Tag Archives: IIS

Convert a Folder to an Application on a Remote IIS Host

The topic recently came up of the best way to convert a folder to an application on remote shared hosting server. Some hosts may have this built-in to their control panel. I know many (like Cytanium) have options in the control panel to create Virtual Directories, but sometimes an application specifically needs its folder to be marked as a literal “application” within IIS.

Since I’m most familiar with Cytanium’s shared hosting I’ll use their service as a base in this example.

Within the Cytanium control panel first make sure that you have enabled Remote Management. This feature will allow you to directly connect from IIS Manager running on a remote server to the IIS service running on the hosting server.

Enable Remote Management of your shared hosting site

From your Website Properties page in the control panel, click on the Management tab (red box above), fill in the information for the new account you want to create for managing the site (blue boxes above), then click Enable (green box above). After a moment or two you will have Remote Management enabled for your shared site.

Next you set up the connection from your local IIS Manager service. If you don’t already have this installed, grab a copy here.

Open your IIS Manager and choose the option to Connect to Site. Do *not* choose Connect to Server (it won’t work) unless you have full administrative access to the server, which won’t be the case with shared web site hosting.


Specify the connection information. This should be the name of the server in which to connect (your host can clarify this for you) and the *exact* name of the site within IIS – the host can also clarify this for you if you don’t already know. The name should not have http:// and it may or may not match the domain name of the site, so if you can’t connect, the first thing I’d do it confirm these two settings.


Assuming the IIS Remote Management service is running and enabled for the site, the next dialog box you see will be asking you for your username and password information (which, in this example, we set in the Cytanium control panel above).


You might get a certificate warning (you will at Cytanium). As long as you trust the source (and I sure hope you trust your host if they’re supporting your site for you :>) you can click Connect and move to the next screen.


On this last screen it is going to ask you to name the connection. You can leave it as the name of the site or give it a name that has more meaning to you – it doesn’t matter technically and is only a reference that will be displayed in your IIS Manager.


Viola! Your connected now!

Here is what it will now look like in the IIS Manager GUI. Note also that I’ve drawn a red box around the folder that we’re going to convert to an application.


Right click on the folder and choose Deploy -> Convert to Application.


You’ll now see that the icon next to the folder has changed to denote that it is an active “application” within IIS.


That’s it – your done! That folder is now an application and should work exactly as-if you had made the changes locally on the server.

By the way, you might want to poke around with the other features you can manage from the Remote IIS Manager tool. Depending on what your web host has enabled, this is a nice way to make configuration changes to your IIS hosted site.

Happy hosting!

IIS/ASP.Net Install Error “The referenced assembly is not installed on your system”

Guest post from Rick Barber from OrcsWeb today…

While attempting to install IIS through role services with other than the default options checked or ASP.Net under IIS in role services on Windows Server 2008 and 2008 R2 you may come across errors like the one below; ‘Attempt to install XXX failed with error code 0x800736B3.  The referenced assembly is not installed on your system.’


After little success trying a variety of ‘fixes,’ I came across this KB article:


Once I downloaded and installed the proper hotfix, I was able to install IIS and ASP.Net on my Windows 2008 R2 server.


Happy hosting!

Basic IIS Performance Statistics

There are some neat counters available in Windows Performance Monitor for showing some IIS (Internet Information Server) statistics. My three favorites are:

  1. Current Anonymous Users: This counter shows the number of current anonymous HTTP connections. Since most web sites serve content to anonymous users, it’s the one that seems to make the most sense to me when trying to gauge current traffic / activity on the site.
  2. Anonymous Users / Second: This counter shows the data above, but how many connections per second those site visitors are generating.
  3. Maximum Anonymous Users: This counter just show the peak number of anonymous users that were connected at a single time. Sometimes it’s neat to see where the site activity peaked.

How do you see these? Here are the steps and screenshots:

First find the Performance Monitor by clicking the Start Menu then Administrative Tools then Performance Monitor:

Find PerfMon


Then click on Performance Monitor in the left-hand pane under Monitoring Tools. After that you are presented with the graph window and you can click the green plus icon to add counters to this window (play around and different counters – there is a LOT of really neat information available).


After clicking the green plus icon, you are presented with a huge list of counter groups. Within each of those groups are individual counters. There are a ton – you really do need to just play around and check out the options.

For web (IIS) counters though, look for the group named Web Service and click the plus sign next to it to expand and show the individual counters.


After you add the counters you’ll see them listed at the bottom of the graph window, along with the color of each counter so you can match them easily.


There you go. Play around and have some fun checking out what type of traffic is hitting your site and how well the server is performing.

Happy hosting!

Does anyone manually install IIS anymore?

Microsoft has made installing – and doing the initial base configuration of – Internet Information Services (IIS) ridiculously easy by using the Web Platform Installer (WebPI).

Open WebPI, select Products in the top menu bar, then select Server in the left menu bar, then choose the IIS Recommended Configuration. What’s installed/configured with the IIS Recommended Configuration install?

  • Static Content
  • Default Document
  • Directory Browsing
  • HTTP Errors
  • HTTP Logging
  • Logging Tools
  • Request Monitor
  • .NET Extensibility
  • Request Filtering
  • Static Content Compression
  • ISAPI Extensions
  • ISAPI Filters
  • WAS Process Model
  • Management Console
  • WAS Configuration API
  • WAS .NET Environment
  • .NET 4.5 Extended with ASP.NET for Windows 8
  • .NET 3.5 for Windows 8

Let WebPI install all these things for you and you’re pretty much ready to roll. A few other things you might want to install on your web server afterward (also through WebPI) are:

  • Web Deploy
  • URL Rewrite
  • FTP Publishing

Happy hosting!

Brad on Google+

Can you run WordPress on Windows? Sure, it works great!

Did you know that WordPress works – and works great – on Microsoft Windows? Sure, WordPress runs on top of PHP and MySQL, which are commonly thought to be related to Linux, but they work perfectly on Windows Server also. In fact, this blog post that you’re reading right now is running via WordPress on Windows, MySQL, and PHP.

Here’s a blog post by Artur at OrcsWeb showing a walk-through of installing WordPress on Windows Server.

As you can see in the post, Microsoft’s WPI (Web Platform Installer) makes it super-easy even for non-administrators.

Happy hosting!