One of the many things I love about ConfigMgr is that with every release it just gets better and better and this includes the documentation which is just fantastic compared to what it used to be. However, I am more than a little dismayed about Microsoft’s decision to retire the “Classic” view of the documentation on the TechNet/ MSDN libraries and instead force people towards the “Lightweight” view as indicated by this message that has been appearing on the ConfigMgr Documentation Library:
This view of the MSDN and TechNet Libraries will be replaced soon with the Lightweight view. Try it now by clicking the Lightweight link above.

So what do I love about Classic view?

Well simply put it’s the only view that includes the “Expand All” functionality that allows you expand all of the items on a page in “one hit” which is especially useful for searches which won’t include text in unexpanded sections on a page which is the case in other views. I also like to expand all sections before I read a page rather than having to expand each section as I go (which is the case in the other views), which can become tedious on pages with lots of sections to expand. Classic view is also the only view that includes the “Table of Contents” in the left-hand column which I find useful for “jumping off” into other areas of the documentation. Now I’m no Search Engine expert, but I’m assuming that if I can’t find content on a page that’s hidden in a collapsed section then neither will they.

How do I switch to “Classic” view?

If you’v never tried Classic view and you’re wondering how to switch from Lightweight view to Classic view it’s easy: Click the “Preferences” icon (the little gear item towards the top right hand corner of the screen). Doc Preferences

 This will load the “Choose View” screen.
Doc Choose View
Select “Classic” then click “OK“. The Documentation Library  will load in Classic view.
Doc Classic View

How can I give my feedback on this?

If like me you depend on Classic view and don’t want to lose it then please give Microsoft your feedback which you can do in several ways:
  • Email the ConfigMgr Documentation alias (smsdocs@microsoft.com)
  • Click on the “Click to Rate and Give Feedback” text towards the top right hand corner of the screen which will drop down “Give feedback on this content” dialog box where you can enter your feedback which is read by the various documentation teams.
  • Provide your feedback on this post and I’ll forward it on for you.

Hopefully if enough of us feel strongly enough about this and tell Microsoft we might be able to get them to reconsider their decision, which I personally feel would undermine the hard work of the various documentation teams by de-valuing their hard efforts.

 

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