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I have a SharePoint Online environment. When trying to run a workflow on document sets, sometimes I get this error:

Retrying last request. Next attempt scheduled after 27/09/2017 15:55. Details of last request: HTTP InternalServerError to https://rooturl.com/_api/SP.WorkflowServices.InteropService.Current/StartWorkflow Correlation Id: f16a23be-7bc1-2d6e-8e76-7f86bcf0615b Instance Id: 6f9ef8ec-7d14-434f-83b0-4cc4af163c58

Exception from HRESULT: 0x8102009B

The workflow scenario is a 2013 workflow calling a 2010 sub workflow. The first part of logic of the 2013 workflow seems to be executing properly, but the above errors seems to be displayed when the 2013 workflow attempts to start the 2010 workflow.

Any idea what the reason could be? It is unlikely to be an overload of workflows as I have also tried when virtually no one was using the SharePoint and it happened even then.

Update: When this happens, as a work around, I always have to go back a step, as simply restarting the workflow on the problematic list item (document set) only returns the same error over and over again. The business process of this system is basically 1 document set (business process stage) being created by workflow based on an another document set (representing the previous stage). So first I have to delete the problematic stage and recreate it again via workflow on the previous stage. Once re-created (even if still having the same metadata and everything) the workflow seems to then work. Naturally, this is not a solution but rather a work-around, that takes too much time and hassle every time this happens!

  • I have seen this same error when attempting to start a 2010 workflow within 2013. I believe that it came down to a permissions issue. Even with the end user having "Contribute" permissions at the list level, I still got this error, but it didn't occur for me (Site Admin). I was advised to look at using an App Step in the 2013 workflow to give the workflow full control no matter who the end user is. When I went to place the "Start a List Workflow" action in the app step, the action was not even there to choose from. Sorry not much help, but I'm still looking for an answer to this myself. – cbbrown Sep 27 '17 at 14:31
  • @cbbrown Thanks for your comment! I do not think this would apply to me, for 2 reasons: 1) I am global admin and it happens to me also 2) This does not happen all the time but only on some documents. I have updated my answer offering my workaround, if you want to take a look. Hoping to find an actual solution soon though! – Jurgen Cuschieri Sep 27 '17 at 14:49

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