Working with SharePoint document libraries

Document libraries are collections of files that you can share with team members on a Web based on Microsoft Windows SharePoint Services. For example, you can create a library of common documents for a project, and team members can use their Web browsers to find the files, read them, and make comments. Users with Microsoft Office 2003 can check out and edit the files as if they resided on a local or network drive.

By default, your team Web site comes with a built-in document library named Shared Documents, which is listed on the Quick Launch bar as well as on the Documents and Lists page.

About this tutorial

This tutorial teaches you how to use some of the most basic features of working with SharePoint document libraries.

Goals

After completing this tutorial, you will know how to:

  • Create a document library
  • Create folders and navigate between them
  • Add files to a document library
  • Check out, edit, and check in files.
  • Set properties of files
  • Delete documents and folders

Links to information on using more advanced features document libraries like Web discussions and content approval appear at the end of this tutorial.

Suppose you're the owner of a new site at Contoso corporation and want to share some files that were created in Microsoft Office Excel, PowerPoint, and Word. The files are being prepared for an upcoming customer visit with Trey Research. You want to create some presentations, documents, and spreadsheets with supporting data.

Before you begin

To complete this tutorial, you'll need a Windows SharePoint Services site and an empty document library. It is best to try out these tutorials on a site that is not being used by a team. Your system administrator can create one for you or you can create a site beneath your team's current site as described in the next section. If you don't have a server running Windows SharePoint Services available and have Internet access, you can sign up for a hosted Windows SharePoint Services trial.

Create a practice site

 Note   You can create a subsite under the current site if you are a member of the Administrator site group or a member of a site group that has the Create Subsite right. If you are not a member of the Administrator site group, ask the site administrator to create a subsite for you. Make sure you are a member of the Web Designer or Administrator site group in the new subsite.

  1. On the top link bar, click Create.
  2. At the bottom of the page in the Web Pages section, click Sites and Workspaces.
  3. In the Title and Description section, type a name, such as Document Library Tutorial, and a description for the new site.

For example, you can type Working with Document Libraries Practice Site for the description of this site.

  1. In the Web Site Address section, type the Web address (URL).

The first part of the address is provided for you. For the second part, type document-library-tutorial.

  1. In the Permissions section, click Use same permissions as parent site.
  2. Click Create.
  3. On the Template Selection page, click Team Site, and then click OK.

After the site is created, it appears in your browser.

Downloading sample documents

To complete this tutorial, you'll need to go to the Download Center to download a set of practice documents. Follow the instructions on the download page to save the files to your computer.

 Note   If you have a set of documents that you'd rather work with, you can use those instead. The practice documents are provided as a convenience.

After you have a site and documents to practice with, you'll need to create a document library as described in the next section. Make sure you are a member of the Administrator or Web Designer site groups or a site group with the Add and Customize Pages right on the new site.

Creating and configuring a document library

Now that you have a site and some documents to work with, you're ready to create your document library and set up some folders.

Create a document library

  1. On the top link bar, click Create.
  2. On the Create Page page, click Document Library.
  3. In the Name box, type Trey Research Visit.

New List page

  1. In the Description box, type Supporting files for upcoming customer meeting with Trey Research.
  2. In the Navigation section, click Yes to put a link to this document library on the Quick Launch bar on the home page.

Quick Launch bar

In a site with only a few lists and libraries, it's a good idea to choose Yes here. Having a link to a document library on the Quick Launch bar makes it easier for site users to find it. But in sites with many lists and libraries, you'll want to include only the most commonly used lists and libraries or the Quick Launch bar will get too long.

  1. In the Document Versions section, click No. For document libraries that will contain files that get developed over time, it is a good idea to turn document versions on. You won't be changing the files in this tutorial, however, so there is no need to save versions.
  2. Click Create.

A page that displays the default view of the new document library appears.

Creating folders

  1. Go to the Trey Research Visit you created earlier (if you're not already there): On the top link bar, click Documents and Lists. On the Documents and Lists page, click Trey Research Visit Tasks.
  2. In the Trey Research Visit document library, click New Folder.
  3. On the New Folder page, in the Name box, type Presentations.
  4. Click Save and Close.
  5. Repeat these steps and create two more folders called Spreadsheets and Documents.

Moving between folders

  1. To go into the Presentations folder, click on its name.
  2. To move back up to the top level of the folder, click Up Button image.

