SharePoint 2010 For Students – Baby Steps (1)

Updated:This post is part of a cross-blog series between me and Rand Khalaf. If you find this post useful, check out the other parts here.

I have been delivering many sessions about SharePoint for Students at many Universities for the last four months. A lot of them were interested in getting to know it more, but didn’t know how to start the journey.
So, I decided to start writing a series of blog posts as a guidance for students explaining how to kick off in SharePoint world.

First Step:

Determining the Hardware/Software Requirements:

One of the SharePoint learning curve challenges is that you need to get your hands dirty on hardware requirements, installation, and administration, basically we are talking about the IT Professionals stuff which is surely hated by most of  students with a development background, but, in order to be a successful SharePoint Farmer you must start learning some IT Professional topics and having the basic knowledge about it.

So, in order to start using SharePoint, you will need some compatible hardware requirements specifications, that SharePoint must be running on.

As a first step you need to check the following basic requirements:

  1. Is your processor x64 & Hardware Virtualization Capable?
  2. Does your hardware have enough RAM to run the SharePoint?

X64 CPU & Hardware Virtualization Support:

To answer the first question, you need to understand first what the hell is X64 and x86 (32-Bit and 64-Bit), definitely I will not answer your question here, but here is a very useful resource that explains the different between each Architecture: Click Here.

Regarding Virtualization, It’s a huge topic, and definitely you need to read more about it here, and here.

This is one of the requirements in order to run the SharePoint, the CPU must support the x64 Architecture, and in order to check if the CPU supports this Architecture, you need to use a very useful Utility.

This awesome light utility “SecurAble” (115 K.B) determines if the processor supports the Hardware Virtualization, and the x64 Architecture capability.

SecurAble is a standalone application which doesn’t need any installation or runtime DLLs, so when you run it you will see one of the following results:

NoFeatures

As you see, the first result on the left highlighting that your CPU is only supporting 32-Bit, which unfortunately means you cant install SharePoint there, but the good news is,, most of PC’s and computers nowadays are compatible and not so hard to get.

On the other hand, if your processor is x64 capable, you will see the following:

AllFeatures

On the other hand, if your processor is x64 capable, you will be lucky because x64 Architecture is supported, but when checking using the Utility, as you can see on the right side of the white area, you may not have the Hardware Virtualization support, which is okay… don’t worry, SharePoint will run Normally.

RAM Availability & OS Selection:

In this version (2010), Microsoft did a pretty genius job in increasing the minimal required RAM, it is now 4.0 G.B as it’s mentioned in the official documentation of TechNet, but SharePoint can make it on 3.0 G.B, it will be slow and troubled sometimes, but it can be optimized, we will talk about this later.

So at this stage, you have to take a decision about which Operating System to go with, you have the following options:

  1. Windows Vista x64 SP1. (Not Recommended)
  2. Windows 7 x64. (Not Recommended)
  3. Windows Server 2008 x64 SP2.
  4. Windows Server 2008 R2.

I will be talking more about the installation decisions, and what’s the right way to start learning SharePoint In the upcoming posts.

Resources and Links:

Windows Server 2008 R2 Trial Download.

How to extend Windows Server Evaluation Period.

Visual Studio 2010 Ultimate Trial.

Microsoft Office 2010 Trial Download.

7 Responses to SharePoint 2010 For Students – Baby Steps (1)

  1. […] series by cross blogging posts, which means this post is circle 2 in the series, you can find “SharePoint 2010 For Students – Baby Steps (1)” on his […]

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  4. […] the first post, I’ve mentioned the supporting Operating systems, here below you will find a matrix that would […]

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