Managed Metadata is one the great new features introduced in SharePoint 2010. That’s why we decided to write a series of articles describing some common scenarios that could be useful in practice.
Our first article will demonstrate how to programmatically import a term set defined in a csv file.
Creating term sets and terms using the browser is very straightforward using the Term Store Management Tool in Central Administration. However, there are some cases when we are required to programmatically create a term set by importing a csv file with terms into the Managed Metadata term store in SharePoint 2010.
In the following walkthrough we show how to create a valid csv file with term sets. Then we take a look at some of the key steps of building a SharePoint farm solution that imports the csv file into the Managed Metadata term store using the standard SharePoint Server 2010 API.
Prepare the CSV Term Store File
Let’s start with showing how to create the csv file with the managed metadata we want to import.
The import process requires a file with the .csv extension formatted a specific way. For details on this format, see the following TechNet article. Even after reading through all the details on the format though, building the file from scratch could be quite tedious and time-consuming. The good news is that there is a much easier way to accomplish this task – by using the great macro enabled template created by Wictor Wilén in his article Create SharePoint 2010 Managed Metadata with Excel 2010.
Once we download the template, we click on the Create New Term Store Sheet ribbon button located in SharePoint 2010 group. This will open a new sheet in Excel where we can enter our term set information. After the information is in place, we click on the Create Term Store File ribbon button. This saves the sheet data as a .txt file and we manually change the file extension to .csv.