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Secret SharePoint: Links and Looks

Secret SharePoint: Links and Looks

by: Robert Bogue 11 Jun 2018

Often there are times when you want to send a link to someone or control the look of a SharePoint page.  If you’re willing to do a bit of work, you can get links that make sense and look good, and you can improve the look of a page with something as simple as a parameter.

Solution 1: Path to a Folder

Have you ever wanted to share the folder you’re working in with a coworker via Skype or Email and struggled, because the URL from the address bar is a scary collection of letters and numbers that seem to bear no relation to anything important?  Most of us have.  Fortunately, there are a few ways to get to the friendly URLs that we want to give our friends.  First, you can select the dot to the left of the folder and click Copy Link from the menu.  Finally, you’ll have to click to use a link for folks who already have existing access.

The other approach is to put the URL together by hand.  You can capture the URL to the document library and then just start tacking the folders on at the end.  For instance, if I want to point a colleague to a folder called “Bar” in the “Foo” folder of the “Manchu” document library in the site “Chinese,” I can take the base URL for the document library (which appears in the URL) that looks something like:


Onto that, you can add /Foo/Bar to get:


It’s easy enough to do by hand and will provide your colleagues the opportunity to see the path, so they can find the documents even if they don’t have the direct link handy.

Solution 2: Just the Contents

Columbo used to be famous for his saying, “Just the facts Ma’am.”  This no-nonsense approach to getting to the heart of what’s important works in more than old detective shows.  Sometimes we want to show just the contents of the page without the distraction of the “chrome.”  That is, you may want to display a page without any menus or other distractions.  Consider a situation where you’re trying to do digital signage, and you just want to display the stories on the home page without the menus that users won’t be able to touch anyway.  Or perhaps you want to install displays around manufacturing machines to display their status that’s processed through a SharePoint page.

To get SharePoint to hide the menus and other “chrome,” you can simply add IsDlg=1 to the end of the query string and the chrome will go away.  If you have no existing parameters it’s just ?IsDlg=1.  If you’ve got existing parameters, you can add &IsDlg=1.

Now SharePoint can be a part of your overall communication with your organization — without having to write custom interfaces.

Solution 3: Broken Web Parts

Web pages can contain web parts, but what happens when the page is broken by those web parts – or it’s just not loading fast enough?  Sometimes you can’t get to the page itself.  But if you can’t get to the page to remove the broken — or slow — web part, how do you remove it?  The answer is simple.  Add ?Contents=1 to the end of the URL to get a maintenance view of the page, including all of the web parts and the ability to delete them.  Unlike trying to access the page normally, this maintenance mode of the page doesn’t try to run the web parts and therefore won’t be slow or broken.

About the Author

Robert Bogue is a thought leader on all things SharePoint and an engaging presenter who speaks at events around the world.  Rob has been awarded the Microsoft MVP designation fourteen times and earned recognition as a Microsoft patterns & practices Champion.  Rob holds certifications from Microsoft: MCPD, MCITP, MCTS, MCSA: Security, MCSE, as well as CompTia: A+, Network+, Server+, I-Net+, IT Project+, E-Biz+, CDIA+.  Rob also served as a team member for the SharePoint Guidance.  He is the author of 25 books.  Robert is committed to “making the complicated simple.”  Find out more about SharePoint made simple at www.SharePointShepherd.com and get all the SharePoint secrets and more by visiting www.ThorProjects.com/content.  You can also contact Rob at Rob.Bogue@ThorProjects.com.


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