Anonymous access to Lists in MOSS

I spent a little time today trying to figure out why I could not grant anonymous access to a list in Sharepoint.  I tried just about everything I could trying to track down why I was continually being prompted for authentication each time I connected.

My first guess would have been an IIS issue, however I was not getting an IIS 401 error, I was getting a Sharepoint 401 error.  So that ruled out IIS pretty quickly, also the fact that the rest of the site was working anonymously was indicating obviously that it was working.

I really couldn’t understand why when I clearly had anonymous access enabled I was being continually prompted for authentication.  It turns out this is a sharepoint feature (literally here, its a feature, as in XML and in the features folder) called “Lockdown”.

What it appears to do is severely reduce the granularity that permissions can be assigned to objects, such as lists.

To turn it off just run this command :

stsadm -o deactivatefeature -url -filename ViewFormPagesLockDown\feature.xml

Then go back to your list, and remove the permissions for anonymous access, then readd them.  This will force a reset of the granular permissions that have been defined.

You should now be able to acccess the list with anonymous auth.

Naturally, after finding the problem and the solution, I was able to find a technet article on it.  Tap ViewFormPagesLockDown\feature.xml into goolge and a technet KB comes up immediately.


One Response to Anonymous access to Lists in MOSS

  1. Pingback: Anonymous Form Submission with SharePoint 2010 « Mark Rhodes

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