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Configuring ASP.NET on IIS in Windows 8

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I've installed web applications on various IIS versions on different Windows platforms and I always find some task to be annoying. Here are some common issues and how to get it resolved. This post is specific to IIS 6 and Windows 8. I will keep this post up to date as possible as I encounter or think about them.

Problem 1

  • By default, if you're using an App Pool that is set to ApplicationPoolIdentity as the process model identity, you will get an error if your connection string is set to IntegratedSecurity=true. This means that the authentication is tied to the local credentials.

    Solutions

    a.) Set it to false and configure/grant an actual user to connect to your local SQL Database instance. This can be configured in SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS).

    b.) Set the process model identity in the Application Pool, instead of built-in account to a custom account using your Windows credentials.

Problem 2

  • If you're getting a 401 (unauthorized access) to static resources (CSS, JS, etc.), this means that the default account for IIS doesn't have the permission to read these files.

    Solutions

    a.) You can go to IIS manager and select the website and go to the Authentication > Anonymous Authentication and make sure that it's enabled (at a minimum, it needs to be enabled) AND set to a user that has permission. By default, it uses IUSR for permitting anonymous access.

    b.) You can also go to the website project itself in your local directory and add IUSR to the list of accounts that are permitted to read the website directory. Right click on the project and Properties > Security > Edit. By going with this approach, you can keep the anonymous authentication to the Application pool identity since the permission is given or set to the built-in user account.

Side notes

  • In Windows 8, the command aspnet_regiis -i doesn't work anymore so if you don't have ASP.NET 4.x installed, adding it can be accomplished by going to the Programs and Features > Turn Windows features on or off then look for ASP.NET 4.x. Feel free to refer to this article for more information about this.

Feel free to comment or offer some insight if you find this post valuable or have encountered issues outside of what I highlighted in this post.

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