I have a site collection in SharePoint 2010 and hierarchy of 2 subsites( sitecollection/subsite1/subsite2) under that. I am dealing with subsite 2. Sub site 2 doesn't inherit permissions from its parent. I added a user in one of its group and assigned "View Only" permission to the group. But when I try to Login with newly added user it gives me "Access denied". Why is this so. This user can only log on to the site if its added as Site Collection Administrator.

Please help me understand this problem.

  • What is the URL the user is trying to access when getting access denied, are they accessing the subsite directly through http://sitecollection/subsite2 or attempting to get into http://sitecollection first? Jul 18, 2012 at 8:42
  • User tries to access the subsite2 directly.
    – V.B
    Jul 18, 2012 at 8:46
  • The user can access the site only with "Full Control" permission.
    – V.B
    Jul 18, 2012 at 9:01

2 Answers 2


Create a group and give Read Level permissions on the subsite. Include the user in that group and try to access the subsite directly from that user.

Additionally you need to ensure the following

  1. The landing page of the subsite should not be checked out or in a pending approval state.
  2. The masterpage referred by the subsite should also be a published and approved version.
  3. Verify any webparts that may be added in the landing page of the subsite.
  4. Verify the permissions of the document library where the landing page resides in. Ideally the group where the user is added should have a Read level permission on that document library.
  • I created my own group in my subsite and gave "Read" permission.But still there is "Access Denied" error.
    – V.B
    Jul 18, 2012 at 10:47
  • Can you change the permission level of the group from Read to Contribute temporarily check the access ?
    – ArkoD
    Jul 18, 2012 at 10:54
  • I tried only "Full Control" works not any other level.
    – V.B
    Jul 18, 2012 at 11:03
  • 1
    Probably you can create a group at the upper subsite level and give read access and then inherit permissions on the lower subsite and try it once again. I think it should work.
    – ArkoD
    Jul 19, 2012 at 12:13

We have to understand how SharePoint works... We are trying to access a subsite here without any permission to the parent site collection. Its almost like trying to access 2nd level floor with the main gate closed.

Please grant Read access to the user at the top level site collection and give required permission to the user at the subsite2.

@Arko has given the right resolution. Just trying to explain the behavior here.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.