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I have about 125 custom columns that I want to use on a different SharePoint site. Is there a way to do that without re-entering all the column definitions? In a perfect world, I could do some sort of XML output, then re-import that to the new site. However, the world's not perfect (as far as I know, at least), and I'm trying to gauge how much work I have ahead of me.

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up vote 2 down vote accepted
  1. In Visual Studio 2010 it is possible to generate the XML per field or list by using the Server Explorer Window after creating a new SharePoint site connection.
  2. Also Waldek M. has a tool called ImTech Fields Explorer ( that would allow export of fields as XML

Hope it helps, C:\Marius

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You can save a list as a template with content, save the template locally and upload it to another site collection to provision new lists off of.

I am wondering though if the managed metadata columns operate like Lookup columns when exported, they lose their values. We're just in the process of upgrading our environment to 2010 so I can't confirm that theory.

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Saving as a list template is the way to go. You would just add the template to your new site and create a new list from the template. – John Chapman May 8 '12 at 21:43

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