I am working on SharePoint Admin and Development part. One of our customer is using SharePoint 2013\2016. User is getting Special character issue while uploading file in SharePoint 2013\2016. We are searching for characters those are not allowed in SharePoint 2013\2016 files\folders. Found for SharePoint 2010 but not found for SharePoint 2013\2016.

Can you please help me to list down the special characters not allowed in SharePoint 2013\2016 files\folders?


6 Answers 6

~, #, %, & , *, {, }, \, :, <, >, ?, /, |, "

above special character is not allowed for files/folder.. you need to replace these characters for create folder or files..

  • 3
    is ! allowed ? Jul 8, 2014 at 7:47
  • is it related to SharePoint 2013? I know for SharePoint 2010.
    – MAK
    Jul 8, 2014 at 8:41
  • 1
    Yes Arsalan, ! is allowed.. Jul 8, 2014 at 10:05
  • also it for both SP 2013 and 2010 Jul 8, 2014 at 10:05

You cannot use the following characters in file/folder name:

Tilde (~)
Number sign (#)
Percent (%)
Ampersand (&)
Asterisk (*)
Braces ({ })
Backslash (\)
Colon (:)
Angle brackets (< >)
Question mark (?)
Slash (/)
Plus sign (+)
Pipe (|)
Quotation mark (")

There are also restrictions about the positition of a character in a file/foldername:

  • You cannot use the period character consecutively in the middle of a file/folder name.
  • You cannot use the period character at the end of a file/foldername.
  • You cannot start a file/foldername with a period character.
  • If you use an underscore character (_) at the beginning of a file/foldername, the file/folder will be a hidden file/folder.

In addition, file names and folder names may not end with any of strings:


Source: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/905231/en-us

  • Is it related to SharePoint 2013? I know for SharePoint 2010. The link given is Applies to: Microsoft Windows SharePoint Services 3.0; Microsoft Windows SharePoint Services 2.0; Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007; Microsoft Office SharePoint Portal Server 2003; Microsoft SharePoint Foundation 2010; Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010;
    – MAK
    Jul 8, 2014 at 8:44
  • Yes, it is correct for SharePoint 2013 too. Jul 8, 2014 at 11:20
  • Can you edit your answer with "Backslash (\)"? Because of formatting it seems like it says "Backslash ()", I cannot edit it because of the minimum required characters. Jan 21, 2015 at 1:00
  • Ya but in my case it is not allowing ; character also while downloading the file it removes ; semicolon character from the name of the file. Jun 24, 2015 at 8:20

Not to resurrect an old thread but I thought I would add my regex. One issue from KB905231 it is not clear if the prohibited file suffixes (i.e. .files or _files, etc.) are including or excluding the file extension. I assumed including so foo.doc.files would not match but foo.files.doc would.


Edit (1/26/17): It did not prevent tilde or double period in the middle. Here is a new one with some unit tests at https://regex101.com/r/XWYV2r/2

This is only lightly tested. YMMV.

  • This was very useful for me however does not catch the "ending period" exception or the "consecutive period" exception Jan 26, 2017 at 15:18
  • 1
    Try the new one. I improved it a bit Jan 27, 2017 at 4:38
  • @gamelove42 - thanks! I forgot tilde in my answer below - updated Jan 27, 2017 at 16:35

Instead, this regex "matches" on any file name using restricted characters. Including "beginning or ending period" and "consecutive periods"


Below is the context in which it's used, this Powershell script recursively outputs all filenames located in $DirectoryPath to a .CSV and includes a size column (since SharePoint has a max file size of 50mb) and displays the restricted characters used by the file name.

Get-ChildItem `
        -Path $DirectoryPath `
        -Recurse `
    | where { ! $_.PSIsContainer } `
    | Sort-Object name `
    | Select-Object `
        @{ l='Character'; e={ [regex]::Matches($_.name, '^[\._]|[!#%&*{}\:<>?\/|`"~]|\.{2}|\.$|(?:\.files)$') } } `
        , @{ l='mbSize'; e={ $_.length/1MB } } `
        , Directory, BaseName, extension 
    | Export-Csv `
        -Path 'c:\Temp\files.csv' `
        -Encoding ascii

The script does not list folders, only file names


If someone has to validate these characters with a regex (js or C#), the following regex will work:


That will be something like: "Match anything except for the following characters any number of times"

(I am not very good at regexs so, please correct me if I'm wrong)


"~", "#", "%", "&", "*", "{", "}", "\", ":", "<", ">", "?", "/", "+", "|", ".." Aboove is the list of special characters which are not eligible for naming a sharepoint file. it gives and error if user try to cerate a file with these characters is misleading sometimes. "the file name you specified is not valid or too long."

".." is also not valid special characters for a file name in sharepoint. People ignore it most of the time.

  • You are simply repeating what others have answered. Aug 15, 2018 at 13:17
  • the list mentioned by others is not complete , double dots ".." is also not valid special characters for a file name in sharepoint. People ignore it most of the time. Aug 15, 2018 at 13:56
  • Yes they do. "You cannot use the period character consecutively in the middle of a file/folder name." sharepoint.stackexchange.com/a/105997/42862 Also what do you have that supports your answer that people ignore most of the time. Aug 15, 2018 at 13:59
  • because most of the time during testing single dot is considered which is valid case but fogot to test double dots which is also a valid test scenerio. Aug 15, 2018 at 14:08
  • There really isn't any point for resurrecting this old of a thread. Your argument that .. isn't mentioned is false, as Brannmar said. Nikitin Nikolay says it, gamelover42's second regex supports it, and SP Combatant's regex supports it. Please read the other comments before repeating old news. Having too many answers in a thread can confuse people trying to find a simple answer.
    – KGlasier
    Aug 15, 2018 at 14:16

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