Minimal Download Strategy in SharePoint 2013

Minimal Download Strategy (MDS) in SharePoint 2013

Minimal Download Strategy or MDS is a new feature introduced in SharePoint 2013 for quick rendering of SharePoint Pages. It reduces the amount of data that the browser must download whenever the page load happens. When a user requests any page, only the page content that is changed from the previous downloaded version is retrieved, rather than downloading the entire page content.

This feature is only compatible with the publishing page template.

How to Enable the MDS Feature

A. Click on Site settings then select "Manage site features" > "Activate the Minimal Download Strategy".

Once you enable the feature the URL looks as in the following:

MDS : https://demoMD5/_layouts/15/start.aspx#/SitePages/page.aspx

Non MDS: https: //demoMD5/SitePages/page.aspx .

B. EnableMinimalDownload the property of the SPWeb object. It can be activated on the server side or CSOM or Power Shell.

The following is the sample CSOM code to enable the Minimal Download feature in SharePoint 2013:

var clientContext;
clientContext = new SP.ClientContext.get_current();
this.oWebsite = clientContext.get_web();
Function.createDelegate(this, successHandler),
Function.createDelegate(this, failureHandler)
function successHandler() {
alert("MDS is enabled in DEMO site.");
function failureHandler() {
alert("MDS is failed due: " + arguments[1].get_message());}

PageRenderMode Control in Master Page:

<SharePoint:PageRenderMode runat="server" RenderModeType="MinimalDownload" />

The RenderModeType property takes either “MinimalDownload” or “Standard” as the values. For a Minimal Download strategy RenderModeType should be MinimalDownload.

AjaxDelta Control

There is one control that must be placed in the master page, the AjaxDelta control. It should be added to the head section of the master page. If the page is a home page then it will clear all controls and ensure that the page is loaded fully and registers the correct scripts.


One of the key things in the MDS implementation is DeltaPage. This page class is the key to generating the full pages or just the deltas. All the common pages such as WebPartPage, WikiEditPage, UnsecuredLayoutsPageBase, LayoutsPageBase and so on are inheriting from this page.Thus all these pages support Minimum Download strategy in SharePoint.

The best candidates for MDS implementation are:

a. ASP.NET Pages

b. Master Pages

c. WebParts and Controls

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