Add a shortcut to a SharePoint document stored in a different document library (classic)

Note: Does not apply to SharePoint Online/O365 modern experiences. Only applies to classic experiences and SharePoint Server/on-prem.

In modern experiences, SharePoint allows convenient addition of links to documents stored outside the current library. However, on-prem and classic experiences are a bit different. Basically, we have to permit the “link to document” content type in the library first.

Allow shortcuts to documents

1. Go to Library > Library Settings

2. Choose Advanced settings

3. Set Allow management of content types to Yes.

4. Click OK to save changes.

5. Under Content Types choose Add from existing site content types

6. Select Link to a Document and Add >.

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7. Click OK.

Test the new option

Now, back in your document library, your New button will have the Link to a Document option available.

Once selected, you’ll enter a name for the shortcut (can be different from the document’s actual name) and its URL.

Voila! Insta-link to documents stored elsewhere.

Add a shortcut to a SharePoint document stored in a different document library (modern)

Note: Applies to SharePoint Online/O365 and modern experiences only.

In SharePoint Server/on-prem, we have to manage content types and allow links to documents before we can link to documents outside the current document library. But in SharePoint Online/O365, there’s a Link option on the New menu that does all the work for us, and without even needing to adjust the library’s content type settings.

Modern experience in SharePoint Online/O365

In a modern-view document library, simply use New > Link.

Then paste a URL to the file, or select it from recent files which, yes, will include files modified even outside the current library.

This will add a link/shortcut within your document library to the document stored/managed elsewhere.

Click to enlarge

Classic experience

Check out my post on how to accomplish something similar in classic and on-prem experiences.

Solution: SharePoint document library links/shortcuts to other documents go to a blank .aspx page

Today I ran across an issue where someone had created links within a classic document library that redirected users to documents stored in a different library. This is easy to do, but for some reason those links were now leading users to blank .aspx pages instead of the intended document.

Note that users weren’t taken to an “invalid” or “can’t be found” error page, but a completely blank page with a URL ending in .aspx. If you’re being redirected to anything other than a blank page the following solution probably won’t apply to you.

I figured out that, somehow, the library in question no longer had the “Link to a document” content type included. You normally can’t delete a content type that is in use, but with the right permissions and perhaps a migration tool or script, anything is possible. Without the content type on the library, the links that once worked under that content type now could not.

Important: The links are not necessarily broken – do not delete them. Once the content type is added again, they should work unless the original URLs have actually changed.

To re-add the link/shortcut content type to the library, follow these directions (same as if you were adding it for the first time):

1. Go to Library > Library Settings

Click to enlarge

2. Choose Advanced settings

3. Set Allow management of content types to Yes.

4. Click OK to save changes.

5. Under Content Types choose Add from existing site content types

6. Select Link to a Document and Add >.

Click to enlarge

7. Click OK.

Now check your links, and they should work!

The “New item” menu in modern SharePoint document libraries now allows adding templates

I happily stumbled across an update to modern document libraries I hadn’t noticed before. The modern document library “new item” menu now includes an option to “Edit New Menu” which pulls up this pane in-context:

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And also includes the ability to upload a new template directly from the menu, rather than through content type settings.

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Any new templates added via this method will use the default content type for that library, but provides a way to have multiple templates for a single content type.

10 reasons putting team/department documents in SharePoint is better than shared drives: Part 2

Asset 1mazeThis post is a continuation of 10 reasons putting team/department documents in SharePoint is better than shared drives.

See part one for information about:

  1. Version history
  2. Approvals/Administration
  3. Check-in/Check-out
  4. Co-editing
  5. Archiving & retention

And below for information about:

  1. Sharing and security
  2. Remote access
  3. Metadata and views
  4. Workflows & alerts
  5. Sync & export

Continue reading “10 reasons putting team/department documents in SharePoint is better than shared drives: Part 2”

10 reasons putting team/department documents in SharePoint is better than shared drives: Part 1

Asset 1mazeYou know that one file, right? The one named “Agenda.docx” in the folder called “November” in the “2008” folder in another folder called “DO NOT Delete” in the “Archive” folder of the “Retired Committees” folder?

Me either. And chances are you don’t need it anymore. But managing team/department documents on traditional shared drives has challenges like this all the time, with management, retention, content ownership, etc. SharePoint, however, can greatly assist in keeping your content current, relevant and organized.

