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SharePoint Myths Busted


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Presented to our internal SharePoint User Group on June 13th, 2014.

Sometimes we run into common questions or misconceptions about SharePoint. This is a tongue-in-cheek way to address these issues and let people know how things actually work.

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SharePoint Myths Busted

  1. 1. Thomas Duff SharePoint Support Team June 13th, 2014
  2. 2.  Sometimes we run into common questions or misconceptions about SharePoint  This is a tongue-in-cheek way to address these issues and let people know how things actually work.
  3. 3. “My permission list says that Bob has limited access to my site. He shouldn’t be able to read anything. Can you fix his permissions?”
  4. 4. Limited Access only appears if you have/had unique permissions on a site, and it doesn’t mean you have reader access to this page. It’s used by SharePoint to allow you to “pass through” this page/site level to get to the areas inside the site that has unique permissions…
  5. 5.  To Remember:  Limited Access does not mean Reader.  It’s controlled by SharePoint.  It’s only there if you have unique permissions on a site.  Think of it as a “right of way” to get from one place to another if you have to pass through restricted territory.  Just ignore it.
  6. 6. “I’m trying to use the view columns to filter my list, but SharePoint isn’t showing all the values for that field.”
  7. 7. These are the valid Status options. But these are the only ones used in the view.
  8. 8.  To Remember:  The values in a view column filter are only the values that actually exist in that view.
  9. 9. “I set unique permissions on my site. I updated the groups in that site, and now nobody has access to the main site. SharePoint is broke.”
  10. 10. In this site, I use the DuffTeamSite Owners group in the main site. I also have unique permissions in the Site Collection Images site.
  11. 11. In the Site Collections Images site, I also use the DuffTeamSite Owners group.
  12. 12. I’m removing the [DL] RITS Spark Support name from the DuffTeam Site Owners group from within the Site Collections Images site (with unique permissions).
  13. 13. But when I look at that group in the main site, the entry is also deleted from there. Your unique permissions means that you can add or remove the entire group, but you cannot change the members of the group without affecting any other site where the group is used.
  14. 14.  To Remember:  Breaking inheritance doesn’t mean the *contents* of the groups are frozen, just the fact that the group is used in that site.  Changing the group members changes the group wherever it is used in the site.
  15. 15. “I have a lot of data in my SharePoint list, but now I need to get it out of SharePoint. I’m going to have to retype all of it.”
  16. 16. Use List Tools > List > Export To Excel from the SharePoint list…
  17. 17. For the two prompts you’ll get prior to the exported spreadsheet, click Open and Enable…
  18. 18. If you save the spreadsheet in a SharePoint library or a shared drive, you can automatically refresh it with the latest SharePoint information by using Table Tools > Design > Refresh > Refresh All.
  19. 19.  To Remember:  Every SharePoint list has an Export To Excel function you can use to extract your list data to Excel.  You can even refresh the spreadsheet with the most up-to-date data in SharePoint with a single click of a button in Excel.
  20. 20. “I tried to edit a document in my SharePoint library, but it says it’s locked for editing by someone else. No one is in it, though.” Sort of…
  21. 21. Here’s the locked/checked out message. The green arrow on the icon is the “checked out” indicator. To get control, either have them check it in or discard the check out.
  22. 22. In this scenario, Excel checks a internal lock in the file to determine if it’s still being edited by someone else. If the file was abnormally closed, you have to wait for the lock to time out.
  23. 23.  To Remember:  Your document may just be checked out.  Abnormal Excel close can lock a document until the timeout happens on its own… there’s little we can do to speed that along.
  24. 24. “I have full control access in my site, but I can’t edit my home page. My permissions must be wrong.”
  25. 25. To see if the page is checked out, make sure you can see the Ribbon Bar on the page.
  26. 26. Either have the person check it in, or you can override the check out.
  27. 27.  To Remember:  You may well have access to edit all the pages, but someone else might have it checked out.  Display the Ribbon Bar to find out who has it checked out.  Discard/Override their check-out if you need to get control of it.
  28. 28. “I have full control access in my site, but I don’t have the ability to view or update the permission groups. The SharePoint permissions must be broken.”
  29. 29. Click on the group name. Click on Settings > Group Settings.
  30. 30. I suggest you let everyone VIEW the membership of the group, but only allow the Owner to EDIT the group.
  31. 31.  To Remember:  Each permission group has an Owner (and you might not be that person or in that group).  There’s an option to choose who can see the contents (Owner or everyone) and who can update the group (the group Owner or anyone already in the group).
  32. 32.  Feel free to ping us:  Thomas Duff (