Create an alert or subscribe to an RSS feed

To stay updated when documents or items on your site change, set up alerts or subscribe to Really Simple Syndication (RSS) feeds.

  1. Go to the library or list where you want to set the alert or RSS feed. (If you’re looking at a view of the list or library on another page, you may have to click the title of the list or library first. For example, you may have to click Documents first to go to the Documents library.)
  2. Do one of the following:
  • To set an alert or RSS feed for the entire library or list, click Library or List, and then click Alert Me > Set alert on this library or click RSS Feed.
    Alert Me and RSS buttons
  • To set an alert for a document or list item, select the document or item and then click Files > Alert Me > Set alert on this document or click Items > Alert Me > Set alert on this item, depending on whether you are working with a library or a list.
    Set alert on this document
  1. Select the options you want for the alert or follow the instructions for subscribing to the RSS feed.

 Note    The exact names of the tabs and buttons in steps 1 and 2 vary if you are in a specialized library or list, such as a picture library, tasks list, or calendar list. For example, a calendar list has Events and Calendar tabs where you can find the Alert Me and RSS Feed buttons.

For more detailed instructions about the options, read on in this article or in the See Also section.

More information in this article


Overview of alerts and RSS

Both alerts and RSS feeds inform you about updates, and both allow you to customize how much information you receive. They differ in how the notifications are delivered to you.

Alerts come in e-mail or as text messages to your mobile phone, depending on how your site is configured. You can decide how often you want to know when specific items change. For example, if you want to know each time someone adds a new file to a library, you can create an alert for yourself or even for a co-worker.

RSS feeds help you to consolidate updates from different sites in an RSS reader. RSS feeds come at periodic intervals, and appear in an RSS reader, where you might already manage subscriptions to other types of information, such as headlines from news or blog sites. There are several types of RSS readers, including stand-alone readers, browsers such as Windows Internet Explorer, and e-mail programs such as Microsoft Outlook.

 Important    If your site is part of an Office 365 subscription, alerts and RSS feeds are enabled when your site is first created, but your site administrator can disable RSS for a site or for an entire site collection. If your site is part of a separate SharePoint deployment that your organization manages on its own:

  • A server administrator has to configure outgoing e-mail in Central Administration before you can receive an alert as an e-mail message. Similarly, before you can receive an alert as a text message, a server administrator has to enable the SMS/MMS service settings in Central Administration.
  • Before you can receive RSS feeds, the server administrator has to enable RSS feeds in Central Administration and the site administrator has to have left RSS feeds enabled for the site on the Site Settings page.

Find information about how to configure outgoing e-mail, the SMS service, and RSS feeds in the See Also section of this article.

Alerts

Alerts can be set up for different types of information, so that you can learn about the changes you are most interested in. You can set up an alert for a list, library, folder, file, or list item. For example, you can set up an alert for a folder in a library, without receiving alerts when changes occur in the rest of the library.

You can set up alerts for different types of changes, ranging from every single change to only changes that occur to the files you created. You can also set up the delivery method for alerts so that they appear as messages in your e-mail inbox or as text messages on your mobile phone, if your site is set up that way.

RSS Feeds

RSS feeds appear in an RSS reader with updates and subscriptions from other sites. RSS is a technology that enables you to receive updates in a standardized format from several sites at once.

You can view and subscribe to RSS feeds for a list or library, or even a view where you have filtered the information or customized the columns. You cannot subscribe to an RSS feed for an individual document or list item.

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Create an alert for a list or library

 Tip   If you have permission to manage alerts, you can also create an alert for another person by typing his or her information into the Users box.

  1. In the list or library where you want to create the alert, click Library or List.

     Note    The name of this tab varies, depending on the type of list or library you want to create an alert for. For example, for a calendar list, it’s the Calendar tab.

  2. Click Alert Me > Set alert on this library. (In a list, the command will say Set alert on this list.)
    Set alert on library
  3. On the New Alert page, in the Alert Title section, change the title for the alert if you want. The title appears in the subject line of the alert e-mail message and is also used for managing alerts.
  4. If the Send Alerts To section is available, enter the user names or email addresses of people you want alerts to be sent to.
  5. In the Delivery Method section, select the method of delivery you want for your alerts.

     Note    To send an alert as a text message, you need to enter your phone number in the box. If the Text Message (SMS) options are grayed out, the site might not be configured for outgoing e-mail and SMS alerts. Contact your server administrator.

  6. If the Change Type section is available, choose the types of changes that you want to be notified about. For example, you can receive alerts about all changes or only when items are deleted.
  7. In the Send Alerts for These Changes section, specify whether you want to be alerted for all types of changes, or for specific changes, such as when anything changes or only when someone changes an item that you created or recently changed.
  8. In the When to Send Alerts section, choose how frequently you want to receive the alerts, such as immediately or in a daily or weekly summary, and at what day or time.

     Note    For mobile alerts, Send notification immediately is the only option.

  9. Click OK.

 Note   Depending on how your site and servers are set up, the person you created an alert for might receive an e-mail message that confirms that you created an alert. The alert e-mail message might provide links to the list or library, alert settings, the name of the person who created the alert, a mobile view, and other information and commands.

