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SharePoint Basics

Before you Begin:

SharePoint makes it simple for several people to work on the same documents in the creation and management of team websites by providing a library-like system of electronically checking the document in and out for editing.

Windows SharePoint Services has four levels of access:

  • Reader – Readers cannot make any changes to the SharePoint sites that they visit. They can read all the data available on the site, but cannot make any changes.
  • Contributor – Contributors can add content to existing document libraries and lists.
  • Web Designer – Web designers can create lists and document libraries. They also have the ability to customize the SharePoint pages in the web site.
  • Administrator – Administrators have complete control of the web site.

Depending on what level of access you have on the sites you visit, you may or may not be able to follow all portions of this QuickNote. If you have any questions about what level of access you have to a SharePoint site you should contact the person in charge of the site. Where appropriate this document will inform you of the minimum level of acces required to complete steps if they require more than a Reader level of access.

Logging in to SharePoint:

Enter URL of your Windows SharePoint Services site in your Web Browser address bar as shown below.  If you do not know what the site-name is, then you may go to http://portal.umflint.edu/SiteDirectory and search for the site.


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If you are accessing the SharePoint services from on campus and are logged into the computer you are using, you should not be asked to log in.Enter your user name in the User name box, and enter your password in the Password box.  You may place a check mark in the Remember my password box if you want your information to be stored. 

Using a Meeting Workspace:

A metting workspace site is a SharePoint site created by an administrator to share information about a meeting or event.


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  1. Click the Documents and Lists shortcut on the Link bar.
  2. Click the Meeting Workspaces shortcut in the See Also section of the left side pane.
  3. Select the meeting workspace you wish to view.
  4. To return to your home page click Up to [Sharepoint Team Site Name] located in the upper right corner of the window.


Creating an Announcement:
All steps in this section require that you have at least Contributor access. 


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  1. Click the Add new Announcement shortcut at the bottom of the Announcements web part.
  2. Enter a title for the announcement in the Title field.
  3. Enter the announcement in the Body field.
  4. If desired you may set an expiration date for the announcement by typing a date in the Expires box. You may also click on the calendar button to choose a date from the calendar.
  5. If you wish to attach a document to the announcement click on the Attach File button.
  6. Click the Browse button.
  7. Locate the file you wish to attach.
  8. Click OK.
  9. Once you are done modifying the announcement click Save and then Close.


Creating an Event:
All steps in this section require that you have at least Contributor access. Click the Add New Event shortcut at the bottom of the Events web part.

  1. Enter a title for the event in the Title field.
  2. Enter the date the event will begin in the Begin field. You may also use the calendar to select a date.
  3. If the event has an ending date, enter the date in the End field. You may also use the calendar to select a date.
  4. Enter the event description in the Description field.
  5. Enter the location of the event in the Location field.
  6. If this event will occur more than once you may set the recurrence by selecting one of the options next to Recurrence.
  7. Click the Save and then Close button once you are finished modifying the event.


Adding a Link:
All steps in this section require that you have at least Contributor access.


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  1. Click on the Add New Link shortcut at the bottom of the Links web part.
  2. Enter the link URL in the URL field.
  3. Test the link by clicking Click here to test. This step will help to ensure that you do not put a broken link up.
  4. Enter the description of the link in the Type the description field. Whatever you type here will be displayed on the Links web part.
  5. Click the Save and then Close button when you are finished editing the link.


Using a Document Workspace: A document workspace site is a SharePoint site created by an administrator to share information about a document or groups of documents.

  1. Click the Documents and Lists shortcut on the Link bar to see all documents and lists available on the site.
  2. Click the Document Workspaces shortcut in the See Also section of the side pane.
  3. Select the document workspace you wish to view.
  4. To return to your home page click Up to [Sharepoint Team Site Name] located in the upper right corner of the window.

 Opening and Modifying a Document: All steps in this section require that you have at least Contributor access.

  1. Click the Documents shortcut in the Quick Launch bar.
  2. Select the library that contains the document you want to open from the Document Libraries list. Click on the name of the document you want to open.
  3. Click the OK button. You may be asked to enter your password again to open the file.
  4. Make your changes to the document.
  5. Once you have made all the desired changes select Save from the File menu.
  6. Click the Close button, or the X in the upper right hand corner, to close the document.


