I have a Managed metadata list column which does not have a default value. The list has a couple of items for which these columns are currently set to empty. I have set a default value to the column after I have created these items. is it possible to set all the empty field values for the list items to the default value retrospectively?

3 Answers 3


For one time fixes, sometimes flipping over to datasheet view and doing a click & drag is the quickest way to make a bulk update.


You can kick off a workflow after the item has been added and let that workflow check specific fields on an empty value. If empty, fill it with your value.

It can be done via a eventhandler too, but I like the workflow more as I believe you can set it declarative.


Is this a one time thing? Or will the default be changing frequently and you want to modify a bulk amount?

Either way, you can write a powershell or .Net script which can loop through and update all the records accordingly. Unfortunately you can't use datasheet view for managed meta data fields.

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