I have SharePoint 2013 installed and I am trying to publish my own modified approval workflow.

I would like the workflow to be accessable within the selection below when choosing a workflow to use within the document library.

Workflow selection

I used SharePoint designer on the SharePoint server (i opened the site I am interested in) and copied and modified the globally reusable work flow named

Approval - SharePoint 2010

which created a Reusable workflow named

Approval - Controlled Documents

Created workflow

If I left click on this I can see that publish appears within the ribbon but if I click this after a few minutes I get the following error which keeps coming up even after I clear it.

Error message

I have tried looking for a simple guide on the steps I can take to create a simple workflow and deploy it but I cant see one that fits my needs. Am I missing a step or cant it be done?

  • Does the error happens when you create a simple workflow? Try creating one that just's logs 'Hello World' to workflow history list (ie. Log to hitstory-->End Workflow) and try to publish it. – Marek Sarad Jan 19 '17 at 10:05
  • Yes that worked. – Silentbob Jan 19 '17 at 11:18
  • Hmm not sure then why are you getting this error. Normally i create Approval workflows from scratch. Try this guide for approval WF creation and does it work for you. nothingbutsharepoint.com/2013/02/25/… – Marek Sarad Jan 19 '17 at 11:28
  • I thought about that but when I try to find 'Approval workflow task (en-US)' under step 1 its not listed. – Silentbob Jan 19 '17 at 11:36

After trying numerous suggestions found online to resolve this I was getting nowhere.

Another user in my business needed to reboot the SQL server we use for SharePoint databases due to a back up issue we were having. This resolved the problem. Works fine now.

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