Friday, September 5, 2008

Site Template vs Site Definition

Site Definition Advantage:

  • Data is stored directly on the Web servers, so performance is typically better.
  • A higher level of list customization is possible through direct editing of a various XML files.
  • Certain kinds of customization to sites or lists can only be done with site definitions, such as introducing new file types, defining view styles, or modifying the drop-down Edit menu.
Site definition Disadvantages:
  • Customization of site definition requires more effort than creating custom templates. ( Not a big difference in effort if planning is proper )
  • Users cannot apply a SharePoint theme through a site definition.
  • Users cannot create two lists of the same type with different default content.
  • Customizing site definitions requires access to the file system of the front-end Web server.
Site Templates Advantages:
  • Site templates are easy to create.
  • Almost anything that can be done in the user interface can be preserved in the template.
  • Site templates can be modified without affecting existing sites that have been created from the templates.
  • Site templates are easy to deploy (Basically just a file upload).
Site Template Disadvantages:
  • Site templates are not created in a development environment.
  • They are less efficient in large-scale environments, not very easy to move them across various environments.
  • If the site definition on which the custom template is based does not exist on the front-end server or servers, the custom template will not work. The reason is that Site Template is a delta file applied on an existing Site Definition.


Robert Bogue September 6, 2008 at 9:36 AM  

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