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In sharepoint - what's the difference between a "LIST" and a "LIBRARY"?

    Question

  • In sharepoint - what's the difference between a "LIST" and a "LIBRARY"?
    • Edited by Mike Walsh FIN Wednesday, November 03, 2010 4:50 AM ?? removed
    • Moved by Mike Walsh FIN Wednesday, November 03, 2010 4:51 AM general q (From:SharePoint - Design and Customization (pre-SharePoint 2010))
    Wednesday, November 03, 2010 2:56 AM

Answers

  • A list contains items that are collections of fields/properties/columns. Optionally each item can have one or more attachments.

    A library is a list, but but have one and exactly one file associated with each item. A library item also has fields/properties/columns.

    Another way to say this is that a list item has a focus on "text" stored in fields/properties/columns, while a library has a focus on a single document.

     

    When writing custom code, a list and a library look, and are processed the same, so both internally are "lists".  Both lists and libraries (generally) support common features such as Content Approval, Versioning, and Folders. Libraries alone support Check in and Check Out.

     

    Files are handled a little differently by search. When a user searches for a keyword in a document, if the document is in a library, they find the document listed in the search results. But when the document is a list attachment, search returns the list item. The user would then need to click the list item and then click on the attachments.

     

    There are also specialized libraries, such as Picture Libraries, Forms Libraries and Slide Libraries, that have "special knowledge" of their files. Picture libraries know how to create thumb nails, Slide libraries know how to split a PowerPoint file into individual slides.  These same files with attached to a list, are just "files".

     


    Mike Smith TechTrainingNotes.blogspot.com
    • Proposed as answer by Frode Aarebrot Wednesday, November 03, 2010 7:52 PM
    • Marked as answer by Peng Lei Friday, November 12, 2010 9:31 AM
    Wednesday, November 03, 2010 3:12 AM

All replies

  • A list contains items that are collections of fields/properties/columns. Optionally each item can have one or more attachments.

    A library is a list, but but have one and exactly one file associated with each item. A library item also has fields/properties/columns.

    Another way to say this is that a list item has a focus on "text" stored in fields/properties/columns, while a library has a focus on a single document.

     

    When writing custom code, a list and a library look, and are processed the same, so both internally are "lists".  Both lists and libraries (generally) support common features such as Content Approval, Versioning, and Folders. Libraries alone support Check in and Check Out.

     

    Files are handled a little differently by search. When a user searches for a keyword in a document, if the document is in a library, they find the document listed in the search results. But when the document is a list attachment, search returns the list item. The user would then need to click the list item and then click on the attachments.

     

    There are also specialized libraries, such as Picture Libraries, Forms Libraries and Slide Libraries, that have "special knowledge" of their files. Picture libraries know how to create thumb nails, Slide libraries know how to split a PowerPoint file into individual slides.  These same files with attached to a list, are just "files".

     


    Mike Smith TechTrainingNotes.blogspot.com
    • Proposed as answer by Frode Aarebrot Wednesday, November 03, 2010 7:52 PM
    • Marked as answer by Peng Lei Friday, November 12, 2010 9:31 AM
    Wednesday, November 03, 2010 3:12 AM
  • Hi,

    Lists is the general term. Libraries are special kinds of Lists.
    An item added to a library must be a file. You can't have a library without a file. You can specify versions for libraries which naturally are different versions of that file.
    A non-Library list doesn't have a file. What you can do in all kinds of Lists is to add a column of type Hyperlink/image and in that field you can put the URL of a document but that is the nearest you can come.
    That is the main outline. Some types of lists have different functions like for instance people only being able to read their own posts. But those aren't available in every type of List and aren't available at all with document libraries and other libraries.

    This thread is very similar to yours. Please refer to:

    http://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/sharepointinfopath/thread/3bc516f9-cba9-4403-bae3-dff071eeead1

     

    I wish you every success in your important work.

    Best regards,

    David HM

    Friday, November 05, 2010 1:33 AM