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Anonymous access to SP lists on public 365 site

Sep 27, 2011 at 7:35 PM
Edited Sep 27, 2011 at 7:37 PM

It seems odd that MSFT doesn't want to give users the opportunity to use more of Sharepoint to build their public sites in O365. Though it wasn't marketed well, the Office Live Small Business service provided an easy, user friendly way to get SP content onto their sites. It was used by developers to create a shopping cart app, a blog app, a way to add a drop down menu system, and many more things that extended the functionality of an otherwise drab web site. It was like the WordPress plug in feature-users could install a solution and use it in a purely wysiwyg way.

The keys to this functionality in OLSB were:

Anonymous access to SP lists was allowed as soon as a list or form was "published". Otherwise, lists remained password protected. 

Modules were included in the page editor tools, based on the xsllistviewwebpart, that allowed deployment of lists in either a form or list view format. A box was provided to link to an xsl file.

It's an ingenious way of creating a controlled SP publishing environment which has unfortunately been thrown out in O365. There's already a workaround out there to change list permissions to anonymous for those not using the public site editor tools.  But what we really need is a replication of what existed in OLSB:

List publisher and form designer "web parts"  (aka "modules") in the page editor, that can access back end lists (if necessary, only lists in a separate "public" library). 

The modules should be able to be linked to an xsl file.

This way, ordinary users who want a wysiwyg editor experience can still get it, without sacrificing the benefits of Sharepoint.