I'm trying to insert data in a list by clicking on 'edit' at the main view. I have created data in Excel so that I don't have to insert data one by one. When I'm pasting 7 or less rows in the grid all workflows run normally and they complete, however when I paste 8 or more rows a lot of workflows fail. returning error with no explanation. The error I get:

An error has occurred in 'Name of Workflow'
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Any thoughts what could be a problem? Maybe there's a limit how many instances can be running of the same workflow?

2 Answers 2


Yes. In most cases by default you cannot start more than 15 workflow instances nearly at the same time. You can increase this limit (I think up to about 30 or so) but you should try to avoid doing that for performance. The idea is you can't have too many (about 15) workflow instances being called to memory at the same time. SharePoint does have a queuing mechanism to queue workflow start events but it still doesn't handle this issue very well.

Read more about limits of SharePoint workflows here.


I wonder whether it's really a workflow problem. Because the limitations with less than 15 datasets are not hit... Did you check ULS logs for more informations? Do you really have consistent data (=> field types ok, no interdependet data and so on)? And normally inserting data in a grid does not start all workflows at exactly one time. So the number of really concurrent working workflows should be less than 15 even if we insert more data. Otherwise inserting data into a grid would fail in much more cases.

  • 1
    But his workflows complete with fewer insertions. So it's hard to think that there's a defect in the workflow. Also, the 15 workflow (which is the max, workflows can fail below this limit) limitation is applied for the entire farm not just this site or list. I have experienced this issue too.
    – kovac
    Aug 5, 2016 at 9:41

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