Managing larger Office365 document libraries

This morning I ran into an interesting problem.  We have an office365 document library we’re using as a small scale CMS, where users are contributing documents and editing the attributes of those documents.  PowerBI can then query the attributes in that document library to determine what has been contributed, and what is outstanding.  As the project has been successful, we hit the 5000 document mark this morning.  5000 items is the limit for a document library.  Effectively, once you’ve gone over that 5000 item limit, you can no longer sync the library.

SLATS

This limit is sneaky, as there are no warnings other than viewing the library content.  The report used an OData feed, that never returned an error when the document library was over 5000 items.  It just sat there and never finished.  Anyone who has sync’d their desktop to the document library before it had reached 5000, would have a message in OneDrive for business that reads “We can’t sync this library because it’s too large”, any subsequent files would return the “We’re syncing your files but it’s taking longer than expected“.

Onedrive

It turns out the only way to natively move these files and preserve the attributes, is to copy the files in the sharepoint admin from one document library to another.  If done this way, the attributes will be preserved.  (Don’t copy files via explorer/Onedrive sync).  Alternatively, if you had a document library that was less than 10 meg, you could save it up as a template, and restore it with another name.  That will probably never happen, as the sheer size of the table of contents on 5000 files would itself probably come close to 10meg.

Still looking for an easy solution.  More to come.

Far better an approximate answer to the right question, which is often vague, than the exact answer to the wrong question, which can always be made precise. -John Tukey
The plural of anecdote is not data. - John Myles White

Recent Posts

RSS PowerBI blog

  • End-User Filtered Export capabilities now available February 13, 2019
    For the third straight week, we’re delivering on the item I’ve heard more end-user feedback around than any other we’d promised to deliver in the October blogpost.  At long last, you and your users will be able to export their Power BI reports to either PDF or PowerPoint and have their selections on the screen […]
  • Incremental refresh & query folding February 13, 2019
    As part of our strategy to converge enterprise and self-service BI on Power BI as a single platform, we announced the public preview of incremental refresh last summer. While there is still more work to be done to get it to general availability, we have seen strong uptake of incremental refresh. Incremental refresh is a […]
  • Microsoft a Leader in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for Analytics and BI Platforms for 12 consecutive years February 13, 2019
      We’re very grateful to our customers, our community members, and our partners for making Power BI what it is today.   Thank you.   The Power BI Team       Get the 2019 Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for Analytics and Business Intelligence Platforms report* to learn more.             *This graphic […]