Recently, I have worked with a lot of new features introduced in Sharepoint 2010 and I came across the Metadata service. This metadata service proved to be quite powerful and very handy for anyone who doesn’t want to use the internal Multilingual management of Sharepoint and instead want to use a custom service. While there are other ways to do this, the best advantage of the metadata service is that it installs on Central Management and hence all the sites in the farm automatically inherit the metadata keywords you create and Sharepoint also allows the portability of the metadata across farms – this is possible since there’s a dedicated database created for the metadata and all you need to do is to back up and restore the db on the other farm and configure your metadata service to use the restored db (just like transferring a sharepoint site from one server to another).

To enable metadata service on your server, do the following:

  1. Go to Central Administration.
  2. Under Application Management, click on Manage Service Applications.
  3. Click on New and then select Managed Metadata Service.
  4. Enter the details in the following way:
    • Database
      • Name: Metadata Service
      • Database Service: <SQL Server Name>
      • Database Name: <Name of your Meta database> (If you want to use an existing meta db, first restore the db on the SQL Server and then enter the name of the db you restored).
      • Select the preferred way of authenticating to the SQL Server (when sharepoint creates the service)
    • Application Pool (Create a new application)
      • Application Pool Name: Sharepoint – Metadata
      • Security Account – use “Configurable” and select from the list of managed accounts.
  5. Click on Create.
  6. After the creation, go to Central Administrator -> System Settings -> Manage Services.
  7. Scroll to Managed Metadata Web Service and click on Start (in front of it). If it’s already started, then leave it as it is.
Your Metadata Service should be configured by now. Now, lets see how to play with Metadata.
  1. Go to Central Administration.
  2. Under Application Management, click on Manage Service Applications.
  3. Navigate to Term Store Management Tool. You can do it in two ways:
    • Select the Managed Metadata Service row and then click on the Manage icon in the Ribbon.
    • Click on the Managed Metadata Service text (it is a direct link to the management tool).
  4. In the tool, you’ll first see the Properties. Do the following:
    1. In “Available Service Applications”, select “Managed Metadata Service”.
    2. In “Term Store Administrators” , add users who you want to be administrator for the service.
    3. Select the Default Language e.g. English.
    4. Add any other Working Languages, e.g. French, etc. If you are not allowed to select and add new languages, try first saving the existing configuration and then it’ll allow adding more languages, provided the user you are logged in from is also one of the Term Store Administrators.
    5. If you don’t see more languages but want to add, you’ll have to install the Sharepoint 2010 Language pack for the desired language.
  5. Save the configuration by clicking on Save.
  6. On the left, you’ll see Taxonomy Term Store tree.
  7. Right click on it, and add a New Group for your keywords.
  8. Right click on the Group you created and select New Term Set. A Term set is a collection of keywords.
  9. Right click on the Term Set and select Create Term. A Term is a synonym to your keyword.
    • Please see that while creating a term, your default language would be selected. The Term name that you give acts as the Keyword Code and the Keyword Label in the default language, after you have given the code you can select a different language and give the Label in that language as well.
    • Click on Save, to save the information for your Term (Keyword).
This is how you can prepare Metadata keyword store. For using the keyword in a list/library do the following:
  1. Go to List/Library settings.
  2. Create a new column.
  3. Select Managed Metadata as the column type.
  4. Go down to Term Set Settings and from the Tree you can select the Term Set you want to use.
  5. Rest of the settings you can adjust according to your need.
  6. Click on OK to save.
  7. Try editing a row, you’ll see that on the right side of your column there’s an Metadata icon. Click on icon to see the terms (as per the Term Set you selected while create the column). Select keywords you want to use and click on OK.
  8. Click on Save to save the row.
This is how you can use the terms. Remember the terms will be shown to you in the language according to your Display Language. To change the language, select your username on the top right corner and change the Display Language, you’ll see that after the page refreshes the keyword will also be shown in the selected display language.

For more information, you can always watch this video.