Updating MySite Master Pages and Design

After much head banging!! I have drawn the conclusion that MySites do not work like your typical SharePoint Portal Sites. Normally one would simply check out a page whether its was a master page or an ASPX page and modify it using sharepoint designer.


While this is okay in practice this hardly holds true when dealing with MySites. If you would like to make changes to your mysites post them and those changes take effect for existing sites its going to involve a little more effort than normal.


The challenge I faced was to simply modify the title, “My Site” to that of the home page of the sharepoint site. While this seemed simple, I first opened the default.master page and changed asp:ContentPlaceHolder Id=”PlaceHolderSiteName” to a simple <HREF> Tag. Saved the changes, and no dice. So I figured thats typical perhaps something within the aspx pages was overwritting the place holders.


I then proceeded to open the default.aspx page and couldn’t find a reference <asp:Content contentplaceholderid=”PlaceHolderSiteName1″ runat=”server”>. As I proceeded to pull my hair out I noticed there was no publish functionality as one would normally expect. You could checkout the document but when I attempted to publish the document it more or less prompted me to save the document. After reading several articles on how to update the master page there were numurous recomendations to change XML files and master page headers to new master pages, etc. These simply changed the pages has new users created master pages and did not change the existing layouts.


One of the articles reference changing an XML document located in C:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\Web Server Extensions\12\TEMPLATE\SiteTemplates\SPSPERS\XML while on my way to this location I noticed a default.aspx located at C:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\Web Server Extensions\12\TEMPLATE\SiteTemplates\SPSPERS. I proceeded to save the modified document out of SharePoint Designer to my desktop, copied the file up to the Web Front End and placed it in the directory. obviously backing up the old document prior. Voila~! all existing pages were updated with the new results.


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