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I am a workflow newbie so please forgive me if this is a naive question, but is there a way to programmatically get a reference to the selected item(s) of the list that initiated the workflow, in a sandboxed solution?

I'd like to be able to preform actions on each list item who's checkbox is selected when the user executes a workflow. Seems like this should be easy, though I cannot find a straight forward was of accomplishing this, I feel like I missing something.

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If inside the workflow you can use SPWorkflow.ParentList

If not in the workflow then you need to implement an SPWorkflowEventReceiver in SPWorkflowEventReceiver.WorkflowStarted you can use properties.ActivationProperties.Item

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