How to create and define the document templates’ library

To be able to create documents from within MetaShare’s user interface, a document library for MetaShare’s document templates needs to be created, configured and defined.

Below you find instructions for how to:

  1. How to create the document templates’ library
  2. How to add document columns to the templates’ library
  3. How to define the path to the document templates, in MetaShare
  4. Optional – How to define the path to the document templates, in the Office applications

1 – How to create the document templates’ library

The document template’s library can be located in any SharePoint site but if you want to manage smart document templates, the site cannot be based on a modern site template, as these sites do not subscribe to content types. Also, to ensure that MetaShare content types and site columns can be subscribed to the site, without any issues, we recommend that you create a new site collection that does not have any previous custom site columns in it that could conflict with the columns that are published from the content type hub. Therefore our recommendation is to either create a specific MetaShare workspace where your  templates are located (all users that are to be able to create documents need to have read permissions to this workspace) or to create a new standard SharePoint site collection and configure it according to the instructions below:

  1. Login to Office 365 and open the “Admin” app from the App Launcher:
    Office 365's App Launcher
  2. Open the “SharePoint” admin center:
    Link to "SharePoint" admin center
  3. Click on the “New” function and then select the “Private Site Collection” option:
    Create a new private site collection
  4. On the “New site collection” page, fill in the form:
    Fill in the form for the new site collection

    1. Give the site a meaningful “Title”, e.g. “MetaShare’s document templates”.
    2. Give the site a meaningful “Web Site Address”, e.g. “/sites/MetaShares-document-templates”.
    3. Under “Select a language”, select the language for the site. If you want your templates to work efficiently with smart document templates, the language should be the same as the default language that all workspaces are created in (currently the default language of the Content Type Hub).
    4. Under “Select a template” choose “Team site (classic experience)”
    5. Select your “Time Zone”.
    6. Define an “Administrator” for the site collection.
    7. Click on the “Finish” button.
  5. Once the site collection is created, open the site collection.
  6. Click on the “Settings” icon on the top right-hand side of the page and select “Site settings”:
    Link to "Site settings"
  7. Beneath the “Users and Permissions” section, click on the “People and groups” link:
    Link to "People and groups"
  8. In the left navigation, click on the site’s visitor’s group:
    The site's visitor's group
  9. Click on the “New” function and then select “Add Users”:
    Select "Add Users"
  10. Add a meaningful group for all of the users that in MetaShare are to be able to create documents based on document templates:
    Add users to the group
    Unmark the check-box “Send an email invitation”.
  11. Do step 11-13 again but this time for the Owners’ group, where you add all users that are to be able to manage the templates (upload new templates, edit templates, delete templates and add document metadata to the library (in order to create smart document templates)).

2 – How to add document columns to the templates’ library

In order to create smart document templates, the document library needs to have the columns that should be added to the templates. A prerequisite, as mentioned above, is that the document template’s site is not based on a modern site template, as these sites do not yet subscribe to content types. If the templates are located in a MetaShare workspace this step is not needed, as MetaShare automatically adds metadata to the document library.

  1. Open the document library’s settings by clicking on “Site contents” on the left navigation, then clicking on the ellipsis (three vertical dots) and selecting the “Settings” option:
    Open the document library's settings
  2. Under the “Columns” section, click on the “Add from existing columns” link:
    Link to "Add from existing columns"
  3. To make it easier to select the applicable columns to add, select the applicable site column group. Select the applicable columns, click on the “Add” button and then on the form’s “OK” button.
    Add columns from existing site columns

3 – How to define the path to the document templates, in MetaShare

  1. Once the document template library has been created, copy the path to the document library and paste it into the “Document template library” field in MetaShare’s general settings:
    The "Document template library" field in MetaShare’s general settings
  2. Add meaningful templates to the document template library.
  3. A “New” function will now be visible in the toolbar inside workspaces, displaying all templates in the document template library. Click it to create documents

4 – How to define the path to the document templates, in the Office applications (optional)

The templates that are uploaded to MetaShare’s document template library can also be made available from Office applications (Word, Excel and PowerPoint), if users are to be given the flexibility to create documents from there as well. This needs to be done per application and preferably done by group policies. The manual procedure is:

  1. From your Office application (applicable for Word, Excel and PowerPoint), click on the application’s “File” tab and then on “Options”, in the bottom of the left navigation.
  2. Select the “Save” section and in the “Default personal templates location” fill in the document library’s WebDAV address:
    The "Default personal templates location"
    The WebDAV address for for a library is written in this format:

    \\[tenant's-name][email protected]\DavWWWRoot\sites\[site's-address]\[library's-address]

    For this url:

    https://contoso.sharepoint.com/sites/MetaShares-Document-Templates/Documents

    The WebDAV address will be:

    \\[email protected]\DavWWWRoot\sites\MetaShares-Document-Templates\Documents
  3. Users will unfortunately not be prompted for authentication when using a WebDAV interface. To enforce SSO to WebDAV you have to modify the computer’s registry by following the instructions on this page.
  4. Your MetaShare templates will now be shown in Office, when you click on the application’s “File” tab, the “New” option on the left navigation and the the “Personal” tab.
    The MetaShare templates are shown in Office
    Note that in Word and in Excel, all Word and Excel files that have been uploaded to the templates library will be shown under the “Personal” templates tab. In PowerPoint you will however just see the PowerPoint files that are saves as template-files.