Adding a column to a document library

When you add a column to a document library, you add a new type of property that users can set for files in that library. You can require that users enter information for a column, or columns can be optional. By adding columns (properties), you make it easier to sort, filter, and organize files for retrieval.

By default all document libraries come with columns that let you edit the name and title of the file. There are also columns that Windows SharePoint Services maintains for information such as the name of the person who last edited the file and the date and time the file was last saved. For the upcoming visit to Trey Research, you will add a column to so that document owners can specify how close their files are to being finished.

  1. Go to the Trey Research Visit you created earlier (if you're not already there): On the top link bar, click Documents and Lists. On the Documents and Lists page, click Trey Research Visit Tasks.
  2. In the Trey Research Visit document library, click Modify settings and columns.
  3. In the Columns section, click Add a new column.
  4. In the Name and Type section, in the Column name box, type Status, and then click Choice (menu to choose from).

Add a Column page

  1. In the Optional Settings for Column section, type Status for each file as the description for the column.
  2. In Require that this column contains information, click Yes.
  3. In the Type each choice on a separate line box, replace the placeholder text with the following entries:

Not Started

Writing

Team Review

Legal Review

Complete

  1. In Display choices using option, click Drop-Down Menu.

In this case, the Radio Buttons option would work as well. The Checkboxes option allows users to choose more than one status.

  1. In the Allow fill-in choices option, click No.

If you know that the number of categories is going to increase over time, it is good to enable this option. However, in this example, you want to control which options for file status appear so that it is easier to track progress.

  1. In Default value, make sure Choice is selected. The first item in the list (Not Started, in this case) is the default.
  2. Make sure the Add to default view check box is selected.
  3. At the bottom of the page, click OK.

Now that you've added the Status column, you're ready to add some files to the library.

Adding documents to the document library

This tutorial will show you three methods for uploading pictures to a picture library. Windows SharePoint Services provides the first of these methods, single upload. Office 2003 provides a tool for uploading multiple documents, or you can save a file directly to a document library from within an Office 2003 program.

Uploading a single file from the Web browser

  1. Go to the Trey Research Visit you created earlier (if you're not already there): On the top link bar, click Documents and Lists. On the Documents and Lists page, click Trey Research Visit Tasks.
  2. In the Trey Research Visit document library, click the Presentations folder that you created earlier.
  3. Click Upload Document.
  4. On the Upload Document page, click Browse to the folder with the sample documents you downloaded earlier.
  5. Click the file Project Status.ppt and then click Open.
  6. Click Save and Close.

The Microsoft Office PowerPoint® 2003 presentation file appears in the document library. The Status property is set to the default value that you chose when you created that column.

  1. Repeat the steps above and add the sample file Recommending a Strategy.ppt.

 Note   You can add any other files to the document library this way. For example, you could go to your My Documents folder and add files from there.

Uploading multiple documents

The steps below teach you how to upload multiple documents if the computer you are working at has Office 2003 installed. Even though you will be working in Windows SharePoint Services in your Web browser, you will only see the Upload Multiple Files link mentioned below if you have Office 2003 installed. In the example below, you'll add the sample Microsoft Microsoft Office Excel spreadsheet files and Word documents to the Spreadsheets and Documents folders respectively that you created earlier.

  1. Go to the Trey Research Visit you created earlier (if you're not already there): On the top link bar, click Documents and Lists. On the Documents and Lists page, click Trey Research Visit Tasks.
  2. In the Trey Research Visit document library, click the Documents folder that you created earlier.
  3. Click Upload Document.
  4. On the Upload Document page, click Upload Multiple Files.
  5. Go the folder where you downloaded the practice files.
  6. Select the two Word files (Memo_Draft.doc and Memo_Final.doc) by selecting the check box next to each file.
  7. Click Save and Close.
  8. When prompted to confirm that you want to upload the files, click Yes.

The files appear in the document library. The Status property is set to the default value that you chose when you created that column.

  1. Repeat the steps above to put the two Excel spreadsheet files (Cost analysis with pareto chart1.xls and Start-up capital estimate1.xls) into the Spreadsheets folder.

 Notes 

  • You can also use the Explorer view to copy multiple files to a document library. In the Select a View pane, click Explorer View, and then, from a Windows Explorer window, drag the desired files into the document library.
  • If you're familiar with using network paths, you can also copy files to a document library using the method described in Setting up Windows SharePoint Services as a Collaborative File Store.

