I created a custom "master page" for our SharePoint site. On this site, my users need to have the Excel/Word documents open up "on the page", instead of opening up in Excel/Word/etc. I'm fairly new to SharePoint development, so please feel free to point out if I'm missing something fairly simple!

Thanks, Ian

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    Are you able to give an example of where you've seen behaviour similar to this? The closest thing I can think of for what you describe is "Office Web Apps" which I believe is only available for SharePoint 2010. This is a lot more than a masterpage customisation.
    – James Love
    Commented Dec 1, 2010 at 20:49

1 Answer 1


Actually, the default behavior for IE is to open Office documents in the browser via the plugin, which I think is what you want. Most of the help you'll find scouring the web is people wanting to go the other way: to force it to open in the Office client. Here is Microsoft's official support document on the topic: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/162059

I cannot find anything to walk you through the reverse of this, but perhaps you could reverse engineer the steps in this document to come up with your solution.

I think what you are saying is that you want your master page to be visible/active when the user opens a document, and you want said document to be displayed in the editable region of the page. I don't think this is possible in SharePoint 2007. The problem is going to be that the browser plugin will open the documents full-screen anyway, hiding your master page.

  • Thanks for the feedback! This has lead me down the path of creating a web part page to display my spreadsheet "in the window". Now to troubleshoot some menu issues!
    – IanCaz
    Commented Dec 6, 2010 at 15:17

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