Creating and Using ShareSpaces

NetDocuments recommends using CollabSpaces for sharing documents. See CollabSpaces.

Table of Contents


A ShareSpace is a secure container used to share and collaborate on documents with people who are not users of your cabinet. You can also share the ShareSpace with cabinet users if you choose. A ShareSpace allows collaboration among users anywhere in the world on documents without creating multiple copies as you do when using email.

You can use this printable Guide to Receiving a ShareSpace to give to your clients that will be receiving the ShareSpace.

Watch this short tutorial video to learn more about ShareSpaces:

Cautions when using ShareSpaces

ShareSpaces are designed to be used for a handful of shared documents and a handful of users. Generally the best usage is to collaborate on a few documents with a few people over a temporary time period. If a collaboration need requires more people or documents, you should consider using multiple ShareSpaces,  a Secure Delivery Link, or External User access. Learn about other Sharing Options and Guidelines

A ShareSpace will function best when it contains fewer than 25 documents and fewer than 25 users. 

ShareSpaces cannot contain folders or other ShareSpaces.

Users that access ShareSpaces from their My Cabinet can NOT add a new version to a document in the ShareSpace, but may delete versions, or change the official version.

Users with limited rights may not have access to all features described below. 

Create a ShareSpace

A ShareSpace can be created in two ways:

1) From a workspace you can click Workspace Options > Add ShareSpace to add it as a top-level container in the workspace.

2) From your Recent Documents list, within a folder, or from a Search Result,

a) select any number of documents

b) click Share externally under Options in the Document Details panel

c) enter a name for a new ShareSpace or use an existing ShareSpace

By creating a ShareSpace, you now have the capability to grant access to others, including the sender, so that you can collaborate within the ShareSpace rather than sending emails and document copies back and forth.

ShareSpace page

The ShareSpace will appear as follows when it is opened:


A ShareSpace functions somewhat like a folder, but acts differently in the way it stores and secures documents. ShareSpace documents can be searched by entering the document name or ShareSpace name into the Advanced Search. If you search the ShareSpace name, you will get a search result of the documents in the ShareSpace. You can also locate the ShareSpace in the folder where it is filed. A ShareSpace should always have at least one document in it and always be filed in a folder or a workspace. Any document in a ShareSpace is fully searchable to all Cabinet users who have access to it. There are no user fees when sharing ShareSpace contents with non-Cabinet users, such as with your clients.

In addition, depending on the access you grant to individuals sharing the ShareSpace, if you allow them, they can add or edit documents, participate in threaded discussions, and with edit rights can Approve documents in the ShareSpace.

Adding Documents

NOTE: Documents that you don't have A rights to cannot be moved into a ShareSpace using the filing option, but a copy of the document can be placed into a ShareSpace. 

NOTE: You cannot create a ShareSpace in My Cabinet. A ShareSpace must be created in a shared Cabinet. When it is shared with a non-Cabinet member, the ShareSpace will appear in that person's My Cabinet Inbox. 

Add Documents/Items that are on your local computer to a ShareSpace

You can add any document that is on your local computer to a ShareSpace if you have at least (E) Edit rights to the ShareSpace. Users have the option to:

  1. Upload an Existing Document
  2. Create a New Document
  3. Scan in a Document
  4. Save a Web Page Link
  5. Start a Discussion

NOTE: Remember that security is defined differently for a ShareSpace.  In a ShareSpace, security is defined for the ShareSpace, not individual documents.  All Documents outside of ShareSpaces have individual document permission capability. 

Move a Document that is already in NetDocuments into a ShareSpace

You can move one or many individual documents at a time into a new or existing ShareSpace. To do so:

Check the box next to the document from your Recently Opened List, Saved Search, Search Result, or folder.

