If you’ve ever tried to create a new item on a SharePoint list, you may have noticed that the form always includes an Attachments field that can’t be hidden like other columns. If your process doesn’t require attachments or you’d like to prevent users from uploading documents to the list, you’re likely wondering how to get past this obstacle.
Note Be aware that if users previously utilized the Attachments field, this action would delete all attachments they’ve already uploaded on all list items.
In this post, I’ll highlight the 5 simple steps involved in removing the attachments field for a list’s new item form.
How to remove the attachments field from a list’s new item form
Click Settings | List Settings
Select Advanced settings
Set the Attachments radio button to Disabled
You’ll receive a warning making sure you’re aware that this action deletes all attachments (if there are any). Click OK.
And that’s it! Now your forms will only show fields you’ve created and configured.
If you’re not able to access or modify List settings, you may not have high enough permissions to modify the list. Check with your site owner to see if they can assist.
Attachments are secondary to the list/form data itself and should be used for specific business processes, such as attaching receipts for reimbursement requests or perhaps photos or screenshots for facility or issue trackers. If the document is independently important, it should be stored in a document library.
Also keep in mind that attachments don’t have version history, cannot be renamed or reorganized without downloading/re-uploading, and they are not searchable in Microsoft 365. If you need to search for attachments, you should store them in a document library instead of a list – and you can always use a lookup column or hyperlink column to connect the list and library.
A recent project tasked me with providing a default value for an enhanced rich text field. Most field types allow you to set a default value out of the box. With enhanced rich text (multi-line text field type) there’s no option to set a default value.
I decided jQuery was the route I wanted to go on this one. After Googling for a fair while I finally found a response that helped.
Modifying the answer provided there, I simplified the code that worked to:
Just save that code as a .js file you upload to your site. Then reference the saved .js filepath via a Content Editor Web Part placed on the new item page (newform.aspx).
Not familiar with jQuery?
The first line of the script needs to reference jQuery. In some environments this needs to be hosted in your site (I typically use Site Assets for this). In other cases, you can just reference it hosted elsewhere (not recommended, but could work for testing/short-term in some environments). I used the code from http://code.jquery.com/jquery-latest.min.js and saved its contents as a .js file of my own that I uploaded to Site Assets. Then just replace the URL in the first line of the script with the URL of the file you uploaded to Site Assets.
More than one enhanced rich text field?
The script looks for any enhanced rich text field, and in my case I only had one in the form so it was fine. If you have more than one, just replace TextField_inplacerte with the full ID of the rich text text field on your form.
Hint: User developer tools with F12 in the browser then select the field. The ID you want will end with TextField_inplacerte and likely start with your field name.
I was recently asked to develop a PTO request form that accomplished the following:
Allowed users to submit PTO, Remote work, Training, and Other requests
Auto-lookup of the employee’s manager
Send confirmation to submitter
Notify manager and seek approval/rejection with comments
If approved, send notification with an iCal link users can save to their calendar, and add the PTO to our shared departmental calendar (minus any comments)
Note: This particular build was done on SharePoint Server 2016 and uses a SharePoint Designer workflow.
Create the PTO request form
Thanks to Gregory Zelfond for sharing the idea of using a Tasks web part for this as opposed to a list. Much of this first section is inspired by his post here, with some adjustments for my purposes and preferences.
Add a tasks app and name it PTO Requests
Go to List settings for the new tasks app
Configure Versioning settings as follows
Back under List settings, configure the following Advanced settings as seen here
Under Views, keep All Tasks, My Tasks, Approve/reject Items, and Calendar. Delete the rest. Rename All Tasks and My Tasks to All Requests and My Requests.
Back under List Settings, under Columns, create the columns shown in green here, and rename those in red. Duration should be the last column you create (number format), and its formula follows the screenshot. Category needs to be the types of “Out of Office” a person could request (like PTO, Remote, Training, Other).
I like the Duration column because it will allow us to show how many weekdays (not including weekends) the PTO Request includes. So those multi-week or broken-week requests show an accurate number for management purposes.
Back under List Settings, select “Task” from under Content Types. Configure each column (hide, make optional or require) as follows:
Your new form should resemble this now:
You might want to spend some time making your views a nice dashboard as well. Here’s what I did for “All Requests.” Notice I grouped by a different calculated column which determines whether the PTO is Upcoming, Current, or Past and then sub-grouped by category.
