The Environment: Working in an old production SP2010 Standard Farm. I have a ridiculously simple SPDesigner workflow that just has a single action to Update the list item and set the contents of a field to be a link to a form I built to print the list item in a pretty way. I have the workflow bound to OnCreate and OnChange. I publish the workflow and everything works properly.

The Problem: Every few months the workflow suddenly stops generating the print link. When I investigate I can see that the workflow isn't trying to run (i.e. It doesn't say "Cancelled" or "Failed" or "Complete" in the Workflow execution column of the list ... the column is just blank. Similarly the workflow history list doesn't get any entries when I add items to the list either.) So I open up Designer and check the workflow and it says it is still bound to Create and Change. However, the only way to fix the workflow is to publish it again.

The Question: I'm at my wits end to try and troubleshoot this problem. Has anybody encountered anything similar? Does anybody have any suggestions as to how I might troubleshoot this? (I should probably mention that I don't have server access to this farm, so I'm restricted to things I can accomplish through Designer, CSOM, and the web UI)

Help me StackExchange ... you're my only hope!

Edit: Here is exactly what the workflow does...

Step 1

Set Variable: url to /site/restOfPath/ListName/PrintView.aspx?ID=[%Current Item:ID%], print

then Update item in Current Item (to set column printLink = Variable: url, where the printLink column is of type HyperLink)

...that's all.

  • 1
    is it running in an impersonation step by chance? Commented Feb 6, 2017 at 21:19
  • The workflow just got magically un-published again (if that's what is actually happening) It's not running an impersonation step. I'll edit the question to include details of the code. Thanks for the suggestions so far.
    – NiceNix
    Commented Apr 10, 2017 at 12:22

2 Answers 2


Do you use an Impersonation Step in the SharePoint Designer Workflow? If so, that is causing the problem. When impersonating, and the impersonation user changes something in the domain (f.e. a password change) then the workflow is stopped from working. You have to bind it again (publish). Try to run it whitout an impersonation step.

  • 1
    Good point. But my workflow doesn't use impersonation ... and I'm pretty sure that when impersonation fails, the error shows as a Cancelled workflow with the details saying something like "Authorization Denied"
    – NiceNix
    Commented Apr 10, 2017 at 12:56

If you are working from a SharePoint List, you could just add the link as a calculated value column. If it's a Form Library, I'm not sure how you can do it without a workflow, but I'm interested to hear what others suggest.

  • Can you use ID in a calculated column?
    – NiceNix
    Commented Apr 10, 2017 at 12:57

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