Don’t use the Sharepoint Solution Generator, so far we have not been able to upgrade the site definitions through a solution without it killing existing sites based on the site definition.
I have seen many different ways of doing this, but I found the following method seemed to work for me, using the “SharePoint Extensions for Visual Studio 2005” and the “
SharePoint Solutions Generator“ Use the “SharePoint Solution Generator” to create a site definition project.
- Open the project and add your custom master page to the “Site Definition” folder
- Open up “onet.xml”
- Add the following node to the “ListTemplates” section
- Add the “MasterUrl” attribute to the “Configuration” node with a value of “_catalogs/masterpage/project.master”, where project.master is the name of your custom master page. This means all the pages using the “~masterurl/default.master” token will use the URL defined to point to your custom master page
- Add a “Module” node to the Modules section of the configuration called “MasterPage” that will reference the module definition in the “Modules” section of the onet file
<Module Name=”MasterPage” />
- Add a module definition to the “Modules” section of the onet file. This will copy the custom master page file into the master page library when the site is provisioned.
- Save the onet file and then deploy the project into your environment using the deploy option in “SharePoint Extensions for VS 2005”
- When you create a new site from your site definition it should now use your new master page.
Below is a screen grab of the onet.xml file with all the changes highlighted