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Consider the following scenario:
In a Windows SharePoint Service 3.0 site, you use a SharePoint list that has lookup columns. These lookup columns display content from another document library.
You have more than 1000 items in the SharePoint list, and each of these list items has unique permissions.
When the SharePoint list item count exceeds 1000 items, the lookup columns in the list do not retrieve data from the document library. Instead, they return empty fields.
To resolve this issue, apply the following update:
971065 Description of the Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 hotfix package (Sts.msp): May 13, 2009
To work around this issue, reset the permissions on list items to make them inherit permissions from the list root (parent). Also, make sure that the total count of list items that have unique permissions does not exceed 1000.
Microsoft has confirmed that this is a problem in the Microsoft products that are listed in the "Applies to" section.