Wednesday, 3 November 2010

Error occurred in deployment step 'Activate Feature': A duplicate field name "xx" was found.

Problem: A site column/ field occurs more than once.  I.e. there is a duplicate field name.
Initial Hypothesis:  If you are deploying site columns declaritively (CAML), you will have 2 site columns with the same name and type.  This commonly happens with "Email" so be more specific or reuse the exisitng site column. 
Resolution:  Ensure thre duplicate field name is unique or reuse an exisitng suitable site column.

If you have check that you don't have the issue above and you are deploying using Visual Studio 2010 use the following advice.  This occurs after you have renamed or deleted the site columns as explained above.

Problem: Deploying site columns using VS results in the error "Error occurred in the deployment step 'Activate Features': A duplicate field name "Email" was found. 
Initial Hypothesis: Ensure you don't have duplicate fields as show in the above problem solver.  Activate the feature using ststadm, it will now work.  The problem is that Visual Studio on it's 1st build and deployment caches SharePoint information, this was done by MS to speed up subsequent deployments of code.  However, the cached VS SP info is now wrong so restart VS 2010 and deploy again.
Resolution:
  1. Retract the solution that holds the failing feature;
  2. Close and reopen the Visual Studio Project; and
  3. Deploy the feature using VS 2010. 

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