We've got some lists that we plan to aggregate using a content query web part (CQWP) later, using a custom content type. The content type will be used on numerous sites within a site collection, but in each site we might not need all the columns, so we'd like to delete the ones we don't need on that local list.

Will this affect aggregation and filtering in the CQWP if some of the columns of the content type aren't present on some of the lists, while other lists might have additional columns not found on the content type? Will this blow up the CQWP?

Just wanting to see if this path is a good idea or if we'll run into serious issues down the road. Thanks.

1 Answer 1


You could take other routes besides aggregating content types.

One would be to create a data source in Designer and then bring in the columns directly from the other lists. Your xsl would get tricky b/c you woudl need to reference xpaths, which could affect performance but I've done amazing things using this method.

Or you could create a new custom list with lookup columns to the various other lists where you could then select to pull in whatever associated columns you need. This would probably be the easier of the two.

  • Thanks, Josey. Can the second technique of lookup columns be used if the lists reside in other sites and we're pulling information into the root site of the site collection?
    – Alex C
    Dec 6, 2011 at 4:49
  • 1
    Yes, you can go across sites. You cannot go across site collections however. Also, the internal name of the columns is wierd on lookup columns so be sure to copy it exactly (not the column display name).
    – Josey
    Dec 6, 2011 at 20:20

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