Doucument version and access control

gwa60060 used Ask the Experts™
I need the ability to have users create documents (Word, Excel, PDFs) and place them in a directory.  At that point is needs to become a read-only document. If the document needs to be modified, it needs to be edited and saved with a name that distinguishes it as a revision to the original, then it becomes read-only etc..

CAn this be done with Windows OS or does it require special software. If so, any recommendations ??
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Top Expert 2014


You have shadow copy but you can't have multiple name for each copy :



Shadow copy are more for restoring documents to a previous version. I need ALL the old versions available at all times. I need to be able to document the changes to the versions over time.

Your question was posted to MS SharePoint, so I presume you have access to that.  If not, then you might want to consider using it.
Document versioning is a major reason to use SharePoint to store documents.  In your document library settings, you can turn versioning on.  You can choose to save Major and Minor versions, and you can trim the version history if you want, so that only a certain number are kept.
There are tons of other advantages to using SharePoint this way, including the ability to enforce checkout/checkin procedures, workflows and a much better search mechanism than the filesystem.  And your Office applications can save directly to SharePoint.
The approach you describe is unnecessary if you''re using SharePoint.  Windows SharePoint Services is free with your Windows 2003 OS license.  That's the way I'd go.  If your company is very small, you can whip out a SharePoint installation in a few minutes.  But there are some tricks to managing it, in particular backing up the database.  If you already have SQL Server, you should already have a maintenance plan for backups.
Mike Sharp
By the way, using this approach means instead of having a bunch of documents with similar names like:
Project Plan 10-23-2009.doc
Project Plan - Mike changes.doc
Project Plan_2009-10-23.doc
You simply have ONE document, called "Project Plan.doc".  And you have every version safely available to review.  And you always know what is the most current version.  With the three documents in this example, you don't really know for sure which one is the most recent, except hopefully by the file date.  But as documents get passed around via email, you will never really know for sure.

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