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SharePoint How-to: OfficeDocumentConnection

Entry point for Windows SharePoint Services at UVM

Using the Microsoft Document Connection to access SharePoint 

With the release of Mac Office 2008, Microsoft started providing a tool called the "Microsoft Document Connection" to Macintosh users.  This utility can be used to connect to SharePoint document libraries, the Microsoft SkyDrive service, and other WebDAV document reposotories.   The Document Connection is a useful for bulk file upload and download on Mac computers.  For heavy users of SharePoint, the Document Connection can speed operations that are generally cumbersome when carried out in a web browser.  

Because this tool is created by Microsoft, it provides the best-available support for Microsoft's WebDAV protocol implementation, and thus is the best utility that we know for Mac-based bulk management of documents stored in SharePoint.  Previously, we recommended the use of the Mac Finder to access SharePoint document libraries, but we no longer can recommend this access method owing to ongoing incompatibilities between Apple and Microsoft implementations of WebDAV protocol.  Previously recommended third-party WebDAV clients for the Mac (such as "Goliath") have ceased development, and also exhibit incompatibility with SharePoint 2010.

To begin using the Microsoft Document Connection, you must first install Microsoft Office 2008 or Office 2011.  Office is available free of charge to all UVM faculty and staff.  Visit http://www.uvm.edu/it/software/licensing/ees/​ for details.

Once installed, you can launch the Microsoft Document Connection by opening the "Applications" folder in the finder, then expanding "Microsoft Office 2008/2011".  "Microsoft Document Connection" should be located in this folder:

 

After the Document Connection launched, click the "Add Location" icon, and select "Connect to a SharePoint Site...":

 

You will be prompted to enter the Address of a SharePoint site.  You can get the address for your site or site doument library by visiting the site in your browser, then using cut-and-paste to copy the address from your browser URL bar to the Document Connection:

 

You will be prompted to enter a username and password to connect to your SharePoint site.  If desired, you can save these credentials to your Mac Keychain to avoid the need to re-enter your credentials on future connections.  Once you have connected, you will see a list of document libraries in your site in the Document Connection window.  Standard mouse operations are supported in the Document Connection.  You can drag-and-drop documents to and from the Document Connection to upload and download documents to SharePoint.  Note also that the Document Connection has document check out and check in options.  These features allow you to signal to other site users that you are working with a document: