I am unable to publish a SharePoint 2010 workflow due to the following error: “Could not publish the workflow because the workflow configuration file contains errors.”

Several posts suggest deactivating and then re-activating the Workflow Features. https://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/sharepoint/en-US/8333b2c0-ca4d-4e5f-a1bc-a37926d530bd/sharepoint-designer-workflow-error-errors-were-found-while-compiling-the-workflow?forum=sharepointgeneralprevious

However prior to doing this I get the standard warning "If you deactivate this feature, any user data or customisations associated with this feature might be lost. In addition, any active features that depend on this feature might fail to function."

Am I safe to deactivate this and re-activate. I don't want to impact the production environment.

  • Is this the first time you try to publish a workflow to this site? Has it worked before? Do you have any running workflows in the site? Is it a big workflow? Commented Apr 26, 2016 at 15:17
  • in sharepoint 2010 or sharepoint 2013?
    – Waqas Sarwar MVP
    Commented Apr 26, 2016 at 15:46

1 Answer 1


Any running Instance of the Workflow will be lost. i think it is not best practice to deactivate it in Production farm.

If you have lower environment then try to reproduce the issue over there. also have a look into this post SharePoint 2010: 3 of 6 Workflows "Failed on Start". SharePoint Designer Workflow Works Fine?


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