Archive for category: AzureSearchTool

2015 Recap: The king is dead – long live the king!

02 Jan 2016
January 2, 2016

3 times and you have a pattern, right? This is not the first time I write a recap for the past year, (2014, 2013) – and it is always good fun to reflect the last one and plan the next one.

The Past aka 2015

2015 was a super busy year for me – both work, community and private live was packed and very intense.

Events

I attended so many events this year, without my outlook calendar a reflection would not be possible anymore. Lets start with my favorites:

SharePoint Saturday Belgium / Antwerp

That was my first SharePoint Saturday ever – and it was epic. The spirit of the Belgium SharePoint Community is awesome, speaking there was really rewarding for me! Maybe I cant attend in 2016, but if I have the chance I probably will.

ShareCamp 2015

ShareCamp is totally unique, I totally love the open style of the conference – everybody can speak there, beginner, experts, customers, everybody. I totally like the mix, especially when there are topics that are outside of the “SharePoint box”, I learned a lot there and for me that is perfect infotainment.

ShareCamp Sessionvote

 

Search Stammtisch Munich

We are only few, but dynamite comes in small packages 🙂 Every first Monday we meet in my favorite cocktail bar. It is the best place to talk about SharePoint Search and everything around it, from 3rd party to hybrid, to Azure Search – we covered everything. I hope to see more people this year, but well, Search is a niche and won’t attract hundreds.

http://www.pussersbar.de/en/pussers-bar.html

taken from http://www.pussersbar.de/en/pussers-bar.html

SharePoint User Group Munich

I think I attended very SharePoint User Group Meeting in Munich (that should be 5-6) and organized one. Always good fun!

Conferences

I had the chance to speak at 2 commercial conferences about SharePoint Search this year: SharePoint Days and ShareConf – for 2016 I will try to speak more, maybe I try a different conference, too. Let’s see how it goes.

My blog

From a content producing side, 2015 wasn’t my best. I only crafted 16 posts, but well some of them took really a lot of time. Cloud Hybrid was one of them – and as a premiere I blogged about my new hobby: Paragliding. As one of my new year resolution is “fly more!” the chances are high that I will blog about it again.

Facts and figures

I like figures and statistics and all that – 89.000 page views is not that bad for my tiny blog, isn’t it? I have nothing to compare too, but I am quite happy with it. +12% from last year!

Blog Stats 2015

blog stats for 2015

 

Countries 2015

180 countries – I say “hello” from Germany!

My most visited blog posts are apparently from 2014 – luckily two are about search and that makes me happy:

  1. Installing SharePoint 2013 SP1 with SQL Server 2014 on Windows Server 2012 R2 – Picture Love Story (~14.000 views)
  2. #SharePoint 2013 – Create a Search Service Application and Search Topology with Powershell (~10.200 views)

  3. Install Office Web Apps 2013 for SharePoint 2013 – with PDF Preview (9.700 views)

Contributions

On the contributions part, I tried to commit some time to my favorite tool – SharePoint Search Query Tool – and it is totally worth it. I use that tool so often, so why not improve it to make it even better?

Additionally I started my own tool – Azure Search Tool – I have to admit that I haven’t put any time into it recently, but it’s still fully functionally. I will block some time soon to give some more love because its a cool and useful util.

The Future aka 2016

2015 was a shift year – I saw a lot of clients migrating to SharePoint Online and I think even more will do in 2016. With that move I learned a lot about migration to the cloud, SharePoint Apps and Azure – and I think that will be my business focus for 2016. Maybe we launch a SharePoint App as a product – that would be fun!
Lots of work a head, many challenges to be solved – there is a good year ahead of us! And we will see SharePoint 2016 RTM very soon. I am not as excited as I was for SharePoint 2013 – but the platform matures with every release and I hope to see many many Search challenges and projects. Even more as with 2013 because SharePoint Search is business critical, right?

Main goals for next year: SharePoint Search, Apps, Azure, Community, SharePoint Search, Hybrid, Azure Search, Paragliding. I am a simple man 🙂

just hanging there

Happy new year!

With that said, I wish you all the best for 2016, health, prosperity, lots of excitement and fun!

AzureSearchTool: Suggestions, please!

06 Jul 2015
July 6, 2015

Suggestions are a killer feature for search – same applies to Azure Search!
Performance for the lookup of the possible options in combination with a large index is a key here – scale scale scale!

I released 0.7.0.0 version of the AzureSearchTool today.

Suggestion

I added all of the possible suggestion options – it’s a different search type so it needed a while to add it to my current implementation. But as the version number indicates, I am close to catching up with the main features. Did I mention that I added search as you type? And it generates this super verbose REST Url for you, too.

As of now all of the 12 query options for suggestions are implemented:

azuresearchtool_suggestions

azuresearchtool_suggestions2

Maybe I will change the layout for suggestions soon – most of the times this feature will be used as type ahead – see this codeplex code as example:

Video – Suggestions in Action

Watch it in action, first without fuzzy then with it:

Next version – “facet all the things”

Before I release version 1.0 I will add facets support, that’s for sure! Maybe I will change the UX to support the facets visually – I will figure that one out while I implement it. Maybe I tackle the “Test Data” tab, too.

Do you have suggestions?

If so, please leave a comment or open an issue at the AzureSearchTool github page.

AzureSearchTool – More Options, More Fun

08 Jun 2015
June 8, 2015

Today I released the next version of the AzureSearchTool (v.0.3.0.0).
If you have not read about the tool at all, please see the introduction here.

In the very first version the tool was quite simple and most of the search parameters were not handled. That has changed now:

Index

I implemented the schema overview (actually that was not that much but looks great):

Index Schema and Statistics

Index Schema and Statistics

So now you can see what fields of what type you have – and how those fields are specified.

Below of the Schema you get the two available statistics – the count of documents you have indexed and how many storage you currently consume. Not that much to show here.

Query

The query side was more work, but it is definitely worth it. Currently there are 16 query parameters available (see specification) and the AzureSearchTool now assists you entering them. Some of the fields should be Url-Encoded so I handled that one, too.

The picture shows a rather basic query for the token “dsds”:

All options are handled now

All query options are handled now

That query results in a nice REST url that you can copy to your application:

Create that by hand or with Postman? Rather not.

If you managed to enter invalid values in the search query parameters, the AzureSearchTool now shows the error that is returned by Azure Search:

That error is really helpful!

That error is really helpful!

Overall

I think the feature set almost doubled in this release. Next on I will work on Facets & Suggestions.

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