Using a Document Workspace

Using a Document Workspace

If your organization is running a collaboration site built with SharePoint products and technologies, you and your colleagues can develop a presentation from within a document workspace. The document workspace provides a forum in which multiple people in different locations can work on a single presentation. The presentation can be checked out by any site member. While the presentation is checked out, other people can view it but they cannot edit it. After the presentation is declared final, you can move it to a more permanent storage location, and delete the document workspace.

You can publish the presentation to a document workspace from within PowerPoint. The process of publishing creates the workspace and stores a copy of the presentation there so that other people can work on it. When you open the presentation stored on your computer, PowerPoint asks whether you want to download updates from the document workspace and provides a Document Management task pane with tools that enable you to keep your copy synchronized with the copy stored in the document workspace.


You can upload the presentation to a document library on the SharePoint site. You and your colleagues can then work with the presentation in its workspace and publish the final version back to the original copy in the document library. Working with presentations from within a SharePoint site is beyond the scope of this book. For information, refer to Microsoft Windows SharePoint Services Step by Step (ISBN 0-7356-2075-X) by Olga Londer, Todd Bleeker, Penelope Coventry, and James Edelen (Microsoft Press, 2005).

In this exercise, we demonstrate how to publish a presentation to a document workspace, explore the Document Management task pane, view the document workspace, and then delete it. There are no practice files for this exercise.


This exercise is provided for demonstration purposes. To follow the steps, you need access to a SharePoint site, and you need to have the user name and password for the SharePoint site available. The steps assume that you have access to a site created with Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007. If you have access to a site created with a different version of SharePoint, the steps will be different.

Open the presentation for which you want to create a document workspace.

Click the Microsoft Office Button, point to Publish, and then in the Distribute the document to other people pane, click Create Document Workspace.

Microsoft Office Button

The Document Management task pane opens, with the name of the presentation in the Document Workspace Name box.

In the Location for new workspace box, type the URL of the site where you want to create the document workspace (or if you've previously connected to the site, select it from the list). Then click Create.


A message might appear saying that the URL you have typed is a restricted or non-trusted site. If you trust the site, open your Web browser and add the URL to your list of trusted sites. Then click Create again.

PowerPoint displays a couple of message boxes to report its progress.

If you are asked to supply your user name and password to connect to the site, enter your SharePoint site credentials in the User name and Password boxes, and then click OK.

When the document workspace is created and the presentation has been saved in the space, the Document Management task pane reappears with the name of the workspace at the top and five tabs that show information from the workspace. From this task pane, you can do the following:

  • You can download changes that have been made to the copy of the presentation stored in the workspace by clicking Get Updates at the bottom of the task pane.

  • You can set options associated with the site by clicking Options.

  • You can click the Members tab to display the members of this workspace (currently just you). To add a new member, click Add New Members below the list box, and then complete the Add New Member dialog box. You can also send an e-mail message directly to members from the task pane.

  • You can click the Tasks tab to display a list of outstanding tasks associated with the presentation. To add a new task, click Add New Task below the list box. If you click Alert Me About Tasks, you are taken to the New Alert page of the document workspace, where you can specify that you want to be alerted when the tasks associated with the presentation change.


    If your organization uses workflow technology and a workflow has been set up for this presentation, you can click View Workflow Tasks to get information about your tasks.

  • You can click the Documents tab to display a list of all presentations in this work-space (currently just the active presentation). To add a new presentation, click Add New Document below the list box. To create a new folder in which to store presentations, click Add New Folder. To be alerted when presentations are added or changed, click Alert Me About Documents.

  • You can click the Links tab to display a list of links to auxiliary materials associated with the presentation. To add a new link, click Add New Link below the list box, and to be alerted when links are added or changed, click Alert Me About Links.

  • You can open the document workspace in your Web browser by clicking Open Site In Browser below the workspace name at the top of the task pane. (You might have to enter your site credentials.) Any members, tasks, presentations, and links you add while the workspace is displayed in your Web browser will be reflected in the Document Management task pane in PowerPoint.

To delete a document workspace:

At the top of the Document Management task pane, point to the name of the workspace, and then click the arrow that appears.

A list of workspace commands appears.

In the list, click Delete Workspace, and then click Yes to confirm the deletion.

Sending a Presentation as an E-Mail Message Attachment

At any time while you are developing a presentation, you can send it to other people for review. Each reviewer makes changes and adds comments in his or her copy of the presentation and then sends the copy back to you. You can then look through each copy and transfer changes and comments to the original.

You can send the presentation as an e-mail attachment from within PowerPoint by clicking the Microsoft Office Button, pointing to Send, and then clicking E-mail. A message window opens in which the presentation is already listed as an attachment. To send the presentation, you simply enter the recipients' e-mail addresses and click Send.

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