The New SharePoint 2016/O365 Document Library Experience

August 31, 2016

Finally, the more intuitive and seamless approach to working inside document libraries has arrived! In this article, I will dive into the new 2016/O365 Document Library and its functions. Sections below will correspond to a 2013 ribbon category. Each will explain where the new functionality is in 2016 and how it has changed…or if it even still exists. The purpose of this blog post is to serve as a guide when you are working with your new library or even as a quick tutorial before getting started.

However, first things first, let’s get the obvious out of the way; the ribbon…there isn’t one! Instead there is an action bar with some common commands as well as some pop-out menus that we will discuss below. The action bar is dynamic and lists commands based on if you have documents or folders selected. Without any items selected you have 4 actions and the ellipsis menu. The action bar commands will change when 1 item is selected and change again if more than 1 item is selected. 

Most action bar commands are available in the item ellipsis menu.

Action Bar with Ellipsis Menu

Please use the images below as references below where noted as ‘action bar ellipsis menu’.

  • With no items selected:
    pastedGraphic.png
  • With 1 item selected:
    pastedGraphic_1.png
  • With 2 or more items selected:

There is no ellipsis menu with 2 or more items selected.

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Item ellipsis Menu

Please use this image as references below where noted as ‘item ellipsis menu’.

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New/Upload Documents     

 2013 Ribbon

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2016 Functionality

New Document and New Folder

  • Drop down from the action bar that combines the New Folder and New Documents into one. 
  • ‘Link’ and ‘Document Set’ are now a standard content types. You don’t have to manually add them from the Library Settings.
    pastedGraphic_5.png

Upload Document

  • Drop down from the action bar to upload documents and now upload entire folders…finally. 
  • Drag and drop into the library is still supported. 
    pastedGraphic_6.png

Open & Check Out/In Documents

2013 Ribbon

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2016 Functionality

Edit Document

  • With one item selected, you get the option to open the file in the corresponding office web app or the client program. You can also get these 2 options from the item ellipsis menu. 
    pastedGraphic_8.png

Check Out/In

  • Check out and check in are available either in the action bar ellipsis or the item ellipsis menu. 
    pastedGraphic_9.png


Manage Document Properties

2013 Ribbon

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2016 Functionality

2016 introduces a details pane for not only the library as a whole (discussed later) or for a single selected item. 

View/Edit Properties

  • In the library on the right side, you will see the icon for the details pane pastedGraphic_11.png.
  • With one item selected click on this icon to see the details. This details pane shows you a preview of the document as well as all properties associated with the content type of the selected item.
  • These properties can be edited within the details pane and will save automatically. 
  • Clicking the ‘Edit All’ link will take you to the traditional edit details page. 
    pastedGraphic_12.png 


  • Below the properties, you will see the recent activity pane for the selected item. This will display edits, a link to version history, sharing and item information. 
    pastedGraphic_13.png

Version History

  • Version history can be accessed in 3 ways
    • The action bar ellipsis menu.
    • The item ellipsis menu.
    • The recent activity pane with an item selected. 

Shared With

  • Shared With can be accessed in 3 ways
    • The action bar command.
      pastedGraphic_14.png
    • The recent activity pane with an item selected. 
    • The item ellipsis menu.

Delete

  • Delete can be accessed in 3 ways
    • The action bar command.
      pastedGraphic_15.png
    • The item ellipsis menu.

Share & Track

 2013 Ribbon

share-track2013.png#asset:1419


2016 Functionality

Share

  • Share can be accessed in 2 ways
    • The action bar command.
      pastedGraphic_14.png
    • The recent activity pane with an item selected. 
    • The item ellipsis menu.

Alert Me

  • Alert Me can be accessed 2 ways
    • The action bar ellipsis menu.
    • The item ellipsis menu.

Popularity Trends

  • At this time, this bit of functionality is not available. 

Follow

  • At this time, this bit of functionality is not available. 

Manage Copies

2013 Ribbon

pastedGraphic_16.png

2016 Functionality 

Download

  • Download can be accessed 2 ways
    • The action bar command.
      pastedGraphic_17.png
    • The item ellipsis menu.

Sent To

  • This is now handled with the Move to and Copy to actions available in the action bar and item ellipsis menus.

pastedGraphic_18.png

Manage Copies

  • At this time, this bit of functionality is not available. 

Go To Source

  • At this time, this bit of functionality is not available. 

Workflows

2013 Ribbon

pastedGraphic_19.png

2016 Functionality 

Workflows

  • Workflow is available for a selected item only through the item ellipsis menu. 

Publish

  • At this time, this bit of functionality is not available. 

Unpublish

  • At this time, this bit of functionality is not available. 

Approve/Reject

  • Approve/Reject is available for a selected item only thought the item ellipsis menu after you set Require content approval for submitted items to ‘Yes’.

Cancel Approval

  • At this time, this bit of functionality is not available. 

Tags & Notes

2013 Ribbon

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2016 Functionality 

  • This feature has been deprecated.

