Workflow to Update Hyperlink Display Text

Problem:

I wanted to use Quick Edit to update the URL column for a bunch of items in a list. The problem is that when you edit a hyperlink column, you have to click the little hyperlink editor icon next to the cell to also edit the display text. Otherwise, it just shows up as the URL.

Solution:

Use a workflow to change the display text to something else.

1. First, create a new text column or use an existing text column
2. Open SharePoint Designer
3. Create a new List Workflow
4. Add Update List Item action
5. Click “Add…”

6. Scroll through and find your new column. In this example I used the existing Description column.

7. Click “…” to open the String Builder

8. Click “Add or Change Lookup”
9. Select the hyperlink column
10. Change “Return field as:” to URL

11. Click “OK”
12. IMPORTANT: Add a comma and a space.
13. Click “Add or Change Lookup” again to select a column, or type out what you want your display text to be. I am setting mine to be the Title of the item.
14. Click “OK” > “OK” > “OK”
15. Add another Update List Item action
16. Click “Add…”
17. Set the hyperlink column to the value of the column we updated in the previous step

18. Click “OK” > “OK”
19. Change the Start Options to “Start workflow automatically when an item is changed”
20. Publish

Now you can Quick Edit a bunch of URLs without having to manually change the display text.

Workflow Stuck On Starting After Password Change

I generally use my own account to create and publish workflows. One day, none of my workflows were completing and they were all stuck on “starting”. I thought maybe there was something wrong with the workflows themselves so I tweaked one of them a bit and re-published and voila! It worked! But the thing I tweaked really shouldn’t have “fixed” anything. So I changed it back and again, it worked!

After banging my head against my desk for a little while I remembered updating my password that morning. Maybe all I needed to do was republish my workflows.

Which is what I did and it fixed everything.

There may have been an easier solution, but this worked for me.

Summary:

If you’re going to use your own account to create and publish workflows, you might have to re-publish every time you change your password.

You should probably use an admin account without a password policy to publish workflows.

 

Start Workflow on Inbound Email

By default, workflows will not auto start for attachments sent to a library via email.

To enable this functionality, run the following PowerShell script on your SharePoint server.


Add-PSSnapin Microsoft.SharePoint.PowerShell -ErrorAction SilentlyContinue

$spWebService = [Microsoft.SharePoint.Administration.SPWebService]::ContentService
$spWebService.DeclarativeWorkflowAutoStartOnEmailEnabled = $true
$spWebService.Update()

Next, make sure your workflow is configured to start automatically when an item is created.