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Fixing the SharePoint 2010 Breadcrumb

In SharePoint 2010 default masterpage (v4.master) has delivered Breadcrumbs in a new, and I think confusing, way.

SharePoint 2010 Breadcrumb

SharePoint 2010 Breadcrumb

From my perspective, this approach is difficult to use because it is hidden from the user. Once you know about it the breadcrumb is easier to find, but its nowhere near as usable as a traditional breadcrumb.

Smashing Magazine offers a range of alternatives you can consider in implementing your own breadcrumb which are worth considering if you want to create a fully-customised master page.

However, want if you want a breadcrumb of the same style as SP2007?

What if you want to revert the 2010 breadcrumb into the style of the 2007 breadcrumb? Well it turns out that the v3 masterpage(the 2007-style masterpage that runs on SharePoint 2010 to allow companies to avoid a visual upgrade) runs the old-school masterpage.

If you dive into the v3 masterpage (default.master) you can see the following snippet to in place of the breadcrumbs.

<asp:SiteMapPath SiteMapProvider=”SPContentMapProvider” id=”ContentMap”  SkipLinkText=”” RenderCurrentNodeAsLink=”true”  NodeStyle-CssClass=”ms-sitemapdirectional” runat=”server”/>

As it turns out, if you paste that snippet into the v4 masterpage it will work perfectly.

Update: Turns out it won’t work perfectly, but its pretty good. There are a number of circumstances (i.e. site settings page) where it falls short, but for most users its better than nothing. To have a perfect breadcrumb, unfortunately you’ll need to open up visual studio.