When an user does some changes like changing background color or adding an image for Home.aspx via SharePoint Designer what actually happens at this moment? In other words what happens under the hood? Let me guess - may be SharePoint Designer uses server client object, or windows service for editing, updating data in WSS_Content.

I will be very glad to get any explanation or helpful links.

2 Answers 2


Yes you are right just for more informations :

There is two page state Ghosted and Unghosted

Ghosting is the state on which pages are rendered from the File System.

Unghosting is the stage where the edited pages reside in the database and are rendered from there.

Note : Application page is always ghosted, but Site pages can be ghosted or unghosted (if changes have made through SharePoint Designer).

I hope it will be helpful for you.

  • Thanks, may be you know how I can programmatically edit like changing background color an aspx page ?
    – isxaker
    Sep 4, 2017 at 10:44
  • You can create your own css file and reference it in your application page. Sep 4, 2017 at 11:07

You have to remember that SharePoint Designer is a very old application and pre-dates all of the remote APIs we have now. If you Fiddle the traffic sent to and from SPD you'll see calls to an endpoint called owssvr.dll, which is a long-deprecated service but still present and in use in a number of cases. This is how Designer is able to communicate its changes back to the server.

I haven't done this in a long time, probably the 2010 version, but I have to believe it still works the same way.


  • Thanks for your answer. SP Designer is not required. I just try to get some information how I can edit(create) an aspx page programmatically. I have backuped file system and SP database and now I need to recreate(restore) my sharepoint to a new host programmatically. I can't do this neither by csom nor ssom. So I just want to repeat changes made by SPDesigner. Can me advise something ?
    – isxaker
    Sep 4, 2017 at 15:33
  • In your question, you should ask for the stuff you actually want to know. "How can I edit or create a SharePoint page programmatically" is a completely different question than the one you asked. Sep 5, 2017 at 14:37

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