SharePoint 2007 has really nice looking alerts that you can configure from the site itself. For example, you can subscribe to a discussion board by clicking “Actions > Alert Me” and you will start receiving alerts if and when there are changes on that discussion board.

However, if you want to make changes to how the alert email looks – perhaps to make the email look more like your corporate emails – you have to modify a file called alerttemplates.xml located in C:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\Web Server Extensions\12\TEMPLATE\XML. Combined-Knowledge has a great white-paper on how to do so.

However, I just wasted a bit of my time figuring out why my changes were not taking effect. It turns out that after making changes to your alert template, you must use the stsadm -o updatealerttemplates to update the alert template for the site collection you want. Then you MUST re-subscribe yourself to receive the alert by clicking “Actions > Alert Me

It appears that the site creates a separate alert template for each user. Seems inefficient if it is true – can someone confirm this?


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