I want to set SharePoint permissions to some users for browsing directories only. The structure of my Document-Center SharePoint Online site is:


And I want to allow user1 to for example edit on "subsubsubdirectory3", view only on "subsubsubdirectory2", no access on "subsubsubdirectory1". But also I want to give to user1 permissions to browse all the path what is necessary to access subsubsubdirectory3 and subsubsubdirectory2.

I tested it out and I only saw the options to browse directories and view files without downloading. But I don't want to give user1 privileges to view files in other folders. No matter if he can see other directories (like "subdirectory1"), I just don't want to let him open files that he shouldn't open.

Other options is sharing via link, but it will be hard to use by some users, so i don't want to use this trick.

Any suggestions will be useful! :)

1 Answer 1


Unfortunately, when I had faced the same problem, the only solution was to set specific permissions on each other item that existed within the folders. From my experience there is no easy solution in this situation, just because you shouldn't try to handle SharePoint like you would handle a file server. The best approach will be trying to split at the top level, meaning document libraries and, if possible, site collections.

  • So I have to set "view only" to all needed folders with inheritance and then remove this access from important, secret files?
    – newbie
    Jun 18, 2021 at 5:22
  • Basically, yes.
    – jimas13
    Jun 18, 2021 at 6:11
  • So I know what to do basically. What do you propose at the advanced level?
    – newbie
    Jun 18, 2021 at 9:48
  • use your logic of splitting folders on the Document Library level or even Sharepoint Site collection level. It will be better, by means of performace and easier in permission handling.
    – jimas13
    Jun 18, 2021 at 10:40

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