Versioning Update for SharePoint Online and OneDrive
The Importance of Version Control
Version control, or versioning, allows a file or item to be restored to an older state that is chosen from the version list. With versioning enabled, items and files in the SharePoint list or library are protected from unwanted, miscalculated and inadvertent errors.
Applications of Versioning
Track Version History: version history discloses information about when an item or file was changed, by whom, what was changed, and any comments that were made when files are checked into libraries
Restore Previous Version: file or items that are corrupt can be restored from a previous version. A previous version can also be restored if mistakes are made in the file or item, or if the previous version is more akin to what is wanted. The restored version becomes the current version
View Previous Version: Before reverting to a previous version, there is the capability to compare two versions within a Microsoft Office document, such as Word or Excel, to determine the differences between the two documents without overwriting the current version.
What is New with Versioning
Versioning is becoming more crucial as software and technology advances, as exemplified by the evolution of AutoSave and Restore Your OneDrive. Leveraging versions allows greater confidence for users and administrators alike while delivering better user experience.
In line with development, Microsoft recently announced they will be enabling versioning on all Document Libraries in team sites in SharePoint Online and OneDrive for Business with a default of retaining a minimum of 100 major versions. If your library is set to retain 100 or more major revisions, then this update will not affect you. However, existing libraries that are set to retain less than 100 major versions will be updated to meet the minimum criteria of 100 events.
Roll out will begin in June for first release customers while remaining tenants worldwide will receive the update in July. The rollout is expected to be completed by the end of July.
Who is Impacted
As mentioned, all team sites for OneDrive for Business and SharePoint Online will be affected. Will you be impacted if your team sites are not connected to an Office 365 group? The answer is “yes”, the rollout will update to the 100 minimum major revisions if you are not set to be 100 or above.
What if we are On-Prem for SharePoint? Will this affect us? The answer is “no”, this will have no impact on your SharePoint document libraries.
What Else Changes
Once the update is rolled out to your tenant, site owners and administrators will not be able to set a versioning limit of less than 100. In addition to this, they will not be able to disable document library versioning as it will now be standard practice to have it enabled.
What About Storage Space?
Prior to the redevelopment of the flat collection sites with Office 365, versioning of document libraries required large storage sites. This, in turn, created issues for the allocation of storage for site collections. The result of limited storage was the stringent, low versioning limit. With the new approach of flat collection sites, storage is less of a concern than it was in the past; however, with audits, the speed of change in technology, and the increase in collaboration between teams and individual members, errors and corrupt files can be incurred, which places a priority on the ability to restore and recover these files and items. Hence, the rollout of the new higher, minimum versioning limit of 100.