How to Fix the 5000 Item Limit Error Message in Classic #SharePoint Online Lists and Libraries

There is a hard limit on the number of items that can be displayed PER VIEW in lists and libraries. That limit is 5000 items. This means that you cannot display more than 5000 items in any view or you will get the following error :

This view cannot be displayed because it exceeds the list view threshold (5000 items) enforced by the administrator. To view items, try selecting another view or creating a new view. If you do not have sufficient permissions to create views for this list, ask your administrator to modify the view so that it conforms to the list view threshold.

It’s very annoying, we know. It’s been on uservoice since 2015 and still nothing has been done about it. Please keep voting it up and commenting. But here’s how you fix it.

After the message, you will notice that the options on the ribbon is greyed out and you can’t get into the settings.

Go to Site Contents and access the app from there. Click the … next to the app and Settings. This takes you straight into the back-end of the app so you can fix it.

Here you can see the error. That warning message starts displaying from 3000 items onwards.

Scroll down to the views and click Create View.

You can either start from a Standard view or from the the All Documents / Items view.

This is example is going to work off the ID column, so I’m going to display a few thousand at a time.

Give the view a name specifying how many items there are and make this the default view.

Scroll down to the sort section and decide how you want to sort things. I’m putting the newest items on top.

Scroll down to the filter section to filter information in and out. In this case, we only want to display 2000 items. Every single document and list row gets a unique identifying number called the ID, so its an easy setting to work from because it is consistent. The settings would then be :

I always like to put totals on everything so I can see how many items are in an app.

And then choose how many items you want to see before having to scroll to the next page. (This also can’t exceed 5000). Then click OK at the bottom.

The error message will be gone and you can see you content again.

However, if you click All Documents / Items again, you will still get that 5000 item limit error.

Go back to Site Contents, navigate to that app, and click Settings again. Or if you are still in your new view, go to settings from the ribbon.

Scroll back down to the views and click on All Documents / All Items.

And delete it.

You could try and edit the All Docs / Items view to only display a certain number of items, but I’ve been having hits and misses with that. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. So if it doesn’t work and you still get the error message, just delete this view altogether and make your own views.

Create additional views depending on how many items you will have in total. Create a new view from either settings or from the ribbon.

Put the new thresholds in the name.

Go back to the filters and and put start and end points in. Don’t forget to use AND, not OR.

Make the newest view the default view so that all the most recent items are on top and its the first view that people see when going into that library.

Update the app description to say that the thresholds have been taken care of so you don’t have to manually check every single app view.

Now you can easily see from Site Contents which ones have been fixed and which ones haven’t.

You can create filters on multiple things. Dates work well, create a view per year perhaps. Or by country, department, person, category, etc etc. As long as you have some metadata, you can usually find a way to do a filter. But in our scenario, there is no metadata because these libraries are automated storage points for emails, so we work off the ID column, because that’s in every single app regardless.

This all has to be done manually on every single app that is going to exceed 5000 items. Painful when you have hundreds of apps, but least it can be fixed.

Please Note : searching for items in the Find an Item box will only search in the view you are in. So if the search results come up blank, go to a different view and try again.

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