View Formats

2013 Ribbon

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2016 Functionality 

Quick Edit

  • This is an action bar command when no items are selected.
    pastedGraphic_22.png

Done

  • This is a toggle back to the normal view by clicking ‘Done’ from quick edit.
    pastedGraphic_23.png


Manage Views

2013 Ribbon

pastedGraphic_24.png

2016 Functionality 

This is where the most exciting changes have been seen. Now, modifying views provides a new and improved user experience. In the past, we’ve had to navigate away from the page to create and modify views. In the new document, library experience everything is done on the page and on the fly.

There are two different formats of each view, list and tiles. You can choose these by clicking on the current view from the right side of the action bar.

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  • List format is your standard rows and columns view of your items.
  • Tiles format is a view of your items in a grid format that shows a preview of the document and some brief metadata.

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Create a column

  • From any view, on the right side you will see the icon to add a column pastedGraphic_27.png.
  • This will show a pop-up menu with the 5 most common data types as well as ‘More…’ for the other datatypes. 

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  • By choosing single line of text, we’re presented with a dialog box to give this column a name. 

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  • You can also add a column from the Column settings menu discussed later. 

Change a view

  • Beneath the list formats, we’ll see a list of available views we’ve have created. 

pastedGraphic_30.png

Column drop down menu

  • By clicking on a column, we’re presented with a new menu with more functionality.
  • We now have not only the ability to sort and filter, but now we can group by and a column settings menu (more about this under Create/Modify a view.

pastedGraphic_31.png 

Create/Modify a view

  • Creating and modifying views are the same process except for one minor change, which we’ll see in the last step.
  • Column settings menu.

pastedGraphic_32.png

  • Here we have the option to rename the column, move it left or right in the view, hide it or show/hide columns. 
  • Show/hide columns will bring up the Edit view columns pane. Here we can check and uncheck columns to show in the view. This pane can also be accessed by clicking the iconpastedGraphic_27.png and then Show/Hide columns at the bottom.

pastedGraphic_33.png

  • Once you are done with adding or removing columns from the view, hit apply. Now this is where the difference in creating or modifying comes in to play.
  • When modifying any view, you will see an asterisk appear next to the view name. 

pastedGraphic_34.png

This means the view is unsaved and if you navigate away from it, your changes will be lost. So let’s look at the saving these changes. Clicking once again on the view menu, we’ll see Save view. This will bring up a dialog box that allows us to save as the current view, or rename it, thus creating a new view. 

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Other settings can be accessed my selecting Manage Views from the view drop down menu. This would take you to the manage views page that you are familiar with from 2013.

Tags & Notes

2013 Ribbon

pastedGraphic_36.png

2016 Functionality 

Deprecated

Share & Track

2013 Ribbon

pastedGraphic_37.png

2016 Functionality 

Email a Link

  • At this time, this bit of functionality is not available. 

Alert Me 

  • Alert Me is accessed by the action bar ellipsis command.

RSS Feed

  • This is available via the Library Settings. 

Most Popular Items

  • At this time, this bit of functionality is not available. 


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Connect & Export

2013 Ribbon

pastedGraphic_39.png

2016 Functionality 

Sync

  • Available as an action bar command.
    pastedGraphic_40.png

Connect to Outlook

  • At this time, this bit of functionality is not available. 

Connect to Office

  • At this time, this bit of functionality is not available. 

Export to Excel

  • At this time, this bit of functionality is not available. 

Open with Explorer

  • This is available under the view drop down. As in previous versions of SharePoint it’s only available in Internet Explorer.
    pastedGraphic_41.png

Customize Library

2013 Ribbon

pastedGraphic_42.png

2016 Functionality 

Form Web Parts

  • At this time, this bit of functionality is not available. 

Edit Library

  • At this time, this bit of functionality is not available. 

New Quick Step

  • At this time, this bit of functionality is not available. 


Library Search

Another big improvement in libraries is the search. Start typing your search terms in the box in the upper left and you will immediately see results as you type in a dialog box. The more you type, the more refined those results become. It will also give you the option to see more results.

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Settings

2013 Ribbon

pastedGraphic_44.png


2016 Functionality 

Shared With

  • Shared With can be accessed 2 ways
    • Library Settings.
    • The details pane with no items selected.

Workflow Settings

  • Workflow Settings can be accessed in the Library Settings

Library Settings

Wait a second! Where’s the library settings. For some reason, it took me a long time to find this one. There are a few ways to back into it but the official way to get to it is the cog menu.

pastedGraphic_45.png

New Features

Pin to Top

Pin to Top is a new feature that allows you to pin documents or folders above the list of other items. This is handy for you to pin frequently accessed documents, such as pinning an Employee Handbook in an HR library. Keep in mind that you are only allowed to pin 3 items.

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Right Clicking on Documents/Folders

Right clicking on documents or folders in a library will now bring up the contextual menu or the item ellipsis menu. This is helpful if you want to hide the ellipsis column in a view. You can still right click anywhere on the row and get the ellipsis menu. 

Recent Activity

In libraries, we now have a recent activity section in the details pane. With no items selected, it will show you activity as it relates to the library as a whole and its contents. With an item selected, you will see recent activity as it relates to the selected item.

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That just about does it! Please check back as some of the functionality that doesn’t exist today in 2016/O365 may appear. I will try to keep this blog post updated with those changes. If you see any corrections that need to be made, please feel free to comment and let us know!

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