No Right Click In SharePoint 2010

Ok, so it’s not the end of the world but it has been bugging me for a while that it’s not possible to right click on navigation items in SharePoint 2010. In both the global navigation and the current navigation (quick launch) right clicking on a link does not bring up the expected menus.


Why is this important? Well I guess it’s not really in the grand scheme of things, but I use ‘Open in New Tab’ a lot when working in SharePoint as a sort of productivity tool. As I missed my standard right click menu I did a bit of digging around as to where it had got to.

My first thought was that for some bizarre reason it had been disabled with JavaScript. Would they do that? Of course not! And attempting to repeat the problem in other browsers quickly showed that this was an Internet Explorer only issue. In FireFox the menu returns as expected.


Opening up the useful IE Developer Toolbar to view the HTML source and CSS found the issue. The links in the menus are rendered as two nested span tags in a list item, in an unordered list. On each of these spans there is a ‘display: block’ value set. Disabling this value on each span will return the right click behaviour to normal! This is likely to stop the text behaving as expected however (particularly the ‘additional background’ class?), and so I wouldn’t recommend it without first talking to a front-end developer to put together a permanent update to the CSS.


Now if you can’t make any CSS changes to the environment – which I imagine is the situation for many people for whom this bugs as much as it does me – there are some straight forward workarounds using one of a couple of simple keyboard shortcuts.

  1. Holding down the Control key whilst clicking on the link will open the link in a new tab in the background.
  2. Holding down Shift + Control keys whilst clicking on the link (left mouse button click) will open the link in a new tab and take you to it.
  3. Holding down the Shift key whilst clicking on the link (left mouse button click) will open the link in a new window.
  4. Position the cursor to the extreme left hand side of the link element before right clicking.

I hope this helps other right click pedants out there!

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