Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Data view plus for SharePoint online (SPFx) template sample

And again... I love this web part so much I have to share another template I made with it.

For those who don't know, the data view plus is a versatile web part that connects to various data sources and display the data using several built in controls, plus it allows you to provide your own template for rendering.

Current data sources are:

  1. SharePoint List
  2. Aggregation of several SharePoint Lists
  3. Excel File
  4. Graph API
but more are added all the time.

So, I got an ask from our sales team to build a risk matrix sample template to a customer who was interested in this product.

Within a couple of hours of work I got this fully working template out to the customer - nothing but HTML and CSS work was needed!

Here is the result web part:

When hovering over a risk, here are the details:
You can see the filter control above the chart, and since this chart is built by custom HTML template - you can customize it as much as you want with full control on all rendering!

And of course, the data source can be any one of the supported data sources so you have a very flexible, custom tailored solution to fit any requirement your clients may have!

Note: The template is available in the sample templates of the custom control as of version build #47
Note 2: This sample template relies on the following fields to exist in the data source:
Title: text
Probability: number or choice (1-5)
Severity: number or choice (1-5)
Project: any type
Risk Owner: any type

Friday, June 22, 2018

SPFx 1.5 npm install errors

I recently wanted to upgrade my SPFx project from 1.4 to 1.5 release.

I followed the instructions on sp-dev-docs for the upgrade (found here:

But at the last step - running npm install - I got a breaking error that would not let npm install complete:


node-sass@4.9.0 install C:\testspfx\node_modules\node-sass
node scripts/install.js
Timed out whilst downloading the prebuilt binary
Hint: If is not accessible in your location
try setting a proxy via HTTP_PROXY, e.g.
  export HTTP_PROXY=
or configure npm proxy via
  npm config set proxy
phantomjs-prebuilt@2.1.16 install C:\testspfx\node_modules\phantomjs-prebuilt
node install.js
Considering PhantomJS found at C:\Users\xxx\AppData\Roaming\npm\phantomjs.CMD
Looks like an npm install -g on windows; skipping installed version.
Saving to C:\Users\xxx\AppData\Local\Temp\phantomjs\
Error making request.
Error: connect ETIMEDOUT
at Object._errnoException (util.js:992:11)
at _exceptionWithHostPort (util.js:1014:20)
at TCPConnectWrap.afterConnect [as oncomplete] (net.js:1186:14)
Please report this full log at
npm WARN ajv-keywords@3.2.0 requires a peer of ajv@^6.0.0 but none is installed. You must install peer dependencies yourself.
npm WARN optional SKIPPING OPTIONAL DEPENDENCY: fsevents@1.2.4 (node_modules\fsevents):
npm WARN notsup SKIPPING OPTIONAL DEPENDENCY: Unsupported platform for fsevents@1.2.4: wanted {"os":"darwin","arch":"any"} (current: {"os":"win32","arch":"x64"})
npm ERR! errno 1
npm ERR! phantomjs-prebuilt@2.1.16 install: node install.js
npm ERR! Exit status 1
npm ERR!
npm ERR! Failed at the phantomjs-prebuilt@2.1.16 install script.
npm ERR! This is probably not a problem with npm. There is likely additional logging output above.
npm ERR! A complete log of this run can be found in:
npm ERR! C:\Users\xxx\AppData\Roaming\npm-cache_logs\2018-06-21T17_03_52_895Z-debug.log
   ###########|       .-----------------------------------.
   ###/    (##|(@)    |          Congratulations!         |
   ###  ######|   \   |    Solution tester is created.    |
   ###/   /###|   (@) |  Run gulp serve to play with it!  |
   #######  ##|   /   '-----------------------------------'
   ###     /##|(@)

My setup:

My package.json file is as follows:

  "name": "dvp",
  "version": "1.0.1",
  "private": true,
  "engines": {
    "node": ">=0.10.0"
  "dependencies": {
    "@microsoft/sp-client-base": "~1.0.0",
    "@microsoft/sp-core-library": "~1.5.0-plusbeta",
    "@microsoft/sp-webpart-base": "~1.5.0-plusbeta",
    "@types/knockout": "3.4.55",
    "@types/webpack-env": "1.13.1",
    "@types/es6-promise": "0.0.33",
    "knockout": "3.4.2"
  "devDependencies": {
    "@microsoft/sp-build-web": "~1.5.0-plusbeta",
    "@microsoft/sp-module-interfaces": "~1.5.0-plusbeta",
    "@microsoft/sp-webpart-workbench": "~1.5.0-plusbeta",
    "@types/chai": ">=3.4.34 <3 .6.0="" mocha="" types="">=2.2.33 <2 .6.0="" build="" bundle="" clean="" code="" gulp="" knockout-paging="" scripts="" test="">

Cause and workaround:

I created a new project using version 1.5 but got the same error.
So, next - I removed all packages in my package.json, deleted my node_modules folder and added them back one by one running npm install after each one to see which one was causing this issue.

I found the cause for this issue is coming from a dependency of one of the "@microsoft/sp" packages in my dev dependencies... not something I can live without.

I still can't be sure what is causing this issue but a bit of googling around I encountered a lot of people had a similar issue a few months or years back.

It seems to be something with the npm package installer causing it, and the workaround many people were using was:

npm install phantomjs-prebuilt@2.1.16 --ignore-scripts

So, I ran that command separately which completed successfully. Next I run the full npm install and what do you know! It finished successfully (with the regular list of 100+ warnings LOL)

Ran gulp, fixed a couple of lines of code that had to be changed and done. Now my project compiles and runs on SPFx 1.5

Still, this took an awful lot of time and the upgrade process is still something I fear as I have yet to have a single version upgraded without running into some npm hell like that (or worst) that just took half a day of work to fix.

Well, hope this helps someone else save some time! Good luck!

(reference github issue:

Monday, May 7, 2018

SharePoint 2013 date picker scrolls form to the top

Just recently noticed a bug in SharePoint 2013... Yeah, I know it is 2018 now LOL

The bug is simple but very annoying.
If you have a long list form, with many columns, and you have a few date columns at the bottom - beyond the scroll position - clicking any date picker will open the picker but will scroll your page to the top.

This happens when using non-IE browsers (I use chrome), and it is the result of the following code running INSIDE the picker iframe:
    function: setFocusDatepicker

Is trying to set focus to the current date element.

Now, since this code is executed in the iframe it could be tricky to fix, since we don't have any code running in that iframe, but our code runs on the current window...

But there seems to be a fix for that we can use a little (a lot actually) JavaScript trickery to manipulate the frame's code from the containing document.

We will hook up to OnIframeLoadFinish function, which is called when the iframe of the picker is ready.

Once inside, we will find the function setFocusDatepicker INSIDE the iframe.
(Note: this is only allowed since we are on the same domain as the iframe...)

Then we will override the setFocusDatepicker to keep the workspace scrollTop, call setFocusDatepicker, and then restore the workspace scrollTop.

Here is the complete code, just call it once after all scripts were loaded:

ExecuteOrDelayUntilScriptLoaded( function() { if (typeof(window.original_OnIframeLoadFinish) !== 'function') { window.original_OnIframeLoadFinish = window.OnIframeLoadFinish; window.OnIframeLoadFinish = function() { original_OnIframeLoadFinish.apply(this, arguments); window.Picker.contentWindow.original_setFocusDatepicker = window.Picker.contentWindow.setFocusDatepicker; window.Picker.contentWindow.setFocusDatepicker = function() { workspaceTop = document.getElementById('s4-workspace').scrollTop; window.Picker.contentWindow.original_setFocusDatepicker.apply(this, arguments); document.getElementById('s4-workspace').scrollTop = workspaceTop; } } } }, "datepicker.js");