Working with files in a document library

Now that you've added files to the document library, you're ready to learn how to check out a file, open it for editing, and then change the properties of a file.

Checking out a document

With document library files, you should always check out a file before opening it and making changes. This prevents other users from opening the file and making changes while you have it checked it. If a user views the file while you have it checked out, he or she will see the last version that was checked out, not the version that you're working. Once you check the file back in, users can see the changes that you made.

Checking out a file

  1. Go to the Trey Research Visit you created earlier (if you're not already there): On the top link bar, click Documents and Lists. On the Documents and Lists page, click Trey Research Visit Tasks.
  2. In the Trey Research Visit document library, point to the file Memo_Draft.doc to display a down arrow.
  3. Click the down arrow to reveal a menu, and then click Check Out.

Once you've checked out a file, the Check Out option on the menu changes to Check In. You can use this option to check the file back in after you're done making changes to the file. In this tutorial, however, you'll use the Check In option in Word.

Open a file for editing

Now that the Memo_Draft.doc file is checked out, you're ready to open it in Microsoft Word. The steps below describe opening a file for editing using Microsoft Office Word 2003. For information about using Microsoft Word 2002 or Microsoft Word 2000 with Windows SharePoint Services, see Good, Better, Best: Windows SharePoint Services Integration.

  1. Go to the Trey Research Visit you created earlier (if you're not already there): On the top link bar, click Documents and Lists. On the Documents and Lists page, click Trey Research Visit Tasks.
  2. In the Trey Research Visit document library, point to Memo_Draft.doc to display a down arrow.
  3. Click the down arrow to reveal a menu, and then click Edit in Microsoft Office Word.

Microsoft Office Word 2003 opens, displaying the file. The Shared Workspace pane also opens. Normally after you open a file for editing, you'd have some changes to make. There's no need to do so for this tutorial however.

 Note   When working with a document library from your Web browser, if you click the name of the file it opens in read-only mode. If this occurs and you want to edit the file and save changes, simply close the file and use the steps listed above to edit the document. Don't use the Save As option from your Office 2003 program to save the file back to the document library with a different name. This can cause confusion for your team when they try to find the right file to update.

Setting properties on a document from within an application

Now that you know how to check out a file and open it in a Office 2003 program, you're ready to learn how to set properties for the file.

  1. The Memo_Draft.doc file should still be open in Word 2003 with the Shared Workspace pane open. If this pane is not open, click View, and then click Task Pane.
  2. Click the Document Information Button image tab.
  3. Change the Status property to Writing.

Check in a file from within an application

With the properties set, you're ready to check the file in and close Word 2003.

  1. Click File, and then click Check in.
  2. Click File, and then click Exit.

If a file in a document library is missing required property settings, you'll be prompted to provide them. After you've done so, Word 2003 will close.

Setting properties on a document by using a Web browser

You've already learned how to set properties using the Shared Workspace page in Office 2003 programs. Now you'll learn how to do so using a Web browser. This is handy because it allows you to change properties without opening an application.

  1. In the Trey Research Visit document library, go to the Spreadsheets folder.
  2. Rest the pointer over Start-up capital estimate1.xls, and then click the arrow to display a drop-down menu.
  3. On the drop-down menu, click Edit Properties.
  4. In the Status field, choose Complete.
  5. Click Save and Close.

Suggested next steps

Congratulations on completing this tutorial! Now that you have learned the basics of working with document libraries, here are a few suggestions for additional tasks you can try, to learn about Windows SharePoint Services:

After you finish this tutorial, you will probably want to delete your practice SharePoint site or just the practice document library so that you don't waste your server resources. (You must be a member of the Administrator site group for your site to delete a document library. If you are not a member of the Administrator site group, you can ask the person who created the document library for you to delete it.)

Delete a site
  1. Click Site Settings on the top link bar of your site.
  2. On the Site Settings Page, click Go to Site Administration.
  3. On the Site Administration page, in the Management and Statistics section, click Delete this site.
  4. On the confirmation page, click Delete.
Delete a document library
  1. On the page that displays the document library, under Actions, click Modify settings and columns.
  2. Under General Settings, click Delete this document library.
  3. Click OK.

 Note   The example companies, organizations, products, domain names, e-mail addresses, logos, people, places, and events depicted herein are fictitious. No association with any real company, organization, product, domain name, email address, logo, person, places, or events is intended or should be inferred.

 
 
Applies to:
Deployment Center 2003, Windows Sharepoint Services 2.0