Entire site collection uses a custom Master page located on top level.

Recent change:
Subsite permissions were changed to enable a particular group access to the subsite, but not top level site. So the subsite is no longer inheriting permissions and a new group was added with read rights to the subsite only.

Master page on the subsite now displays wonky. Menus are listed down the left instead of layered, etc...

What am I missing?

1 Answer 1


When you broke the permission inheritance to the parent site, you also broke inheritance to essential style files, page layout files, and other essential files which define the page's structure, etc. These system files are located at the root of the site collection.

Your users should always have at least Read-permissions to the system files. As they have been given access rights only to the subsite-level, this requirement doesn't fulfill. Therefore, you need to adjust your user permissions.

Slightly offtopic, but a rule of thumb when designing a site collection is to consider the user groups that should access the particular site. It's always recommended to have a top-to-down architecture, where users always have permissions to the parent site of a subsite.

  • Thanks :) I do understand the need for top down design. Unfortunately, we are allowing an outside organization to use the resources on this 1 particular subsite, and it can't be avoided. Is there a place that I can specify the permissions to system files without giving access to the entire top level site?
    – user67793
    Jun 21, 2017 at 16:19
  • 1
    Found it! The new group had to be added to the Style Resource Readers group :)
    – user67793
    Jun 21, 2017 at 16:25
  • @Quibell exactly. Glad to hear it's working for you.
    – moe
    Jun 21, 2017 at 16:29

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.