Share option in SharePoint

Today I got some feedback on my earlier posts regarding the share option (this and this one).

So I’ve looked at this option in some more detail. And to be honest, this “Share” option really deserves a lot of attention to get it right.

First of all, there’s a difference between SharePoint 2013 and SharePoint Online. In Online you will get the options which allow people to share items and sites without the consent of the site-owner or site-collection administrator. In SharePoint on-premise these options simply are not available. These options allow people to share content or sites and change the permissions to these, without the knowledge or required actions by the site owner.

access_request_1

In SharePoint 2013 on-premise, you only see the “Allow access request” checkbox and mail-address field.

Ok, but how does this work. I’ve tried to keep this simple.

None of the options are checked

In this case, the Share option still works. It will send an e-mail (with the link) to either the item or the document. It will also add an entry to the “Shared with me” section of the OneDrive. It will not change any permissions. So if you share a document with someone without the necessary access rights, he/she will see a nasty error message.

Allow access requests

When you use this option and enter an email address of the site-owner or site-collection administrator (important this one!), you will get this functionality.

When a person shares a document (or site):

  1. An access request email is send to the specified email address;
  2. The intended person needing access also receives an email, informing him/her that this access request is being processed;
  3. The access request is entered in the list of Access requests, which the site-owner (or site-collection administrator) can access;
  4. The permission-inheritance to the document is broken (already!), awaiting the outcome of the access request;
  5. If granted, the link is send informing that the document has been shared;
  6. If not, the permission-inheritance is restored and the person requesting the share is informed.

Share without hassle

In SharePoint Online you will see to additional options. Both start with “Allow members to”.

Basically what these options allow you to do, is circumvent the access requests procedure as I described above. Instead, SharePoint will either break the inheritance to a document automatically (option 1) or add persons to the “Members of” group of the site (option 2) when the site is shared.

Needles to say that these options need to be evaluated closely before you decide which one you are going to use.

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