Menu items don’t show in global navigation

Hmmm…. this must be one of the most stupidest bugs I have ever seen in SharePoint.

So what’s the deal?
I’ve got a sitecollection in SharePoint 2010 that will eventually contain about 35 subsites. After creating the first 18 subsites, my global navigation showed only the three subsites I wanted the enduser to see. I hid the other 15 subsites.

My global navigation bar looked like this:

After added an additional 10 sites (all hidden from navigation), I suddenly noticed the menu item “Speaker pool” was gone.

So, trying to figure out what happened I checked the navigation settings for the option “Show subsites” and of course the permission settings to see if the menu item was security trimmed. Nothing out of the ordinary here.

Have a look at my global navigation settings:

Eventually, while just fiddling around, we figured it out…

As you may know, you can configure how many items the global navigation will show (see below). It was set to 20 by default.

I now had 35 subsites (of which 32 were hidden). It turns out SharePoint doesn’t look at the fact that you may hide subsites. So, all subsites (hidden or not) are counted to see how many subsites will be shown in the global navigation. Duh!

So, setting the maximum items to 50 solved the problem!

I’m not sure in what order the menu’s are retrieved from the database and why the item “IS Intranet” did show up and “Speaker pool” didn’t. I expect it has something to do with de creation date of the site…

And I didn’t test this, but I guess this will also go for the current navigation (quick launch).

7 thoughts on “Menu items don’t show in global navigation

  1. Robert

    Hello Ernst;
    Sort of a reverse question here. Say you have 4 choices in the Global Navigation on the site homepage. You click on choice #2. Is there any way for the Global Navigation on page #2 to now show choices #1, #3 and #4 – and perhaps a choice to go back home? Since you are already on page #2 there is no need to show this choice any longer.
    This is pretty easy to do with a HTML menu, but I’ve not seen any way to do this in SharePoint 2010.

  2. Ernst Wolthaus Post author

    Hi Robert,

    Actually, I wouldn’t recommend hiding the current menu item because it gives the user a clear indication where they are in the structure of the site…

    However, it can be done quite easily by adding some CSS: {
    display: none;

    This will hide the selected (current/active) menu item…

    1. Robert

      Thank you Ernst. I agree with your reason for not hiding the current menu item, but this is a nice little piece of css to have in the bag of tricks. Once again, it’s all in knowing the selectors. Short and easy to implement.
      Thanks again for your reply.

  3. Laura

    Wow, thank you for posting an entry about this. I was completely baffled on this one and you cleared it up for me. Much appreciated!

  4. soumen

    In SharePoint 2013 I created OOTB global navigation selecting “Structural Navigation: Display the navigation items below the current site”. Now the issue is – my first navigation item is automatically getting hide when I clicked on that item means if the hit the URL corresponding to first menu item. Other menu items are Ok and if I click other menu items then first menu item automatically shows.
    How can I display all menu items display always in Global Navigation?


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