Sharepoint 2013 : Creating team sites (part 1) - Customizing team sites, Working with document libraries

10/10/2013 7:42:37 PM
In this section, you will learn about the new interface for customizing team sites. In the past, a site owner needed to go into various site menus and dig around for options; as you will see, the new Getting Started tiles make it much easier for the novice site owner.

Customizing team sites

When you create a new team site, you are first presented with the Getting Started tiles shown in Figure 1. The tiles help explain some of the ways that you can adapt the site to meet your requirements.

A screenshot of the Getting Started tile menu on a team site.

Figure 1. The Getting Started tiles help you easily accomplish basic tasks necessary to customize your site.

The tiles and their purpose are enumerated as follows:

  • Share Your Site . This is a shortcut to the new sharing interface that helps you share your site with other people and groups.

  • Working On A Deadline . This is a shortcut to add a task list and calendar to your site if your site will be used for projects and task management.

  • Add Lists, Libraries, And Other Apps . This tile is a shortcut to add apps and additional functionality to your team site.

  • What’s Your Style?  This takes you into the new gallery of style templates for team sites. The style templates are an easy way to give your site a unique and pleasing look.

  • Your Site. Your Brand.  This tile is a shortcut to the settings for the logo and site description.

  • Keep Email In Context . This tile helps you add a site mailbox for your team to share emails that are relevant to the entire team.


After you have finished with the initial setup of your site, click Remove This, and the Getting Started tiles will be removed. If you want to use the tiles again later, you can use the Getting Started option on the Settings menu.

Working with document libraries

Document libraries have been an ever-present feature of team sites for several versions of the product, and that continues in SharePoint 2013. A document library is a SharePoint app that is used to save and store documents in a shared location. Document libraries are similar to network file shares, allowing team members to contribute, edit, and collaborate on documents. However, document libraries can go far beyond this basic functionality by using some of the other SharePoint features such as workflows, metadata, versioning, and content types.

When a new team site is created, a document library named Documents is created by default. The document library is placed front and center as a web part on the team site home page and as a left navigation link, as shown in Figure 2.

A screenshot showing two possible methods of navigating to a document library from the home page of a team site.

Figure 2. Navigation to a team site document library is possible from multiple points.

The most basic task that teams need to perform when collaborating on documents is getting the documents into SharePoint. Now that document libraries support dragging in SharePoint 2013, the process of getting documents into a library is easier. The interface for working with documents is streamlined and clean; some of the menu options remain hidden until you click the ellipsis icon (…) next to a document’s title.  When you click the ellipsis, you will see a preview of the document in a hover panel. Notice in Figure 3 that another ellipsis icon appears on the hover panel that will take you into even more options for the item you are working with.

A screenshot showing the new Edit Control Block menu being selected within a document library. When the menu is selected, a hover panel displays a preview of an Excel file.

Figure 3. When the new ellipsis (Edit Control Block/ECB) menu is selected, a preview of the document appears in a hover panel.

Often, after a team member has put a file into a document library, one of the key tasks is to share the document. In SharePoint 2013, it is easier than ever to share an item in a document library with others. Sharing is covered in depth later in this section.

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