Create the workflow for approval and calendar addition
Because this workflow has many steps, I’m only going to show some high-level tips for completing it. Build your workflow to suit your needs. If you have specific questions on how I built mine, please comment.
The approval request email
For the “then Email Current Item: Approver” step, here’s how I did the email:
The link for approving and rejecting is as follows, and you’ll need to replace the red text with a lookup to the current item’s ID. The easiest way to get this might be to do a test submission and copy the link to the approval page where the manager will choose Approved, Rejected, or Pending. You can find this page by viewing a submission, then clicking “Approve/Reject.”
Then just be sure to swap the specific ID with the lookup field for ID.
This will reduce the number of clicks your approvers/managers have to do significantly. Their process will be:
Click big link in email
Select decision and enter comments
If denied email
No bells and whistles here. You might even include a link to the dash suggesting they submit another request if they wish.
If approved, create calendar item
This is fairly straightforward. If approved, we create an item in a different list. I even edited the “Calendar” view of my PTO requests by adding an “app part” for the separate calendar instead of using the built-in calendar view the task list provides. I then just minimized and hid the chrome of the “Calendar” web part that was already on the view. This allowed me to keep some overlays and other processes related to the second calendar, but see if in context of PTO Requests.
Also, to protect the privacy of those submitting “Other (please explain)” requests (likely FMLA or something private) I have the workflow changing “Other” to just “Out of Office” for the purposes of adding to our shared calendar.
If approved email
Since I created a calendar item if approved, I’m including an iCal link in the approval email for users to open the .ics file and save it to their calendars. Here’s a post on how to structure iCal links. Just instead of creating a calculated column, construct the URL in SharePoint Designer:
Improve the look with script (optional)
The following script improves the look of both your views and your forms. It will:
Get rid of “See also” items when viewing requests
Change “New task” to “New request” in your views
Make sure all fields are visible, and not hidden behind “Show More”
Just copy and save the following script as a separate .js file in your Site Assets and follow the instructions beneath the script to add it to your views and forms.
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In classic list views/forms and on-premise environments, your choice columns allow you let users specify their own value. But the label is literally “Specify your own value:”. This can be changed.
Note: If you’re using the modern experience, you don’t have this issue.
To change the label, add the following script to your newform.aspx page, changing the name of the field referenced (see below). You can add this script in a script editor web part as a snippet or save it as a .js file to your Site Assets and reference it in a content editor web part.
To get the actual field label, use F12 (developer tools) when viewing the form and select the checkbox. Copy everything after the ‘#’ sign or whatever the column name is, ending in ‘FillInRadio.’
Once you’ve added that script (and updated the field name with your own), save the page and you’ll see your new label:
I recently developed the above solution for a project requiring attachments at multiple points throughout the form. Originally I considered just placing a static “attachment button” in multiple places, but I came up with this and liked it better.
So if you also have long forms for your SharePoint lists, and you would like an easier way for end users to add attachments to list items, ditch the out-of-the-box ribbon menu attachment button and try this “floating attachment box” solution instead.
When you create a custom new item form in SharePoint Designer, you get a bonus set of “Save” and “Cancel” buttons automatically generated. One set at the top, and one set at the bottom (as generally seen on default forms).
Chances are if you’ve created a custom new item form, you had other intentions for the space now taken by duplicate buttons. Here’s how to get rid of the spare buttons and get back to designing and tweaking your custom new item form.
What I learned? There aren’t a lot of free solutions out there for quick quiz creation and embedding in SharePoint. And the ones that are out there don’t look the greatest. Then I remembered Microsoft Forms has a quiz function! Don’t these look great? Even better – you can embed in SharePoint Server/On-Prem or SharePoint Online/O365!
Microsoft Form’s quiz capabilities are incredible. In five minutes you can create a quiz that looks good, is easy to update and has features ordinarily only available with a premium subscription through other services. And as seen above, you can embed the results as well, making voting fun or showing a group how everyone is performing as a whole on a topic quiz. Here are some of the great features you get with Microsoft Forms:
This post will introduce you to some basic conditional formatting, rules & validation ideas you can implement today in your customized SharePoint forms using PowerApps. And don’t worry – if you start making changes to your form and don’t want to keep them, you can easily switch back to the original SharePoint form.