Jul 08 2020 01:21 AM
Jul 08 2020 01:21 AM
I would like to hide the version history of our documents in Sharepoint from all external users, no matter how they collaborate on our documents (read and edit / invited through "All" link or specifically, etc.). In other words, I would like to set Sharepoint up so only internal users can ever see version histories. Is that possible? I've been researching and googling like crazy and I can't find anything. Can anybody help?
Thanks a lot,
Jul 08 2020 01:43 AM - edited Jul 08 2020 03:41 AM
It is not possible to apply different permissions to document versions. One possible approach might be to use a flow to "move" document versions to a different library where you can use permissions to prevent external users from accessing the items. The "move" needs to be made using a different security context because the external user will not have write permissions in this shadow library.
This also affects your internal users: they need to go to a separate library to access the versions. Search will also return search results from this other library. This is far from ideal.
One more thing: are the external folks allowed to see the changes in the latest document version from the different users? making sure they don't see that may also be tricky.
Summary: this seems like a requirement that is hard to implement
Jul 08 2020 03:13 AM
Thanks a lot for your answer. I hesitate to duplicate documents - that can only lead to mistakes and confuse my users. I found this solution, but I can't make it work the way I need it to: https://sharepointmaven.com/how-to-prevent-users-from-accessing-old-versions-of-a-document/
To answer your question: yes, the external users should be able to see and edit everything in the latest version. They just shouldn't be able to see older versions.
Jul 08 2020 03:54 AM
Moving/copying documents around is bad. Fully agree.
The "CUSTOM PERMISSIONS LEVEL" approach should work.
One thing you should also check is whether the external users connect using OneDrive for Business.
If they use local copies and the sync has not yet run then they will have access to a previous version. Perhaps theoretical but something to be aware of.
Jul 08 2020 06:35 AM
Thanks a lot for your answer and for the pointer about OneDrive. I'll keep that in mind.
If you don't mind, would you be willing to help me make the custom permissions approach work? What group do I give these custom permissions? Website visitors only have Read rights at the moment. I don't understand how this goes together with the edit rights we give external users when we invite them via link sharing.
Jul 08 2020 10:46 AM
Maybe that can help you. In SharePoint, you can create a permission level where you disable the option to view version history, create a group of members of external users, and assign the permission level to that group. I tested it in my environment and it worked!
If you want, I'll send you step by step.
Jul 12 2020 11:36 PM
A step by step would be super helpful, thanks so much. I've tried the permission level approach but I couldn't make it work.
Jul 13 2020 07:25 AM
Where exactly are you having problems? The second option provided within the SharePoint Maven link is pretty detailed and shouldn't give too many problems. On a high level you're basically creating a new group (which is a collection of users), then attaching a custom permission group to it. Once these are done, you'll edit the permissions on the library level and add this custom group there.
A step by step would (using content from the SharePoint Maven blog) be something like this: -
Hope that helps!
Jul 17 2020 12:19 AM
Thanks so much for your answer and for the detailed explanation. My issue is with the members of the new group. They're not set in advance so I can add them to the group individually. It should be <all external users> (i.e. everybody except my team). I can't figure out how to make that happen. We have one group called "Website Visitors". I'm not sure if that's the right one. But this group only has read rights. So I don't know how that goes together with the edit rights we give our external users through link sharing.
I hope I'm explaining my confusion in a way that makes sense...?
Jul 31 2020 06:49 AM
Aug 03 2020 05:23 AM
Whilst I think that the solutions given will work, these are somewhat scuppered by the fact you'll be granting rights via a very wide mechanism.
What also doesn't help is that SharePoint rights are additive, which means if a person is given a low permission set (like read) and a higher one (like edit), they'll be granted the maximum rights.
So I suppose you'd be looking at your external users, assuming all they need is read rights, having minimal permissions whilst your own team of editors would have a higher permission set granted via Edit rights.
Aug 04 2020 12:10 AM
Thank you very much for your answer. I think that's basically what I struggle with.
If I give the following rights:
- external users: read, don't see version history
- internal editors: edit, see version history
then what happens if we send an external user an edit link (which we do often)? I'd like them to then have the following rights:
- edit, don't see version history
but I'd assume they would then get:
- edit, see version history (like the internal editors). How do I avoid that?
Aug 20 2020 04:23 AM
I did some more research and found out that I would have to edit the permission level "Limited Access" used for link sharing, which is apparently not possible (https://docs.microsoft.com/de-de/sharepoint/sites/user-permissions-and-permission-levels).
@microsoft: Is there a workaround for this? I really don't want external users to be able to see our version history - there might be sensitive data in there.