Friday, February 12, 2010

Declarative workflows cannot automatically start if the triggering action was performed by System Account

This is the exception came to me today when I try to run a workflow on a list when an item is created. I tried different combination and didn't get the problem resolved. Even I removed all workflow conditions and actions and placed a simple update like update the title of the item in workflow body. Still that didn't give me the result. The workflow  is not starting at all automcatically.

After some research found that, when we are using system account [With the account we installed SharePoint], the workflows won't run automatically. This is looking crazy but that is what the problem. When I try to run them manually, then they are running absolutely fine, but they aren't starting automatically.

When I try to login with another account other than system account, no problems. Workflow starts automatically. The only reason is "if we install SP1 package, then declarative workflows can no longer be triggered by the SharePoint System account" as there is the possibility of security vulnerability. So, they didn't give access to run the declarative workflows under the System account.

So, friends, if you face any type of these problems make sure you login with some other account other than system account. Hope this helps to save at least 2-3 hours of time.


  1. Hi Praveen, this helped me a lot of time. I was seraching all the services, and other stuff, but nothing helped. God bless u :)

  2. Hi Praveen,
    I'm working on SPD2010 and created custom workflows for my site. Lately, it stopped updating when I'm trying to publish(new) or re-publish(old) any workflows. Last time the proxyassemblycache got updated is around 4 hours back and after then nothing seems to be updating. The ULS log shows the following msg when I tried to trigger one..

    01/11/2012 12:20:32.41 SPUCWorkerProcessProxy.exe (0x1CC4) 0x1434 SharePoint Foundation Workflow Infrastructure b9vu Unexpected Declarative workflows cannot automatically start if the triggering action was performed by System Account. Canceling workflow auto-start. List Id: %s, Item Id: %d, Workflow Association Id: %s

    Could you please comment in this..thank you.

  3. Hi Sravan,
    Did you try to login to the site as any user other than system account user and tested???

    Please check by login as a normal user and tell me.

  4. No one in my organization can log in as the system account. Therefore the workflow should never run under this account yet the error is generated for the system account.

  5. Mine is exactly the opposite. I receive the error if the workflow is started by anyone. We don't login using the system account and receive the error with every workflow.

  6. Hi Clem,
    If the user is not logged in to the SharePoint site using system account then this problem will occur in below case.

    Is the workflow running on item created, item updating etc.? If yes, if item is creating or updating through code and in the code, you must have written run the code with Run with elevated privileges... Which means the code is running with the help of "System Account".

    Please check once and let me know.