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Create an alert for a folder, file, or list item

You can use the following procedure to create an alert to track an item in a list, a document in a library, or a folder in a list or library. For example, you can set an alert so that you receive notifications about changes to an event on a calendar or a task in a Tasks list.

 Tip   If you have permission to manage alerts, you can also create an alert for another person by typing his or her information into the Users box.

  1. In the list or library where the folder, file, or list item is located, select the item you want to create an alert for. (To select the item, click the icon that represents the item, or point to the space next to the item and then click the check mark that appears.)
  2. Click Files > Alert Me > Set alert on this document.
    Set alert on this document

     Note    The name of the tab varies for specialized libraries and lists, such as picture libraries, tasks lists, or calendar lists. For example, in a tasks list, click Tasks > Alert Me.

  3. On the New Alert page, in the Alert Title section, change the title for the alert if you want. The title appears in the subject line of the alert e-mail message and is also used for managing alerts.
  4. If the Send Alerts To section is available, enter the user names or email addresses of people you want alerts to be sent to.
  5. In the Delivery Method section, select the method of delivery you want for your alerts.

     Note    To send an alert as a text message, you need to enter your phone number in the box. If the Text Message (SMS) options are grayed out, the site might not be configured for outgoing e-mail and SMS alerts. Contact your server administrator.

  6. If the Change Type section is available, choose the types of changes that you want to be notified about. For example, you can receive alerts about all changes or only when items are deleted.
  7. In the Send Alerts for These Changes section, specify whether you want to be alerted for all types of changes, or for specific changes, such as when anything changes or only when someone changes an item that you created or recently changed.
  8. In the When to Send Alerts section, choose how frequently you want to receive the alerts, such as immediately or in a daily or weekly summary, and at what day or time.

     Note    For mobile alerts, Send notification immediately is the only option.

  9. Click OK.

 Note   Depending on how your site and servers are set up, the person you created an alert for might receive an e-mail message that confirms that you created an alert. The alert e-mail message might provide links to the list or library, alert settings, the name of the person who created the alert, a mobile view, and other information and commands.

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Subscribe to an RSS Feed for a list or library

 Note   Depending on your browser or how your system is set up, this procedure might not be available or the steps may differ. For more information, see your site owner or administrator.

  1. In the list or library to which you want to subscribe, click Library or List.

     Note    The name of this tab varies, depending on the type of list or library you want to create an alert for. For example, for a calendar list, it’s the Calendar tab.

     Tip   If your Web browser enables you to subscribe to a view, an RSS toolbar button might become enabled at this point. If so, you might be able to click it to subscribe directly to the list or library. If this feature is not available in your browser, then you can follow the steps in the rest of this procedure.

  2. In the Share & Track group, click RSS Feed.
    Library RSS Feed

     Note    If the RSS Feed button is disabled, RSS may be disabled for either this site or for the entire site collection. See your site administrator.

  3. On the RSS feed page that appears in a browser window, follow the instructions for how to subscribe to the feed. For example, click Subscribe to this feed.
  4. Follow any additional instructions in your RSS reader, browser, or e-mail program.

 Note   If subscribing to the feed by using the subscription link doesn't work for your reader, follow the instructions in your RSS reader to copy and paste the URL of the feed into your reader.

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Subscribe to an RSS Feed for a view of a list or library

If you have permission to modify a view, you can subscribe to an RSS feed for a particular view. This enables you to receive updates on changes that occur to information that appears only in that view.

Some Web browsers enable you to subscribe to a view by clicking an RSS button in the browser toolbar.

  1. In the list or library to which you want to subscribe, click Library or List.

     Note    The name of this tab varies, depending on the type of list or library you want to create an alert for. For example, for a calendar list, it’s the Calendar tab.

  2. If you aren’t already looking at the view you want to subscribe to, select the right view from the Current View drop down list and then click Library or List again.

     Tip   If your Web browser enables you to subscribe to a view, an RSS toolbar button might become enabled at this point. If so, you might be able to click it to subscribe directly to the view. If this feature is not available, then you can follow the steps in the rest of this procedure.

  3. Click Modify View to open the view for editing.
    Modify a view

 Note    If Modify View does not appear on the View menu, you do not have permission to edit the view and therefore you cannot use this method to subscribe to the RSS feed of the view.

  1. In the Name section, click the RSS buttonRSS Image.
  2. On the page that appears, follow the instructions for how to subscribe to the feed. For example, click Subscribe to this feed.

     Tip    Copy the URL from the RSS feed subscription page. You can then post this URL on you site so that contributors to your site can view and subscribe to the RSS feed.

  3. Follow any additional instructions in your RSS reader, browser, or e-mail program.

 Note   If subscribing to the feed by using the subscription link doesn't work for your reader, follow the instructions in your RSS reader to copy and paste the URL of the feed into your reader.

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Applies to:
SharePoint Foundation 2013, SharePoint Online Enterprise (E1), SharePoint Online Enterprise (E3 & E4), SharePoint Online Midsized Business, SharePoint Online operated by 21Vianet - Enterprise (E1 & E2), SharePoint Online operated by 21Vianet - Enterprise (E3 & E4), SharePoint Online operated by 21Vianet - Midsized Business, SharePoint Online operated by 21Vianet - Small Business, SharePoint Online Small Business, SharePoint Server 2013 Enterprise, SharePoint Server 2013 Standard