Versioning is the method by which successive iterations of a document are numbered and saved.
A system of version control is useful for documents which are likely to be revised and redrafted and where you might need to keep a record of how the document changed over time.
There are some benefits of versioning:
- There is a clear clues about who made changes to a document, when, and what was modified
- Users always can access the latest version, and still can access the previous versions.
- Identify the differences between the different versions.
- You have confidence to delete the drafts.
SharePoint have 3 versioning options:
No earlier versions are saved.
Create major versions
Save the document versions using a simple versioning scheme (such as 1, 2, 3). The first version of document will be 1.0, and subsequent documents will have an increase of “1.0” in the version number.
Create major and minor (draft) versions
Save the document versions using a major and minor versioning scheme (such as 1.0, 1.1, 1.2, 2.0, 2.1). Subsequent minor version will increase by “0.1”, e.g., 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, etc. Subsequent major version will increase by “1.0”, e.g., the draft 1.3 will become a final 2.0.
To better control when a new version of a document is created, SharePoint provides Check-out and Check-in features. The Check Out and Check In features enable the user to lock and unlock documents to control exclusive access for editing.
Require Check Out feature is a way to control document collaboration, if a document is checkout, other users cannot overwrite it. This feature is not enabled by default in document library, you can enable this feature in Library Settings – Versioning Settings page.