Accessing Office 365 Group Hidden SharePoint Site Collection

Recently, one of my happy users of Office 365 Group published Access Web App using Access 2016 to their Office 365 Group. Instead of using SharePoint site link, an office 365 Group link was used and the app was up and running!

So I hear you say…”Sure SharePoint does that and behind the scenes for each and every Office 365 Group there is a SharePoint site collection”.

The issue here was:

  • how do you access this hidden site collection?
  • how do you delete this access web app from the Office 365 Group?

Well here’s how to!

Looking at the Office 365 Group Settings (screenshot below) and aside from Library Settings, all the other menu options listed (Site contents, Site Settings) within SharePoint settings redirect to the files page (i.e. Shared Document Library of this Office 365 Group).

3 menu options

In particular, I was interested to locate the Access Web App in site contents page so it can be deleted as this is not supported by Microsoft. Though the user was able to publish Access Web App in the first place but that’s the issue to resolve for another day!

I fired up the SharePoint Designer to check if Access Web App was present but nothing was there!

8 no access in SP designer

So in order to access the hidden settings you need to get around the redirect, by adding query string parameter for Office 365 Group SharePoint Settings menu options URL with ?noredirect=true

We can now access the Office 365 Group (you need to be an O365 Group Owner) Site Contents page by accessing the URL:
<O365tenant.sharepoint.com/sites/<o365GroupName>/_layouts/15/viewlsts.aspx?noredirect=true

4 site contents

However, it turns out after accessing the site contents page and as a Office 365 Group owner you cannot access its settings nor remove from the group. So for this you need to open a ticket with Microsoft who can delete this from their end.

7 cannotdelete access

Upon exploring further you can access other useful Office 365 Group settings. I’ve made it easy for you to access various settings. I found the storage metric useful to monitor capacity as the only document library exists in Office 365 Group is where all files reside.

CAUTION: I DO NOT RECOMMEND TO CHANGE ANY SETINGS WITHIN THE FOLLOWING SETTINGS.

Office 365 Group SharePoint Settings without redirection
Site Contents – <O365tenant.sharepoint.com/sites/<o365GroupName>/_layouts/15/viewlsts.aspx?noredirect=true
Site Settings – <O365tenant.sharepoint.com/sites/<o365GroupName>/_layouts/15/settings.aspx?noredirect=true
Storage Metrics – <O365tenant.sharepoint.com/sites/<o365GroupName>/_layouts/15/storman.aspx?noredirect=true
Audit Settings – <O365tenant.sharepoint.com/sites/<o365GroupName>/_layouts/15/auditsettings.aspx?noredirect=true
Site Collection Features – <O365tenant.sharepoint.com/sites/<o365GroupName>/_layouts/15/ManageFeatures.aspx?Scope=Site&noredirect=true
Site Features – <O365tenant.sharepoint.com/sites/<o365GroupName>/_layouts/15/ManageFeatures.aspx?noredirect=true

Hope you found this post useful and helps you troubleshoot any issues you may get.

Chirag.

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Posted in Issue, Office 365

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