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I have found a strange difference between our production and dev servers in the UserInformationLists. In dev the name property is called Name but on the production instance it's Title. Then the job title property is Title on the dev server and Title0 on the production server. What could cause this?

Just to be clear, this is the built-in UserInformationList and neither site has had customization of any sort done that would cause this. Allow me to amend that. Any customization that I could imagine might cause that. We do have many custom content types.

In the prod server the user objects are returned as:

{
    //etc..
    "Title": "Robert Kaucher",
    "Account": "dm\\rkauche",
    "WorkEMail": "Robert_Kaucher@domain.com",
    "MobilePhone": null,
    "AboutMe": null,
    "SIPAddress": "Robert_Kaucher@domain.com",
    "IsSiteAdmin": true,
    "Deleted": false,
    "Picture": null,
    "Department": "3.14",
    "Title0": "Programmer Analyst",
    "FirstName": null,
    "LastName": null,
    "WorkPhone": null,
    "UserName": "rkauche",
    "WebSite": null,
    "AskMeAbout": "SQL Server, Windows Server, Silverlight, C#, PowerShell",
    "Office": null,
    "Id": 1,
    "ContentType": "Person",
    //etc...
}

Then on the dev server as:

{
    //etc..
     "Name": "Robert Kaucher",
    "Account": "dm\\rkauche",
    "WorkEMail": "Robert_Kaucher@domain.com",
    "MobilePhone": null,
    "AboutMe": null,
    "SIPAddress": "Robert_Kaucher@domain.com",
    "IsSiteAdmin": true,
    "Deleted": false,
    "Picture": null,
    "Department": "3.14",
    "Title": "Programmer Analyst",
    "FirstName": null,
    "LastName": null,
    "WorkPhone": null,
    "UserName": "rkauche",
    "WebSite": null,
    "AskMeAbout": null,
    "Office": null,
    "Id": 1,
    "ContentType": "Person",
    //etc..
}
  • Are they definitely at the same release level? SPs, CUs etc? If you create a new site collection in each environment are they the same? – Dave Paylor Aug 16 '13 at 21:04
  • I verified that this is in fact the only site collection on the production farm that has this issue. I am not sure where to even begin looking. The only customizations are a few SPD workflow extensions, a single event receiver, and a few custom content types that were created from within SharePoint. – Robert Kaucher Aug 17 '13 at 0:47
  • Are they all off the same templates? Sorry if these are things you have already thought of . . . – Dave Paylor Aug 17 '13 at 4:43
  • The site collection in question has only the root site. It was created from the standard team site template. Our internal IT site was created from the same template. It is in a different site collection, but shares what I imagine is the correct schema in the dev farm/site. – Robert Kaucher Aug 17 '13 at 15:01
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Microsoft decided for some reason to have a predefined undeletable attribute (column) 'Title'. As this shows up everywhere (visible to the user) by default (if you don't suppress it, which you can), many people use this as 'Name' instead of properly defining a name field (which is bad if you ask me).

You / your programmer however defined a real 'Title' field to hold an actual title and a 'Name' field to hold a user friendly name (which is good), but which gives you a bit of trouble, as the Title somehow conflicts with the predefined title.

That this shows up differently on dev and prod machines is likely to be caused by some different configuration concerning these fields, so you might want to check and change the configuration in the production environment, because I think you did well concerning field names in the dev environment.

  • I installed SharePoint in both environments and made no customization regarding the user profiles in either environment. So I am at a bit of a loss to understand what this might be. Same AD and everything. – Robert Kaucher Aug 14 '13 at 17:06
  • Well, I was talking about a tricky SharePoint list issue concerning the way MS uses "Title", which might be the cause of the problem you see. I don't think this is caused by user profiles or Actice Directory settings. ... on the other hand, if you read this data from an AD, why do you want to store it in SharePoint? Doesn't make much sense to me at first glance. – PeterB Aug 15 '13 at 15:43
  • I don't think you understand. The UserInformationList is a built in list. Not a custom list. It is in all SharePoint 2010 site collections and returns the users and groups for that site collection. This is not something that was customized in any way. – Robert Kaucher Aug 15 '13 at 19:44
  • Oh I see. Then it needs to be some configuration difference between the two servers, sites, or site collections. Sorry I can't help you there as I don't have access to SP 2010 server. – PeterB Aug 16 '13 at 8:57
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It is just a display problem or do you have any problems with users in this affected SC? Can you add them to SP groups and their names are visible? Can you see user details in page footers or names was replaced by System Account? I saw similar problems during migrations and maybe I have no idea whats happening right now, but there is a way how to fix it, if you need it.

  • It is not causing any issues. I was just hoping to get to the bottom of it. – Robert Kaucher Aug 23 '13 at 14:44
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I believe this is just display name for fields which are different, internal/static names are probaly the same? Maybe the site collection was created earlier on some old SharePoint version, and then display names on that list got changed in some update package.

I have checked it on my sp2010 farm, Name field in UserInfoList has internal name "Title". It could be possible to change display names for columns in the User Information List, I guess this should not affect built-in functionality. Though I don't see this option in the UI for that, so maybe some coding/scripting is needed for that.

The Users list schema could be found in 14 hive folder, so you can check field names there: 14\TEMPLATE\GLOBAL\Lists\USERS\, referenced resource entries exist in 14\Resources\core.resx resource file

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