13.4. Master Pages and Layout Pages
So far in this chapter you have seen how to customize SharePoint pages in general, both MOSS and WSS pages. In reality, many of these customizations are used on WSS pages, since MOSS has a smarter way to control the look and feel of both the chrome and the content of a web page. In SharePoint 2003, you customized WSS 2.0 in a different way than SPS 2003. The differences are much smaller in SharePoint 2007, although there are some: Both MOSS 2007 and WSS 3.0 use Master Pages to control the chrome of the page, while only MOSS uses page layout files to govern the look and feel of the page content. Instead, WSS pages are configured directly, either by customizing the site definition files or by editing the page using SharePoint Designer, as previously described in this chapter.
13.4.1. Master Pages
A Master Page file consists of a style definition and one or more CSS files. The style definition controls, for example, the position and layout of the navigation and Quick Launch bar, while the CSS file controls the font types, sizes, and colors for the text. One SharePoint page can only be associated with one specific Master Page; different pages can have different Master Pages. Each site collection has a library with all the Master Pages available for this SharePoint page, known as the Master Pages and Page Layouts Gallery. As this name implies, this library also contains page layout files, but for now, let's focus on the Master Pages. To list these ...