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Editor’s Note: SharePoint 2010, the Flexible Framework

You won’t find a more flexible system for building intranet or Internet sites, and no matter where you are in the lifecycle of your planned or deployed sites, this TechNet ON package has resources for you.

By Mitch Irsfeld

When it comes to site creation, the versatility of SharePoint Server 2010 enables the publishing of both intranet portals and public Internet sites, and meets the differing requirements of both environments.

Whether you’re looking to publish in an intranet or Internet environment, you get to decide which SharePoint 2010 features to implement. This edition of TechNet ON provides the key guidance and resources to understand how the environments differ, and best practices for meeting the differing needs.

That flexibility has certainly caught the attention of the market for framework products, which has consolidated to the point where very few products today offer the capabilities necessary for building secure, scalable portals with the usability and manageability you need. See why Microsoft’s SharePoint sits atop Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for Horizontal Portals.

Getting Started

To get you started, Samantha Robertson and Cern McAtee from the SharePoint team walk you through the main differences to consider when you design public Internet sites versus intranet portals. From the types of users supported to the licensing requirements, the environments are different, but as we learn in their TechNet Magazine article, SharePoint on the Internet and in the Intranet: Different Environments, Similar Needs, SharePoint 2010 is flexible enough to handle the requirements.

And despite those differences, you quickly learn that intranet and Internet sites built on SharePoint 2010 also have many similarities and can make use of the same publishing features for designing sites. To begin designing your architecture, use the models presented on the Architecture Design for SharePoint Server 2010 Resource Center. Then check out the SharePoint Server 2010 design samples, where you can download illustrations of a typical corporate deployment of SharePoint Server 2010 that use two forms of authentication, classic or claims-based.

For guidance on setting up a published intranet site for your organization, start with Published Intranets in SharePoint Server 2010. And be sure to download the Task Map for Published Intranets in SharePoint 2010 for help in determining business goals, requirements and constraints, governance and storage, content requirements, and site structure.

Likewise, if you’re building a public Internet site, check out Microsoft Solutions for Internet Sites and discover how to expand your reach, increase customer retention, and drive revenue with Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010 for Internet Sites and Microsoft FAST Search Server 2010 for Internet Sites.

Of course, before you start the project, make sure key people are trained to use SharePoint Server 2010. If familiarizing yourself with SharePoint 2010 for the first time, download the evaluation trial. If you’re already a SharePoint 2010 pro, use the modules presented in SharePoint 2010 Advanced IT Pro Training to upgrade your skills with deep technical learning.

Learn from Others

A great place to start when you’re planning your deployment is the technical case study white paper Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010 Enterprise Intranet Publishing Environment. The document describes an actual SharePoint Server 2010 environment, but could be applicable for any production environment at a large, geographically distributed company. To view other case studies from Energizer, Boy Scouts of America, and other organizations, head on over to SharePoint Customer Success Stories to see how extranets, collaboration platforms, information delivery systems and more have been deployed.

And there’s much more. We’ve organized the content under two tracks, Plan Your Site and Build & Manage, to help you wherever you might be in the lifecycle of your site.

Win a Trip

And finally, if you’ve already begun designing sites with SharePoint, you can enter to win a trip to the SharePoint Conference 2011 in Anaheim, CA. We are launching our SharePoint journeys video contest where you can tell us where you are on your “journey,” and the unique ways you have used SharePoint to enhance your organization. Create a video no longer than 2 minutes and 30 seconds explaining or illustrating how you are using SharePoint. Check here for the official rules.

Mitch Irsfeld
Mitch Irsfeld, Editor of TechNet, is a veteran computer industry journalist and content developer who managed editorial staffs at several leading publications, including InformationWeek, InternetWeek and CommunicationsWeek. He is also an editor for TechNet Magazine and managing editor of the TechNet Flash newsletter.