Click Share externally from the More Options menu

Enter a name for the new ShareSpace if you want to create a new ShareSpace for the document(s) and select to file in a folder or not, OR

Navigate through the folder hierarchy to locate an existing ShareSpace

You can select to Move or Copy the document.  Then Click OK

HINT: If a ShareSpace is in a folder, you can drag a document that is also in that folder into the ShareSpace to place it in the ShareSpace. This will perform a move of the document into the ShareSpace.  You can also drag a document from the right side to the ShareSpace displayed in the Navigation pane under the folder where it is filed. This will be a move also.

NOTE: If you chose to create a new ShareSpace, it is created and the document is added to it.  If you chose to create a ShareSpace and did not file it in a folder, you will have to search for the documents you added to locate the ShareSpace and its new contents. We recommend that you always file ShareSpaces in a folder to help you locate them. You may also want to add the ShareSpace to your Home Page. 

Edit/Set Up Alerts (Follow)

Alerts allow you to receive notifications of changes made to documents in a ShareSpace. Alerts can be sent to multiple destinations, including a pager, cellular phone, RSS feed, or any device with an email address. You can define multiple alerts.

By default, no alerts are defined automatically for users with access to a ShareSpace. To have other users receive notifications when you add documents, the other users will have to choose to Follow the ShareSpace. Users cannot set up a Follow on behalf of other users. 

If you want to receive alerts when new documents are added to a Sharespace, check the box that says All Documents in the document selection screen.


To Add or Edit an Alert:

  1. Click Follow, under ShareSpace Options
  2. Click Add to define a new rule or Edit to change a rule
  3. If you do not wish to be notified when anyone with access to the ShareSpace modifies something, click Users and select individuals
  4. If you do not wish to be notified when any document in the ShareSpace changes, click Documents to select specific documents
  5. To be notified at multiple email addresses, separate the email addresses with semi-colons
  6. Choose a standard email format or condensed format
  7. Click OK. 

Sharing a ShareSpace

Email Link

You can Email a Link to everyone with access to a ShareSpace by clicking the Email Link option. Only people you email who have access to the ShareSpace will be able to open it.

It is critical when sharing a ShareSpace to always use the Email Link button to send a link to the ShareSpace. If the user is a new user who has been setup to use a username and password, that same link will also direct the person to create a password and provides them their username.

If your notification includes users who are new and have never logged in, you will be directed to the built-in Email send dialog as shown below instead of your desktop email. If you have selected the Desktop Email Integration option in Settings > Application Settings and you have a MAPI-compliant email system and you are not sending to new users, you will be taken to your standard Email Send Message dialog. This is a per-workstation setting. If you have set this flag and you are working on a computer that does not have a MAPI-based email system, it will automatically use the email dialog built into NetDocuments. A sample email is shown below (when sending to new users). You can add text to this email message prior to sending it.


NOTE: If your Cabinet Administrator has configured the Cabinet to use email disclaimers, the email notification will include that disclaimer information.

History/Audit Trail 

The History log in a ShareSpace applies to all actions across all documents in a single view, per user. This is somewhat different than being able to view the history for a single document. Click History for a one page view of what each person with access to the ShareSpace has done with all the documents. The history is displayed chronologically.

NOTE: You must have at least Edit and Share rights (VES) to view the History log of the ShareSpace. You can also choose to print the history log for all users in a single report.  

File in Folder

A ShareSpace can and should be filed in a folder.

NOTE: If you create a ShareSpace and do not add documents to it, you will be unable to locate that ShareSpace through a search. Documents in a ShareSpace can be located by searching on the ShareSpace name. You can also add a ShareSpace to your Home Page to easily locate it in the future. 

Add to Home Page (Star)

To access a ShareSpace directly by a single click from your Home Page, click the star next to the ShareSpace name. If the star is yellow, it is on your Home Page. 

Organize and Manage ShareSpaces

Organize ShareSpace Contents

You can organize items in a ShareSpace and place them in any order by using the Organize option. Because a ShareSpace is often used for multi-party collaboration, the most important documents are sometimes sorted at the top, along with any discussion items. To do this:

  1. Click Organize documents from the ShareSpace options menu
  2. Drag and drop documents names in the order you choose
  3. Click OK when completed.

