Tip: Know Whether to Delete or Close Web Parts on SharePoint 2010

Follow Our Daily Tips


There are two options for removing Web parts from a page: close and delete. While the two have similar effects, they are different and it is important that you understand how to use them appropriately. Deleting a Web part deletes the Web part from the page permanently. You can add the same Web part back to the page, but you will need to redo all the customization and configuration of the deleted Web part. (There is no Recycle Bin capability for Web part customizations.)

To delete a Web part, do the following:
1. Open the page where the Web part is located.
2. Select Edit Page from the Site Actions drop-down menu.
3. Click the Web part to be deleted.
4. Click the Web Part Tools tab on the Ribbon.
5. Click the Delete Button, and then click OK in the warning dialog.

Closing a Web part, on the other hand, preserves the Web part’s configuration and customization by moving the Web part to the Closed Web Parts gallery. The Web part can be returned to the page from the Closed Web Parts gallery with all of its configuration and customizations intact.

Note that in SharePoint Server 2010, a closed Web part no longer consumes the same system resources as open Web parts.

To close a Web part, do the following:
1. Open the page where the Web part is located.
2. Click the Web part.
3. Select Close from the Web part’s shortcut menu.
Closed Web parts can be returned to the page by going through the process to add a Web part, and then selecting a Web part from the Closed Web Parts category. A quick way to see a list of all closed Web parts on the page is to use the Web Parts Maintenance page.

The Web Parts Maintenance page can be opened by appending ?contents=1 to any page that contains Web parts.

As an alternative, many Web parts can also be exported, preserving their customizations without requiring them to be maintained in the gallery.

Tip adapted from SharePoint 2010 Administrator’s Pocket Consultant by Ben Curry.

Looking for More Tips?

For more tips on Microsoft products and technologies, visit the TechNet Tips library.