Just looking for some advice from the community - not sure if this is the right stack so someone just tell me if it needs moved...

I'm currently the support guy for Sharepoint but I want to learn more about dev - the only kind of web dev I know currently is PHP and my skills are quite out of date. Finding the various methods available for SP both on-prem and cloud quite confusing.

Can anyone give me some reccomendations/resources to get started with SP dev? Ideally I'd like to learn server-side first as that's what I'm most familiar with, but could do with getting to grips with client-side (REST et al) first, but have so far found understanding the concepts a bit taxing (obviously I'm more dot matrix than dot net...)

closed as primarily opinion-based by Aakash Maurya, Waqas Sarwar MVP, Asad Refai, Eric Alexander Oct 21 '16 at 13:05

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • 1
    Hi Thomas your are very welcome to ask questions on sharepoint. But unfortunately this question of yours falls in the category of opinion based, hence mostly it will be closed on voting basis. But keep in mind SP.SE is the best place to find solutions to a well researched problem. – Asad Refai Oct 21 '16 at 11:58
  • That seems fair, I had looked for a stack specifically for SP dev but there wasn't one. Seemed the easiest way to get some advice. – Thomas Gass Oct 21 '16 at 15:01
up vote 3 down vote accepted

Glad that I found someone with similar background as me here..

When the first time I learned SharePoint about, I thought of it as a platform rather than a product. So you could build custom content, pages, etc there.

Maybe the first part is to learn about Web Part (built in WebPart in SharePoint and custom web parts). One of great example with downloadable code could be found here.

When I started to build custom webpart on SharePoint (my first webpart was a simple table showing 10 recent documents from a doc lib), basically I just thought the lists and libraries as database tables (maybe because most of my projects are playing with displaying list and library items in custom layouts and formats), so basically you could do query (CAML Query, I found a great tutorial here).

After you are familiar enough with webparts, I think you will be started to be accustomed to the development steps, and maybe you will try another thing such as develop a Custom Application Page for example.

After starting development by playing with SharePoint webparts, list items and libraries, the next step I learned was the Event Receiver, which is basically code that will be triggered after a certain event (another great reference here).

The next step I learned was the workflow. It is not very capable as other BPM softwares, but it is pretty good and straightforward for simple tasks (I had only used SharePoint Designer workflow though). There is a good tutorial for SharePoint 2013 workflow here. Maybe after this part, it is good to explore more on Custom (Visual Studio) Workflow.

And that's all I could share about the SharePoint Development on my early days (of course maybe it is not the best practice, and of course I am still a long long way from mastering SharePoint Development), but in my case, it is pretty effective way to learn and develop custom solution based on my client's requirement on the early stage as a SharePoint Developer / Consultant / Whatever.

  • Thanks Andy, that sounds about right - CAML and Event Recievers sound like a good place to start. Totally agree re Sharepoint being a platform, I think this is what MS ideally want it to be with 365 (though I don't feel it's quite there yet as still has a lot of undocumented bugs and issues I keep running into). Already quite familiar with workflows in SPD but haven't had a chance yet to try any VS ones. – Thomas Gass Oct 21 '16 at 9:29
  • You're welcome. Hope that helps.. Can't talk more about the 365 because I still don't get a chance to play with that. Maybe after all of those the server-side things, you should also try the JSOM to play with SharePoint objects using Javascript. That's also pretty cool and convenient. – AWJ Oct 21 '16 at 9:37
  • Count yourself lucky you don't get to play with 365! I've had a brief look at JSOM before and it seems pretty good for client-side. – Thomas Gass Oct 21 '16 at 10:34

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