Review and track workbooks on a PowerPivot Gallery by using SharePoint approval workflows


Applies to: SharePoint Server 2010

You can use Microsoft SQL Server 2008 R2 PowerPivot for Microsoft SharePoint 2010 and PowerPivot for Excel 2010 to generate Approval workflows that can track PowerPivot workbooks when they are published to a PowerPivot gallery.

This article assumes that you have PowerPivot for SharePoint 2010 and PowerPivot for Excel 2010 installed and are using a PowerPivot Gallery on your PowerPivot for SharePoint site. If you do not have PowerPivot for SharePoint 2010 installed or do not have a PowerPivot Gallery created on your deployment of SharePoint Server 2010, see the following Microsoft TechNet articles:

The PowerPivot Gallery in PowerPivot for SharePoint 2010 is a document library and, as such, Approval workflows can be managed in this gallery. You must be a member of either the SharePoint Server Administrators group or the Owners SharePoint Server group on the PowerPivot site to use the procedures in this article.

Build Approval workflows with SharePoint Server 2010

SharePoint Server 2010 provides several workflow templates that you can use to build and upload to a document library; in this article we use a PowerPivot Gallery as the document library. We also use the Approval - SharePoint 2010 workflow template in this article. First you must enable workflows on the top level of the site collection where your PowerPivot Gallery is located in your SharePoint Server 2010. Next, you must add the Approval - SharePoint 2010 workflow to the gallery. When you are finished, any new PowerPivot workbooks that you save to your gallery also have an attached Approval workflow. That way, either your organization's IT department or your team manager can review each workbook.

To activate workflows for a site collection

  1. Open the top level of the site collection that hosts your PowerPivot Gallery in SharePoint Server 2010.

  2. On the top level of the site collection, on the Site Actions menu, click Site Settings.

  3. On the Site Settings page, in the Site Collection Administration section, click Site collection features.

  4. On the Features page, click Activate next to the workflow feature that you want to activate.

    The Status column displays Active when that feature is activated.

To add the "Approval - SharePoint 2010" workflow to the PowerPivot Gallery

  1. On the PowerPivot Gallery site, on the Library Tools tab, click Library.

  2. In the Settings group, click Workflow Settings, and then click Add a workflow.

  3. On the Add a Workflow page, in the Workflow section, select the workflow template that you want to associate with the PowerPivot Gallery. In this instance, we select the Approval - SharePoint 2010 template.

  4. In the Name section, type a name for this workflow, for example PowerPivot approval.

  5. In the Task List section, select New task list, or if you have an existing task list, you can select that.

  6. In the History List section, select New history list, or if you have an existing history list, you can select that.

  7. In the Start Options section, click the option that you want to use to start this workflow. In this instance we want the workflow to start when a new PowerPivot workbook is published on the gallery. Therefore we select the Start this workflow when a new item is created option.

  8. When you finish setting up the workflow, click Next.

    On the Customize Workflow page, you can assign workflow approvers, specify how tasks are routed, select the due date, and specify how long the workflow is active. The only required setting on this page is the Approvers section where you assign the workflow to a person or group. The rest of the settings are optional for this scenario.

  9. In the Approvers section, type the names of the people or groups to whom the workflow will assign tasks, and also select the order in which those tasks are assigned, if it is needed.

    As previously mentioned, the remaining sections on this page are optional for this scenario. If you have to customize the Approval workflows for your PowerPivot Gallery site and need more information, see Use an Approval workflow (


    On the Customize Workflow page, you can use the CC option to notify specific people when the workflow starts and ends, without assigning tasks to them. If you design custom workflows with either Microsoft SharePoint Designer 2010 or Microsoft Visio Premium 2010 you can set the workflow to send e-mail messages to appropriate people anywhere in the workflow cycle. See Use the task process editor for approval workflows (, Roadmap: Design and publish a SharePoint workflow with Visio 2010 and SharePoint Designer 2010 (, and Create, import, and export SharePoint workflows in Visio ( for more information.

  10. Click Save when you are finished with your Approval workflow.

  11. On the Workflows page, all of the PowerPivot Gallery workflows are listed and show the total instances for each workflow that are in progress. Here, you can add new workflows, remove workflows, or view workflow reports for the PowerPivot Gallery.

Now, when a new workbook or document is uploaded, published, or saved to your PowerPivot Gallery, the PowerPivot Approval workflow is started.

To view the PowerPivot Gallery workbooks

  1. On the PowerPivot Gallery site, in the Lists section, click Tasks. The All Tasks page displays all of the workflows that are attached to the PowerPivot workbooks that are published on the PowerPivot Gallery.

  2. On the PowerPivot Gallery site, you can display all of the workbooks that are published in a detailed list. In the Library Tools section, click Library, and then in the Current View section, click Gallery, which is the default view, and then select All Documents from the drop-down list.

  3. In the All Documents view, point to a workbook in this list and click the arrow that appears, and then click Workflows. This page displays the workflows that are started for this workbook.

See Also

Other Resources

Resource Center: Workflows in SharePoint Server 2010