Adding Bundling and Minification to Web Forms

My   B/M tutorial provides a good introduction to benefits of Bundling and Minification. You should read it to become familiar with the bundling and minification. This blog will focus on using B/M with Web Forms, my B/M tutorial focused on ASP.NET MVC.

Create a new ASP.NET Web Forms application which targets the .Net 4.5 framework.


Run the application launch the IE F-12 developer tools. Select the Script tab, then use the assets button to view the JavaScript files.


You can select one of the JavaScript files and view it in the left pane. Note the full (non-minimized version) of the files are used.

Creating the jQuery Bundles

Add jQuery, jQuery.UI and jQuery validation to the  BundleConfig class in the App_Start folder. The following code shows the complete class:

using System.Web.Optimization;

public class BundleConfig
    public static void RegisterBundles(BundleCollection bundles)
        bundles.Add(new ScriptBundle("~/bundles/jquery").Include(

        bundles.Add(new ScriptBundle("~/bundles/jqueryui").Include(

        bundles.Add(new ScriptBundle("~/bundles/jqueryval").Include(

        bundles.Add(new ScriptBundle("~/bundles/WebFormsJs").Include(

        bundles.Add(new ScriptBundle("~/bundles/MsAjaxJs").Include(

        bundles.Add(new ScriptBundle("~/bundles/modernizr").Include(

Register the Bundles

The templates create the code hook up the bundle registration in the Application_Start method in the Global.asax file.

void Application_Start(object sender, EventArgs e)

Reference the Bundles

Add the jQuery bundles to the <asp:PlaceHolder > markup as shown in the following code:
    <asp:PlaceHolder runat="server">        
         <%: Scripts.Render("~/bundles/modernizr") %>
         <%: Scripts.Render("~/bundles/jquery") %>
         <%: Scripts.Render("~/bundles/jqueryui") %>
Comment out the jQuery script references in the ScriptManager tag as shown below:
    <form runat="server">
    <asp:ScriptManager runat="server">
            <asp:ScriptReference Name="jquery" />
            <asp:ScriptReference Name="jquery.ui.combined" />

CSS Bundles

Examine the Bundle.config file, which contains the markup to create CSS style bundles.

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8" ?>
<bundles version="1.0">
  <styleBundle path="~/Content/css">
    <include path="~/Content/Site.css" />
  <styleBundle path="~/Content/themes/base/css">
    <include path="~/Content/themes/base/jquery.ui.core.css" />
    <include path="~/Content/themes/base/jquery.ui.resizable.css" />
    <include path="~/Content/themes/base/jquery.ui.selectable.css" />
    <include path="~/Content/themes/base/jquery.ui.accordion.css" />
    <include path="~/Content/themes/base/jquery.ui.autocomplete.css" />
    <include path="~/Content/themes/base/jquery.ui.button.css" />
    <include path="~/Content/themes/base/jquery.ui.dialog.css" />
    <include path="~/Content/themes/base/jquery.ui.slider.css" />
    <include path="~/Content/themes/base/jquery.ui.tabs.css" />
    <include path="~/Content/themes/base/jquery.ui.datepicker.css" />
    <include path="~/Content/themes/base/jquery.ui.progressbar.css" />
    <include path="~/Content/themes/base/jquery.ui.theme.css" />


You can add your own style bundles to the Bundle.config file.

The following markup shows the CSS bundles and JavaScript bundles referenced. Note that you can multiple bundles in one call to the Render method.

<%: Styles.Render("~/Content/themes/base/css", 
                    "~/Content/css") %>
<%: Scripts.Render("~/bundles/modernizr") %>
<%: Scripts.Render("~/bundles/jquery",
                    "~/bundles/jqueryui") %>

Comments (24)
  1. Kevin J says:

    This is great, unless you don't have the non-minified files. In RC everything worked well. But in the RTM version it looks only for the non minified version and if its not there, then it just ignores it. Any help would be appreciated.

  2. @  Kevin J    non-minified files. In RC everything

    That's not correct. See my tutorial…/bundling-and-minification

  3. Martin de Ruiter says:

    Hi Rick, can the BundleReference control also be used for JS, or only for CSS?

  4. Kevin J says:

    BTW, the same goes for the css files.

    The situation I am talking about is when debug=true

  5. Hao says:

    @ Martin, currently the BundleReference only references CSS

    @ Kevin, you just need to rename the .min files to be something else, Debug = true will ignore *.min by default.

