thing to be done after the initial SharePoint Deployment and Configurations. You can use an Internal Mail Server or simply relay to an external Services such as Hotmail or Gmail. We will go through both ways in this Article. No purpose of referring to an External Service if you got a Mail Server in premise (e.g. – Exchange Server). Developers always prefer to use free Services like Gmail or Hotmail since having a Mail Server set up as a virtual is something consumes resources.

Scenarios

  • Using External Services (Mostly Used for Testing Purposes by Developers)
  • Using In Premise Mail Server
  • Standalone and Multi Server Farms

Initial Common Steps (Ignore if you have SMTP and IIS 6.0 Roles and features Installed and go directly to Scenarios below)

To Install SMTP Services in SharePoint Server, Open Server Manager and go to Add Roles and Features. My server in this scenario is 2012, if yours is 2008 or earlier you may do the same from Control Panel –> Programs and Features.

Go to Add Roles and Features.

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Click Next until you get the ‘Select Features’ tab. Select the SMTP Server There. Choose Telnet Client too, you will need it to test the connectivity to SMTP Services Later.

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Below Tab will be prompted. Simply click ‘Add’ to it. SMTP Server is usually managed from IIS 6 Interface so let it install all the required components there. Click next after the selection and it will be completed in a minutes.

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Once Installation is done, Go to Start menu and type IIS, find the old IIS Icon which comes as second item in results. Click and it will launch the IIS 6.0 Manager.

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Meanwhile Let’s go to Services of SharePoint Server (Open Run and type ‘services.msc’ and Enter) and find SMTP Service then make the Startup mode to ‘Automatic’ from ‘Manual’.

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Above Steps are the common ones for any scenario.

Scenario A – Configuring Outgoing Email for SharePoint with External Service

Once you launched the IIS 6.0 it will load below Snap in.

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Right click on the Virtual Server Name [SMTP Virtual Server #1] and get the Properties of it.

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General Tab – Nothing to do here

Access Tab. Under Authentication, Enable Anonymous and Click OK.

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Connection: Choose All except list below under connection. You can also specify the Server here by choosing the first option so that would be more secure.

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Relay: here also the second option for me. You can specify the server too.

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Massage Tab – Nothing to do here for now. You can simply customize by defining limits based on the requirements.

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Delivery Tab – Set the Outbound Security here. Choose ‘Basic Authentication’ and define the Account details which will be used to connect to particular SMTP Server (External). Enable TLS encryption and click OK to save.

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Outbound Connection: I have No changes here. The default Port is 25 and you have to adjust based on the Port Number used by your External SMTP Service (‘I’m Using Gmail for testing)

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Advanced: Define the FQDN of your SharePoint Server (Local Server which runs SMTP Service) and check DNS to validate the name. Set the name of your external SMTP Service under the ‘Smart Host’ field. (Gmail – smtp.gmail.com | Hotmail – smtp.live.com etc…)

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You can leave rest of the things such as ‘LDAP Routing’, ‘Security’ with Defaults and enable as and when requires.

Let’s Open up IIS Manager which hosts our SharePoint Web Applications (IIS 7/8). Point to Relevant Web application which we will be using Outgoing Email in SharePoint. Click on the ‘SMTP E-Mail’ Feature.

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Define it to use ‘Local Host’ and Save.

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That’s it from IIS 6.0 Panel. Let’s Open up SharePoint Central Administration to do the last thing. Point to ‘System Settings’ –> Configure Outgoing Email Settings’ under Email and Test Category.

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Define the

  • Outbound SMTP Server (Local SharePoint Server which we enabled SMTP Services)
  • From and Reply to Addresses
  • Character Set with Defaults

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That’s all on Configurations. Do a IIS Reset before we test the functionality.

Testing of Functionality.

You can either Set an Alert to a Library and if it’s sent we are good.

Login using an Account which has an Valid Email address. Create a test Library and go to Library Settings and ‘Set Alert on This library’.

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It will prompt below snap in. it shows the Email address of the particular user. Click OK to save with default settings. Default settings will send an alert immediately based on any change you are doing to this library.

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It will create the initial Alert right after the enabling. This Proves that Outgoing Email is now Functioning Well !

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Or else the other way is to Create a Simple Workflow to fire a Mail based on a Record (or something). This is a nice way to test it out. Would be robust than the alert.

Open SharePoint Designer and create a Two Step Simple Workflow like below to test.

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Upload a sample Item and Start the Workflow.

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This will trigger the mail immediately.

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Scenario B – Configuring Outgoing Email for SharePoint with In Premise Mail Server.

In This scenario, SharePoint Server will relay all the outbound mail traffic to Organization’s Mail Server which may be Exchange Server.

Nothing much but only below few changes you should do after the common Configurations done.

In SMTP Server ‘Delivery’ Tab. Enable ‘Anonymous Access’ under ‘Outbound Security’

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Also the Internal Mail Server Name in the ‘Advanced’ Settings

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Scenario C: Deal With Standalone and Server Farms

Standalone: In The Central Administration, You can point to Local SharePoint Server in the Single Server Scenarios. Do not point to the Smart Host from Central Admin.

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Server Farm: having SMTP Service installed and configured in one of the Frontend Server would do. Make it available in all WFE Servers if you have multiple with Load balanced so that SMTP Service will still work even if any WFE goes down in case.

Point in to the Smart Host in Server Farm Scenarios. Do not point to the Local Server

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Important Troubleshooting Steps

1. If you are not getting any mails yet, Check the Junk Folder too, sometimes it goes there under the untrusted category

2. Keep Monitoring the Queue Folder (C:\inetpub\Mailroot\Queue) if the mails are queuing here, you got a point to check.

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3. Sometimes External Service vendors may have changed the port for SMTP for security purposes. Check the connectivity using Telnet. This is why we install Telnet service too when we installed SMTP. Open PowerShell as Admin and run below lines (customize with Name and Port)

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If it connects Like below, we are Cool here. Otherwise you got a point to check, may be the port number of Firewalls you have.

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Notes:

  1. All Above Configurations are Identical for both SharePoint 2010 and 2013.
  2. Also There’s No single Edition wise Difference (Foundation, Standard, Enterprise). all the steps are common for all Editions of SharePoint.