But sometimes you have to change the name of your organizational unit or your product portfolio, and that may have repercussions for your content.
To avoid unpleasant surprises, I have made a list of what you can change, how to do it, and what happens – good or bad. I will change my example “Drinks” business into a “Beverages” business, and the product categories will change as well.
- Clear Softdrinks will now be “Clear Beverages”
- Dairy Drinks will now be “Dairy-based Beverages”
- Juice Beverages will now be “Juice-based Beverages”
This post deals with changes in
- Site name /URL
- List or Library name/URL
- View name/URL
This is my “Drinks Business” site (URL: /Drinks) and the main library before the change:
The columns “Business” and “Drinks Type” are a Choice field and a Lookup field, respectively. This is the position of the site in my site collection:
Now, let’s make those changes!
How: Gear wheel top right > Site Settings > Look and feel > Title, description and logo. Overwrite the title with the new one and click OK.
- The new site name is displayed on all places, such as top left of site, Navigation, site map web parts etc.
- The old name still appears on my Office365 > “Sites I’m following” page.
- The site has a new position in Site Contents > Subsites (sorted alphabetically) or Navigation (if you use structural navigation)
How: Gear wheel top right > Site Settings > Look and feel > Title, description and logo. It depends on your permissions if you see this option.
Replace the last part of the URL with the new URL and click OK. (Please do not use spaces because you will end up with “%20” in the URL)
- All content in the site will get a new URL
- Content accessed via My Favourites, Navigation, links lists, emails, buttons or other places where you have used the old URL will display a “page cannot be found” error when clicked.
- The site is shown on my Office365 > “Sites I’m following” page, but it uses the old URL so I can no longer access the page. (I can do it from the “Subsites” list though)
Oh dear, this is a serious change! Please do this only:
- When you have not yet launched your site to a large audience
- If the site is for a small, manageable audience (e.g. your project team or department team)
- If you are prepared to spend effort on redirecting people
- If the old URL can no longer be used for legal or other reasons
- For any other reason as long as you are aware of the consequences
I have reversed this change because I want to access this site from the “Sites I’m following” page.
2. LIST OR LIBRARY
How: Click “Library” tab > click Library settings from the ribbon > List name description and navigation. Replace the name with the new one and click Save.
- New position in Site Contents (this is sorted alphabetically)
- Changed name in standard site navigation
- New position in standard navigation, when you have sorted automatically on title
- Webpart titles, UNLESS you have edited the webpart title manually under Appearance earlier; in that case the title stays as is. (Interesting, but rather strange, behavior, which I will try to unravel)
- If a list is used as a Lookup List for a document library, the name change will automatically be adjusted in the library.
How: Click “Library” tab > click “Open in Explorer” in the ribbon.
Click the site name in the browser and you will see all libraries and lists displayed as folders. Then change the name of the “Documents” folder. (Please do not use spaces)
How: You can not do this from the list, so you have to follow instructions for changing the URL of a library. Click on “Lists” instead of the document library name and then all lists open up. Change the name of the list you want to change. (Please do not use spaces)
- All Links to the library or list and their content, accessed via My Favourites, Navigation, Links lists, emails, buttons or other places where you have used the old URL, will display a “page cannot be found” error.
- Sometimes, the list name will change with the URL. I think this happens when you have not edited the name or URL before. (Strange!)
- If a list is used as a Lookup List for a document library, the URL change will automatically be adjusted in the library.
3. LIST AND LIBRARY VIEWS
On top of the library you will see the Views in alphabetical order (and the Default View first). Please scroll up for the first screenshot and you will see Dairy, Juice and, if you click on the …, there’s Soft.
1. On List/Library, select List/Library from the ribbon, and open Modify View in the ribbon OR 2. Click on … behind the views and click “Modify View”.
Replace the View name and click OK .
- New position in Views (sorted alphabetically)
How: On List/Library, select List/Library from the ribbon, and open Modify View in the ribbon. Replace the View URL and click OK. (Please do not use spaces) What happens?
- All Links to the views, accessed via My Favourites, Navigation, Links lists, emails, buttons or other places where you have used the old URL, will display a “page cannot be found” error.
- In a list, links or buttons that open a new entry form, and go back to another than the default view after entry, will display an error (although the data will be saved – the New Item part is correct; but the Source link is no longer correct). If you open a new form directly from the list, no problems will occur.
That is enough for today. Next time, I will show what happens if you change other elements in your site.
The title of this post is inspired by David Bowie’s “Changes”.