Creating a Team from an existing O365 group

O365 groups make up the sun in the O365 solar system. And every Microsoft Teams team (planet?) must have an O365 group to exist. You’ll also use O365 groups for group email and calendars, defining permissions for private Stream channels, collaborating with group members in Planner, and much more.

When you create a new team from scratch, it automatically creates an O365 group (and a SharePoint site collection). Whomever you invite to that team is added to the O365 group which is also used to define permissions in other apps and services throughout O365.

But let’s say you were using O365 groups before Teams was cool. You don’t want to create duplicate teams or have to manage twice as many, right? Luckily, you can use existing O365 groups to create new teams.

Create a team using an existing O365 group

In Teams, beneath your list of Teams, click Join or create a team.

Click Create team.

Choose Create from…

Next, click Office 365 group.

If you choose Team, it will copy that Team’s apps, settings, and channels to the new Team (without changing the original Team). This might be useful for classes with similar formats, or creating committees or teams based on a well-received template.

But to create a team from our existing O365 group, we’re going to select Office 365 group.

Now select the existing O365 group for which you’re establishing a new Team, then click Create.

After a moment, your new Team will be created and you’ll be taken to its landing page.

You can verify membership is correct by opening the Team’s menu (ellipses) and selecting Manage team. This

Here you can view owners, members, and guests from the O365 group. You can now modify the O365 group’s membership here if you wish, keeping in mind it affects permissions outside of Teams as well (as is the nature of O365 groups).

Microsoft recommends modifying O365 group permissions via Teams because doing so elsewhere (such as the M365 admin center) will cause a delay in taking effect and removed team members may retain Teams chat access for a couple hours.

Check permissions for an individual or group in SharePoint

If you want to see which groups a user belongs to, or how an individual is granted (or restricted) access to a particular site or resource, use the “Check permissions” button in Site Settings –> Site Permissions (or any advanced permissions page).

SharePoint 2016 example of checking permissions
SharePoint Online example of checking permissions (see specific allowances)

Export SharePoint group membership names and email addresses to Excel

Before we start, if you’re just wanting to email all members of the group you can “select all” then choose “E-Mail Users” from the action menu when viewing the group membership within SharePoint. This opens an Outlook window with all the addresses pre-populated.

But, if you still need an excel sheet of membership for another purpose (perhaps to format a sign-in sheet, generate documents with mail merge, share the list with others, etc.) follow these steps:

  1. With the group open in SharePoint, copy the URL and note the ID number at the end of the URL
  2. Open a new excel workbook
  3. From the “Data” tab, select “New Query” –> “From Other Sources” –> “From OData Feed
  4. Paste the group URL in the prompt but delete everything after the site address and replace with the following, replacing “6” with your group’s ID from step 1
    /_api/Web/SiteGroups/GetByID(6)/Users
  5. When prompted for login credentials you’ll use “Windows” for on-prem/server and “Organizational account” for O365.
  6. Click “Edit” once the group loads so we can choose which columns to keep/delete
  7. Ctrl+click the column headers you want to keep
  8. Right-click a header of a column you’re keeping and select “Remove Other Columns”
  9. Close and Load
  10. You should now see your group membership and email addresses (and any other fields you kept). Save this somewhere and, if updates are made in the future, just click “Refresh all” to bring in new members and remove old.

Updated 8/8/2019: Added step 5 to show the login credentials prompt.

SharePoint workflow troubleshooting: “Item does not exist. It may have been deleted by another user.”

This error message tends to reveal itself whenever you’re dealing with item-level permissions. Try the following to resolve this error.

Note: For any change to a workflow, you’ll need to start/restart your workflow to test it. Resuming a workflow will only resume the previous version of the workflow (still broken).

Continue reading “SharePoint workflow troubleshooting: “Item does not exist. It may have been deleted by another user.””

Securing information by setting item-level permissions in SharePoint without workflow

SharePoint Designer is a fantastic workflow builder – but sometimes, if your workflow isn’t built correctly, implementing item-level permissions via workflow could fail and leave your submitted information or documents vulnerable to data spill. A safer, more reliable method is to use out-of-the-box (OOTB) item-level permissions.

This OOTB method is great because it applies to all items, former and future, while workflows would need to be triggered for previous items to be set. This becomes tricky to do retroactively when your lists could already have thousands of items. This OOTB method is also not dependent on other steps or actions that could fail, as it might be in a workflow.

Continue reading “Securing information by setting item-level permissions in SharePoint without workflow”

SharePoint “Cancel Checkout” permissions

When you’re working with item-level permissions in SharePoint, you will see this message in advanced settings:

“Note: Users with the Cancel Checkout permission can read and edit all items.”

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Here’s how to check to see if a group or individual has that cancel checkout permission, or add it if needed:

Continue reading “SharePoint “Cancel Checkout” permissions”

SharePoint workflow “access denied” error sp.utilities.utility.SendEmail solution

If you’ve found this post by search, you’ve likely already gone into the workflow settings for a particular list or document library item and have clicked the info icon (infocon) next to “Internal status” and found that your workflow is “in progress”, but has an error: “Access Denied. You do not have permission to perform this action or access this resource.” Peering into the bulk of the message, you see a helpful tidbit that includes sp.utilities.utility.SendEmail. This could be from a number of causes, but here are the summaries of three possible solutions. Note that the first solution is still required even if you try B or C below. I’ve only included the second and third solutions as additional possibilities if the first doesn’t solve your problem.

A common question, before we begin, is what level of permissions any individual needs to be able to send an email or start a workflow generally. It doesn’t matter so much if you’re using Impersonation or App Steps, but the quick answer is a minimum of Contribute level permissions is good.

Continue reading “SharePoint workflow “access denied” error sp.utilities.utility.SendEmail solution”

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”