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Cancel or terminate a workflow instance (SharePoint Server 2010)

Published: May 12, 2010

There are two different ways that you can stop a workflow instance:

note Note:

You cannot restart an instance of a workflow that has been cancelled or terminated. To reuse the workflow with the same list or library, you must start a new instance of the workflow. For more information, see Start a workflow instance (SharePoint Server 2010).

Cancel a workflow

When you cancel a workflow, the status of the workflow is set to Canceled and all tasks that the workflow created are canceled. Participants receive an e-mail message that the workflow has been canceled.

note Note:

The option to cancel a workflow in progress is available only if the workflow template supports cancellation. All predefined workflows—Approval, Collect Feedback, Collect Signatures, and Translation Management—support cancellation.

To cancel a workflow on a list or library

  1. Verify that you have the following administrative credentials:

    • You must be a member of the Site Owners SharePoint group on the site that you are configuring.

  2. Browse to the list or library for which you want to cancel a workflow.

    If the name of the list or library does not appear, click View All Site Content, and then click the name of the list or library.

  3. Point to the document or item involved in the workflow, click the arrow that appears, and then click Workflows.

  4. On the Workflows page, in the Running Workflows section, click the name of the workflow that you want to cancel.

  5. On the Workflow Status page, in the Workflow Information section, click Cancel all <workflow name> tasks, where <workflow name> is the name of the workflow that you are cancelling.

    note Note:

    The Cancel all <workflow name> tasks link is not available for workflows that do not support cancellation. In this case, you can either allow the workflow to complete or terminate the workflow as described later in this article.

  6. On the Modify Workflow page, click Yes.

To cancel a site workflow

  1. Verify that you have the following administrative credentials:

    • You must be a member of the Site Owners SharePoint group on the site that you are configuring.

  2. Browse to the home page of the site for which you want to cancel a site workflow.

  3. In the Quick Launch, click All Site Content, and then click Site Workflows.

  4. On the Workflows page, in the My Running Workflows section, click the name of the workflow that you want to cancel.

  5. On the Workflow Status page, in the Workflow Information section, click Cancel.

    note Note:

    The Cancel all <workflow name> tasks link is not available for workflows that do not support cancellation. In this case, you can either allow the workflow to complete or terminate the workflow as described later in this article.

  6. On the Modify Workflow page, click Yes.

Terminate a workflow

If a workflow error occurs or a workflow stops responding, you can terminate the workflow. You might also want to terminate a workflow that is not cancellable. Terminating a workflow sets the status of the workflow to Canceled and deletes all tasks created by the workflow but does not notify the participants.

To terminate a workflow in a list or library

  1. Verify that you have the following administrative credentials:

    • You must be a member of the Site Owners SharePoint group on the site that you are configuring.

  2. Browse to the list or library for which you want to cancel a workflow.

    If the name of the list or library does not appear, click View All Site Content, and then click the name of your list or library.

  3. Point to the document or item involved in the workflow, click the arrow that appears, and then click Workflows.

  4. On the Workflows page, in the Running Workflows section, click the name of the workflow that you want to terminate.

  5. On the Workflow Status page, in the Workflow Information section, click Terminate this workflow now.

  6. In the dialog box that appears, click OK.

To terminate a site workflow

  1. Verify that you have the following administrative credentials:

    • You must be a member of the Site Owners SharePoint group on the site that you are configuring.

  2. Browse to the home page of the site for which you want to terminate a site workflow.

  3. In the Quick Launch, click All Site Content, and then click Site Workflows.

  4. On the Workflows page, in the My Running Workflows section, click the name of the workflow that you want to cancel.

  5. On the Workflow Status page, in the Workflow Information section, click Terminate this workflow now.

  6. In the dialog box that appears, click OK.

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