SharePoint cannot add external users is a common error faced by the SharePoint users while granting permission to the external users to an external content type in the office 365 SharePoint admin center.
This is a bit irritating as the users are unable to add the external users as SharePoint members. Moreover the error “Couldn’t add external users as a member in SharePoint” also occur with the older version of office and SharePoint 2010.
Well, are you also unable to add external users and receive one of the below-given error on your specific case:
- No exact match was found. Click the item(s) that did not resolve for more options.
- No results were found to match your search item. Enter a new term or less specific term.
Then this article is for you, here check out t6he complete solution to fix this irritating SharePoint cannot add external users’ error.
So, keep reading the article…!
How to Fix Cannot Add External Users to a SharePoint?
Solution 1 – Allow External Content Type Access to Everyone / All User
To fix the issue, make sure to grant access to Everyone or All User groups to the External Content-Type. And as done, utilize the list of permission for managing permissions to external resources.
Here follow the steps to do so:
- Start and search the SharePoint Admin center.
- Then click on Secure Store > and choose the Target Application ID (used for the external list) > click Edit (on the ribbon).
- And in the Members box > add Everyone group > hit OK.
- Then go back to SharePoint Admin center > click BCS menu.
- Now under BCS menu > click on Manage BDC Models and External Content Types option
- Choose BDC Model > choose Set Metadata Store Permissions.
- Next in the set Metadata store permission box > add Everyone to the permissions
- Then to add the user > click Add.
- And from the list of available accounts or the metadata store > choose Everyone group. Assure the Execute box is check marked.
- And at the bottom in the MDC Metadata Store,> choose to Propagate permissions to all BDC model, External System, and External Content Types.
- Now tick mark all the boxes listed > hit on OK.
As completed, try getting access to the external list utilizing the SharePoint permissions. Well, the external content is on the SharePoint site.
Solution 2 – Utilize PowerShell Cmdlet
Here it is suggested to use the Microsoft community-designed PowerShell-based cmdlet that fixes the issue while running it through SPO PowerShell Module.
Follow the steps to do so:
- Download and install the SPO PowerShell Module by clicking the link given.
- Now run the Power ShellModule as Administrator.
- And utilize the command to connect:
$userCredential = Get-Credential -UserName $adminUPN -Message “Type the password.”
Connect-SPOService -Url https://yourcompany-admin.sharepoint.com -Credential $userCredential
- Then change the particulars like username, user credential, and URL with your site URL and credential and connect.
- As connected, start typing the following command >
set-sposite -identity $Siteurl -sharingcapability ExternalUserAndGuestSharing
- When effectively done, start SharePoint and try adding the external user.
Hope this works for you to resolve couldn’t add external users as a member in the SharePoint error.
Solution 3 – Enable External Sharing
But if you are still encountering the SharePoint cannot add external users, then there is a possibility, you have turned off the External Sharing on Office 365, SharePoint and Site.
And try to turn on External Sharing to check if this works for you to fix the error
Follow the steps to do so
- First, open Microsoft Online Administration Center.
- Then below SharePoint Online > click the Manage link.
- Now from the Administration center window > click on Manage Site Collections
- Next from the Administration center dashboard > click on Settings > from the Menu > choose Manage External Users option.
- Then choose the Allow button > click on Save for applying the changes.
Now try adding the external users to SharePoint and it is estimated the problem is resolved.
Solution 4 – Logout Microsoft Accounts
If you see the error message “We are sorry email@example.com can’t be found in Microsoft.SharePoint directory” error.
Then there is a possibility you are getting the error due to an authentication token creating conflict with the server.
So to fix, this log out of the entire Microsoft account from the problematic device. And after signing out of the entire Microsoft Accounts, check if SharePoint cannot add external users error is fixed.
And next try to sign in to Microsoft accounts.
Solution 5 – Clear Browser Cache
If none of the above-given solutions works for you then the issue might be related to the web browser cache. With times the web browser cache gets corrupted and starts conflicting with the server and may cause conflict in the SharePoint.
So, clear the browser cache as this may work for you.
Follow the steps to clear cache for chrome:
- Start Chrome > and click on the Menu icon > choose Settings.
- Then click the Search bar > type Cache and click on Clear browsing data.
- Now under the basic tab > check cached images and files > cookies and other site data option
- And click on the Clear data button.
Hope now couldn’t add external users as a member in SharePoint error is fixed. The steps given to clear the browser cache is for chrome.
So make sure to follow the steps as per the browser you are running. Moreover, you can run the automatic SharePoint Repair Tool to fix the error easily.
Easy Solution to Fix SharePoint Cannot Add External Users Error
Well, when any type of error occurs in SharePoint then it becomes inaccessible and needed to be repaired. However, when all the above option does not work, to fix the error then feel free to use the SharePoint File Repair Tool.
This is one of the best software which completely works in repairing the SharePoint database. It allows administrators or users to extract SharePoint databases such as documents, tables, indexes, labels, media files, and other objects from inaccessible MDF files.
It not only repairs the corrupted SharePoint database but also restores the deleted or corrupted database and then save the recovered MDF files at a specific location on your system.
Steps to Run the SharePoint Repair Tool
- Firstly, download, install and launch the SharePoint Recovery Tool.
- The interface screen displays two options to recover SharePoint data: ‘Complete Repair‘ and ‘Document Recovery‘. Select as per your requirement.
- If you choose ‘Complete Repair‘, the screen will show the options for selecting and searching SQL Server (.MDF) files. Click on ‘Browse‘ to select a SharePoint database for repair.
- If you do not know the actual path of the database which you want to repair, click on the ‘Find‘ to locate the MDF file in a specific drive.
- After selecting the desired file initiate the scanning process.
- After finishing the scan, the software would generate a tree of all SharePoint database tables and will display it in the left pane. You can select the table in the tree and can have the entire preview in the right pane. Then click on ‘Repair‘ to begin repairing for the selected database.
- After clicking on ‘Repair‘, this dialog box will appear. Specify the SQL Server name or Instance name and the desired destination path.
- Click on the ‘Browse‘ option to choose the destination path. And select the ‘OK‘ button.
- Once this process gets completed, you would find a dialog box that displays this message ‘Recovered file saved at the desired location.” This shows that Recovery Process has successfully completed’.
- Select the ‘OK‘ button.
- You would find another dialog box that asks whether you want to attach the repaired database to the web application. If you click on the ‘Yes‘ button, the above dialog box will be displayed.
- In the web application type URL, the name of the corrupt database and SQL Server Instance name.
- Then select the ‘OK‘ button and proceed.
- When the process gets finished, you would be able to access the repaired database by opening the web application.
That’s all folks..! This is all about the cannot add external users error in SharePoint.
I tried my best to list down the complete fixes to get rid of Couldn’t add external users as a member in SharePoint issue and easily add members in SharePoint.
Hope the solutions given works for you to fix this nasty SharePoint error. But if not then run the advanced SharePoint Repair Tool.
If you have any other queries or suggestions, then share them with us on Facebook. Also, if you like this article, then share it with the users going through the same issue.
Jacob Martin is a technology enthusiast having experience of more than 4 years with great interest in database administration. He is expertise in related subjects like SQL database, Access, Oracle & others. Jacob has Master of Science (M.S) degree from the University of Dallas. He loves to write and provide solutions to people on database repair. Apart from this, he also loves to visit different countries in free time.