I am a user of Sharepoint at my company where we do project based work. Every project has its own team site.

Over the years content on a certain subject is written in multiple projects, making the content scattered over multiple team sites.

As I am an "owner" of one of the subjects I want to centralize the information that is scattered. For this I created another team site where I aim to collect a selection of the documents from the various project team sites.

Now I'm looking for a productive way to link project team site files to my subject team site.

What I've tried / looked into


I found this answer, but it implies that I have access to develop in the Sharepoint environment which is not the case

Cross site publishing

This answer mentions corss site publishing. It looks good, but as I have no control over the creation of project team sites I don't think it's feasible.


Initially I tried to copy over relevant documents from the various project team sites to my subject team site, but I realized that that could lead to the creation of multiple versions of the same document (e.g. when someone on the project site edits the document after I've copied it).

Sharepoint links

I have tried using links which works reasonably well, but it has the downside that links do not work when they're synced via OneDrive for Business (they just appear as an .aspx file). As syncing is the way most people access files on a team site, this is therefore a deal breaker.
I was hoping it would work similar to Google Drive where one file can live in multiple folders.

"Copy to" functionality

I've tried out the "copy to" functionality which almost does what I want, but it requires that:

  • users on the project site check-out files they edit (this does not happen now)
  • users on the project site manually push updates to the file copies

These requirements make it not usable, as in practice this would result me in chasing every project team site user to push changes after they update something.


How can I keep a file in sync between two team sites, ensuring that both team sites remain syncable via OneDrive for Business?

4 Answers 4


You could create a workflow on on each library that contains information being updated on "subject" such that whenever a new document on "subject" is created or updated, that file is then updated in your centralized information site.


I think the most effective way to actually sync between two sites would be using custom solutions. Since you have passed that option, you can use OneDrive for Business and Microsoft Flow instead.

Keep both document libraries synced to OneDrive for Business.

Then create flows for OneDrive for Business and trigger them when a file is created / modified / deleted (properties only) in one folder.

Please note that trigger the flow when a file is deleted is not yet supported.


Copy files from one OneDrive for Business account or folder to another.


I, not sure if there has been any upgrade in 365 that solves this issue in a better way, but I´ve found something that helps somehow: We work on plans and different levels of groups with different access to files. The problem we had was that some teams work on files placed in a general folder/file structure but we don´t want them to access to all the info in those folders. The solution found is:

  • I´ve created a new team with it´s own Planner and members.
  • Then I create a task in planner in wich I add a link to the subfolder (placed in the general structure). This is working as the secundary team can access to the folder in the general structure but only to that folder, not to the whole structure of folders.

Hope this helps. Gabriel

  • Thanks for thinking with me. Unfortunately our tenant does not have Planner enabled, so I can't test this out. Apr 27, 2020 at 15:42

I think I figured out a relatively robust and easy to use method (for Windows at least).

You can use a .url file to point to the URL of a file on a Sharepoint team. The file is a simple text file with the following content:


When this file is opened, it redirects you to the URL mentioned on the second line. If that URL is a file on Sharepoint, the file is opened either in the browser (Web=1) or in the application (Web=0).
Of course, any access restrictions are taken into account.


  • Team site "vegetable" has a file /Documents/green/bell_pepper.docx
  • Team site "fruit" has a file /Documents/red/tomato.pptx
  • Team site "refrigerator" needs to have a reference to both these documents.

One could just take the bell_pepper.docx and the tomato.pptx files and copy them over to the "refrigerator" team, but that would mean that any updates to the files would not propagate.

With the .url file one can create two text files on the "refrigerator" team site:

bell_pepper.docx.url (you can name this whatever you want):




Now if you access the "refrigerator" team site (either through the web, or through the Windows folder synced by OneDrive for Business) you can double click on the .url files. You will then be redirected (via your browser) to the current version of the respective files on the other team sites.


  • If the original files get renamed, the link to it (from the "refrigerator" team site) breaks. This can be solved by using durable links in the .url file. I don't have that functionality enabled on my tenant, so I can't test.
  • Using this method you can also link to a specific version of a Sharepoint file, by simple specifying the URL of the version you want.
  • To open a .url file in Windows, the .url extension needs to be associated with your default browser. I believe that is the case by default, but maybe good to check.

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