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Please correct me if am wrong. I am trying to understand how variations work in SharePoint.

  1. I create a primary site in ENGLISH.
  2. I create its variation in ARABIC.
  3. I create a new page in ENGLISH site and write some content in it.
  4. After sometime the timer job runs and makes a copy of that page in ARABIC.
  5. Then I edit my ARABIC page and write content in it.

Is this how it works?

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That's pretty much it. – James Love May 23 '13 at 8:01
up vote 0 down vote accepted

That's the basics, yes, but a few more details for you (SP2010)...

  • Firstly this only works in Publishing sites, so you need that feature enabled.
  • The timer job (runs every 20 secs) will only push across published pages, so ensure your page is a major version.
  • The new page on the target site will be a a minor/unpublished version, awaiting your translation. It wont transalte the content for you unfortunetly (..coming in 2013 I think?).
  • The content types must be the same, but the target can having differing master pages or page layouts.
  • (and I believe it is difficult to turn variations off once enabled, so just be aware of this)

We found users were getting frustrated with the automatic propagation of pages, so we ran a PowerShell script to set it to manual, which allows them to force the propagation over when they felt a significant change to the content was made, as opposed to a typo fix. (I think there was an MSDN article on this).

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