I have a library that contains different projects. The projects are created based on a specific project structure format in the same library as a sample for the users using that library.

Currently, the owners of that library assign permissions to the users after the project is created manually.

I want to simplify the process of assigning permissions to the users and avoid manual assignments for the owners.

I thought about creating different project formats, assigning permissions to the formats based on my requirements, and asking the owners to simply copy/paste the formats and assign only the required metadata columns.

However, it seems that copy/paste does not take into consideration the permissions assigned for the format folders/subfolders structure and keeps inheriting permission from the parent library.

What is the best practice/solution to avoid the manual permission assignments for the projects based on different formats by using copy/paste commands? Can someone provide an example of whether the above is feasible?

Any help is highly appreciated.

Thank you!

1 Answer 1


You could try the code in the blog:

  #PowerShell Function to copy permissions between Folders in SharePoint Online
    Function Copy-PnPFolderPermissions
             [Parameter(Mandatory=$True)] [string] $WebURL,
             [Parameter(Mandatory=$True)] [string] $SourceFolderURL,
             [Parameter(Mandatory=$True)] [string] $TargetFolderURL,
             [Parameter(Mandatory=$False)] [Bool] $AppendToExisting = $True
        Try {
            #Connect to PnP Online
            Connect-PnPOnline -Url $WebURL -Interactive
        #Get the Web
        $Web = Get-PnPweb
        $Ctx = Get-PnPContext
        #Get Source and Target Folders
        $SourceFolderItem = Get-PnPFolder -Url $SourceFolderURL -Includes ListItemAllFields.HasUniqueRoleAssignments
        $SourceFolder = $SourceFolderItem.ListItemAllFields
        $TargetFolderItem = Get-PnPFolder -Url $TargetFolderURL -Includes ListItemAllFields.HasUniqueRoleAssignments
        $TargetFolder = $TargetFolderItem.ListItemAllFields
        #if permissions are Inherited in Target Folder, Break the Inheritance
            If($AppendToExisting -eq $True)
                #Break Folder permissions - keep all existing permissions & Clear Item level permissions
        Else #If the Folder has unique Permissions already
            If($AppendToExisting -eq $False)
        #Get all permissions assigned to the source folder
        $SourceRoleAssignments = Get-PnPProperty -ClientObject $SourceFolder -Property RoleAssignments
        #Copy Source Folder permissions to Destination Folder
        ForEach($RoleAssignment in $SourceRoleAssignments)
            #Get RoleDefinitions of the Role Assignment
            Get-PnPProperty -ClientObject $RoleAssignment -Property RoleDefinitionBindings, Member
            #Leave the Hidden permissions
            If($RoleAssignment.Member.IsHiddenInUI -eq $False)
                $SourcePermissions = $RoleAssignment.RoleDefinitionBindings | Where {$_.Name -notin("Limited Access")}
                $PermissionLevels = ($SourcePermissions | Select -ExpandProperty Name) -join "; "
                If($SourcePermissions -ne $null)
                    #Add Source Folder's Permission Level to the Target Folder
                    $RoleDefBindings = New-Object Microsoft.SharePoint.Client.RoleDefinitionBindingCollection($Ctx)
                    ForEach($RoleDefinition in $SourcePermissions)
                    $Permissions = $TargetFolder.RoleAssignments.Add($RoleAssignment.Member,$RoleDefBindings)
                    Write-host "Copied '$($RoleAssignment.Member.Title)' with Permissions '$PermissionLevels'"
    Catch {
        write-host -f Red "Error Copying Folder Permissions!" $_.Exception.Message
#Set Parameters
$WebURL = "https://crescent.sharepoint.com/sites/Marketing"
#Server Relative URLs of Source and Target Folders
$SourceFolderURL = "/sites/Marketing/Shared Documents/Old"
$TargetFolderURL = "/sites/Marketing/Shared Documents/New"
#Call the function to copy Folder permissions
Copy-PnPFolderPermissions -WebURL $WebURL -SourceFolderURL $SourceFolderURL -TargetFolderURL $TargetFolderURL


How to Copy Permissions from One Folder to Another in SharePoint Online using PowerShell?


Thanks for the reply. I have updated my answer in this thread in Q&A forum to help more people in the future:Copy permissions of a folder and subfolder in a library.

  • Hi Elsie, thank you for providing the example from the blog post. Does that mean every time they want to create a project in the library they have to ask an IT to execute the PowerShell script to copy the permissions for a folder to another? Is there no other way to do avoid that?
    – SmithBZ
    Nov 15, 2021 at 9:00

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