Office Desktop Co-editing is currently in limited availability

Find answers to frequently asked questions about the improvements with Editing and Co-Editing with Microsoft Office Integration.

Co-editing with Microsoft Office Integration connects Egnyte to Office 365 to allow multiple users to edit a document simultaneously using the Office desktop software. The collaborative editing can be used only with Microsoft Word™ (*.docx), Excel (*.xlsx, *.xlsm), and PowerPoint (*.pptx) documents. 

 

Overview articles

Introducing "App Control Center" for Admins

Configuring Co-editing with Microsoft Office Integration for Admins

Co-editing with Microsoft Office Integration for Users

FAQs regarding One-click collaborative editing with MS Office Online & Google WorkSpace Applications

 

FAQs

Is Collaborative Authoring available for everyone?

Yes, it's available for all plans and open for everyone to set up and add.  MS Office is the integration name, and your Egnyte admin will be able to add a domain by visiting the Apps & Integrations page.

 

Which Egnyte clients are supported?

These changes are available on Egnyte Web UI, Egnyte Desktop App (Windows & Mac), Egnyte for iOS (iPhone and iPad), and Egnyte for Android (Smartphone and Tablet). 

 

Is co-editing supported for Hybrid connected users?

For Hybrid connected users, co-editing is supported when connected to Turbo 2.7.0 or higher

 

Do these changes work with older versions of Microsoft 365? 

  • Microsoft Office 365 Tenant and Office Business license, including SharePoint Online. 
  • End-users must have an Office 365 account that includes Office Client application licenses (Business, Business Premium, E3, E4, or E5).
  • Egnyte user email address must be the same as the email used in Azure AD for permission mappings.

Microsoft Home and Student editions for Office 365 are not supported for co-editing with Microsoft Office (Desktop) as they are intended for consumer usage and don't have a SharePoint license. Please contact us at support@egnyte.com if you have any questions about compatibility. 

 

Why do I get a "Lock" or "Read-only" message when I try to open a document with Microsoft Office (Desktop)?

If you encounter either message during a co-edit session, here are a few scenarios to verify:

  • The file can be locked by another user, or if you locked the file while another user is attempting to access it for co-editing, then the previous co-editing session may not have closed properly.
  • You may not have the proper permissions to access the file within Microsoft.
  • The version of your Office desktop application may not support co-editing.  This is more prevalent for Excel as you will need to be on the Microsoft 365 subscription version to support co-editing.  For more details regarding Excel, please click here.

Why should I use Microsoft Office vs. Microsoft Office Online? What are the differences? 

Microsoft Office co-editing allows you to use desktop Office applications. Microsoft Office Online, on the other hand, is limited to web browser-based Office applications.

Browser-based Office applications typically do not support the same set of features and functionality as desktop applications. For example, Microsoft Office supports large files (200 MB in XLSx, vs. 5 MB), advanced functions, and macros, while the Online version doesn't support the functions. If your users are working across different machines they should use Microsoft Office Online. If users would like a more native desktop experience, they can choose to work on Microsoft Office Desktop integration.

 

What level of permissions are needed to enable the Microsoft Office integration? 

An admin needs to do the one-time setup by going through Apps & Integrations in the appropriate editing application by clicking "Start Configure" and follow the wizard. We have two different flows supported. 

  1. Automatic flow - Requires Global admin and Cloud Application admin privileges for O365. 
  2. Manual flow -  Requires only Cloud Application admin privileges and full permissions for the existing SharePoint site, which we will use for the integration. 

Once the configuration is completed, the admin needs to choose the appropriate setting to enable this integration for the user's domain by choosing one of the three options: Added for groups, Allowed for users, and Add for all users. We recommend Add for all users

 

Why am I not seeing the "Co-Edit" button in Web UI?

The "Co-Edit" button in line with the list view is shown so users can have one-click access to their favorite or access to the default co-editing app. 

Please ensure that the following pre-requisites have been completed:

  1. You must have one of the available editing applications. For example, Microsoft Office or Microsoft Office Online configured and enabled by your admin and added to your Egnyte account at the domain level. 
  2. If you have multiple co-editing applications added to your Egnyte account, your admin needs to set a default app. To do so, ask your admin to go to the App Control Center and toggle to turn on one application as a "default" for you to see the "Co-edit" button in the list view.
  3. The co-edit button is only shown for the supported file extensions (.docx, .pptx, .xlsx, .xlsm) for Microsoft Office Integration. For Microsoft Office online, the co-editing button is shown for supported file extensions only.

If you only have one co-editing application (Microsoft Office Online or Microsoft Office Desktop), the enabled application is automatically marked as the default co-editing app for you.


