I need to get a list of all files, older then 5 years, from few thousands sharepoint online sites and I am trying to do it with powershell script. The problem I am having is that I have to reconnect with Disconnect/Connect-PnPOnline for each site which causes server to stop responding after few hundreds sites.

foreach($site in $sites){
 $surl = $site.SiteUrl ; $sid = $site.ID
 $gcon =  Connect-PnPOnline -Url $surl -ClientId $GLClientId -ClientSecret $GLSecret -ReturnConnection  # Connection via Global SP app to read current site
 Get-PnPListItem -List $folder  -PageSize 500 -Connection $gcon | ForEach-Object{
   if($_.FileSystemObjectType -like "*File*"){        $f=$_; 
        if($t_TooOldDate -gt $f.FieldValues.Last_x0020_Modified){ ### 
             $a_files+=[pscustomobject]@{'File'=$f.FieldValues.FileRef; 'Size'= $f.FieldValues.File_x0020_Size ; 'LastModified'=$f.FieldValues.Last_x0020_Modified}
             $co++ ; $ts+= $f.FieldValues.File_x0020_Size
  Disconnect-PnPOnline -Connection $gcon

So I am wandering if I could use same connection for the whole script and just keep changing site name? Or maybe there is a better way to do it?


  • 1
    After conducting my investigation and reviewing my previous response, it appears that traversing with the same connection across different site collections is not possible. You ll have to use Connect-PnPOnline again.
    – Pradip R.
    May 16, 2023 at 8:16
  • Try use connection variable - i.e. Connect-PnPOnline with the option "-ReturnConnection". I work with 10K+ sites environment - and I was able to iterate through all sites and connect to every site... I used clientid and clientsecret. Jun 8, 2023 at 21:44

1 Answer 1


You can use MS Graph API to get list of sites sorted/filtered based on Last Modified Date. Here is how I get new sites, but the same technique could be used to get older sites.

If you prefer PnP.PowerShell - Try connection variable. I administer large environment and I was able to iterate through all sites and connect to every site...

$conn = Connect-PnPOnline -ClientId $clientid -Url $url -ClientSecret $clientSecret -ReturnConnection
$site = Get-PnPSite -Connection $conn

Also, just FYI: SPO Site LastContentModifiedDate vs LastItemModifiedDate vs LastItemUserModifiedDate vs Graph LastModifiedDateTime

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