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Sharepoint customisation of look and feel and UI themes

  Asked By: David    Date: Sep 22    Category: Sharepoint    Views: 1798

We are looking at customising the look and feel of the sites that
users create as per their wish. There are 2 aspects to this :

1. At the portal level Sharepoint supports applying of our custom
stylesheet(CSS). So here we can create our own css and specify it, so
that the look and feel of the portal is changed. This can be done
thru code by asking the user what colors he wants in various areas of
the portal and then use his choice to create a stylesheet.

2. At the sites level this custom stylesheet is not supported(OR is
it?). For this Sharepoint provides a set of predefined themes which
can be applied to the sites. But these are limited in number.
These themes are in "DRIVE:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft
Shared\Web Server Extensions\templates\themes".

If i want to create my own themes, is there a way to do it?
Please note that iwant to do it thru code(like writing CSS on the fly
and then applying it).



2 Answers Found

Answer #1    Answered By: Jagdeep Hor     Answered On: Sep 22

Yes, additional WSS Themes can be created and applied. The normal mechanism for
doing this is FrontPage 2003 (create and add) or the web admin UI (add).

If you want to do this programmatically, you can either use "put theme" and
"apply theme" methods in FP-RPC or copy and editing files on the server. Both
are documented in the SDK, the latter under the "Customizing Themes" topic.

Answer #2    Answered By: Aja Howe     Answered On: Sep 22

Well, there are several things to consider before attempting
a "customize for everyone" look, and that is the use of

1. If you are using a virtual server  for each customer, it's
not much problem; you can affect the look of each vs by changing the
css (sps.css for the portal  and OWS.css for sites).
2. If you are customizing just the portal and areas, a custom
css can be applied  for each new one created – remember, each time
new portal, area, or sub-area is created, it will call the
applicable template which will use sps.css by default, requiring you
(or whoever creates it) to go in and apply the custom  css.
3. If you want to customize sites  it's a much bigger chore,
especially if they are on the same virtual server. Each site, when
created will use OWS.css for the design unless you add a custom site
definition which pulls a different style sheet.
4. Themes have their own css  in each of the applicable theme
folders. Each one must be customized individually.

I have customized out portal, but each site underneath uses the same
customization (look and feel) http://public-sp.missouri.edu .
If you change the images, you should not change the name and try to
use an new image that is the same size as the one you are replacing,
otherwise, each template must be touched to apply the new name,
size, etc…. Customizing is not easy because of the architecture
SharePoint, but getting rid if the Microsoft blue is attainable.

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