Branding SharePoint 365


I found this post when I first looked at branding 365 and found it very helpful . There were a few other issue I found while branding 365 so thought I’d put them in one post.

Bellow is the Blog post I found on

The master pages found in the masterpage library are not used for the public website. The default master page is called root.master and can be placed in the root of SharePoint. Click ‘All Files’ in SharePoint Designer 2010 to see the file hierarchy of SharePoint and you will find the Root.master at the bottom of this listing.

We cannot modify root.Master, instead a new master page could be uploaded and set as default master page.

You could try the following to test this out:

1. Use a starter master page found at:

2. Use SPD to upload the new master to “_catalogs/masterpage”. Then right-click the new master page you just uploaded and “Set as Default Master Page”. Then inside each of the pages “pages (web Pages)” you will need to edit the “MasterPageFile=”~site/root.master”” to be something like “MasterPageFile=”~site/_catalogs/masterpage/myCustomMasterPage.master””. This will allow your site to use the new master page.


One additional thing is you will need to add the content placeholder office 365 pages use. It’s not the same as the standard SharePoint master page content place holder.

Add the following to just above or below the SharePoint content place holder (PlaceHolderMain) in your new master page:

<div id="IWS_WH_Elem_Content" class="MSC_Body"> <asp:ContentPlaceHolder ID="IWS_WH_CPH_Content" runat="server"></asp:ContentPlaceHolder> </div>

The issues I found while branding 365 were

  • The search site that is set up when you first open your account doesn’t allow you to activate a solution to brand it. I contacted Microsoft and apparently it is a known issue.
  • A Blog site cannot be set to anonymous ( Which was an issue as we originally hosted and branded our blog site in 365 )

2 Comments Add yours

  1. Gilda says:

    “Branding SharePoint 365 SharePoint Branding Team” genuinely got me simply hooked on ur web site!
    I reallydefinitely will wind up being returning far more
    frequently. Thanks ,Gerard

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