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Is it possible to get webparts in the left side bar?

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I have a custom .master page and the business wants more items on the left. From what I can see with web parts you can only put them in the purple area of my diagram.

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

Please check this excellent post where it is detailed step by step to add web part below the Quick launch -

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THIS LINK IS NO LONGER AVAILABLE :( – lex Jun 20 '13 at 15:49

The smarter option (albeit more involved), may be to create a user control that includes your web part references. As has been stated, you can't include web parts in master pages without editing the master page in SharePoint Designer, which means if you have multiple site collections you have to touch those master pages multiple times. A user control would allow your master page to be deployed via solution with this functionality, and not need to be edited at each site collection for implementation.

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This can be achieved, yes. But only if you add them directly to the masterpage (e.g. via SharePoint designer).

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Master pages don't contain webpart zones. Zones is contained in pages\page layouts. You need to edit page in sharepoint designer in advanced mode as place WebPartZone in content for PlaceHolderLeftNavBar.

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You can design you web part zones accordingly in your page layout and place web parts in those web part zones.

Edit: Corrected Master page to page layout.

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