I have a custom list with few records in it. Now I am using PnP Provisioning Engine to provision the custom list to some other sites.

By default, PnP is only provisioning the list structure and content types. It does not provisioning the list data.

So How can I provision the custom list along with data using SharePoint Online PnP?

Any reference is most welcome!!!

  • Hello Aakash, can you share you code to create Lists and content types in sharepoint online using PnP engine. I got those things working in a console application when XML resides in my local computer directory, but I am not sure how to connect with the sharepoint online if I have XML file on azure web.
    – Sigar Dave
    Feb 23 '18 at 11:57

This is by design. PnP will only migrate the structure and content types and not data.

To provision the data, you will need to write a custom extensibility provider. You need to write that in your provisioning template xml somewhat as below:

  <pnp:Provider Enabled="true" HandlerType="PnP.ExtensibilityProviders.CustomProvider, PnP.ExtensibilityProviders, Version=, Culture=neutral, PublicKeyToken=null">
      <CustomProviderConfiguration id="SampleConfig" xmlns="http://schemas.somecompany.com/MyProviderConfiguration">
        <ChildNode Attribute="value">Some Content</ChildNode>
        //write your custom xml tree structure

The extensibility provider is nothing but a class implementing the IProvisioningExtensibilityProvider interface as below:

namespace PnP.ExtensibilityProviders 
  public class CustomProvider : IProvisioningExtensibilityProvider
    public void ProcessRequest(ClientContext ctx, ProvisioningTemplate template, string configurationData)
        // do something in your provider       

        //something as follows
        List oList = ctx.Web.Lists.GetByTitle("Announcements");
        ListItemCreationInformation itemCreateInfo = new ListItemCreationInformation();
        ListItem oListItem = oList.AddItem(itemCreateInfo);
        oListItem["Title"] = "My New Item!";
        oListItem["Body"] = "Hello World!";

        // or something as below 

        var customData = GetValueFromXMLString(configurationData);
        //read and parse the string and then provision data     


Here, now you have 2 choices:

1) Define your custom XML structure in the provisioning xml, then read and parse that in your provider. This will be helpful if you need to reuse the data and you keep similar structure across some lists. This will reduce your lines of code.

2) Just keep the extensibility provider xml to barest minimum(as above) and handle everything in the class. This will increase the lines of code if you have too many extensions. But if its just a couple of records, would suggest that you use this one.

References - Provisioning.Extensibility

Custom Extensibility Handlers for PnP Provisioning Framework

  • I guess, I will not need any PnP to provisioning data, I will already have the context of the current site, also I will be knowing the name of the list, so I can directly use the code to insert the list item to the list without using any IProvisioningExtensibilityProvider. What you will suggest? Oct 18 '17 at 3:35
  • 1
    Well you are correct in a way. My scenario is a bit different. I usually like complete automation . ExtensibilityProvider is fired after your provisioning is complete. Think of it as event receiver. It provides me with access to my custom XML tree structure without any major complexities. But if that's not your case, then you can skip it and use any console application. Please correct me if i am wrong about the assumptions. Oct 18 '17 at 5:15
  • 1
    I feel this answer is wrong.. PnP does provision list-data OOTB. It does however not "get" the list data. That is what Add-PnPDataRowsToProvisioningTemplate is for. See docs.microsoft.com/en-us/powershell/module/sharepoint-pnp/…
    – Nils
    May 21 '19 at 13:44

I have done a similar thing recently and have written an article about it. You can easily achieve this by running some SharePoint PowerShell commands.

Connect-SPOService -Url https://yoursharepoint-admin.sharepoint.com

Set-SPOsite https://yoursharepinttenant.sharepoint.com/sites/yoursharepointsite -DenyAddAndCustomizePages 0

Connect-PnPOnline https://youradmin.sharepoint.com/sites/yoursite/

Get-PnPProvisioningTemplate -Out c:/Provisioning/template.xml

Add-PnPDataRowsToProvisioningTemplate -Path c:/Provisioning/template.xml -List 'The list name' -Query '<view></view>'

Connect-PnPOnline https://youradmin.sharepoint.com/sites/yourdetinationsite

Apply-PnPProvisioningTemplate -Path C:/Provisioning/template.xml

Hope it helps.


i managed to do this by adding rows as XML, a alternative option for some scenarios, perhaps?enter image description here

   <pnp:ListInstance Title="bookings" Description="bookings list demo" TemplateType="100" Url="Lists/bookings" >
      <pnp:DataRows UpdateBehavior="Overwrite">
            <pnp:DataValue FieldName="Title">Taming of the Shrew</pnp:DataValue>
            <pnp:DataValue FieldName="dateFrom">10/10/2018</pnp:DataValue>
            <pnp:DataValue FieldName="dateTo">Sample Project 01</pnp:DataValue>
            <pnp:DataValue FieldName="noOfTickets">4</pnp:DataValue>              
            <pnp:DataValue FieldName="Title">Hamleta</pnp:DataValue>
            <pnp:DataValue FieldName="dateFrom">11/11/2018</pnp:DataValue>
            <pnp:DataValue FieldName="dateTo">Sample Project 02</pnp:DataValue>
            <pnp:DataValue FieldName="noOfTickets">5</pnp:DataValue>

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