Microsoft SharePoint 2013:Version history

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Document versioning in SharePoint 2013

Last time we have talked about one of SharePoint features for successful documents management – Checking documents in and out in document libraries. Today, we continue talking about document management and specifically about document versioning feature. It is one of the most important part in document management and it is definitely should not be overlooked.

Versioning – is the feature that gives users the ability to create copies of a document each time when it is edited and also add comments for each version. It is very useful for document protection, because using this feature you can restore any document to its earlier version.

Versioning settings, just like check out requirement and document approval are turned off by default. In case you want to turn version history on, you need to pay attention to the way your team processes documents. If contributors in your team accurately check and approve documents before publishing to SharePoint sites, there is no need to turn on visioning. The same is true for Site Assets libraries, because you may not want to create versions for images. It is also important to pay attention to this because each version of the document takes additional space on your SharePoint site and in result grows the size of the content database. Nevertheless, versioning is very important feature when dealing with documents and it is strongly recommended for your team to review and work out versioning options.

Turning on Document Version History

  1. Navigate to the library where you want to turn on this feature. (Note that if you have a lot of documents in the library, but only some of them need versioning and approval, it will be more useful to create a separate library for them or consider moving these documents to the library where Versioning is already turned on)
  2. Go to Library Settings page and then to Versioning Settings.
    Version history - 1.png
  3. In the Document Version History section choose the necessary option from No Versioning, Create Major Versions, Create Major and Minor (Draft) Versions. Major version (with whole numbers – 1, 2, 3) indicates already published document versions and Minor (Draft) versions (with decimal number – 1.0, 1.1, 1.2) are indicates the version that is not published yet. Please note that option to create Minor (Draft) Versions is not available for lists.
  4. Optionally, you can set a limit for number of versions that this library will keep for each document.
    Version history - 2.png
  5. If you have chosen the option Create Major and Minor (Draft) Versions, you need to specify which users should be able to view drafts in this document library. There three options in this section:
    • Any User Who Can Read
    • Items, Only Users Who Can Edit Items
    • Only Users Who Can Approve (and the Author) – this option is disabled unless you have turned on content approval for submitted documents.
      Version history - 1.png
  6. Click OK.

Viewing document version history

There are three ways to view document version history

The first way:

  1. Select the document for which you want to see version history from the library.
  2. Click the Version History button located on the ribbon in the Files tab in Manage section.
    Version history - 4.png
  3. The Version History dialog will appear where you can find the list of versions for this document, date and time they was created, who has modified this document and comments added to the versions.
    Version history - 1.png

The second way:

  1. Select the document for which you want to see version history from the library.
  2. Click on the ellipsis near the file`s name to open the common actions menu.
    Version history - 6.png
  3. In the pop-up window click another ellipsis and chose Version History option.
    Version history - 7.png

The third way – add versions column to the list view:

  1. On the ribbon go to the Library tab and click Modify View button.
    Version history - 8.png
  2. Check the box next to Version column. It should be at the end of the columns list.
    Version history - 9.png
  3. Click OK.

Restoring an earlier version of the document

  1. Select the document which you want to restore to an earlier version.
  2. Open the Version History dialog using one of the ways described above.
  3. Hover over the date and time stamp of the version you want to restore.
    Version history - 10.png
  4. Click on the arrow appeared and choose Restore form the menu.
    Version history - 11.png


[[Category:{SharePoint 2013 architecture}]]

Version history - 12.png