Office 365 guide series – Using your document templates in SharePoint online
Greetings SharePoint Online users!
This is the third in the Office 365 and SharePoint Online series.
|1. Office 365 guide series – Create a new list from an Excel spreadsheet|
|2. Office 365 guide series – A guide to SharePoint Navigation using metadata|
|3. Office 365 guide series – Using your document templates in SharePoint online (This post)|
This time I will explain how to:
Use Office templates within your SharePoint Online document libraries. In every organisation, or at least the majority, you talk about templates and you know that you have them, somewhere, but in the end, you and everyone else end up using an existing document and make changes, like you take an agreement from one customer and make changes to the numbers and customer names…would it not be nice if you could get everyone to use the same template? And if a change to the template affected everyone? Wouldn’t that be just smashing eh?
Now I’ll show you the easy steps you have to follow to just get started, We’ll use a simple word template in this example, but you can use any template that you allready have.
|Note: In this guide, I will show the quick and easy method, in a later post, I wil show how to use Content Types wich will also allow you to use custom templates, but in a much more controlled way. A link to that post will be added here when that guide has been posted.|
Start by locating a word template, or create one, add some info to the header with logo and company name and address maybe, and add something to the footer for example and save the file as a dotx file. Save it locally so that you easily can access it when we want to upload it to our SharePoint online. – I have created a simple letter template for the company DonkeyMind, with their logo and some additional info in it. I’ll use this in my step by step guide below. I saved this as letter.dotx in my ..\documents\DonkeyMind templates\ folder.
In a SharePoint Online site, now do this:
1.0 Upload the template file. This is not the easies thing to do, unfortunately Microsoft has choosen to make it a lot harder in SPO and SharePoint 2013 than it really has to be (Browse button from 2010 has been removed), unknown to me why. But this is how you do it:
1.1 Browse to your document library in SharePoit online, where you want to use your own custom document template.
1.2 Click the tab, Library. This will present the ribbon for you with the settings available for a document library.
1.3 In the ribbon, click on Open with Explorer
|Note: The site URL has to be added to the ‘Local intranet sites’ or ‘Trusted sites’ with added logon automatically, if it isn’t, you will get a popup telling you that it will not work otherwise.|
1.4 Click ok on the Internet Explorer Security warning
1.5 The library will now open in a Explorer window, in this windows you will see a folder named forms which is a bit greyed out.
1.6 Double-click on the folder forms, now you will see the following list of files
1.7 Now, in a separate explorer window on your computer, locate your saved template file (dotx)
|Note: In my case, I stored it under ..\Documents\DonkeyMind templates\|
1.8 Put the tw0 explorer windows side by side
1.9 Drag and drop the template file from your local folder to the SharePoint library forms folder
1.10 The file will now be uploaded to the SharePoint forms folder
2.0 When the file is uploaded ok, go back to your browser and the document library
2.1 Now, we need to change the template used from the default template.dotx to our own template, in my case, letter.dotx. Again, click on the Library tab.
2.2 Click on Library Settings
2.3 In the Library Settings dialog, click on Advanced settings
2.4 Locate the Document Template section
2.5 Change the filename in the Template URL to reflect your template files name
2.6 Click on OK
2.7 Click on Documents in the ‘breadcrumbs’ to go back to the library again.
2.8 Click on the Files tab
2.9 Now, on the New Document button, click on the dropdown and New Document
2.10 Press Yes in the dialog asking if you really want to open this file, because you do…
|Note: Avoid this by changing the Trust Center settings in your Office applications.
1. Allow trusted locations on my network.
2. Add new location
3. Type in the https path to your SharePoint Online tenant
(See references for 2007 and 2010)
2.11 You may also get prompted for your username/email address for the Office 365 account. Type it in and press Next
|Note: This dialog only shows up if you are not logged into your office applications using your Office 365 account|
2.12 And Password…Sign in
2.13 The new document opens, based on the template
2.14 When you have types your letter and are done, simply press Save, this will show you the save as dialog with the path to the SharePoint document library at the top
2.15 Select that and type in a filename and save the file
2.16 You are done, use the New Documents button to create your standard letters based on the custom template, again and again.
|Note: All the same steps apply in SPO as well as SharePoint 2013 onpremise, exept for the ‘add site URL to trusted sites’ issue. In an onprem situation the URL is most of the time already considered Trusted or Local intranet.|
How to enable or disable hyperlink warning messages in 2007 Office programs and in Office 2010 programs