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We're developing a custom SharePoint web part that will allow our internal corporate users to vote up/down items. for various reasons, we do not have access to a database to store the voting data. Our current plan is to use a custom list to store the data. We're not expecting huge traffic but this list could easily hold hundreds of list items.

We're accessing the list using jQuery and SPServices and then building the page on load.

Does anyone have any experience using lists in such a way and what are the potential gotchas that we should be aware of with regards to performance, list size limitations, etc...?

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

Hundreds of items doesn't sound like a big number for Web services. You should be fine.

Are you on SharePoint 2010? If so, you might consider using REST services instead. I haven't done any comparison, but Microsoft says REST services offer better performance.

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Yes, we're on SharePoint 2010 – Alison Nov 3 '11 at 13:34

As Christophe said, "hundreds" of items shouldn't be a big deal. You should be cognizant if you're using jQuery though, that everything is processed client side. You should do your best to optimize your script (only returning fields you actually need, as an example) to prevent longer load times or issues with clients that have less memory.

SharePoint 2010 gives you access to large list throttling to help elevate some of the issues of storing lots of list items (though we're talking about say 5,000+ items). That said, I'd never recommend doing a web service call against that many items anyway, especially not client side. A few hundred and you should be ok, much more than that and you should seek a more efficient way to do it.

The second question, as Christophe asked, is if you're on SharePoint 2010. If you are, then you can utilize the out of the box ratings and tagging capabilities of the built in social features vs creating your own approach that would (in that case) add unnecessary overhead.

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