I was going to remind myself of a technique that I’d seen Liam Cleary use on his blog about importing XSL files into ItemStyles.xsl, but then I noticed that he’d linked to a far better idea from Brendon Swartz – you can change the XSL file that the Content Query Web Part presents ItemStyles for. If you export the Content Query Web Part as an XML file and edit it, you’ll see a property ItemXslLink. Simply give it a url to the new ItemStyles.xsl file.
Personally, I think this is fantastic. Frequently I have been asked to do custom roll-up of content, with customised display. If you have to add to the standard ItemStyles.xsl, then before long your ‘Presentation’ setting for your standard CQWPs is full of highly specific item styles. This way, I can isolate – nearly hide – the existance of my much more specific item styles to general users.
And I’ll say more about what I was doing with it shortly.