SharePoint 2010 – Search Center Controls Missing

Further to the previous post related to “styling for SharePoint 2010”, I was having an issue with the “SEARCH” page. 

Even though I’d updated the Master Page to be 2010 aware (ribbon, etc), I was getting the Search Center home page showing as ‘blank’ in the middle – and the search controls were in the flyout (when clicking the ribbon button for “Location”) :


This page is within the ‘Search Center’ site :

  • Page Name : default.aspx
  • Page Layout : SearchMain.aspx

I looked into a working example (changed the Master Page to be v4.master) – as well as tried the old “upgraded2007” Master Page – and found that the culprit was actually a placeholder control in the Page Layout : PlaceHolderTitleBreadcrumb

Here’s the reason why (as far as I can tell) :

The Page Layout (SearchMain) puts the search controls into the ‘breadcrumb’ placeholder – this would normally be shown just underneath the top navigation (for a 2007 implementation).  

When moving to 2010, the same placeholder (PlaceHolderTitleBreadcrumb) is thus located within the ribbon, in the Master Page – meaning that the Page Layout is essentially injecting these controls into the ribbon.

My actions to resolve this were as follows :

  • Change the PlaceHolder name in the Page Layout (SearchMain.aspx) –> PlaceHolderSearchControls
  • Within the Master Page, include a placeholder within the ‘main’ area (for PlaceHolderSearchControls)

This is now working as expected.   See below…>


And – the flyout for “Location” is working too – this was broken :


So – if you’re having troubles with SEARCH, just check the PlaceHolders in use – and where they’re slotted into the Master Page.


7 thoughts on “SharePoint 2010 – Search Center Controls Missing

  1. TechGuy August 18, 2010 / 7:28 pm

    Hi there,

    First, thanks for posting this!

    Quick question: Do one should change other aspx pages as well like peopleresults, advanced, etc. as it seems once you hit the SEARCH you are back to sq 1.




  2. TechGuy August 18, 2010 / 8:15 pm

    Hi there,

    I was doing further testing as well and found that if you create a new Search Site (Enterprise) it looks Search Control in minimal.master page and shows an error

    System.Web.HttpException: Cannot find ContentPlaceHolder ‘PlaceHolderSearchControls’ in the master page ‘/_catalogs/masterpage/minimal.master’, verify content control’s ContentPlaceHolderID attribute in the content page. at System.Web.UI.MasterPage.CreateMaster(TemplateControl owner, HttpContext context, VirtualPath masterPageFile, IDictionary contentTemplateCollection) at System.Web.UI.Page.get_Master() at System.Web.UI.Page.ApplyMasterPage() at System.Web.UI.Page.PerformPreInit() at System.Web.UI.Page.ProcessRequestMain(Boolean includeStagesBeforeAsyncPoint, Boolean includeStagesAfterAsyncPoint) 85818aff-8574-4e13-b2f6-95698a9e7278

    Thanks & regards,



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