I recently delivered a SharePoint 2010 collaboration solution for a client who wanted to upgrade and migrate MOSS 2007 into SharePoint 2010. I was responsible for designing fresh architecture for the new environment, planning the migration project, and implementing and training at the post-implementation stage. One interesting challenge I had was to learn and write instructions on how to use a Document Connection run on the Mac OS environment to connect to a SharePoint 2010 site.

Microsoft Document Connection for Mac OS enables you to easily work with documents stored in a SharePoint site. In Windows, as you know, there is a client tool called Microsoft SharePoint Workspace 2010 which enables you to share and work on not only a document library but also a list. Specifically, SharePoint Workspace 2010 provides real-time automatic synchronization of desktop content. Document Connection for Mac OS has many limited functions but, in my opinion, the built-in functions on Document Connection are enough to work on documents stored in a SharePoint document library.

Prior to working with SharePoint documents using Document Connection, you have to consider the following:

  • Microsoft Office 2008 for Mac Home and Student Edition can’t connect to a SharePoint site.
  • Document Connection is only available in Microsoft Office 2008 for Mac Service Pack 2. This basically means if you aren’t using Service Pack 2, you have to upgrade.

In this post, I'll try to share some basic tutorials as follows:

  • Connect to a SharePoint site using Document Connection
  • Upload documents into a document library
  • Check-Out/Check-In/Discard a document

Connect to a SharePoint site using Document Connection

As I mentioned about version edition earlier, you have to make sure that your Office 2008 for Mac is upgraded to Service Pack 2 (version 12.2.0). Note: you have to upgrade to Service Pack 1 prior to upgrading to Service Pack 2.

Open your Application area on a Mac computer, navigate to the Microsoft Office 2008 folder and open Document Connection.

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The Document Connection tool appears. On the left panel. Click Add Location > Connect to a SharePoint site. As you can see, Document Connection also allows you to connect to an Office Live Workspace known as Windows Live Sky Drive.

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The dialog box appears. In the Site Address box, enter the main site collection address for the SharePoint site. In the Authentication setting, select the proper authentication you are using. We have two settings: Username and password and Kerberos. Enter username and password and then click the Connect button to start connecting to a SharePoint site.

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If you can’t access SharePoint, here are some reasons:

  • You don’t have the right permission to access the SharePoint site so you should request one from an Administrator.
  • The network is unavailable so you should determine the status of the network connection.
  • The network requires additional authentication to sign in to a SharePoint site so you have to change authentication from basic to Kerberos authentication. In my case, I use Windows authentication.
  • Double check your version edition if you are using Office 2008 Mac Home or Student edition.

Upload documents into SharePoint document library

Microsoft Document Connection run on Mac OS enables you to upload document from your Mac computer to a SharePoint document library quickly with some basic steps.

In the Document Connection user interface, select your SharePoint site under SHAREPOINT heading. On the right panel, you can see all sites included in your SharePoint environment. Select and then double-click on your site where you want to upload a document.

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In the right panel, you can see all components in your selected site. Navigate to the document library or folder that will store your document.

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Select document and then click Upload to start uploading the document into a document library or folder (if any)

Check-Out/Check-In and Discard

When you check out a file, you change only the copy of the file on your computer and lock the file that is located on the server. After you change that copy, you check it in by using Document Connection. The advantage of this method is that nobody else can change the file until you check it back in. For example, you might want to check out a file if you need to edit your work several times and you do not want anyone else trying to edit it.

Navigate to the document you want to check-out and then edit. The basic steps on how to navigate to a specific document are like the above tutorials. On the toolbar, click Check Out. When you are finished editing, click Check In on the toolbar.

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Checking out a file temporarily locks the file on the server, and any changes that you make appear only in the file on your computer. If you want other people to see your changes, you have to check in the file. If you do not want to keep the changes that you made and want other people to be able to make changes to the file on the server, you can discard the check out.

Select checked-out file and then click Discard on the toolbar.

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On the toolbar, you can create a new file directly from the Document Connection, edit, read and upload the document easily.















[Updated 17 September 2014] For OneDrive, please see this thread: http://community.office365.com/en-us/f/153/t/261728.aspx