SharePoint 2013: Some observations on Enterprise Search

August 13, 2015 - 16:44, by Steven Van de Craen - 0 Comments

I’m doing some testing with the Enterprise Search in SharePoint 2013 for a customer scenario and here are some observations…

Content Source as Crawled Property

The “Content Source” name is out of the box available as Managed Property on all content in the search index

This makes it possible to create Result Sources that aggregate content from different Content Sources similar to Search Scopes back in the old days.

SharePoint 2013 Search Query Tool #1

Meta elements (HTML <meta> tags) as Crawled Properties

Information from meta elements in web pages is extracted into crawled properties

Consider the following example:

Simple website with meta tags

After crawling this website with SharePoint 2013 Search it will create (if new) or use (if existing) a Crawled Property and store the content from the meta element. The Crawled Property can then be mapped to Managed Properties to return, filter or sort query results.

SharePoint 2013 Search Query Tool #2

Query string parameters as Crawled Properties

Query string parameters are not extracted into Crawled Properties

This was actually a request from the customer in order to be able to provide additional information regarding documents (on their website) into the search index. As I suspected it isn’t possible out of the box but you could definitely do it using Content Enrichment.

The “OriginalPath” is available as an input property for Content Enrichment and contains the exact url used for indexing the document:

Content Enrichment Input Properties

With Content Enrichment it is pretty straightforward to look for predefined query string parameters and then map them to output properties.

$ssa = Get-SPEnterpriseSearchServiceApplication $config = New-SPEnterpriseSearchContentEnrichmentConfiguration $config.Endpoint = 'http://cews:818/ContentEnrichmentService2.svc' $config.InputProperties = 'OriginalPath', 'ContentSource' $config.OutputProperties = 'MyParam1', 'MyParam2' $config.DebugMode = $false $config.SendRawData = $false Set-SPEnterpriseSearchContentEnrichmentConfiguration –SearchApplication $ssa –ContentEnrichmentConfiguration $config

More information on Content Enrichment from my SharePoint Saturday presentation:


SharePoint Saturday Belgium 2014 - Content Enrichment in SharePoint Search

April 28, 2014 - 15:06, by Steven Van de Craen - 0 Comments

Last Saturday I delivered a session on “Content Enrichment in SharePoint Search” on the Belgian SharePoint Saturday 2014, showing how to configure it, its potential and some development tips and tricks. Although it was a very specific and narrow topic there was a big audience for it. We even had to bring in extra chairs to have everyone seated.

If you missed my session (shame on you!) or you want to read up on it again, below is my deck and demo code.


SPSBE 2014 Content Enrichment in SharePoint Search



The demos showed the basic configuration, how to use WCF Routing to overcome the biggest limitation, how to debug using Fiddler by configuring the proxy, how to debug by attaching to the noderunner process, etc. The final demo would extract bank account numbers from indexed documents and store them in dedicated Managed Properties to increase findability when searching on one of these numbers.


Disclaimer: you’re free to use this code as you desire, but I’m not taking responsibility should it blow up your server or make babies cry.


Community Red heart

I think we can all agree that SPSBE2014 was a huge success. A big applause for the organisers, the speakers and the attendees for making it all happen. It goes to show that the our SharePoint Community is really great, so show them some love on or

SharePoint Saturday Belgium 2013 - Claims for developers

May 4, 2013 - 08:02, by Steven Van de Craen - 0 Comments


Last Saturday I delivered a session on “Claims for developers” at the 3rd Belgian SharePoint Saturday edition, focusing on Claims Based Authentication. It was great to see that there was a lot of interest in this topic, since it’s something that allows you to do some very cool things.

It was a really fun event and I am really proud to have been part of it! Kudos to the BIWUG people for doing all the hard work organizing this.



I promised to share my slides and the code I demoed, so here it is.


Claims for devs - SPSBE - Steven Van de Craen


Here’s the code package with the following:

  • Role Claims Provider – copies incoming “role” claims that aren’t mapped (augmentation), resolves a list of known claims (received from a web request) to the Entity Picker
  • FBA Login Page – additional functionality such as Reset Password (with Captcha)
  • Windows Login Page – when configuring dual auth on a Zone, use this page to force users to Windows Authentication
  • SAML Login Page – custom redirection to the STS so we can use a generic realm for our STS registration in SharePoint
  • SAML Logged In Page – Debug overview of claims for current user, can be used for updating SPUser
  • STS – Security Token Service with username/password, Facebook and Twitter login. Normalizes the user and provides custom claims. Contains custom redirection logic for SharePoint (generic realm)
  • SampleApp – Sample application configured for authentication delegation to the STS. Displays all claims in the token.

I can’t share the code for the Profile Manager (DB UI) due to copyright.

The package also contains some basic deployment steps.

Disclaimer: all code can be freely used and modified as desired, but I don’t take any responsability for bad things that might occur should you do so Winking smile

SharePoint Saturday Belgium 2012

March 1, 2012 - 16:31, by Steven Van de Craen - 0 Comments

Join SharePoint architects, developers, and other professionals on 28th April for the second Belgian ‘SharePoint Saturday’ event. SharePoint Saturday is an educational, informative & lively day filled with sessions from respected SharePoint professionals & MVPs, covering a wide variety of SharePoint-orientated topics. SharePoint Saturday is FREE, open to the public and is your local chance to immerse yourself in SharePoint!

SharePoint Saturday Belgium

SharePoint Saturday (#SPSBE) is organised by BIWUG (@biwug), the Belux Information Worker User Group.


Extra details and registration information can be found here:

See you there,

BIWUG October 2011

October 2, 2011 - 12:42, by Steven Van de Craen - 0 Comments

BIWUG is announcing another session about SharePoint on Thursday October 27th 2011 in the Microsoft Belgium offices.


18:00-19:00 Welcome with snacks

19:00-19:15 Introduction

19:15-20:15 SharePoint Governance (Speaker Patrick Sledz): Stop thinking about features features features when talking about governance.

When designing governance for a SharePoint implementation, a lot (not to say all) energy and words go out to technical stuff, SLA's and not to the things that define the business value. And the business value is not only a perfect technically tuned and performant SharePoint farm (if that even exists).

20:15-20:30 Break

20:30-21:00 The past, present and the future of BIWUG

During a seemingly quiet period, a lot has been going on behind the scenes. The result of all this secrecy will be revealed in the second part of the evening.

21:00-21:30 SharePint!

Of course there is also an opportunity to network, socialize and discuss the matter explained the previous hours... therefore SharePint!

Location: Microsoft Belgium Corporate Village - Bayreuth Building, Leonardo Da Vincilaan 3, 1935 Zaventem

Registration is now opened on the BIWUG site

See you there !