Publish Custom Office Templates End users

This post is going to be a something new today to publish Custom Office templates made available to all users when they open PowerPoint or Word or Excel Office applications.

This can be done several ways like AD group policy management or Scripting or other ways But I would prefer to do it using Configuration Manager.

After end of the session,You should create and deploy these Office 2010 templates for users with Microsoft Word 2010, PowerPoint 2010, and Excel 2010.

Here is what the requirement is and available to all end users when the user go for New file.


The Whole procedure involves

Creation of custom templates

creation of thumbnails and preview files

Creation of XML configuration file that describes the custom template, thumbnail, and preview files

Creation of registry key that enables Office to read the XML configuration file

Create your templates :

Step 1: Create Custom template (could be PowerPoint or Word or Excel etc) and save it as .dotx (for word) .potx (for PowerPoint) , .xltx (for Excel) on local Drive.

Create thumbnail and preview files (optional):

This is an optional step, but thumbnail and preview files can be very helpful to users because they enable users to quickly view and select templates. To see examples of thumbnail and preview files, click Sample Templates, on the Available Templates pane. If you decide not to create thumbnail and preview files for a custom template, users see the name of the template in the Available Templates pane.

Create an XML configuration file that describes the custom template, thumbnail, and preview files :

To display your custom templates in the Available Templates pane, you must create an XML configuration file. Office 2010 references this file to determine how to locate and display your template, thumbnail, and preview files.

Use the below sample xml code and save it as .xml (name ESKONR_Template.xml)


<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<o:featuredcontent lcid="1033" xmlns:o="urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office">

    <o:application id="PP">
        <o:featuredtemplates startdate="2011-03-01" enddate="2041-03-01">

            <!-- TEMPLATE 1 -->
            <o:featuredtemplate title="ESKONR" source="C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Templates\ESKONR\ESKONR_Template_2012.pot" >


Changes you need to edit : Title: which is title name users will see it when they click New .

Source: Location for custom templates for PowerPoint,Excel or Word

filename : for Thumbnail preview if you don’t have ,remove the 2 lines (media and preview filename).

If you have multiple templates let say for word 2 ,Excel 2 ,you will have to create 4 templates one for each representing template name.

Once you are done with creating XML file,save it to location where templates are stored.


Create registry key that enables Office to read the XML configuration file:

Open the notepad and paste it ,save it as filename.reg

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

"ServiceURL"="C:\\Program Files\\Microsoft Office\\Templates\\ESKONR\\ESKONR_Template.xml"

Edit the reg key that matches with your Title and XML file names(bold letters need changes).

With this,we have got all our prerequisites files in hand.

Now we have got Templates,XML file and Registry Key .With this,we need to deploy all these pieces using Configuration Manager by copying the templates to User local drive folder.

We will achieve this using Simple Batch script using command Xcopy.

Open the notepad and paste the script which copies templates,XML files into user machines folder and run the registry at the end.

@ Echo off
REM Copy templates and registry files
REM Written by eswar koneti

mkdir "C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Templates\ESKONR"

Xcopy "%~dp0ESKONR_Template_2012.pot" "C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Templates\ESKONR" /Y
Xcopy "%~dp0ESKONR_Template.xml" "C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Templates\ESKONR" /Y

Xcopy "%~dp0Templates.reg" "C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Templates\ESKONR" /Y

reg import "C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Templates\ESKONR\Templates.reg" /Y

Create a package in SCCM using above batch file as command line and run the script using administrative rights and for each user who ever logs in so that it will be applicable to all users irrespective of computer.

Hope it helps!

Update :

What if there is new version of the content to be replaced on end user machines ?

To make this work,you will have to change the path of the existing template used in the above process .

Below is the registry location which you will have to identify and update accordingly.


One Response to "Publish Custom Office Templates End users"

  1. Hi, im following your post along with microsoft post and i'm not doing something right. and maybe its on the config manager 2007 side i'm confused on.


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