Exploring Hidden Classic Sites with SharePoint Holmes
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SharePoint Online
Sep 30, 2023 7:27 AM

Exploring Hidden Classic Sites with SharePoint Holmes

by HubSite 365 about Ellen van Aken
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Uncover the mystery of concealed Classic SharePoint sites with the help of SharePoint Holmes!

The author, Ellen van Aken, in her blog post titled "SharePoint Holmes and the Concealed Classic sites", narrates a meticulous journey into a SharePoint mystery she personally experienced. The mystery revolves around the visibility (or the lack thereof) of certain 'Classic' sites in her SharePoint environment.

In the course of an attempted 'spring cleaning' of sites created for testing and learning, she realized that her SharePoint Admin center's list of 'Active' sites did not include all the sites that were present in her environment. In particular, she found some sites labeled as Classic sites and even subsites not listed in the Admin center.

In her exploration, she noticed that some of the unlisted sites were followed sites that had been deleted but were still appearing in the 'Followed' sites list. Further investigation revealed even more unlisted sites, some of which seemed like subsites based on their URLs, and some that were, once again, Classic sites.

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Returning to the Admin Center and filtering specifically for Classic sites, she found that these mysterious sites were still not in the overview. Clueless, Ellen checked the 'Recent' tab of her SharePoint Landing page and found yet another Classic site missing from her list. Further tracing brought her to the conclusion that these missing sites were subsites of two parent sites, which were strangely also not listed in the 'Active' sites.

The resolution to this mystery came in the form of a direct URL to the list of root site subsites. Ellen discovered that all the mystery sites were subsites of the root site, thereby not listed under 'Active' sites because they were created from other sites and not from the SharePoint landing page.

Generalized Exploration of SharePoint Online Issues

While she was not happy with the disorganization of her SharePoint sites, she was content with finally understanding the situation. She closed her account with a key takeaway: Classic subsites, particularly in older tenants, might not be visible in the Active sites list, posing a potential risk.

There were also useful tips for SharePoint Online users, especially regarding 'Followed' sites that had been deleted but were still appearing in their lists. Understanding the nuances of SharePoint Online's management of sites, active, classic, deleted and otherwise, is crucial for efficient and effective use.

Read the full article SharePoint Holmes and the Concealed Classic sites

SharePoint Online - Exploring Hidden Classic Sites with SharePoint Holmes

Learn about SharePoint Holmes and the Concealed Classic sites

In today's renowned SharePoint Holmes series, we unearth another intriguing predicament regarding concealed classic sites. These are often overlooked yet can be pivotal in exploring the depths of your SharePoint workspace. This article presents an overview and resolution to this peculiar issue.

Our journey begins with the realization of numerous accumulated sites which, for an admin, tend to become overwhelming. A wave of spring cleaning hits only to stumble upon an unexpected discovery. While the SharePoint Administrator center provides useful insight into the active sites, certain sites seem to have concealed themselves, manifesting our SharePoint mystery. These mysteriously disappearing sites compel us to dig deeper.

Upon inspection, these sites had already been deleted but made appearances due to their "Follow" status. This results in a cluttered list and mandates manual clean-up for precise organization. Although the sites might be deleted, their trace remains, adding confusion to the workspace.

Further investigation leads to interesting findings. Several sites appearing as subsites with peculiar URL patterns caught our attention. This find triggered a backdrop into SharePoint's nuances, where it was discovered that subsites, along with some other system sites, are not listed in the Active Sites. The exclusion of these subsites could potentially lead to a convoluted workspace.

Delving deeper into the realm of SharePoint, our focus shifted towards Classic Sites. Much to our surprise, these sites were suspiciously missing from the active sites list, while still being operative, adding another complexity layer to the situation. A return to the SharePoint Admin center still did not reveal these sites, pushing us to ponder upon what else was going unnoticed. A meticulous inspection of both landing and recent pages unfolds another potential Mystery - the Classic Site "Drinks Business" was revealed, though it was not recognized as a subsite.

Continuing our journey, we finally stumble upon a solution. A deeper inspection unveils the root-list of all the subsites, which surprisingly includes the missing Classic Sites, solving the puzzle at hand. It's evident that these sites, supposed to be on the top tier, were indeed created as subsites.

This SharePoint Sherlock adventure concludes with valuable lessons:

  • Classic subsites can be elusive and won't appear in your Active Sites list, hence careful inspection of root sites is suggested.
  • It's crucial to remember that once a site is removed, its follow status persists, potentially cluttering your list.
Please note that a thorough cleanup and reorganization of your workspace will streamline your tasks and reduce redundancy.

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