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Change where you work on files that you check out from a SharePoint library

When you use an Office program to check out a file from a Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 site or Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 site, the file is stored by default on your hard disk in a drafts folder that is in your My Documents folder. You can change this location to another location on your hard disk or network, or you can specify that checked-out files are stored on the Web server when you work on them. Your administrator might specify a custom location or prevent the location from being changed, depending on the needs of your organization.

This setting changes the location where you work on the next file that you check out. If you are currently working on a checked-out file, this procedure does not change its location.

This feature is now retired on Office 365

If you’re using Office 365 subscription this feature is no longer available. All new files checked-out in Office 365 will check-out using the Office Document Cache. This change enables offline editing of checked-out files and allows you to edit your checked-out files from more than one machine.

If you have a file checked-out to your local server drafts folder and have lost access to this feature you can still retrieve any changes that were not checked-in to SharePoint. You will need to open the local copy of the file from the Server Drafts location to copy any changes you have made, then paste these changes into the checked-out file from SharePoint. Once done, you can check-in the file as normal.

Find the local server drafts location

  1. Open the Office Application that contains your checked-out file

  2. Click File > Options >Save. Note that you may have to hit the ESC key to see the File menu.

  3. Under Offline editing options for document management server files copy the file path in the textbox labeled Server drafts location.

If you did not have any pending changes to check-in, simply re-open your SharePoint file and use it as normal. 

Word, Excel, or PowerPoint

  1. Click the Microsoft Office Button Office button image , and then click the options for your program: Word Options, Excel Options, or PowerPoint Options.

  2. In the dialog box that appears, click Save.

  3. In the Offline editing options for document management server files section, do one of the following:

    • Use the following procedure to work with checked-out files on your hard disk or on a network location:

      1. Under Save checked-out files to, click The server drafts location on this computer.

      2. In the Server drafts location box, type the location on your hard disk where you want to work with checked-out files, or click Browse and find the location.

    • To work with checked-out files on a Web server, under Save checked-out files to, click The web server.

      When you choose this option, you work with your checked-out files on the Web server or site where your files are stored. You cannot customize the specific location.

  4. Click OK.

Visio

  1. On the Tools menu, click Options.

  2. In the Options dialog box, click the General tab, and then click Service Options.

  3. In the dialog box that appears, click Offline Editing Options.

  4. In the Offline editing options for document management server files section, do one of the following:

    • Use the following procedure to work with checked-out files on your hard disk or on a network location:

      1. Under Save checked-out files to, click The server drafts location on this computer.

      2. Under Server drafts location, type the location on your hard disk where you want to work with checked-out files, or click Browse and find the location.

    • To work with checked-out files on a server location, under Save checked-out files to, click The web server.

      When you choose this option, you work with your checked-out files on the Web server or site where your files are stored. You cannot customize the specific location.

  5. Click OK.

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