Create an alert to get notified when a file or folder changes in SharePoint

Create an alert to get notified when a file or folder changes in SharePoint

To stay updated when your Microsoft SharePoint documents or items on your site change, create alerts. You can set up an alert for a list, library, folder, file, or list item. For example, you can set up an alert for a specific folder in a library, without receiving alerts when changes occur in the rest of the library.

Another way of getting notifications for file or list item changes is to use Power Automate with the SharePoint connector.

Get alerts on item changes in SharePoint

You can get an alert whenever a file, link, or folder is changed in a SharePoint document library. Depending on the item (file, folder, link), you may see different options when you set an alert.

  1. Go to the list or library.

  2. Select the file, link, or folder for which you want to get an alert.

  3. From the list of options for the list or library, select the ... (ellipses), and then select Alert Me.

  4. In the Alert me when items change dialog, select and change the options you want. 

  5. To save, select OK.

Get alerts on all changes in a document library in SharePoint

  1. Go to the list or library and make sure no items are selected.

  2. From the list of options for the list or library, select the ... (ellipses), and then select Alert Me.

  3. In the Alert me when items change dialog, change or fill in the options you want.

  4. Select OK.

Cancel alerts in SharePoint

  1. To view your alerts from a page on the site, from the list of options for the list or library, select the ... (ellipsis), and then select Manage My Alerts.

    SharePoint Online Manage alerts button highlighted
  2. Select the alert that you want to delete.

  3. Select Delete Selected Alerts.

    My Alerts manager with Delete selected alerts highlighted
  4. To delete, select OK.

See updates without email alerts

If you'd rather not get email, but still want to keep on top of changes in your document libraries, take a look at File activity in a document library.

Important: Before you can receive an alert as an e-mail message, a server admin must configure outgoing e-mail in SharePoint Central Administration. Similarly, before you can receive an alert as a text message, a server admin must enable the SMS/MMS service settings in Central Administration.

Set an alert in SharePoint Server 2019, 2016, 2013, or 2010

  1. Go to the SharePoint library or list where you want to set the alert. If you’re looking at a view of the list or library on another page, you may have to select the title of the list or library first. For example, to go to the Documents library, you may first have to select Documents.

  2. Do one of the following:

    • To set an alert for the entire library or list, select Library or List, then select Alert Me, and then select Set alert on this library.

      Library tab with Set Alert on this library highlighted
    • To set an alert for a document, select the document, select Files or Documents, select Alert Me, and then select Set alert on this document.

      In the Files tab, with Set Alert on this document highlighted
    • To set an alert on a list item, select the item, select the Items tab, select Alert Me, and then select Set alert on this item.

      SharePoint 2016 Set alert on an item with item selected
  3. Select the options you want for the alert. 

Note: The exact names of the tabs and buttons in steps 1 and 2 vary if you are in a specialized library or list, such as a picture library, tasks list, or calendar list. For example, a calendar list has Events and Calendar tabs where you can find Alert Me.

Depending on how your site and servers are set up, the user you created an alert for might receive an email message that confirms that you created an alert. The alert email may provide links to the list or library, alert settings, the name of the user who created the alert, a mobile view, and other information and commands.

Cancel alerts in SharePoint 2016, 2013, or 2010

  1. Go to the SharePoint library or list where you want to set the alert. If you’re looking at a view of the list or library on another page, you may have to first select the title of the list or library. For example, you may have to select Documents first to go to the Documents library.

  2. Select Library or List, select Alert Me, and then select Manage My Alerts.

    SharePoint 2016 Manage alert button highlighted

    Note: The exact names of the tabs vary if you are in a specialized list, such as a tasks list or calendar list. For example, a calendar list has Events and Calendar tabs where you can find Alert Me.

  3. Beside name of the alert that you want to delete, select the checkbox.

  4. Select Delete Selected Alerts, and then select OK.

    My Alerts manager with Delete selected alerts highlighted
  5. Select OK.

Configuring email or SMS services

For info about how to configure outgoing email, or the SMS service, see Configure outgoing email for a SharePoint Server farm or Configure a mobile account (SharePoint Server 2010).

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