SharePoint folder "modified" date not accurate

Brass Contributor


the date in the system column "modified" for folders is not accurate. Although new files are created within the folder or modified, the folders modified date does not change.

Which events trigger the modified date of a folder?

Thx for your help. :)

Best regards

8 Replies
I think that folder modified date only updated when we create, or rename folder in SharePoint library.

It will not include changes in the subfolders or files within the folder.

I checked following and it is not working.

Create new file in folder
Update file in folder
Delete file in folder

@FabvE Modified date of folder in SharePoint document library will not change if new files added/edited inside the folder as mentioned by @NikolasAli 


Modified date of folder only changes when you change the create a new folder, rename an existing folder or change any metadata associated with the folder.


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@FabvE This is very disappointing and a backwards step. It should operate like Explorer has done for decades. Not showing the date and modifier of a folder makes sorting and finding information harder. Is there an explanation why it operates in such a poor way please?

Just to add to what Merlin has said, this should be a basic feature. I have been searching for the folder containing changes to files made by a colleague. This is a really useful feature, and it ought to be migrated to Exchange. Most people when working with Exchange will assume that it behaves just like Explorer.
SharePoint is a database which is different from a file explorer - which is the structure most are used to. Databases use metadata, tags, filters and views to optimize the search of data, as opposed to file directory where we use the modified date to if any file/data is modified. SharePoint can be a learning curve however the Search button is a good start! If you know the file name, keyword or if you use metadata, you can search by typing in "Search this Library" and it will pull your file for you. File directories are structural and knowing where your file is stored is always the key in navigating the directory; but since SharePoint is a database you are using a search engine capabilities and features to locate your file/data. Migrating from local server to cloud will be a new experience but its meant to streamline your work!

@Rabarai Thanks for the reply, however it does not really help. Most people I would argue would think that the date shown against a folder is when it was updated not when it was created. Showing the creation date is pointless in most uses. I just want to see which folders have been updated recently quickly and efficiently. 

Hi Rabarai, thank you for your explanations. However, I would say File Explorer also have some kind of database where it store information like date, time, modifiers. It will be just a different type of database. Well, if SharePoint uses database, controlling metadata is much more flexible and having more features and option, should be able to input such a critical information. File name and keyword and searching is not what we are after, we are after when the folders are displayed, and along with the name of the file/folder, we used to see time stamps which we heavily rely on when dealing with large finance related documents, or Government sensitive data.
The complexity of the situation badly impacted by not having the time stamps when moving/copying a files/folder from one site to another SharePoint site is killing. When migrating from onprem file server to SharePoint online, it was possible to migrate with those time stamps and that was what I did for my work place, so that tells SharePoint has capability to copy metadata from legacy onprem files/folder into modern SharePoint and store it in its metadata.

It is just Microsoft forgot to include such an important and critical service or functionality.
While writing this, I still felt the pain, I just step out from a meeting with our managers talking about this painful situation and making the next plan.

Spot on. It seems that Microsoft do not understand real world needs and still do not want to make SharePoint better.