Wednesday 28 October 2009

Activating a feature containing a content type generated from Andrew Connell's stsadm commands generates 100% CPU load

I've used AC's WCM Custom Commands for STSADM successfully in the past and they're extremely handy. In short, I create my site columns and content types in the SharePoint UI and then run Andrew's GenSiteColumnsXml and GenContentTypesXml to dump the XML required for incorporation in a feature. Today I hit a wee snag when attempting to activate a feature containing fields and content types generated from these commands: the operation wouldn't complete until terminated forcefully and the CPU was meanwhile running at 100% (infinite loop anyone?).

Luckily JoeB came across the same problem in the past and was kind enough to post his fix in the comments on Andrew's blog (although I also noticed another commenter noted the issue in production after implementing JoeB's fix...). Andrew says these commands were built using the 80-20 rule: they'll get you 80% of the way there and you're on for the rest. Fair enough—the commands are extremely handy and I reckon they go well beyond the 80% mark. That said, these are some of the things I fix up after generating the output; I'll list JoeB's fix here too:


This makes updating the feature easier:

  • Add the DisplaceOnUpgrade="TRUE" attribute

I've read these aren't meant to be included explicitly but the documentation, useful as it is, indicates they're optional anyway:

  • Remove the SourceId attribute
  • Remove the StaticName attribute

These can go without any consequence I've noticed:

  • Remove the Version attribute
  • Remove the Required="FALSE" attribute

These seem to come out if you muck around with the fields too much in the UI:

  • Remove the PITarget attribute
  • Remove the PrimaryPITarget attribute
  • Remove the PIAttribute
  • Remove the PrimaryPIAttribute
  • Remove the Aggregation attribute
  • Remove the Node attribute
  • Remove the ContentType field altogether (SharePoint Manager 2007 indicates it's added automatically even if not specified)

Content Types

JoeB's fix to the 100% CPU issue:

  • Add NamespaceURI="" to the XmlDocument element

(Note you may also be able to remove the XmlDocuments node altogether).

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