A look at content type hubs in SharePoint Online (Office 365)

For those of you familiar with SharePoint 2010, the content type hub is nothing new to you.  However, in SharePoint Online, the content type hub works a little differently.  The first thing to know is that a content type hub has been set up automatically for you.  You just have to know where to find it.  You can’t get to it from Tenant Administration like you might expect.  Instead, you can find the location by going to the Site Settings page of any site collection and then the Content Type Publishing link.  You will see a screen like the one below which links directly to the content types of a site collection containing your hub.

SPOContentTypePublishing

From here you will learn that your content type hub is located in a site collection named /sites/contentTypeHub.  Clicking on the link from this page will allow you to view the content types in the hub.  One issue I have noticed here though is that only the original Office 365 account creator has access to the site collection.  Accessing it with another user will get you an access denied error message even if you are a global administrator.

SPOContentTypeHubAccessDenied

Unfortunately, you cannot fix this yourself from the tenant administration page because this site collection does not show up on the list.  This means you need to get the person who created the original Office 365 account to go to this site collection and add you as a site collection administrator.  It’s easy to fix but it requires you to involve whomever set up the account to begin with.

Once you get into the content type hub, you can create and publish your desired content types just like you would in SharePoint 2010.  When you publish a content type, you should see it in the other site collections within a few minutes.

SPOContentTypeHub

Working with the content type hub is easy.  Try it out with your account today.  These examples were demonstrated with an E3 account.

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