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SharePoint Service

1. Introduction

Sharepoint Site Front Page Image

SharePoint is a Microsoft technology that allows groups of users to interact and collaborate on documents etc within a secure web site. The service is accessible to all current University members via the Nexus SharePoint login page using your SSO credentials. Any individual, group, department, college or division can request a SharePoint site. Divisions, colleges and departments should have their own Site Collection from which individual sites are created and managed. Individuals are entitled to their own My Site which provides a rich set of social networking features and an area to manage documents, blogs, lists and much more.

All parties using the SharePoint service must adhere to the guidelines in the SharePoint Service Level Description. Failure to follow good governance will result in SharePoint sprawl making the system difficult to both manage and navigate. IT Services has drafted policy to prevent this, and other undesirable management issues. See the documents linked below:

SharePoint Governance document

SharePoint Acceptable Use Policy document

The SharePoint Service now operates Sharepoint 2013 Enterprise after the recent upgrade so documentation provided via the SharePoint site support links ( will cater for 2013 sites, but retain some 2010-specific documents.

Some sites still operate in "2010 mode" but the majority of site collections have now been upgraded. 

2. Why use SharePoint?

SharePoint is an enterprise level 'groupware solution' which provides for the easy creation of Oxford only secure websites suitable for users to share their documents, search for information, collaborate with colleagues, write blogs and collaborate on wikis, etc. Oxford has deployed SharePoint 2013 for use by all sections of the University in their daily work. Once you have a site you can customise it to suit your needs. It could be used to support the administration of the unit, research and development, cross department collaboration or any other type of suitable use.

You can also create your own 'My Site' (referred to in SharePoint 2013 as OneDrive), a personal SharePoint site where you can set your own personal profile, link to colleagues, store links, personal documents, pictures and files of many kinds. It is also possible to share some or all of these documents through your OneDrive using appropriate permissions settings.

3. Accessing SharePoint

The SharePoint home page is: Enter your SSO credentials at the logon page.

The SharePoint home page and support site are accessible to anyone with an Oxford SSO account. To access other sites you need to be given access by the owner. When a site owner gives you access to a site you will receive an email informing you and providing a link to the site. Alternatively, if you know where in the University organisational structure the site sits, you can browse to it from the Site Directory. There is a link to the site directory on the left of the home page. The Site Directory lists all units that have established a SharePoint presence.

4. Obtaining a SharePoint site

Use the flow chart below to identify the type of site you require and how to obtain it. Note that the term 'unit' is used in the sense it is meant in the official University chart: . As in either a college or the body one level down from the division.

How to obtain your site
Figure 1. How to obtain your site


Table 1. Site Request Details:
  We need to know: Your answer
1 Name for your site  
2 URL of the site

[You can specify the part of the URL after /sites/Unit]
3 Name of site owner

[This person will have full administrative rights over the site.]

4 *Does the site have sensitive data that should not be accessible even to the SharePoint Co-ordinator of the unit / college? Yes / No
5 Expected storage requirements over the next year.

[Each unit or college has a storage quota. This information helps with planning quota allocation.]



*Sensitive data
By default the SharePoint Co-ordinator you send this request to will have access to all sites within the unit. If this is not appropriate your site can be set up in its own site collection. However managing your own site collection requires a greater level of SharePoint knowledge. We do not recommend this unless absolutely necessary. This is only applicable to sites that are created under a parent unit or college site.
Useful information

5. Obtaining a SharePoint Mysite (OneDrive for Sharepoint On-Premises)

We receive frequent service requests asking us why a person's MySite (otherwise known as OneDrive for Sharepoint On-Premises) is stuck on "We're almost ready". 

Please note that MySites are NOT created automatically on accessing your Sharepoint User Profile for the first time. MySites are created by us on submission of a support request to with the subject of "Activate MySite for (insert your SSO here)"

Please ensure that somewhere in the request you state the following: 

1) Your name (or the person's name you're requesting a MySite for)

2) The SSO (or the SSO of the user you are requesting a MySite for)

MySite storage is set to 2GB by default and will not be raised beyond this due to the availability of the Nexus 365 OneDrive (which has a 5TB storage capacity and is designed for larger file sharing). 

Note that MySites are not available to external users, temporary users or students at the University. 

5. Help and Support

Help documentation for using SharePoint 2013 is available from the main SharePoint Support site. This site provides documentation on using SharePoint and our recommended best practices. It also contains a wiki and Support Forum where users can ask questions, post answers, chat about the system etc. with other University members (including members of IT Services).

IT Services cannot provide user support that covers all capabilities of SharePoint 2013 but will make best efforts to answer any technical queries. You are encouraged to use the support forums within Nexus SharePoint in order to seek help from experienced users across the University.

The following links will take you to information outlining our support role for SharePoint as well as some useful links to the support area's key items.


Service area: 

Written by IT Services. Latest revision 22 January 2019