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Why am I not seeing the "Co-Edit" button in the Mobile app?

The "Co-Edit" button is shown so users can have one-click access to their favorite or access to the default co-editing app.  Please ensure that the following pre-requisites have been completed:

  1. You must have Microsoft Office for Mobile configured and enabled by your admin and added to your Egnyte account at the domain level. 
  2. You need to have the latest Egnyte App installed on your device.
  3. The co-edit button is only shown for the supported file extensions. 
  4. You need to have the latest Microsoft Apps (Word, Excel, Office, etc.) installed. 

Are there any size limits?

Microsoft Office Integration on Web UI, Desktop, and Mobile has the following limits:  

MS Word - DOCx 200 MB
MS PowerPoint - PPTx 200 MB
MS Excel - XLSx 200 MB
MS Excel - XLSm 200 MB

Microsoft also indicates that co-authoring is designed to work for small teams of about 5-10 users. However, our testing has shown that the performance of co-authoring varies with the number of users and the size of the document. 

Co-authoring performs better with smaller files, for example, MS Word (less than 100 pages) and small teams (5-10 authors). However, if you are authoring very large files changes can lag when saving changes to Office and into Egnyte. 

 

Does this integration work with the older Microsoft Office file formats? 

For Microsoft, only modern formats  .docx, .pptx, .xlsx, .xlsm file are supported. You can't co-author with Office 2007 or earlier format, .rtf, or other formats. In most cases, you can save the unsupported file format in the supported format first within current versions of Word, Excel, or PowerPoint. For Excel, if your file isn’t in this format, open the file and then click File > Save As > Browse > Save as type. Change the format to Excel Workbook (*.xlsx).

Collaborative editing on Microsoft Apps does not support older Microsoft file formats. To collaborate on those files on mobile, you need to change their format on the Desktop App.

 

How can I be sure that the latest changes are saved?

  1. Ensure Auto-SAVE is on, so you are not working on a local copy.
  2. Microsoft Office for Desktop displays the save status indicated in the top status bar.  If the status bar reads Saved or Saved to <HOST NAME>, the edits have successfully made it to the server. However, if the status bar reads Saving…or Working…, then the edits have not yet been sent to the server and may be lost if the browser is closed or if you navigate away from the Office Online application. Do not close the laptop lid, log out, shut down, or put the machine to sleep during a Saving or Working status to ensure that your changes are saved. 
  3. When saving back to Egnyte, there will be a small delay when the file is saved in the new version, which can be up to two minutes or longer in the case of large files. This is because Egnyte for Office for Desktop applications sends edits to SharePoint as often as possible. However, this process is not instantaneous and can be influenced by many factors, including network latency, internet performance, and file size. 

 

How is version control handled?

It will be the same as a collaboration platform. The version pruning algorithm can prune intermediate (not the latest) versions of the same file created from the same device by the same user within a short period of time (about 10 min) - see more details on this helpdesk guide Version Pruning.

When you end the co-editing session after all the contributors have completed their edits and have closed the file on their desktop, we will remove that version from the SharePoint side. That temporary version where it's being saved as people collaborate will then be removed from that server. The purpose is to remove access to multiple different versions and avoid end-user confusion. 

 

How is track change information handled?

Track changes are when the user can hover over the tracked changes to see which user made the change. They will also see an avatar(s) of the user on the right side and who joined and works with them on the document in real-time.

This is Microsoft native functionality, and at this time, integration doesn't play any role. Therefore, you would see some changes depends on what Microsoft O365 product you are using. If changes are not seen, check if you have "Track Changes on" in the Office Document. 

Microsoft Word 2016 and 2019 can both work with Office 365, but the functionality of 2016 and 2019 will be different. Typically, a later version will have better functionality and features (e.g. auto-save may not be available or as good in earlier versions of Microsoft Word), so we recommend using the latest Office suite and ensuring that you have all patches applied by your IT department.

 

Can all collaborators see other users and their work in documentation? 

Yes, all collaborators can see other users' changes, which happens dynamically if auto-save is on.

 

Can users share documents using the Office "Share" native button?  

They can, but we do not recommend it as a best practice.  We provide a guide in the setup guide wizard to restrict it on SharePoint.  Egnyte will capture audit trails and information if you use Egnyte's share and direct share features.  

 

Can co-editing with Microsoft Office be disabled?

MS office integration, like all other Egnyte integrations, is not set up by default for your domain. Admins can disable "added for all users" settings. However, keep in mind that if you enabled Microsoft Office and collaboration is in progress, those changes are saved back to Egnyte before you remove the setup.