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Creating new files using Office Online

Hosts can create new Office files using blank document templates from Office Online. In order to support this, hosts use the :wopi:action:`editnew` WOPI action as follows:

  1. Create a zero-byte file with the appropriate file extension (docx for Word documents, pptx for PowerPoint presentations, and xlsx for Excel workbooks).
  2. Invoke the :wopi:action:`editnew` action on the newly created file. Office Online will detect that the file is zero bytes based on the :term:`Size` property in the :ref:`CheckFileInfo` response.
  3. Once the :wopi:action:`editnew` action has been invoked, Office Online will perform a :ref:`PutFile` operation on the file, overwriting it with template content appropriate to the file type. Note that this :ref:`PutFile` operation will be performed on an unlocked file, so hosts must ensure that :ref:`PutFile` operations on unlocked files that are zero bytes succeed. See the :ref:`PutFile` documentation for more information.


Because the new file creation is done in two steps, it is possible for the :ref:`PutFile` operation to fail, leaving the zero-byte file. Since such a file is not valid, hosts should expect and handle this case. The ultimate solution is left to the host; options for handling this situation include:

  • Hide zero-byte files from the user.
  • Prevent users from opening zero-byte files in |wac|.
  • If a file is zero bytes, then when opening |wac| against the file, always use the :wopi:action:`editnew` action. (This is only an option if the user has edit permissions to the document.)

This is not an exhaustive list of options; ultimately, the host must decide the best approach to this problem.

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