SharePoint 2013 End User Lab Environment Setup

How to setup up a end user SharePoint site for hands on labs.

Option 1 - Use Office 365 SharePoint Online Trial

  • Operating System: Windows 7 or Windows 8
  • Office 2013 Pro (included as part of the trial) or Office Web Apps
Setup Steps:

  1. Sign up for Office 365 Enterprise Trial

    • Please write down your user name and password
    • The default domain for users is You can add your own domain later.
  2. Create sample users

    • Go to Office 365 Admin Center > Users and Groups
    • Create user: Dave Green
    • Create user: Lucy Smith
  3. Find root private site collection

    • From anywhere in Office 365, go to Admin > SharePoint > Site Collections
    • Under site collections, identity the root site collection (example:
    • Go to the site collection and make sure to add site collection URL to Trusted Sites in Internet Explorer.
  4. Rename root site collection to "ABC University"

    • On the home page of your new site collection, click on "Your Site, Your Brand" image
    • In Site Settings Title, Description, and Logo page, change Title to "ABC University"
    • Click OK
  5. Create sites from templates

    • Activate site collection SharePoint Server Publishing Infrastructure and Workflows features. Settings > Site Settings > Site Collection Administration > Site Collection Features
    • Download Courses and Chemistry 101 templates (Internet Explorer will rename the files to .zip. Rename it back to .wsp)
    • Upload site templates to Solutions gallery and activate them. Settings > Site Settings > Web Designer Galleries > Solutions
    • Create a sub site called "Courses" based on "Courses" template.

      • On the home page of ABC University, go to Settings > Site Settings > Look and Feel > Navigation. In Global Navigation, click on Show Subsites checkbox. Click OK.
      • in the Quick Launch Bar on the left, click on Site Contents.
      • In Subsites section, click on new subsite. You should now be within the New SharePoint Site page where you specify a title, site url, and access permissions.
      • In the Title text box, enter “Courses”. In the URL Name textbox, enter “courses”.
      • In Template Selection, select Custom > Courses
      • For Navigation Inheritance, click Yes
      • Click on Create at the bottom of the page. Once the process completes, you should be on the home page of the Courses site.
    • Create a sub site called "Chemistry 101" based on "Chemistry 101" template inheriting the top link navigation. Change Navigation setting to show sub sites at Courses.
    • We recommend creating the two site structure for every user that completes the course. Your URL structure might look something like this:

      • /courses-tom/
      • /courses-tom/chem101
      • /courses-kim/
      • /courses-kim/chem101
    • Alternatively, you can create a site collection for every user that will complete the course.
  6. Download sample documents

  7. Grant each user Edit permission level within the respective site

Option 2 - Use Your Environment

This option is similar to Office 365

Setup Steps:

  1. Decide whether you will use a separate site collection for every user
  2. In Central Administration, create a site collection with "ABC University" title and "Team Site" template
  3. Follow steps from above starting with Create sites from templates