Master Pages in SharePoint 2010

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This SharePoint 2010 tutorial explains, what are master pages in SharePoint 2010? What are different types of master pages in SharePoint 2010? We will also see, how to customize a SharePoint 2010 master page using SharePoint designer 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.

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.

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.

How to customize a SharePoint 2010 master page?

Here we will discuss Customizing a Master Page in sharepoint 2010.

To Customizing a Master Page in sharepoint 2010, follow the below steps.

Step-1. Open SharePoint Designer 2010 and open your SharePoint site.

Step-2. In the navigation pane, click Master Pages.

Step-3. Click Blank Master Page, and provide a name for your master page (for example,

Step-4. Open the Foundation Starter master page in Notepad. Copy and replace the code from the downloaded master page to your new master page while in code view.

Step-5. Toggle to design view to see the master page as it would look in the browser.

Step-6. To set this master page as the default master page for your SharePoint site, click Master Pages in the navigation pane. Right-click the master page and select Set as Default Master Page.

Step-7. Browse to your SharePoint site to test the look and feel of your new master page.

You can check out below SharePoint 2010 tutorials:

This SharePoint tutorial, we discussed master pages in SharePoint 2010, different master pages in SharePoint 2010 and we saw how to customize master page using SharePoint designer 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

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