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I often come across confusion around branding options and navigation customizations for WSS v3 sites.  One of the first questions I ask is if the WSS v3 site is on a server with only WSS v3 installed, or is it on a server where MOSS 2007 has also been installed.  This often adds to the confusion.

In addition to the differences between MOSS 2007 and WSS v3, there are differences in WSS sites depending on if the host server also has MOSS 2007 installed. In regards to branding and navigation, WSS sites NOT on a server with MOSS do not have the option to set a Master Page in the Site Settings, nor can they have drop downs added out-of-the-box to the tabbed horizontal navigation.

You can easily check to see if your WSS site is hosted on a server with MOSS installed by checking the Site Settings for the WSS site.

  1. Go to Site Actions - select Site Settings
  2. Look under the Look and Feel category.  If you see:
    • Top link bar, you have a WSS site on a server with only WSS installed.
    • Master Page and Navigation, you have a WSS site on a server with MOSS installed.

Click here to see a screenshot of a stand-alone WSS site.  

Click here to see a screenshot of a WSS site on a server with MOSS.  All Site Setting differences have been marked.  

For WSS only servers, you will have to set a custom master page for the site using SharePoint Designer.   For drop down navigation, you will need to add a custom navigation solution to your master page.

As a side note, another user interface difference between the two is the Content Query Web Part (CQWP).  The CQWP is a component of MOSS, so it is only available on WSS sites hosted a server with MOSS installed.   Click here for info on how to customize the CQWP.

posted on Friday, May 11, 2007 4:41 PM

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