Expression Web 4 Service Pack 2

We’re pleased to introduce a new service pack for Microsoft Expression Web. Expression Web 4 SP2 focuses on making the editing process easier and faster. It includes improvements in two major areas: 1) workspace configuration and 2) code editing. It also includes a variety of other bug fixes and improvements.

Workspace improvements

Expression Web now supports any number of custom workspaces. You can save, restore and reset workspaces—which are collections of panel configurations. You can find the Workspaces feature on the Panel menu.

With Expression Web 4 SP2, we’ve built custom toolbars into Expression Web. This feature allows you to create any number of custom toolbars using any of the built-in (internal) Expression Web commands. The Custom Toolbars feature is found under the View menu.

Expression Web now provides a preview thumbnail of the currently selected file in the folder list panel. No more hunting around for image dimensions or sizes. In addition, the convenient link text under the size display lets you quickly copy an <img> tag or the CSS dimensions to the clipboard to paste into your markup.

If a CSS file is highlighted, you get clickable links for creating @import and <link> syntax; if a JavaScript file is selected, you can make a <script> tag with a click.

Code Editing Improvements

jQuery is the world’s most popular JavaScript framework. And now, Expression Web users can enjoy one of the best jQuery IntelliSense implementations around. One of the nicest elements of this feature is the intelligence we’ve built into creating selectors. With jQuery, you target methods at HTML elements that are identified using CSS selectors—tags, ID’s and classes.

Expression Web knows the IDs and classes that are available in your document, and will present you with the appropriate list (HTML tags, IDs, or classes), based on what you’ve started typing as a selector. In addition, Expression Web’s jQuery IntelliSense also supports IntelliSense while chaining multiple methods. In jQuery, methods can be executed one after the other within the same expression. In the example below, the css() and prepend() methods are chained, with IntelliSense operating within each chained method.

Our new Snippets panel lets you store and access snippets in a folder-based hierarchy. It comes with dozens of useful snippets in a variety of languages, and will automatically convert and load any existing custom snippets you’ve already built.


Also, the new feature was designed to preserve the ergonomics of the current snippets feature. Ctrl-Enter will bring it to the foreground with focus in the Filter field. Typing will automatically filter the list. You can use the arrow keys to navigate, and hit Enter to insert. Expression Web also now supports “wrap” snippets—where you specify code that goes before and after a selection—as well as the standard “replace” snippets.

A common pain point for web developers is the effort it takes to comment and uncomment bits of code you’re testing. Our Universal Comment/Uncomment feature will comment or uncomment code with Ctrl-j, Ctrl-Shift-j, from within whatever language you’re working with—PHP, JS, CSS, HTML.

Interactive Snapshot

In Expression Web 3 we introduced the Snapshot panel which uses SuperPreview rendering technology to allow you to preview Web pages in any version of IE (and Firefox 3.x) as you’re authoring them. This is great for layout issues, but doesn’t help if you need to test page interactivity. In Web 4 SP2, we’ve added an Interactive mode to our stable of IE renderers (as well as an interactive Firefox 3.x). Interactive mode essentially puts Internet Explorer in a panel, allowing you to see and interact with web pages during the authoring process. Mouse-overs, lightboxes and animations all work. Simply saving your changes triggers a refresh of the panel. IE Interactive uses the current version of Internet Explorer installed on your machine.

We hope you enjoy this new Expression Web service pack. It is available via the download link on the Expression Community site at and will also be delivered via Microsoft update.

Alex Moskwa
Program Manager
Microsoft Expression Web

Comments (26)

  1. Marcello says:


    Do I need to have SP1 installed before I install SP2?


  2. Alex Moskwa says:

    Service Pack 2 is cumulative, so you can install it over either Web 4, or Web 4 SP 1.  You do not need to have Web 4 SP 1 installed first.

    Alex Moskwa

    Program Manager

    Microsoft Expression Web

  3. Tena Certain says:

    Just updated EW4 SP2 and if you are using with Master Pages and have a filtering system set up you may lose the little arrows that allow you to change filter set up.  I am going to support with this, but for now this will let anyone know that they will lose this. Worked fine yesterday, this morning I have zero filter options

  4. Andy says:

    Looks great guys thanks!

  5. Kevin CLarke says:

    Great work guys! I really do like the thumbnail preview, this is a very good move



  6. Matthew says:

    When is Expression Web going to be merged with Microsoft WebMatrix?

