our organization uses two publishing page libraries to ensure that editors (Help Desk users) are presented only approved documents when appropriate (when on a customer call for example).

Draft Pages are copied to the Approved library when they are approved.

The question becomes what to do with Document attachments (and possibly images as well)? Do we make a second Document library? If so, the link between the page and document will not be updated...so thus I find myself here looking for ideas.

Open to any ideas! Thanks, Josh

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    Why do you need two document libraries? Unpublished versions will never be visible for users with read access (if doc lib settings are correct)?
    – Benny Skogberg
    Commented Nov 22, 2013 at 21:09
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    I agree with Benny - you would be better making sure the Help Desk users had a second log on so they see what users see by default but can then log on with a different account to be able to make changes. Commented Nov 22, 2013 at 22:05
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    Thanks for the feedback guys. I agree, however the key problem is that the majority of readers are also editors and SharePoint always presents the DRAFT version first. Since this is mostly used by a help desk, management is concerned that they will provide unapproved info over the phone, etc. If there's a way around that to keep it in one library that would be ideal, but I haven't found one yet!
    – Josh
    Commented Nov 23, 2013 at 7:16
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    Sorry, missed the comment about the additional logon. We discussed this as an option, but it was really frowned upon from both a maintenance standpoint and enduser workflow/efficiency. We're migrating from Lotus Notes and this is just another in a surprising number of examples that makes Notes look good.
    – Josh
    Commented Nov 24, 2013 at 3:18

1 Answer 1


Using only one document library, and not two, I'd do the following:

  • Create a page where you add a document library web part

  • Change the view of the web part implementing a filter, which would show only approved documents. Approval status is equal to Approved

enter image description here

  • Teach the staff to use only this page when supporting on the help desk


Since your users have editorial permission, they will indeed see only approved versions in the web part, but upon opening they'll get the minor, unapproved, version. Therefore you need to copy the approved versions from the editing document library to a read-only approved-only library.

This can be accomplished through a feature with the business logic attached to a custom timer job. It can also be accomplished through PowerShell and Windows Server Task Scheduler. Both methods are advanced, and it would probably take a couple of hundred lines of code to get it working properly (and as such is out of scope of this question).

Start by taking a look at Move files between document libraries in the same Site Collection.

  • Benny - I wish this would work but the problem I found with this is that if a page is in draft you can't display the approved one - unless I'm missing something?
    – Josh
    Commented Nov 24, 2013 at 3:08
  • This is something that really drives me nuts with SharePoint - this just shouldn't be a problem, and it wouldn't be if we had clearly defined authors and readers. But if editors are the main readers as well, it seems you're out of luck.
    – Josh
    Commented Nov 24, 2013 at 3:16
  • @Josh Probebly because they have editing rights, they open up minor versions instead of major. Maybe you need two doc libs then. I'd make a PowerShell script which compares approved documents in both libs, and copy/replace in the help desk lib if there's a difference. You can use Task Scheduler on the server running the script on regular basis.
    – Benny Skogberg
    Commented Nov 24, 2013 at 8:57
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    Got it - will look for answers first and then post if needed - thanks again Benny
    – Josh
    Commented Nov 25, 2013 at 13:57
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    Thanks Benny - I didn't realize it was possible for the system to distinguish between approved and edited like that. I'm going to learn more about this for the future, but for our situation it's definitely out of scope at this point. I'm working with the business owners to determine how they want to proceed.
    – Josh
    Commented Nov 27, 2013 at 16:02

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