Home » SharePoint 2013 Workflow » SharePoint 2013 Workflow Cancels Automatically

SharePoint 2013 Workflow Cancels Automatically

I had been dealing with an issue for a few days and after figuring out the solution I have decided to try to save someone else from having the headache I had to deal with. The issue was that simple SharePoint 2013 workflows created with SP Designer would cancel automatically with an internal status of ‘Canceled’ while SharePoint 2010 workflows worked just as expected. The following error was provided (which didn’t seem very helpful at first):

RequestorId: 8be6fbda-d14b-1182-54ee-f8b57cbd6f59. Details: System.ApplicationException: HTTP 401 {“Transfer-Encoding”:[“chunked”],”X-SharePointHealthScore”:[“0″],”SPClientServiceRequestDuration”:[“47″],”SPRequestGuid”:[“8be6fbda-d14b-1182-54ee-f8b57cbd6f59″],”request-id”:[“8be6fbda-d14b-1182-54ee-f8b57cbd6f59″],”X-FRAME-OPTIONS”:[“SAMEORIGIN”],”X-Content-Type-Options”:[“nosniff”],”X-MS-InvokeApp”:[“1; RequireReadOnly”],”MicrosoftSharePointTeamServices”:[“″],”Cache-Control”:[“max-age=0, private”],”Date”:[“Mon, 17 Feb 2014 21:03:02 GMT”],”WWW-Authenticate”:[“NTLM”],”X-AspNet-Version”:[“4.0.30319″],”X-Powered-By”:[“ASP.NET”]} at Microsoft.Activities.Hosting.Runtime.Subroutine.SubroutineChild.Execute(CodeActivityContext context) at System.Activities.CodeActivity.InternalExecute(ActivityInstance instance, ActivityExecutor executor, BookmarkManager bookmarkManager) at System.Activities.Runtime.ActivityExecutor.ExecuteActivityWorkItem.ExecuteBody(ActivityExecutor executor, BookmarkManager bookmarkManager, Location resultLocation)

Also, if that user tried viewing the workflow status they would receive a ‘Sorry, you don’t have access to this page.’

The few posts that I came across when researching this issue mentioned granting users edit access at the site level. This did fix the issue but it did not seem like a reasonable solution for me so I did a little more investigating. Turns out that with the new changes to the SharePoint 2013 workflow, there was also changes made to which account is used to write logs to the Workflow History list. In 2010 the system admin account was used but in 2013 the workflow initiator’s account is used. This account needs to have at least contribute permissions to the Workflow History list (a hidden list that can be accessed through SP Designer). So here’s my solution:

  1. Navigate to the site that the workflow is on in SharePoint 2013 Designer.
  2. Go to All Files -> Lists
  3. Right click on Workflow History
  4. Select Properties
  5. Click on Permissions for this list under the ‘Customization’ section (This should open up the edit permissions page in the browser)
  6. Break inheritance on this list by selecting Stop Inheriting Permissions in the new opened browser window
  7. Use the check box next to the appropriate group (probably the visitors group) to select the group that needs updated permissions
  8. Select Edit User Permissions
  9. Grant the group ‘Contribute’ permissions
  10. Select OK

Also, it is important to note that if a task is being created in a task list the account will also need access to write to the task list.

7 thoughts on “SharePoint 2013 Workflow Cancels Automatically

  1. Some workflow actions still had a problem even after granting permissions on the workflow history list. In particular the “Send Email” action consistently gave a 401 error.

    We had to grant Contribute at site level to get the Send Email action working.

  2. Pingback: Workflow Permissions Issues | sharepointifications

  3. Hello Ms.Teena. I have searched around 30-40 blogs and then found yours which gives very accurate & precise explanation for the above error. Apart from the error resolution i experienced good learning from your blog & really appreciate your contribution.

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