Help in Migrations – Automatically add metadata via defaults in a folder

Hello – Here’s a feature that I had no idea existed until just recently.  Say you have a bunch of content that needs to move over to SharePoint 2010, and it resides in either MOSS 2007, or in a share drive folder.  Unfortunately, you can’t assign metadata “en masse” as you upload the content, nor change the content type, unless you have a product like Concept Searching. You’re left with the option of uploading the documents, and then editing each document to change the content type and the metadata, or, ask the users to do this after the upgrade. Turns out there’s another way… I’ll preface this with the idea that you have a lot of documents to upload.  Probably not worth it for just a few docs. 

I’ll use an HR document content type as an example of how to auto-assign the metadata and content type on upload.

First, you’ll need to get your metadata and content types all set up on the target SP2010 system.  Then add those content types to the appropriate library.

Second, organize your content into folders (or mark it, sort it, or otherwise organize it) on the source drive or library, which will correspond to the content types they will be put into when they reach the target library. These folders would also need to be further broken out by metadata categories.  For instance, if you have a “HR Benefit” document content type, then those might be organized into folders of “dental”, “health”, “401k”, “vacation”, etc., assuming these documents have a field called “benefit type” in the content type.

Third, on the SP2010 side, change your default document content type to “HR Benefit” in the library settings.  This will force it to assign this content type as the default when you upload.

Fourth, create folders in the SP2010 target library that correspond to the metadata categories that you created on the source side (they don’t have to be exactly named the same, just be sure you know what source goes into what folder). For my example, I’m creating “dental”, “health”, “401k”, “vacation”, etc.  You might also want to turn off approvals requirements, as your uploading a lot of docs and don’t want to send out (potentially) dozens of approval emails.

Now for the interesting part – for our fifth step, we will assign default metadata values for our folders.  You do this by going to the target library’s settings, and clicking on the link “Column default value settings” in the general settings area.


In the page that comes up, click on each folder, and then on the relevant column (in this case benefits).  For your default, set the value to the appropriate text (dental in the example below). The folder icon in this screen will change to a folder with a little green gear.


Now for the sixth and final step, upload your documents folder by folder into your folders that have the default(s) set. Your documents will have the metadata set for what you put as the default for each folder, and your content type is set by what you set in the library settings as the default content type. That’s it!  You can move around these docs and remove the folders once you’re done migrating, the value saved with the document will remain.

One Response

  1. 1. High quality protective gear for your protection September 24, 2012

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