Of course making the switch from shared, common network drives to SharePoint can be intimidating. But the benefits of doing so are well worth the effort to make your team work more efficiently. This post will highlight 10 features in SharePoint you can’t necessarily get from shared network drives:

Part One:

  1. Version history
  2. Approvals/Administration
  3. Check-in/Check-out
  4. Co-editing
  5. Archiving & retention

Part Two:

  1. Sharing and security
  2. Remote access
  3. Metadata and views
  4. Workflows & alerts
  5. Sync & export

Continue reading “10 reasons putting team/department documents in SharePoint is better than shared drives: Part 1”

Convert SharePoint documents to PDF using Microsoft Flow

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Edited Dec 10, 2018 to include “for a selected item” function in modern sites.

Can you convert SharePoint documents to PDF without leaving SharePoint? Heck, yeah!

Basically we’ll create this flow:

  1. “When a file is created or modified” in SP -OR- “For a selected item”
  2. Create document in OneDrive for Business -OR- OneDrive
  3. Convert document (OneDrive action in Flow)
  4. Create document in SP

It’s a bit of a hack but we get exactly the result often requested: convert SharePoint docs to PDF automatically. Here’s how to set this up. A video walkthrough using the “created/modified” trigger is available at the bottom of this post.

Continue reading “Convert SharePoint documents to PDF using Microsoft Flow”

Automating item-level permissions in SharePoint document libraries and lists

workflowitemlevelpermissions

Item-level permissions come in handy for a number of situations. Here are some examples and food for thought:

  • Travel plans are submitted to a list, but only those in people columns (supervisor, director, traveler) are allowed to see or find the plan by search.
  • Allow “content owners” to edit documents, and everyone else to view only.
  • Allow non-admin individuals to set editing permissions for documents or list items by populating a people column

Using a SharePoint Designer 2010 Workflow and an impersonation step, we can:

  • Add list item permissions
  • Inherit list item parent permissions
  • Remove list item permissions
  • Replace list item permissions

This tutorial will use the “replace list item permissions” action. Whenever you’re replacing permissions, you must remember to INCLUDE YOURSELF or admin individuals in the replacement permissions or you won’t be able to access the content or help with troubleshooting. Let’s begin!

Continue reading “Automating item-level permissions in SharePoint document libraries and lists”

SharePoint solution: “Coercion warning: user or group does not have a valid e-mail address”

CoercionWarning

While there are likely a number of causes to this problem, I’m writing in regard to a specific scenario in which a SharePoint Designer 2010 workflow automatically replaces item-level permissions for a document based on the contents of a people column. It’s possible this solution will apply to a different scenario, however, so read on.

The people column’s settings are multiple selection, people AND groups as can be seen here. This is absolutely fine (multiple selection, mixing of permission groups with individuals). You may just note the warning in red in the screenshot below:

“Earlier versions of client programs might not support a Person or Group field that allows multiple selections. Adding this field might block those programs from saving documents to this library.”

column.PNG

In your workflow, just make sure you’re returning your people column “As String” and not any of the semi-colon delimited options. That’s all there is to it. Publish the revision and run the workflow again (and you may need/wish to go in and end any workflows that errored out but are still “running”). Best of luck!

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“Edit in Word” (or Excel) not opening document in Office 365, or “Read-Only” status upon opening and trying to save changes

When working in Office 365 or SharePoint and you open a document for editing, you get two choices. Edit in Word (or Excel) or Edit in Browser. Editing in browser is typically a safe route but it doesn’t give you full functionality like the clients will.

The issue I’m discussing here is when a user tries to edit a document from SharePoint using the client (not Edit in Browser) the client opens to a blank, gray background (no document) or doesn’t open at all. This is likely an account conflict in syncing or accessing.

In other cases, the document may open, but as read-only. If that’s the case, it’s likely permissions-related. You might first check the user’s specific permissions in SharePoint. Sometimes because of broken (not inherited) permissions, or partial access to a site, users are able to edit in browser, but not in the client. If this is your situation, it could well be the cause.

Hopefully this is a simple fix for you, but as it’s become clear to me a number of times with this issue it can be quite complicated. I have a couple fixes, though the second is less ideal. If anyone else has run into this and would like to offer their experience, please do so in the comments.

Continue reading ““Edit in Word” (or Excel) not opening document in Office 365, or “Read-Only” status upon opening and trying to save changes”