You can also choose to add headings in the ShareSpace to further define your document organization as shown below using the same Organize option.


All users will see the documents in the same order. You cannot apply your defined Display Format to a ShareSpace as you can to your Recent Docs list, search results, and folders. Users will need VESA rights to be able to organize documents in a ShareSpace. 

Rename a ShareSpace  

To Rename a ShareSpace: (you must have A rights to do this)

  1. Click ShareSpace on the options menu
  2. Choose Rename
  3. Type the new ShareSpace name
  4. Click Rename 

Copy a ShareSpace

You can make a copy of an entire ShareSpace and its contents or make copies of individual documents within the ShareSpace. When you copy a ShareSpace, the official version(s) of all of its contents are copied. Multiple versions of the documents are not retained.

To Copy a ShareSpace:

  1. Click ShareSpace Options and then select Copy
  2. Select the destination for the new ShareSpace
  3. Click OK 

Move to Another Cabinet

Go to the folder where the ShareSpace is filed,

  1. Check the ShareSpace
  2. Under More Options choose Move/Copy
  3. Select from the Cabinets to which you have access
  4. Choose where to file the ShareSpace
  5. If you want the ShareSpace to be accessible by others at the time of the move, leave the option checked to Share with others in the Cabinet.  The Cabinet security defaults will apply. Otherwise, the access list will include only you.
  6. Click Move

The ShareSpace and its contents will be removed entirely from the current Cabinet. 

Delete a ShareSpace

To delete a ShareSpace and its contents when it is open:

  1. Click ShareSpace options
  2. Choose Delete
  3. Click OK to confirm

You can delete a ShareSpace if it is closed and filed in a folder:

  1. Navigate to the folder
  2. Check the box next to the ShareSpace
  3. Click Delete from More Options
  4. Confirm

NOTE: When deleted, the ShareSpace will be marked as deleted, and the contents are marked as Deleted and can be searched for from the Advanced Search page, where they can be undeleted. To undelete a ShareSpace, you'll need to locate one of the deleted documents, go to Locations to navigate to the deleted ShareSpace, then use the Undelete option. 

When you delete a ShareSpace, all of its documents are deleted. This is different behavior than with folders. When you delete a folder, its contents can be simply 'unfiled', but remain accessible in the cabinet.

Non-members who have access to a ShareSpace will see an option to Delete the ShareSpace. In this case, it is only removed from that user's cabinet, not from the cabinet from which it was originally sent. 

Edit a Document's Profile

To edit the profile of a document or item in a ShareSpace:

  1. Right Click on the document name and select Edit Profile.
  2. If document profiling is enforced in the Cabinet and the document's profile is not complete, the Edit Profile box will appear automatically
  3. If it is and you are just editing previously entered profile information, click Edit Profile and make your changes.
  4. Click Close

NOTE: When you share a ShareSpace with someone who is not a member of your Cabinet, custom profile information is not visible such as Client Number, Matter Number, etc. Custom profile fields are Cabinet specific. Since non-Cabinet members receive the ShareSpace in their My Cabinet where custom profiles are not enabled, they cannot see that information. However, if the people you shared with have a full Enterprise account with NetDocuments, and you have given them Share rights, they can move the ShareSpace from their My Cabinet into a company Cabinet, where their custom profiles are enabled on the documents in the ShareSpace. You will only see your custom profile fields and information and they will see theirs. This allows multiple firms to share a ShareSpace and make the contents fully searchable by their own internal custom profile information. 

Remove a Document from a ShareSpace

To remove a document and place it back in a folder as a single document in the Cabinet:

  1. Select the documents to be removed
  2. Click Move/Copy
  3. Choose a Cabinet and whether to file it in a folder
  4. Click Move

NOTE: When a document is removed from a ShareSpace, just like elsewhere in the product, the document ID is always maintained with the document. When the document is moved out of the ShareSpace, it assumes the access rights of the Cabinet default, or the rights will be based on the Profile if you are using Profile-based security.

