Due to the brand new HTML editor in Visual Studio 2013, static HTML files no longer has the Design|Split|Source options enabled by default.

Design, Split and Source view

That’s because the new HTML editor is the default editor for all HTML files with the exception of ASP.NET Web Forms files (.aspx, .ascx, .master). However, it is only the Web Forms editor that has support for the designer and split view.

So all we have to do is to map our .html or .htm files to use the Web Forms editor instead of the new HTML editor.

Simply right-click any .html/.htm file in Solution Explorer and select Open With…

Open With context menu

Now select HTML (Web Forms) Editor,click Set as Defaultand then hit OK.

Visual Studio's Open With dialog

All files with the same extension will now always open in the Web Forms editor and you get both Design- and Split view.

I also recorded a short video showing a different way to accomplish the same thing.


Comment by mipe

Html(web forms) editor does not support new features of vs2013. It is a disappointment for me.
I can open aspx file in new html editor but webforms controls are not supported. I dont need designer mode. Is there any way to use the new HTML editor for WebForms with supporting webforms controls?


Comment by Mads Kristensen

Unfortunately not. Web Forms editing requires very deep and complex ties to both the ASP.NET runtime, control libraries and FrontPage components. Moving it was not an option without compromising modern features.

Comment by Mark Nash

Did you just mention the F word Mads? I was hoping any FP code had long been expunged from any product and/or source repositories.

Cheers. Love VS2013

Mark Nash

Comment by Nick Coombs

Thanks for clearing this up. Just love it when Micro$oft makes improvements like this.

Nick Coombs