How maximum number of permissions is calculated in SharePoint Online?

Copper Contributor

Hi Community!

I am currently building an integration between Dynamics 365 and SPO for managing documents.

As I would like to handle custom permissions on folders, I come with few questions after reading Microsoft documentation:

Then, considering this, I am wondering how the 5'000 recommendation is calculated?

Let's take an example based on this folder structure:

  • Account1 (folder inherits permission from library)
    • Opportunity1 (folder with unique permissions)
      • Document1 (inherits permissions from Opportunity1)
      • Document2 (inherits permissions from Opportunity1)
    • Opportunity2 (folder with unique permissions)
      • Document3 (inherits permissions from Opportunity2)
      • Document4 (inherits permissions from Opportunity2)

Do we consider that only 2 items are in the 5'000 recommendation (meaning that I can define 4'998 more items with custom permissions)? Or, because documents are inside folders with unique permission they are taken into account for this recommendation (meaning that I can define 4'994 more items with custom permissions)?


Hope that it's clear and thanks a lot for your help!

1 Reply
best response confirmed by taupia_a (Copper Contributor)

Hello @taupia_a 


i vote for only 2 permission breaks. The documents have no unique permissions and therefore do not count as unique authorizations.


We had a similar use case with over 100'000 documents. On root we had 100'000 breaks, it was not really good, after that, we create 20 folders with unique permissions and moved all the documents into the folders and inherit the permission, after that, the solution works fine.


Regards, Dave