Visio drawing in SharePoint 2007

Yesterday I decided to improve a SharePoint site a bit by replacing the very basic navigation web part (content editor web part with a 5x4 table that contains only text with hyperlinks and very far from being pretty) with something fancier. I decided to use Visio for that. I created a quite simple chart:

Simple I admit, but much better than this one:

Do you agree? ;o)

I think I will make the visio drawing a bit fancier but the main point of this blog is how to publish it into a SharePoint site? Since MOSS 2007 does not have the Visio Web Access web part like SharePoint 2010 I had to find an alternate solution. I found 2 promising ideas but none of those worked without some alteration.

  1. Since Visio lets you save your drawing as a PDF it could be a good idea to display that pdf as a webpage. The drawback is that you need a PDF reader installed on the server and it should be configured to open the PDF files in the browser (which should be easy but for me Adobe Reader didn't want to do that despite the "Display in web browser" setting). Then theoretically with the help of a Page Viewer web part you just need to set that it's a PDF and it should display it as a webpage. For me it didn't work.
  2. With the help of Ferry I managed to take the first steps in the right direction:
    • create you Visio diagram as you wish
    • in the file menu choose "Save as Web Page" - this way you have an html file with the corresponding folder with the required files
    • according to Ferry I would have only uploaded it into a SharePoint library and display it in a Page Viewer web part (the details are on that linked site with screenshots and a very nice and clear description how to do that)
    • The only thing is that Visio 2007 saves the diagram as a webpage that consists of the frames:
    • This is not so cool, isn't it? Especially if you want to display it as only a part of a page inside a web part zone. So I had to get rid of that frame on the left. Since I haven't really dealt with HTML before it gave me some headache how to do that but at the end I managed to do it in a very simple way:
      • in the subfolder with the web page files there are gif_1.gif and gif_1.htm files. It seems to be a standard naming because I tried with another drawind and the names are the same.
      • These 2 files contain everything that we need for the moment. You can rename them just be aware that you have to change the gif_1.gif in the .htm file. Then upload both into a SharePoint library.
      • Add a Page Viewer Web Part, set it to display the htm file and voila:
      • Trust me, it's clickable :)

I think it's a quite simple and useful way to display Visio diagrams and drawings in SharePoint. Only 2 files are needed to be uploaded and it gives much fancier possibilities than the content editor!

Published Wednesday, June 9, 2010 5:00 AM by MartinIsti


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