SharePoint: With Service Pack 2 (SP2) Forms Based Authentication and Client Integration Works!


Forms Based Authentication (FBA) now works with Office Integration! But only for Office 2007 Service Pack 2.


Here are my tests:


Tests were done on a VPC with SharePoint and Office on the same VPC.

The VPC started with Server 2003 Std Edition, MOSS Enterprise Edition SP1 and Office 2003 Std Edition

Installed WSS SP2 and MOSS SP2

SP2 install instructions: http://fabianwilliams.spaces.live.com/Blog/cns!DC80CE4E9C963237!536.entry

Created a new application, site collection and configured FBA in a typical manner using the ASP.Net membership and role providers.

Client Integration was disabled by default! (in spite of what was said in the MSDN articles.)  In enabled Client Integration for these tests.

Tests with Office 2003

  • Upload Multiple worked!
  • Open in Microsoft Word - did not work, instead it opened login.aspx as a Word document!
  • Export to Spreadsheet – did not work: "To export a list, you must have a Windows SharePoint Services-compatible application"
  • Connect to Outlook – did not work: "error (0x8004110): 'An error occurred either in Outlook or Windows SharePoint Services...."

So, except for Upload Multiple, Client Integration does not work with Office 2003.

Office 2007 (Enterprise Edition) initial release 12.0.6213.1000

  • Open in Microsoft Word - Word launched, but no errors, nothing, just empty word.
  • Open from Word using full URL to document. ("Could not open "http://.....")
  • Connect to Outlook - Displayed normal SharePoint to Outlook messages, but then displayed an emtpy calendar, so the calendar was created in Outlook, but the data was not linked. Clicking on calendar displays the "read only" message usually seen in Outlook 2003.
  • Export to Spreadsheet - "You do not have adequate permissions to modify this list ..."

So, except for Upload Multiple, Client Integration does not work with Office 2007 (without SP2).


Office 2007 (Enterprise Edition) SP2

  • It all works! (with one extra click)
  • Open in Microsoft Word – displays a login page (looks just like login.aspx) and after logging in display the document (and saves it) just fine.
  • Connect to Outlook, Export to Excel both fail… but….
  • If you checkmark “Sign me in automatically” while logging in then every thing I have tested so far works.
    • Connect to Outlook works
    • Export to Excel works

So as long as you checkmark “Sign me in automatically” when you login FBA now supports Client Integration!

How does it work?

Cookies. Deleting cookies in the middle of a session will break Client Integration.

If you have written your own custom membership provider or your own custom login page then you will need to implement a “remember me” feature using an ASP cookie.


More tests needed…. Does Client Integration work with Office 2007 SP2 without WSS or MOSS SP2???  Don’t know yet…



1 comment:

Johan said...

Unfortunately it makes sense that Office 2007 SP2 is a requirement to make this work; one of the improvements in Office SP2 is:
Substantial improvements to Forms-based authentication support in Word, Excel, PowerPoint and SPD(source: http://blogs.technet.com/office_sustained_engineering/archive/2009/04/16/service-pack-2-for-the-2007-microsoft-office-system-due-to-ship-april-28th.aspx)

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