Wednesday, 3 December 2014

SharePoint Online Variations in an existing site and redirecting from the root site

I've had occasion to refresh my knowledge of the variations features in SharePoint Online recently and ran into an 'issue' that I thought I'd (a) share and (b) record for future reference.

There are plenty of decent guides to the basic setup approach for variation labels, etc. out in the ether of the internet already (this is my reference article), so I won't go over that again here, but I had to work through a scenario where an existing site collection, already used as a publishing site, needs to have variation sites created beneath it.

The issue

Leaving aside the inevitable pain in the backside that will be the content migration from the existing root site (lets call it /sites/intranet/, because that's what it is) to the source variations site (/sites/intranet/en-us/), one of the main annoyances I encountered was the fact that I couldn't get the auto-redirect from the root to en-us to take place.

Spoiler alert: this isn't exactly an earth-shattering solution, but I had to go through the pain of setting up a clean site collection and variations side of things again to track the issue, so I thought I'd save you that annoyance, because I'm nice like that.

The solution

Looking at the root of my brand new site and looking into the pages library I could see that a new page "VariationRoot.aspx" had been created with a page layout type of "Variations Root Page" and when I checked the 'Welcome page' setting in site settings, sure enough, it had been set as the welcome page.

Back to my pre-existing site. Checked the pages library and sure enough, there was the "VariationRoot.aspx" page, popped it into the Welcome Page settings box and hurrah redirection started working as needed.

Now I just need to figure out the content migration best approach...

- rob

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