Working with document stored in SharePoint site using Document Connection

Delivering SharePoint 2010 collaboration solution for a client recently, who wanted to upgrade and migrate MOSS 2007 into SharePoint 2010, was my responsibility. I was responsible for designing fresh architecture for new environment, planning migration project, implementing and training at post-implementation stage. One interesting challenge I had to do was to learn and write guidance on how to use Document Connection ran on Mac OS environment to connect to SharePoint 2010 site.

Microsoft Document Connection for Mac OS enables to simply work with document stored in SharePoint site. In Windows, as you know, a client tool called Microsoft SharePoint Workspace 2010 that enables to share, work on not only document library but also list. Especially SharePoint Workspace 2010 provides real-time automatically synchronization of desktop content. Document Connection for Mac OS has many limited functions, but in my opinion, built-in functions on Document Connection are enough to basically work on document stored in SharePoint document library.

Prior to working with SharePoint document using Document Connection, you have to consider the following:

  • Microsoft Office 2008 for Mac Home and Student Edition can’t connect to SharePoint site.
  • Document Connection is just available in Microsoft Office 2008 for Mac Service Pack 2. This basically means if you aren’t using Service Pack 2, you have to upgrade.

In this post, I try to share some basic tutorials as follows:

  • Connect to a SharePoint site using Document Connection
  • Upload document into a document library
  • Check-Out/Check-In/Discard a document

Connect to a SharePoint site using Document Connection

As I mentioned about version edition earlier, you have to make sure that your Office 2008 for Mac is upgraded to Service Pack 2 (version 12.2.0). Note: you have to upgrade to Service Pack 1 prior to upgrading to Service Pack 2.

Open your Application area in Mac computer, navigate to Microsoft Office 2008 folder and open Document Connection.

The Document Connection tool appears. On the left panel, click Add Location > Connect to a SharePoint site. As you see, Document Connection also allows to connect to an Office Live Workspace as known as Windows Live Sky Drive.

The dialog box appears. In the Site Address box, enter the main site collection address for the SharePoint site. In the Authentication setting, select proper authentication you are using. We have two settings: Username and password and Kerberos.Enter username and password and then click Connect button to start connecting to a SharePoint site.

If you can’t access to SharePoint, here are some reasons:

  • You don’t have right permission to access to SharePoint site so you should request Administrator to give permission.
  • The network is unavailable so you should determine the status of the network connection.
  • The network requires additional authentication to sign in to a SharePoint site so you have to change authentication from basic to Kerberos authentication. In my case, I use Windows authentication.
  • Double check your version edition if you are using Office 2008 Mac Home or Student edition.

Upload document into SharePoint document library

Microsoft Document Connection ran on Mac OS enables you to upload document from your Mac computer into SharePoint document library quickly with some basic steps.

In the Document Connection user interface, select your SharePoint site under SHAREPOINT heading. In right panel, you can see all sites included in your SharePoint environment. Select and then double-click on your site where you want to upload document.

In the right panel, you can see all components in your selected site. Navigate to document library or folder that will store your document.

Select document and then click Upload to start uploading document into document library or folder (if any)

Check-Out/Check-In and Discard

When you check out a file, you change only the copy of the file on your computer and lock the file that is located on the server. After you change that copy, you check it in by using Document Connection. The advantage of this method is that nobody else can change the file until you check it back in. For example, you might want to check out a file if you need to edit you work several times and you do not want anyone else trying to edit it.

Navigate to document you want to check-out and then edit. The basic steps on how to navigate to a specific document are like above tutorials. On the toolbar, click Check Out. When you are finished editing, click Check In on the toolbar.

Checking out a file temporarily locks the file on the server, and any changes that you make appear only in the file on your computer. If you want other people to see your changes, you have to check in the file. If you do not want to keep the changes that you made and want other people to be able to make changes to the file on the server, you can discard the check out.

Select checked-out file and then click Discard on the toolbar.

On the toolbar, you can create new file directly from Document Connection, edit, read and upload document easily.

2:30 PM, GMT +7 –  Nov 19th, 2011


  1. Eric Akawie
    November 6, 2012 — 3:29 pm

    Something I just ran into with a user who was using Document Connection – Be sure to download Adobe Reader. Preview can not pass credentials properly to SharePoint for PDF files. This may only affect https: sites.

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