Monday, July 13, 2009

Get This: Coaxing the Document Information Panel out of Hiding

Have you ever found yourself editing a Word document from SharePoint, wanting to add some keywords to your metadata, then digging around Word for 15 minutes trying to find where to open the document information panel?  Well, I have, and um, I do this for a living.  :)   Lucky for us I happened upon a way to always open the document information panel whenever opening a document from within SharePoint; the setting is in our friend the content type.

Here's how to enable it:

  1. Navigate to the content type settings page (where you manage columns, etc)
  2. this could be a custom content type for a library
  3. the base "Document" content type to apply this setting to all document libraries in your site collection
  4. Under the settings section, select "Document Information Panel settings"

  5. Check the box that says "Always show Document Information Panel on document open and initial save for this content type"; click OK

  6. What do you do if you don't want to change the "Document" content type and don't use a content type on your library?   Each document library has an "instance" of the a content type (usually "Document" even if you don't see it) can edit this instance to set the document information panel settings:

    1. Navigate to the settings page of the library
    2. Under settings, select "Advanced Settings"

    3. Select "yes" in the Allow Management of Content Types section; click ok

    4. You will now see a "Content Types" section on the settings page; select "Document" then complete steps 2 and 3 from the first example