When following a document leads to heartache

Ok, here’s one I ran into today…


Users are trying to Follow Documents in a SharePoint 2013 Site Collection.  (To learn all about following documents, go here: http://office.microsoft.com/en-001/office365-sharepoint-online-enterprise-help/follow-documents-to-track-them-HA102785928.aspx).  The problem is, our particular web application is not linked to the User Profile Service Application (removed from that proxy) because we are using this web application to share with external users and we don’t want any mix-ups between profiles, social, etc.  This is a “dropbox (barf)” kinda thang.

Clicking on this..



or this…



Results in this…


And this (blech)…

UserProfileApplicationNotAvailableException_Logging :: UserProfileApplicationProxy.GetRawPartitionID has null proxy



So What

Well.  It’s confusing to users that if you provide the ability to Follow a Document in the interface, you should let that happen … or take that function away.  Fair enough. In our case, we have no option but to remove that confusing functionality when there is no underlying plumbing to support it.

Now What

Turning off following is really easy. It is a site (web) scoped feature you can simply deactivate.

Go to Site settings, Choose Manage Site Features under “Site Actions” and then deactivate the “Following Content” feature.


And now your Follow Action will be gone.