Content Type Gallery Improvements
Microsoft have now released a shiny new tenant level content type gallery which is located in the SharePoint admin center. This new gallery is going to quickly become the default place for managing both content types and metadata in SharePoint Online. While the core capabilities provided in this gallery have been available for around a decade now, this gallery finally provides a user-friendly interface that will bring these features to the fore.
Additionally, there have been several performance tweaks under the hood. It now considerably quicker for published content types to be available in sites.
The content type hub in SharePoint Online used to be installed by creating a site collection and then activating a site collection feature to install the content type hub. By and large, I imagine that it was only really used by developers – it was almost a hidden, back-end part of many architectures that admins rarely needed to venture into. The Content Type hub enabled admins to create content types from a central location and publish them to sites. However, publishing content types to sites relied on a SharePoint timer job which could take up to 4 hours and even then could be unreliable.
This legacy feature also used the Managed Metadata Service (MMS) and like MMS has also not received many updates since it was created in SharePoint 2010. So it is no surprise that both MMS and content type publishing process have been upgraded in preparation for Project Cortex.
- A modern Content Type Gallery
The new gallery uses the modern UI experience and provides a centralised view over content types. It provides a new top-level interface to oversee content types across the breadth of SharePoint Online, which to me breathes new life into the entire concept of content types.
In the content type gallery, tenant wide content types can be created, administered, and the gallery also streamlines the process of adding, removing, or changing custom columns.