One of the topics which i could not find relevant documentation about, is if the relation between a Site column and its child list column can be break if i do certain customization for the column at the list level. now i have farms with the following versions:-

  1. SharePoint on-premise 2013
  2. SharePoint on-premise 2016
  3. Office 365

And i tried doing those modifications at list level for a column:-

  1. change the list column from being optional to required
  2. chnage the list column name.
  3. i even try to chnage the column type at list level.for example i change the column from being of type "Choice" to "Single line".

but regardless of the above 3 modifications, when i edit the column at site level and i chose to update all the underlying list columns,, then the changes i made at the list level for the column will be overridden.. so can i conclude that in SP 2013, SP2016 & office 365 the relation between the site column and its child list columns will not be broken regardless of the modification i make to the column at the list level ?? or there are certain customization if i do to the column at the list level will break the relation with its site column ??


the idea behind Site Columns is reusability. There is an option at the Site Column level titled 'Update all list columns based on this site column?' which you are aware of, and used when discovering this. The relationship is unidirectional.

Maybe the column that you are creating needs to simply be a list column, and not a Site Column instance added to a list.

  • thanks for the reply.. but i think u miss understood my question .. now I am asking if the relation between the site column and list column can be broken if I do certain customization at the list level or not?? I am not facing specific problem... I am asking general question and gave the choice/single line as an example only
    – john Gu
    May 4 '17 at 20:41
  • Experience says no - it cannot be broken, since that is not the intent of the relationship between Site Columns and instances of the Site Columns (i.e. list columns) as the relationship is unidirectional and cannot be broken by design. An example would be to update choice values for a Choice site column, and then push those changes down to the list columns of it. This saves time for everywhere that the site column is being used throughout the site on different lists and libraries. Let me know if this makes sense.
    – spguy
    May 4 '17 at 21:51
  • spguy his answer is correct May 5 '17 at 7:09
  • @Danny'365CSI'Engelman so you mean the relation between the site column and its underlying list columns will always be their and can not be broken? regardless of the modifications we do to the column at the list level ??
    – john Gu
    May 5 '17 at 11:57
  • spguy his answer says so May 5 '17 at 13:31

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