If I don't explicitly mention the number of versions and uncheck Keep the following number of major versions in Versioning Settings of a document library then does it holds the maximum value of 400,000 as defined by Microsoft in this TechNet Article?

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Yes. There could be 400k major versions and 511 minor versions apart from your current version.

But the better practice would be to set a limit nonetheless. You could set something like 100, which won't be hit in years, and that would be sufficient for all practical purposes.

  • Curious as to why this is the better practice? Does it take up less HDD? I can imagine in many old intranets a given arbitrary limit could be exceeded with no one knowing
    – Roland
    Mar 21 '16 at 2:49
  • That's one of the considerations, yes. Plus since major versions will be stored as separate files on database, even if there are relatively small changes to the file, a 1MB file with 1000 major version will take up 1GB. And when your DB hits the 200GB mark, you will have no clue which files are eating up the space.
    – Nisarg
    Mar 21 '16 at 3:03
  • True, although it depends on the business case as many documents need a complete audit trail (Payroll, HR, etc) as such the HDD will just have to be expanded.
    – Roland
    Mar 21 '16 at 4:05
  • Roland has put the right question in. I don't see this as a best practice in setting a limit. The number depends on organization policy. I just wanted to know about the max value in case I don't mention the number of major versions and I got the answer.
    – Zakir HC
    Mar 21 '16 at 5:40
  • I agree that for business cases which require a detailed audit trail, you cannot limit the number of versions. But how frequent would such a business case be? And in my answer I am not saying "best practice", I am saying it is a better practice to have a limit on the versions rather than not have any. Anyway, I have raised a separate question for this discussion: sharepoint.stackexchange.com/questions/174590/…
    – Nisarg
    Mar 21 '16 at 16:02

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