SharePoint 2010 Cookbook: Customize the Welcome Page of a Document Set

SharePoint 2010 delivers a comprehensive set of document management features. In this article, we continue our deep-dive with a look at how to customize Document Sets Welcome Page.


Using the preceding article in this series, you were able to create a Document Set using an out-of-the-box template. How does one create a different welcome page to give people additional information on how to manage this Document Set?


As mentioned previously in this series, Document Sets are a special type of folder that are created based on SharePoint Content Type. Each Document Set has a “Welcome Page” which is a landing page that presents the shared metadata properties, descriptions, and all of the documents that belong to the document set. In the previous article, we showed how you can customize the Content Type for a Document Set, and we also touched a little bit on how you can customize the landing page. In this article, we will demonstrate how you can further customize the Welcome page to fit your particular needs.

Customize the Welcome Page UI using the Browser.

You can change the standard look, and perform some simple customization of the default Welcome Page of the Document Set by following these steps:

While viewing the Document Set, select Page in the Ribbon, and then click on Edit Page.


This will get you into the standard SharePoint page edit mode, where you can perform functions such as add a Web Part, change the order of Web Parts within a Web Part zone, change the default image, etc.

Let’s add a simple Note Board Web Part into the top of zone (2). Click on Add a Web Part:

Select Social Collaboration in the categories section, then select Note Board ;select the Zone, and then click Add. Once the Note Board Web Part is on the page, click on Stop Editing to save the changes:


Customize the Welcome Page’s Properties.

You can also change a number of the Document Set’s Welcome Page properties using the normal setting page.  Go to the current document library, select Library Tools > Library in the Ribbon, and select the Library Settings menu:

Select your Document Set from the Content Types section:

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Click on the Document Set Settings link:

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This page contains a number of settings that you can adjust.  There are a couple of settings that are worth considering when you design the Document Set.  The first is the ability to share properties between the Document Set (folder) and its documents.  These properties are listed in the Shared Columns section:

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In our example, we added three custom Site Columns to the document set: Project ID, Project Manager, and Project Name.  When you enable the “Shared” check box, these columns will be automatically synchronized from the Document Set to each individual document in the container.  These shared properties can be edited and updated in the Document Set, but not at the document level.  In other words, if you go to any individual document in the set and select View Properties, you will see:

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Which contains information about the Project Manager, ID, and Project Name, along with the individual properties of the document item.  But if you try to edit the document itself, you will not see the shared properties in the edit form:

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The second useful setting is the ability to select a set of properties to display in the Welcome Page.  These options are listed in the Welcome Page Columns section:

Note that you can also edit the Welcome Page as we showed in the last section by scrolling down to the bottom of the settings page and selecting Customize the Welcome Page:

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Customize the Welcome Page using SharePoint Designer 2010.

This is where we're supposed to tell you that you can also use SharePoint 2010 Designer to perform more advanced customization of the Welcome Page.  You can certainly try it by selecting “Edit in SharePoint Designer” in the edit drop down menu:

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Except when SharePoint Designer comes up, it seems to have some problems understanding and rendering some of the Document Set controls on the home page:

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Due to the limitations of scope and space in this article, we will have to try and see if we can solve this problem in a future Cookbook article.  Maybe it works on your machine?

Document Sets have the following limitations of which you should be aware:

  • Document Sets are only available in SharePoint 2010 Server and are not part of the SharePoint Foundation 2010. This also means that the programing object model (SPFolder) is part of the SharePoint 2010 Server API and not available in the Foundation object model.
  • See other Document Set limitations in our previous SharePoint 2010 cookbook article here.

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