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So I've got a Document under an approval workflow, but I'd rather not let the users edit the document while the workflow is active to keep consistency on everyone's approval (it's multi-step). I've toyed with a few possibilities:

1) Checking out the document, but then other users had difficulties setting approval and the workflow malfunctioned

2) I can set up a document in Word or Excel 2010/2013 not to be edited by Word and Excel settings, but PDF's are in this library as well.

3) I know custom development could probably be done, but seeing as this is SharePoint online and any solutions likely won't fit in a sandbox, I'm hoping for a better way. Also the capabilities aren't really in house to maintain code, so I'm hoping to keep it out of the box or SharePoint designer. Third party tools are welcome too as long as they can work in SharePoint online.

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

After research on this, I believe there is little hope for a fool-proof method. We adopted an alternate route of picking up a version change in the document, then canceling the workflow if one is detected. This can be done OOTB in SharePoint.

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If you have followed the guide in this link to enable content approval to hide items from other users until they are approved, my last suggestion is to create a view and only show items which are already approved by everyone.

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Downmodded, missed it, I need to prevent editing by people who could view. – tekiegreg Apr 25 '13 at 18:55
probably due to the link I provided. Like I mentioned, the only way you can "hide" the document is to only show items in your document library which are already approved. – lem.mallari Apr 25 '13 at 19:02

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