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On the development farm I have setup a site collection with OOB "Approval - SharePoint 2010". I "copy" the site collection to a user test farm using Backup-SPSite and Restore-SPSite method.

The workflow was moved over. However, whenever the workflow start it immediately return error and stop. Error is "The workflow operation failed because the workflow lookup found no matching item".

After some try and fail, I can fix it by connect to the site collection with SPD using the new site owner account, then press "Publish" on the "Approval - SharePoint 2010". Everything will work again. I think it is because the workflow publisher is a user account that not exist on my user test farm.

The problem is, we have blocked SPD on production environment. I cannot use the same trick to fix it. Is it possible to work around it?

P.S. I have tried deactivate/reactivate the related site feature. It doesn't change the "publisher". I must use SPD to change the publisher. Is there anyway to change publisher?

  • I know you didn't get an official answer to your question, but your tip on publishing via SPD solved the issue of the migrated OOB approval workflow and the lookup error. Thank you! – phil Mar 27 '18 at 18:52
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    @phil It is great – Mark L Mar 28 '18 at 7:27

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