  6. Ravi S says:

    Hi Rick,

    I am trying to change the visual studio 2012 template default location for "MicrosoftAjax.js" file from ~/Scripts/WebForms/MsAjax/MicrosoftAjax.js to ~/ResourceContents/Scripts/WebForms/MsAjax/MicrosoftAjax.js

    I did this change on "BundleConfig" class, But I am getting the error since the rendered content from engine is

    <script src="Scripts/WebForms/MsAjax/MicrosoftAjax.js" type="text/javascript"></script>

    <script type="text/javascript">


    if (typeof(Sys) === 'undefined') throw new Error('ASP.NET Ajax client-side framework failed to load.');


    Not sure why the engine is not able to reference the updated path here.



  7. Ali says:

    use like below

    <script src="~/Scripts/WebForms/MsAjax/MicrosoftAjax.js" type="text/javascript"></script>

  8. I wonder how to bundle css files from App_Themes folder when the web pages use theme. The problem is that adds all css files located in the theme folder automatically into <header> and it's not quite clear how to replace it with the bundling.

    There is a workaround to move css files into other folder and bundle them but in this case you need to add rthem explicetely into all pages which use the theme.

  9. How about Content Delivery Network scenarios? says:


    Thanks for the great article. Kindly clarify below points:

    1. how about cache-ing of Js files in browser? Does it happen because of axd?d=cryption…(hopefully this would be a fixed string of chars, until the resoure location changes?)

    2. Do we have any such crypting for .axd?d=cryption of Images also?

    3. how about content Delivery network (like AKAMAI) – what would be our mapping url – in case we keep all these digital assets ( images, css, js) in another site like (, How do we refer for Dev, and PROD environment seperately?



  10. Rusul says:

    Do I need to add these lines or not?

    <%: Scripts.Render("~/bundles/jqueryval") %>

    <%: Scripts.Render("~/bundles/WebFormsJs") %>

    <%: Scripts.Render("~/bundles/MsAjaxJs") %>

  11. GM says:

    I have used nugget to install System.Web.Optimization and its dependencies.  However, the call in

    Application_Start to BundleConfig.RegisterBundles cannot find the BundleConfig class in App_Start.  I am not using namespaces, so that is not an issue.

  12. Sanjay Patel says:

    How can i add .skin file into bundle ? does it work ?

  13. Roatin Marth says:

    What's the deal with that "Bundle.config" example? I tried placing that file into my app, it was not picked up.

    Who references/parses that file? Is it built-in?

  14. testUser says:

    For bundling and minification of js and css files, does it have to be done on a page by page basis or bundle into one single js and css for the entire website?

  15. Mostafa says:

    How can i add js & css files that are not part of my application, they are not part of my web application by are being loaded by ashx handler. any ideas how to do this.

    Let me clear what i am having: to load a js file, i call myhandler?file=test.js and therefore i get the file content in my response. how can i implement B/M in this ashx in my case.

  16. noontz says:

    I´m having problems combining CDN´s, bundles, azure & IE. Are there any guidelines / limitations

    example :

    <script type="text/javascript" src = "…/script>


  17. Sunil says:

    Hi Rick,

                    I'm  Adding Bundling and Minification to Web Forms  using nuget  Package Manager for a Asp.4.0 web application using visual studio 2010. when i run the application in VIsual studio Css bundling is working fine.After hosting in IIS its giving 404 error. Could you please tell me any settings i need to do in Web config or in IIS for the proper working of CSS bundling after hosting in IIS

  18. Xarol says:

    You rock!  This helped so much.

  19. Sheraz says:

    I used above technique and add my js in similar way but when I change in any js it's not reflecting, I need to clear cache. Is there any help in this regard.

  20. raghugirish says:

    from where to this bundle.config file

  21. Jason says:

    Nice article. One point though for 4.5, If you take the jquery scripts out of scriptmanager you will find asp will add it back in as a duplicate if have a <asp:RequiredFieldValidator or something on your page. This would be for unobtrusive validation on client and Jquery will not work then you'll get script errors. So I would say put any custom bundles in either a placeholder or scriptmanager but leave the jquery bits alone in the scriptmanager. Thanks.

  22. Swamitra says:

    Thanks a tonnn. I was stuck for hours. CSS styles were not loading. Nothing was happening. I checked my layout page syntax and then I checked file names and everything for 100s of times. then I checked BuildConfig file for spell errors. Everything was fine and I was scratching my head. Then I came to your blog. I saw that it needs to call BuildConfid.RegisterBundles() in Global ASAX file. That's the only thing I was missing. Thanks a lot.

  23. Umang Gupta says:

    Not working… even in bundle complete js code is shown as it is.

  24. Umang says:

    Not Working …

    F12 –> Sources, in left side 'bundles' is shown. Expand it, you can see a file with YourBundleName?v=somestring.

    Click on it.

    on the right side, complete js code is shown (same as it is in the js file, no minification / encryption).

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