Missing Web Part Titles in Search Center Pages

I just had a really weird error – I’d built some search pages for a customer. There was a custom results page, and a custom ‘Advanced Search’ page. When I went into Edit mode, to change the web parts, they didn’t have a title bar – including the ‘Modify this web part’ link. WTF?

Well, they’d been customized using SharePoint Designer, so I figured I’d copy their code from the customer system into a VM of mine, and check that the pages broke on my system. They didn’t. WTF x2 ?

So, the page page code, inside the same master page, in two different systems works differently. To check I wasn’t going nuts, I tried a WinMerge compare on the two files – and found this chunk of XML in my non-working version on the customer site:

<!--[if gte mso 9]><xml>
<o:PublishingContactPicture msdt:dt="string" dt="string">, </o:PublishingContactPicture><o:PublishingContact dt="string"></o:PublishingContact>

Yes, although I’d cut and pasted the code, it was different. I came to the conclusion that this code is created or used by SharePoint Designer itself. I decided to delete it, save the changes to the customer’s page, and refresh my pages. It worked; now when I edit the page, lo, there are titles and the ‘Modify this web part’ menu. I have no idea what this XML is about, but I’m about 70% confident that it’s the culprit. I reckon that there’s a 30% chance that it was just being customized in SharePoint Designer again that fixed it, but I couldn’t see anything else related to the code that was likely to be a problem.

Missing Web Part Titles in Search Center Pages

2 thoughts on “Missing Web Part Titles in Search Center Pages

  1. priya says:

    I am having the same issue.. “Webpart title missing in Publishing Mode”.

    In edit mode, (in dev environment), I can see the webpart tile but once it’s published, the title disappear.

    I have the same code in Production, works fine.

    Dev is the back up and restore of Production. I am not sure where to start troubleshooting.

    Do you think it is the xml?

    Any help is much appreciated.


  2. MadhuC says:

    Very helpful. This is one of those things MS Tools are alwasy known for but never published. One more little help I would like to add is how to use the designer to add/remove the extra code.
    Use Designer in Text Mode.
    Right click on the file and select Edit with option. Then choose SharePoint Designer (Open as Text). This mode will not insert any addtional code.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.