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I am a big advocate of client side code and using the client-side API in SP2013 / SP Online. For me, it's really important that my solutions can be deployed to the cloud as well as on-prem. And thus i try not to create farm-solutions.

I'm a bit torn on the subject of deployment though. Say for instance you want to use the Social-API and show the mentions-count of the current user. Using JSOM, it's easy to extract this from SP and display it on the page by embedding it as a script part. However, i want to display it up on the top by the settings-cog and help-icon. With no delegate controls in the cloud and no app-solution available, it'll have to be packaged as a .JS-file and triggered on the page.

The question then comes to packaging and deployment. I can either add code to a script-webpart or modify the masterpage. These are very manual steps however and will require instructions.

What's your opinion on the best way to package and deploy solutions that are based on JS but not apps?

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To your very last question, how to package and deploy solutions of JS files. I would recommend Sandbox solutions. The site collection owner would be able to upload your solution and the solution could deploy the .js and other files to the server. You can update these with a new/updated solution as needed. Be aware that there are some statements about Sandbox solutions being deprecated, but they are still functional in SP2013.

On the app front, I have seen an example (can find it now) using an App to modify the masterpage on a site and you could use something like that to make it cloud ready.

  • Thanks for your reply, and i believe this is as good as an answer is ever going to get. MS is a little vague regarding their deprecation of sandboxed solutions. The last i heard they were modifying the terminology to be "Sandboxed solutions with code are deprecated". – Helge S Jan 1 '14 at 15:52
  • saying "MS is a little vague" on this topic is a bit of an understatement. But if sandbox solution really were deprecated, they wouldn't have architected Design Packages and the new Visual Studio workflows as sandbox solutions. Or would they? – Derek Gusoff Jan 2 '14 at 17:10

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