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SharePoint Online Workflow Cannot Be Edited in SharePoint Designer 2010

Earlier this month I ran into a couple major issues with a client’s SharePoint Online (Office 365) site.

First, one of their custom sandbox applications stopped working. It wasn’t a great application, so we removed it and everything worked properly again.

At the same time, we suddenly weren’t able to edit workflows on their site. When you try to open the workflow in SharePoint Designer 2010, it times out. You can open / edit the rest of the site with no problems.

After going back and forth with Microsoft support over the course of two weeks (this was the most disappointing experience with their support so far), they offered a solution as outlined here. Needless to say, I was VERY unimpressed. After significant … badgering of the support person he admitted that the latest upgrade to SharePoint Online, which is currently rolling out across all sites, upgrades parts of the back-end to 2013.  This process will break some sandboxed applications and force the editing of parts of the site in SharePoint Designer 2013.

There’s a long list of issues after having the upgrade installed on your site. See this article for more information.

Microsoft has done an abysmal job of informing users of the ramifications of this upgrade. If, like me, this has been a major issue for you, please provide them feedback here.

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