NOTE: A user must have A rights to remove a document from a ShareSpace. 

Email a Document from a ShareSpace

You can email a copy of a document to others who cannot access your ShareSpace or are not registered with NetDocuments.

NOTE: This is a copy of the document sent outside of the NetDocuments service and is not secure. It is as secure as the email application you use for daily email. 

Version Management

Users that access ShareSpaces from their My Cabinet can NOT add a new version to a document in the ShareSpace, but may delete versions, or change the official version).

A ShareSpace accessed from within a Repository with full-text searching and versioning enabled, supports the capability to manage multiple versions of a single document.

You can create new versions of a document in two ways:

Save an Edited Document as a New Version

  1. Open a document, edit it, then save it in its native application and close it
  2. Instead of clicking Save or Close to check in the document, select Check in as new version from the Check in List.
  3. Enter any comments and determine whether the new version is now the official version. If not, uncheck the Official version checkbox
  4. Click OK

Create Versions of a Document without Opening It

  1. Click on the version number on the list view page
  2. Choose to Add Versions of the document.
  3. Type any comments and choose to flag it as the official or not
  4. Click Close

NOTE: When a person clicks on a document name in a ShareSpace, the version flagged as the official version is the one opened for editing. To bypass the automatic opening of the official version, you must click the version number in the column and choose the version you want to open. 

Approve Document

You and anyone else with E rights in the ShareSpace can place an electronic approval on a document. To approve a document:

  1. Click Other options
  2. Click Approve
  3. Click OK. An icon will be displayed next to the document name of any approved document.

NOTE: Approving a document records your name and the current date and time.  Everyone with access to the ShareSpace sees any approvals stamped on a document when they open it. Approving a document does not lock the document in its current state. If the document is edited by you or anyone else after you or others approve it, all approvals will be rescinded automatically. However, approvals are permanently recorded in the History log. If you would like to lock the document so no further edits are possible, or to make a document legally binding, sign the document digitally. (Remember a signed document can never be removed from the NetDocuments Service). 

Sign a Document

A digital signature allows others to verify the identity of a signer and ensures that a document will not be changed with non-repudiation. NetDocuments supports two types of digital signatures:

  1. Personal Digital Certificate
  2. NetDocuments Signature
A digital certificate-based signature is secure and provides a degree of legal protection in the United States under the Electronic Records and Signatures in Commerce Act.  To sign a document with a digital certificate-based signature, you must obtain a digital certificate from a certificate authority such as DST or Verisign. A NetDocuments Signature provides a date/time stamp feature and locks the document text.  However, it does not necessarily provide legal protection.  If two parties agree to use this signature, it may hold as an official certificate authority under the Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act

To digitally sign a document

  1. Click More options on the menu
  2. Select Sign.
  3. Choose to use a personal certificate or a NetDocuments signature.
  4. Click OK

NOTE: When a document is been signed, it cannot be edited or deleted, the ShareSpace cannot be deleted, and signers cannot be removed from the Access List. To purge a signed document, all parties who signed must submit a signed affidavit to NetDocuments requesting that the document and/or ShareSpace be purged from the service entirely. If you want to indicate tentative approval of the document but still allow others the option of editing the document, use the Approve option. 

ShareSpace Info

The ShareSpace Information box shows the following:

  • ShareSpace name
  • Author
  • Created date and time
  • Modified date and time
  • Modified by

To access this information:

  1. Click ShareSpace from the ShareSpace options menu
  2. Choose All Information 

For Administrators

Cabinet Administrators have the option to allow ShareSpace users to access their ShareSpaces without passwords. Instead, the ShareSpace user just receives a link that is not password protected. If this option is not enabled, all ShareSpace users will be required to have a username and password. 


An Administrator can designate an email address to receive email notifications whenever a user other than a member of the cabinet is added to a ShareSpace within the cabinet. 


Repository Administrators can also Remove a user from all ShareSpaces