SharePoint Online and external users (“this invitation has already been accepted with another account” Bug or Feature ?)

 

Be able to bring for free external users to SharePoint online is great even, if they don’t have a MySite/Skydrive/Personal newsfeed,etc and cannot use the Site Mailbox.

But here is a side effect.

Let’s take a look at the following scenario :

an invitation to connect to a SharePoint Online site has been sent to the users sergefictif@gmail.com.

The user receives the invitation in his inbox :

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and clicks on the link; the normal procedure is that he uses sergefictif@gmail.com as a Microsoft account : the following window shows-up

 

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However, the external user has a existing private live id (let’s call it sergeluca@hotmail.com) and doesn’t want to use it; he didn’t signout from this live id and no window is open in the browser.

The user naively clicks on Microsoft account. What will happen is that his private e-mail address (sergeluca@hotmail.com) will automatically accept the invitation.

if afterwards, the user connect his professional address sergefictif@gmail.com to a live id and wants to connect to the O365 web site, he will get the following error message:

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So basically the invitation is sent to identity A, and identity B is authorized.

And this could be embarrassing if the user doesn’t want his private e-mail address to be known…

The helpdesks won’t love it…

So my advice is : ask the partners to sign-out from their Microsoft account by going to www.live.com :

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