Checking out a Document:

All steps in this section require that you have at least Contributor access. If you do not want other users making changes to a document while you are, then you will need to check the document out.

  1. Click the Documents shortcut in the Quick Launch bar.
  2. Select the library that contains the document you want to open from the Document Libraries list.
  3. Place your mouse over the document name that you want to check out. Click on the arrow at the far right of the document name box to display the Edit menu.
  4. Select Check Out from the Edit menu.

Checking in a Document:

All steps in this section require that you have at least Contributor access.

  1. Click the Documents shortcut in the Quick Launch bar.
  2. Select the library that contains the document you want to check in from the Document Libraries list.
  3. Place your mouse over the document name that you want to check in. Click on the arrow at the far right of the document name box to display the Edit menu.
  4. From the Edit menu select Check In

Once you select Check In you will have three options:

  • Check in document – Saves changes and checks the document in so others can modify it.
  • Check in changes saved to this document, but keep the document checked out – Updates the changes you have made so far in the document, but doesn’t allow anyone else to make changes since it is still checked out.
  • Discard changes and undo check out - Does not save any changes you made, and allows the document to be checked out and edited again by others.

Uploading a Document:

All steps in this section require that you have at least Contributor access.

  1. Click the Documents shortcut in the Quick Launch bar.
  2. Select the library that you want to upload a document to from the Document Libraries list.
  3. Click the Upload Document button.
  4. Click the Browse button.
  5. Locate the file that you wish to upload.
  6. Click the Open button.
  7. Click the Save and Close button when you are done.

Adding a Picture to a Library:

All steps in this section require that you have at least Contributor access.

  1. Click the Pictures shortcut in the Quick Launch bar.
  2. Select the library you would like to add a picture to.
  3. Click the Add Picture button.
  4. Click the Browse button and locate the picture file you want to add.
  5. Click the Open button.
  6. Click the Save and then Close button when you are finished.

Creating and Modifying Alerts:

Creating an Alert for a List or Library:

When you create an alert  you will be sent an e-mail message when any changes occur to the List or Library.

  1. Click the Site Settings shortcut on the Link bar.
  2. Click the My Alerts on this site shortcut in the Manage my information section.
  3. Click the Add Alert button.
  4. Select the list or document library that you wish to receive alerts about whenever changes are made to it.
  5. Click the Next button.

In the Alert me about section select when you would like to receive notifications. The options are…

  • All changes – Any time a change is made you will be notified
  • Added Items - You will only be notified when items are added
  • Changed Items – You will be notified when items are changed
  • Deleted Items - You will be notified when items are deleted from the site
  • Web Discussion Updates – You will be notified when web discussions are updated

In the Alert me how often section, select one of the following options:

  • Send e-mail immediately - You will be notified right away of any changes
  • Send a daily summary – You will be sent an e-mail once a day notifying you of any changes
  • Send a weekly summary – You will be sent an e-mail once a week notifying you of any changes

Click the OK button when you are finished making changes to your alert.

An e-mail message will be sent right away to confirm that you successfully created the alert. Creating an Alert for an Item:

  1. Open the library or list that contains the item you wish to create an alert for.
  2. Place your mouse over the item.
  3. Click the arrow at the far right of the title box to display the Edit menu.
  4. Select Alert Me from the Edit menu.
  5. Select an option in the Alert me about section, and in the Alert me how often section.
  6. Click the OK button when you are finished.

Viewing and Modifying Alerts:

  1. Click the Site Settings shortcut on the Link bar.
  2. Click the My Alerts on this site shortcut in the Manage My Information section.
  3. To modify an alert, click the alert name, make changes, and click the OK button. 
  4. To delete an alert check the box next to the alert name and click the Delete Selected Alerts button.

Responding to a Survey:

  1. Click the Surveys shortcut on the Quick Launch bar.
  2. Click the name of the survey you want to respond to.
  3. Click the Respond to this Survey button.
  4. Enter or select your survey responses.
  5. Click the Save and then Close button when you are finished to submit your survey answers.

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