  7. TCertain says:

    Is anyone looking into all the issues with the end of this service pack.  I tried to go to the support forum end of EW, but there is no one there that has any idea about using filters (which I lost the use of in SP2), there are plenty of complaints to go on with this update, and it is constantly crashing.  Had to go back to EW3, because of a larger site just so I could open a page that is fed by xml.  Had to uninstall the SP2, just to use it on a smaller site that before I installed SP2, I had no issues with.

  8. PHP bug in SP2? says:

    When embedding a PHP object->attribute an incorrect validation error occurs.


    <img alt="Article image"

    src="admin/mngArticle.php?show=<?=$article->ID?>" >

    This will give you a missing quote error.

    Am I missing something or is this a real bug?

  9. Dario D. says:

    Can you guys examine this:…/737078-need-some-help-fixing-paragraph.html

    I'm a non-coder, and have been dealing with these huge, huge issues since Expression Web 1 (and maybe Front Page before that… can't remember).

    It has been years now that I've been dropping into forums, looking for help for these SAME issues. There are also a number of non-text-related bugs and annoyances that really need to be fixed, but seem to have been flagged on your bug-trackers as "never, ever fix".

  10. Robert says:

    I have been unable to install the Expression Web 4 Service Pack 2 update.  While installing it ask for the original disk which I put in the drive but it cannot find the file it is looking for.  I have tried dozens of times to install this update without success.  Is there a fix.

  11. AmeenSne says:

    For some reason while I'm using any built-in templeate (e.g: Personal 2), I can not edit the master.dwt navigation links using the "hyperlink properties"!

    when I get the hyperlink properties dialog I can change the display Text perfectly, but when I press the OK Button nothing change!

    I'm still can use the code view mode to edit the links manualy.

    this problem didn't apear in Ex.Web ver1,2 and i'm not sure if ver3 did it too!

    Expression Web is the best Web editor ever, Please… dont fail to the competitors!

  12. ... says:

    Can you release a patch that stops Edit>Undo from undoing the last 20 operations? This breaks my workflow because if I need to undo the table I just built, for example, then undoing will undo EVERYTHING I've done in the last hour.

  13. chesterar says:

    Getting back into designing personal low-level sites (ancestry, favorite football team, search for WWII uncle).

    Used to use FrontPage and it had a view I liked and am hoping it's still in WebExpressions: Site Navigation layout.  It showed the hierarchy of your site with visual parent/child/home depictions of the site's structure.

    Is that view still available in WE4?  I've looked but hoping someone knows a tip.



  14. Steven says:

    However, my most favorite feature seems to be missing. What's happened to the 'Format CSS' for automatically optimizing messy CSS files? It's no longer under the 'Format' menu.

  15. Len Burch says:

    It does not work on a Web3 upgrade and provides no means for contacting Microsoft.  No access because your product code is allegedly for the wrong country.  Press button (which is not there) for MS to find it.  Press help and nothing happens.  What a mess of restrictions that do not work.

  16. Jim Cheshire says:


    I assume that you mean a Web 4 upgrade, right? This SP is for Expression Web 4, so you'll need to install it on that version.

    One thing you can do if you have a problem is try the "Full_File" install of a later update, SP2a. You can download that at…/2635101.

    Jim Cheshire


  17. Joe says:

    I agree with the undo issue, just lost 30 min of work.  Don't tell me to save ever time I make a change, make it work like every other program on the planet.

    "Can you release a patch that stops Edit>Undo from undoing the last 20 operations? This breaks my workflow because if I need to undo the table I just built, for example, then undoing will undo EVERYTHING I've done in the last hour."

  18. Jere says:

    I tried to install Expression web 4sp2 on my window 7 laptop and it would not work. Expression web would not open up after the installation is completed. It worked before I tried to install the update. Thanks.


  19. Joe says:

    Forced to switch to another web editor because of the undo bug.

    I lose to much work because of this bug, it's unfortunate because I've really liked using this product.

    The undo button will not undo the last change but a random amount of changes.

  20. expression web user says:


    any update on expression web since sp2.

  21. Nevin House says:

    Will any service packs be made available for the free version of Expression Web 4?  This SP2 does not install with the free edition.

  22. Lori Dirks says:

    Nevin, the free version of Expression Web 4 includes all of the updates in SP2, along with a couple of other small fixes.



  23. Shimon Haber says:

    Any mew updates available? – <a href="…/225">Shimon Haber</a>

  24. Danton says:

    I can't install SP1 or SP2.  I keep getting an error message stating that the service pack I am trying to install can't be installed because the program is either missing or I have the wrong version.  I have never had this problem before.

  25. Alex Moskwa says:


    You should try installing the free version of Expression Web.  It includes what was in SP1 and SP2.…/details.aspx

    Alex Moskwa

    Program Manager @ Microsoft

Skip to main content