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So our client wants a Discussion Board, but wants to change the functionality and look 'n' feel significantly.

We want to be able to deploy changes via a VS 2010 solution (farm) and a deployable wsp.

In VS I created a new List Definition and set the BaseType attribute (in Elements.xml) to 3. I copied the contents of the file 14\TEMPLATE\FEATURES\DiscussionsList\Discuss\schema.xml into the schema file for my new List Definition (keeping the first List node of the schema file that was autoamtically created and then setting BaseType attribute to 3).

I changed the XslLinks to modified xslt files (deployed as per this question).

I deployed this list based on this definition and then created a new instance in Sharepoint. Created ok. The first issue ia that add a new items says "Add new item" instead of "Add new discussion". Then created an item (discussion) ok. Clicked on this topic and then tried to "reply" to topic. Form came up ok, but when I saved it I get

[COMException (0x8000ffff):    <nativehr>0x8000ffff</nativehr><nativestack></nativestack>]
Microsoft.SharePoint.Library.SPRequestInternalClass.AddOrUpdateItem(String bstrUrl, String bstrListName, Boolean bAdd, Boolean bSystemUpdate, Boolean bPreserveItemVersion, Boolean bUpdateNoVersion, Int32& plID, String& pbstrGuid, Guid pbstrNewDocId, Boolean bHasNewDocId, String bstrVersion, Object& pvarAttachmentNames, Object& pvarAttachmentContents, Object& pvarProperties, Boolean bCheckOut, Boolean bCheckin, Boolean bMigration, Boolean bPublish, String bstrFileName, ISP2DSafeArrayWriter pListDataValidationCallback, ISP2DSafeArrayWriter pRestrictInsertCallback, ISP2DSafeArrayWriter pUniqueFieldCallback) +0
Microsoft.SharePoint.Library.SPRequest.AddOrUpdateItem(String bstrUrl, String bstrListName, Boolean bAdd, Boolean bSystemUpdate, Boolean bPreserveItemVersion, Boolean bUpdateNoVersion, Int32& plID, String& pbstrGuid, Guid pbstrNewDocId, Boolean bHasNewDocId, String bstrVersion, Object& pvarAttachmentNames, Object& pvarAttachmentContents, Object& pvarProperties, Boolean bCheckOut, Boolean bCheckin, Boolean bMigration, Boolean bPublish, String bstrFileName, ISP2DSafeArrayWriter pListDataValidationCallback, ISP2DSafeArrayWriter pRestrictInsertCallback, ISP2DSafeArrayWriter pUniqueFieldCallback) +406

Although the item saves ok (appears after closing dialog with error and refreshing list).

So ... am I on the right track? Is there a better way to reskin the Discussion Board?
What could be causing my error?
How can I debug it?

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