Access and Manipulate Navigation Settings via SharePoint Client Object Model


SharePoint Server OM provides  PortalNavigation class that represents navigation for portal pages and other portal navigation objects. In turn the PublishingWeb class  is used to access the navigation settings (PortalNavigation type).

What about Client Object Model? Unfortunately it is not supported to access and manipulate Navigation settings via CSOM since there is no PublishingWeb Client Object  in SharePoint 2010. But still it possible to accomplish via Client Object Model.

Retrieving Web Client Object with Properties

PortalNavigation class uses internally SPWeb.AllProperties property to store Navigation settings and the same type also exist as a Client Object – Web.AllProperties

ClientObject provides a base class for objects on a remote client, the full list of  client objects available in SharePoint 2010 could be found on MSDN page.

When accessing client objects there are some differences that concern how object properties are initialized. According to the MSDN, in the server object model, when you return an SPWeb object, all of its properties become available for use in code. But to improve performance in the client object model, when you return a Web object (JavaScript: Web) certain properties are not included, and you must explicitly retrieve them.

The following example is aimed to demonstrate how to retrieve Web client object with it properties:

Access and manipulate Navigation settings via CSOM

The following class represents Client Object Model (CSOM) implementation of PortalNavigation class:

The following example  demonstrates how to print and update navigation settings using ClientPortalNavigation class :


Since  Publishing API is not supported in Client Object Model of SharePoint 2010, there is no way to manage  the navigation settings for a publishing site the same way as in Server Object Model. But as was demonstrated in this article it could be accomplished via Web Client Object and Web.AllProperties property.

In turn, in SharePoint 2013 Microsoft.SharePoint.Client.Publishing.Navigation namespace was introduced, in particular WebNavigationSettings class for managing the navigation settings for a publishing site.