Any custom built functionality can be added to SharePoint 2013 either by classic SharePoint solutions approach or through SharePoint Apps. Until recently, ISVs and Partners were using classic SharePoint solution approach to deploy add-ons and other functionalities to their SharePoint environment. But in SharePoint 2013 there is an option to build apps for SharePoint 2013 and host them from completely different environment. It has proven to be a better way to expand and extend the SharePoint 2013 functionalities.

Executing Custom Built Add-ons for SharePoint 2013

In classic execution, all the custom codes are executed within the SharePoint execution environment. In case if the coding has any bugs in it, there is a possibility that this could affect the SharePoint environment. But in SharePoint apps, the custom code is executed in completely different environment of your choosing.

Hosting SharePoint Solution

With SharePoint solutions the hosting options are quite limited through classic approach. It is hosted only on SharePoint server and runs within the application domain. Though the range of options for hosting SharePoint solution may be easy, but it puts the SharePoint environment at risk. Then there is a labor of handling your application life cycle. In case of SharePoint app development, customizations are independent of SharePoint environment and you have the option to choose your hosting based on your app requirement. It could be cloud hosted apps or SharePoint hosted apps.

Application Programming Interface (APIs)

Server object model is required by SharePoint solutions which has complete access to your content and environment. Now the risk involved here is that bug or any performance issues in your code could wound the SharePoint environment. Whereas in client object model used for SharePoint apps, when the code corrupts only the app is affected and the environment is safe.

Deploying SharePoint Solutions

While deploying a classic SharePoint solution you have to think about shutting down for a while in order to reset the application. This could cause a slight temporary glitch over your SharePoint application performance. While deploying a SharePoint app there is no need to shut down your SharePoint environment since they are hosted remotely. You can deploy apps any time of the day without interrupting the SharePoint application performance.

Authentication Mechanism and Languages Support

SharePoint Apps uses a new authentication mechanism called “OAuth 2.0” to interact between App and SharePoint Web Application. Since SharePoint Apps run from different environments it can support multiple languages (HTML, JavaScript, PHP or .NET).

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