Add a SharePoint list or library as a data source

By default, every Microsoft SharePoint list and library in a site has a corresponding data source connection in the Data Source Library. To add a SharePoint list or library to the Data Source Library, you can either create a new list or library or create a new connection to an existing list or library.

Any SharePoint lists or libraries that you create will also automatically have a corresponding data source connection in the Data Source Library.

Note   SharePoint surveys are a type of list and also appear in the SharePoint Lists section of the Data Source Library.

In this article

About using a list or library as a data source

Create a SharePoint list

Create a SharePoint document library

Copy and modify a SharePoint list or library

About using a list or library as a data source

SharePoint lists and libraries in the Folder List automatically have a connection in the Data Source Library

1. SharePoint lists and libraries appear in the Folder List.

2. Each SharePoint list and library automatically has a corresponding data source connection in the Data Source Library.

As with other types of data sources, the SharePoint lists and libraries that appear in the Data Source Library are actually connections to the original data that display the results of a query on that data. However, SharePoint lists and libraries are different from other data source types in two important ways:

  • You cannot modify the query for SharePoint lists and libraries as you can for other sources in the Data Source Library. You can, however, copy the connection for a SharePoint list or library and then create a custom query on the list or library so that it displays the exact data that you want. When you create a new data source connection for a SharePoint list, you do not copy the source data. Instead, you create an additional connection to the same data.

  • You can change the original source data for a SharePoint list or library through the Data Source Library by changing the list properties, which you cannot do for other sources in the Data Source Library. For more information about how to change the list properties of a SharePoint list, see the See Also section.

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Create a SharePoint list

When you click the Create new SharePoint list link in the Data Source Library, the New dialog box opens. In the New dialog box, you can create a new SharePoint list by using one of the built-in SharePoint list templates.

The icon for a SharePoint list The new list in the Folder list is the same in both the Folder List and the Data Source Library.

  1. In the Folder List, click Lists.

    This way, any new list that you create will be included in the Lists folder.

  2. In the Data Source Library task pane, under SharePoint Lists, click Create new SharePoint list.

    If the SharePoint Lists heading is collapsed, click the plus sign (+) to expand it.

    Note   Alternately, you can click New on the File menu, and then click SharePoint Content.

  3. In the left pane, click Lists, and then, in the middle pane, click the type of list that you want to add.

    Tip   When you click a list template, a description of that list appears in the rightmost pane under Description.

  4. In the rightmost pane, under Options, type a name for the new list.

    To follow this example, in the middle pane, click Announcements, and then, under Options, type News.

  5. Click OK.

The new list appears in the Folder List.

The new list appears in the Folder List.
The new list appears in the Folder List.

The new list will also have a corresponding data source connection in the SharePoint Lists section of the Data Source Library.

The new list in the SharePoint Lists section fo the Data Source Library
The new list appears in the SharePoint Lists section of the Data Source Library.

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Create a SharePoint document library

When you click the Create new Document Library link in the Data Source Library, the New dialog box opens. In the New dialog box, you can create a new SharePoint Document Library by using one of the built-in SharePoint Document Library templates.

The icon for a SharePoint Document Library in the Folder List looks different The icon for a SharePoint Document Library in the Folder List from the way it does in the Data Source Library The icon for a SharePoint Document Library in the Data Source Library.

  1. In the Data Source Library task pane, under SharePoint Libraries, click Create new Document Library.

    If the SharePoint Libraries heading is collapsed, click the plus sign (+) to expand it.

    Note   You can also click New on the File menu, and then click SharePoint Content.

  2. In the left pane, click Document Libraries, and then, in the middle pane, click the type of Document Library that you want to add.

    Tip   When you click a Document Library template, a description of that library appears in the rightmost pane under Description.

  3. In the rightmost pane, under Options, type a name for the new list.

    To follow this example, in the middle pane, click Document Library, and then, under Options, type Articles.

  4. Click OK.

After you create the new Document Library, you can see it in the Folder List.

The new Document Library appears in the Folder List.
The new Document Library appears in the Folder List.

The new list will also have a corresponding data source connection in the SharePoint Libraries section of the Data Source Library.

The new Document Library in the SharePoint Lists section of the Data Source Library
The new Document Library appears in the SharePoint Lists section of the Data Source Library.

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Copy and modify a SharePoint list or library

As mentioned earlier, the SharePoint lists and libraries that appear in the Data Source Library are actually connections to the original data that display the results of a query on that data. Unlike with other data sources in the Data Source Library, you cannot modify the query for the data sources that are automatically created for SharePoint lists and libraries. You can, however, copy a connection to a SharePoint list or library and then apply a custom query on the list or library so that it displays the exact data that you want.

When you click Copy and Modify, you create a copy of the data source connection that you can then modify by using the Data Source Properties dialog box. On the General tab, you can modify the name, description, and keywords for the data source. On the Source tab, you can modify the query for the data source. The following procedure shows you how to copy the data source connection and then change the name, description, and keywords for that data source. For more information about how to modify the query for a data source, see the article Create a data source query.

  1. In the Data Source Library task pane, under SharePoint Lists or SharePoint Libraries, click the list or library that you want to copy and modify, and then click Copy and Modify.

    The Query section becomes available.

    Source tab of Data Source Properties dialog box

  2. In the Data Source Properties dialog box, click General.

  3. In the Name box, type a name for the copied data source.

    If you don't type a new name for the data source, the name will be the same as the name of the previous item, but with _copy(n) — where n is the number of copies — appended to it. For example, if you copy the Announcements data source connection but don't type a new name, the name of the new data source will be Announcements_copy(1). If you copy the Announcements data source connection a second time but don't type a new name, the name of the new data source will be Announcements_copy(2).

  4. In the Description box, type a description for the copied data source.

  5. In the Keywords box, type any keywords for the copied data source.

  6. Click OK.

    The new data source connection now appears in the Data Source Library. When you copy a data source connection, you are only copying the query on the original data source. You are not copying the data source itself. In the following illustration, because both Announcements and Announcements_copy(1) are queries on the Announcements list, Announcements appears only once in the Folder List.

    Announcements and Announcements_copy(1) in the Data Source Library

    Because both Announcements and Announcements_copy(1) connect to the Announcements list, Announcements appears only once in the Folder List.

Queries on SharePoint lists and libraries that you create by using Copy and Modify do not appear as links when a visitor views the site in a browser. However, you can create a Data View by using the copied list or library. For more information about creating Data Views, see the article Create a Data View.

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Applies To: SharePoint Designer 2007



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