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Master Pages in SharePoint 2010

This SharePoint 2010 tutorial explains, what are master pages in SharePoint 2010? What are different types of master pages in SharePoint 2010?

What are master pages in SharePoint 2010?

SharePoint 2010 supports master pages to support a consistent look and feel. SharePoint provides a special document library namely Master Page Gallery for storing master pages.

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Different types of master pages in SharePoint 2010

SharePoint Foundation or SharePoint 2010 has 3 out of box master pages available namely:

  • v4.master
  • minimal.master
  • default.master

But still there are some other master pages in SharePoint 2010 are present like:

  • application.master
  • applicationv4.master
  • dialog.master
  • layouts.master
  • pickerdialog.master
  • simple.master
  • simplev4.master
  • sspadmin.master

You can check all the SharePoint 2010 master page files in this directory also: C:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\Web Server Extensions\14\TEMPLATE\LAYOUTS

Among all the master pages v4.master is the most popular master page. It has elements like Site Actions menu, the breadcrumb trail, the Ribbon, the Welcome menu, the Site Icon, the TopNav bar, the Quick Launch etc. v4.master is the default master page in SharePoint 2010.

If you open the master page, then you will able to see it contains some standard HTML element like HTML, head, body, and form, and includes many server-side controls. But one more major concept it, its contents 34 ContentPlaceHolder like PlaceHolderPageTitle, PlaceHolderAdditionalPageHead, PlaceHolderMain etc.

Default.master is a master page designed to support a feature known as a visual upgrade, which assists companies that are upgrading SharePoint 2007 sites to run within SharePoint 2010 farms.

This is beneficial whenever a company is migrating from MOSS 2007 to SharePoint 2010. He does not want his users to immediately switch to the new SharePoint user interface, in fact, users can continue to work with the older SharePoint 2007 user interface during a transition period. After some time then a site collection administrator can change from default.master to v4.master.

All these master pages are in ghost, but you can open a site using SharePoint Designer 2010 and modify it. But after that, it becomes unghosted and stored in the content database. But we have to remember one thing that these pages can not contain inline code.


You may like following SharePoint master page tutorials:

Besides using all these out of box master pages, you can also create your custom master page using SharePoint 2010 designer or using Visual Studio 2010.

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About Bijay Kumar

I am Bijay from Odisha, India. Currently working in my own venture TSInfo Technologies in Bangalore, India. I am Microsoft Office Servers and Services (SharePoint) MVP (5 times). I works in SharePoint 2016/2013/2010, SharePoint Online Office 365 etc. Check out My MVP Profile.. I also run popular SharePoint web site SharePointSky.com

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