Office 365 Distilled EP 11: Unanswerable governance question – folders or metadata?

This episode took us a little bit longer, but the question behind using folders or metadata is just a burning one… that needs a lot of talk. Or it could be the irish whiskey that kind of tasted like a scotch..

SharePoint Saturday season kicking off! Marijn went to speak at SPS Warsaw (Teams etiquette) and SPS Brno (SharePoint conditional formatting).

6:10 Content is king, context is …

Marijn goes on a rant .. Where he ofcourse forgets the rest of the sentence.. In true “hanging out in a bar sense”.

6:30 New feature that makes you able to show SharePoint document metadata in OneDrive
Which got us talking about … The main question for today: do we put folders in document libraries ?

Do we use metadata or folders?

8: history in fileshares
Issues with folders :
– Bury knowledge
– Search is screwed
– Empty folders mean wasted clicks

11: max length
Even though we talk about 512 chars in windows, the limit is really 400 when you use SharePoint or OneDrive:
The entire path, including the file name, must contain fewer than 400 characters for OneDrive, OneDrive for Business and SharePoint Online. If you exceed that limit, you’ll receive an error message.


13: metadata is amazing!
It allows you to dynamically look at different ways to your data
Tiny issue: end users hate filling out metadata.

13:50: Document information panel
From SP2013 you had the document information panel, which was great to let users fill in metadata. We talk about the DIP, where Steve thinks it is still there, but it is really gone..

16:00 4 ways to migrate

Steve talks about the 4 ways to migrate content from a fileshare to SharePoint:

1. Lift and shift: take the folders from the fileshare and drop them in SP
2. Lift and shift: only the content with folder path as metadata field
3. XML file on the size with default settings for folders where documents stored in a folder will get the name as metadata
4. Lift and shift to a read only library – save it somewhere else with metadata
5. Search webpart that would only surface the right documents you want

But… Folders…
OneDrive offline sync uses folders… Teams uses folders.. So what gives?

33 the solution
Could AI be the solution in the future? Some kind of technology that would auto tag all our documents with a correct metadata set ?

Whisky: Tyrconnell

Steve found a bottle in the back of the cupboard and found this lovely bottle of Tyrconnell

Image result for tyrconnell single malt

Steve describes it as the closest an irish whiskey kan get to a scotch.
Color: crazy, light, fluorescent, liquid sunshine
Notes: icing sugar and green apple skin, with vanilla croissant, ash, whiteboard markers, honey
Taste: fresh, lively on the mouth, not overlee sweet, almonds and apples, oily thick liquid like a liquor.
This is a tasting whisky, elegant and sofisticated. Not one to chug away like a Lagavulin.

About: Marijn

Marijn Somers (MVP) has over 14 years experience in the SharePoint world, starting out with SP2007. Over the years the focus has grown to Office 365, with a focus on collaboration and document management. He is a business consultant at Balestra and Principal Content Provider for "Mijn 365 Coach" that offers dutch employee video training. His main work tracks are around user adoption, training and coaching and governance. He is also not afraid to dig deeper in the technicalities with PowerShell, adaptive cards or custom formatting in lists and libraries. You can listen to him on the biweekly "Office 365 Distilled" podcast.