Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Argh, Microsoft drives me crazy-- Or how there is no global blocked file type list

Okay, here's my rant of the day--- how the heck does total misinformation about the way sharepoint works actually make it to the darned Sharepoint interface?!

---Oh no wait-- is it because, despite the fact that I am using WSS only, this interface mistake is correct if you have added MOSS? Would they do that? If so then they need to strip non-WSS data out of the WSS interface----

So I am editing chapter 9 now. I am about halfway through, but you know me, I've got to challenge everything, even when I am in a desperate hurry.

So I got to a bit about the Blocked File Types. This chapter is supposed to be a quick reference, part way through the book, of the settings for Operations in Central Administration. Most of the real meat is in other chapters of the book (although, with the ones I didn't write, I can't be sure), but I want to be accurate, even if I am just blurbing.

So, on Blocked File Types page I notice some text at the top of the page itself. Something written there like a quick tip or suggestion about using the setting --- and it is wrong.

This is WSS 3.0, not an earlier version. It says: NOTE: To allow a file type that is currently blocked you must delete it from both the global and Web application lists.

THERE IS NO GLOBAL LIST ANYMORE, at least not for WSS 3.0. That statement, right at the top of the page, is outdated, misleading, confusing, and wrong. I can understand when a blogger, writer, or speaker gets it wrong. They don't work at MS, they are working on second hand information. But when the Sharepoint team itself, within MS, takes it for granted, without testing, that unblocking blocked file types is a two step process, when then I just despair.

It makes my job so hard when I can't even trust Microsoft to get it right. And what's worse is it makes people who are hardworking and dependable in the industry say things that are wrong because they picked the data up from the darned interface itself.

(here's an example http://www.sharepointblogs.com/ssa/archive/2007/05/09/unblocking-blocked-files.aspx)

And if someone disagrees, they do sort of vaguely, or maybe I'm the only one who has truly noticed: http://www.sharepointblogs.com/mattg/archive/2007/03/13/blocked-file-types.aspx. This guy mentions (sort of, there's no "more..." to the article) that the setting should not be on the Operations page in Central Administration because it is set by web application and then almost mentions that it would be understandable if there were a global list....

Try it yourself. In WSS 3.0, go to the blocked file types page (Central Administration/Operations/Blocked File Types) and read the note for yourself. Then remove a blocked file type from a web application on the page (select the correct web application from he drop down, then delete an extension from the list). Click OK and go to a library in that web application. Upload the now unblocked file type and see that it works. No error page, nothing. No two step process, no going to search on the server to find the global.asax page or whatever to try to remove the file type globally.

this is the third such mistake I have found in the interface itself. It's so sloppy...

Sigh. Okay, rant off. back to work.


Anonymous said...


Thanks for pointing this out. When I published this post (approx. a year ago), we were using beta at that time and whatever is written in the post was true at that time. I think they have fixed it in the final release because I just tested it again after reading your post, you are right now there is no need to delete the filetype from two locations. Deleting it from the SCA is enough. The publish date shown in my post is May 09, 2007. This is the date when we retrieved this post from the web cache and published it again after the blog server crashed. The original publish date (which i dont remember) should be May or Jun 2006.

I will update my post. Thanks once again for pointing this out!

Best Regards,



Callahan said...

Wow, thanks for noticing. And I mean no criticism. We are supposed to be able to trust when is on the page or in the help files. It just frustrates me to no end when we (and I do mean myself too, it's happened in the book a couple of times) are told by MS that something works a certain way for a certain reason, and we pass along that data as fact-- only to be wrong. It's embarrassing.

Anonymous said...


I totally agree with you on this. Thanks!


Anonymous said...

MS drives me nuts as well... I don't understand though, I went to CA and unblocked the file type and it is still telling me that it's blocked by the admin. I thought maybe the ones and zeros needed a little more time to make their way down the tubes, but alas, it's been close to an hour and it still says it's blocked. What am I missing?