Load balancing the certificates on a WSS may cause errors…

Which we found out when we tried to use load balancing for the https and certification. What we want to do is to let the load balancer redirect to any of the two frontend webservers, and not create the certificates directly onto the IIS sites (as usual). So we entered the https URL in the AAM, but we did not create a cert or activate the 443 port on the web application. But when we tried to access the https URL in our browser, we got two login prompts – the first against the https and then a login for the http URL! We changed every setting, tried different configurations, but still we could see in the logfiles that there was a redirect from incoming https to http! WTF? We even created a certificate on one of the IIS web apps just to be sure that the site was working. And that was no problem at all. Of course. No errors in configuration there 🙂 Got a mail from my collegue with a link that describes this error on MS site:
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc288609.aspx#section6

This is a part of the error description that MS gives on the link above:

“Note: Installing the Infrastructure Update for Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 in a Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 farm that uses alternate access mappings with a reverse proxy or a network load balancer, such as in an extranet deployment, may cause some public URLs to become unresponsive. Microsoft is aware of this issue and is developing a solution. Before installing the Infrastructure Update for Windows SharePoint Services 3.0, customers who use this configuration should use a test environment to verify that public URLs remain accessible after the update is installed. “

No wonder. The funny thing about this is that when you have installed the infrastructure update, – there is no return! You cannot remove it. (And you do want all updates when you install the server for sure.) So I think it is a bit late for “verify that public URLs remain accessible after the update is installed” once you’ve installed the update. Even on a test server…

Menu customization in WSS

I activated flyout menus on a WSS site today, and everything works fine – except ONE thing.. Why is it always like that with Sharepoint that when you win some – you loose some?? I have branded the menu and before I activated flyouts, the selected menu (that is, the ACTIVE menu) was showing the right background image (a darker image). But after – and this is interesting – the selected menu does not display the “over” image but instead it is the “Home” menu that looks like the selected one. I wrote my own class in my css file to make it override but that did not effect the style so I probably have to explore the sp asp menu object a bit more…

Victory over SBS, YES!

Yes, today I have been fighting with a customers small business server – but I won!! What I did? The most dreaded – uninstalled WSS 2 on a SBS server and installed a fresh WSS 3 version. Everything went perfect until I wanted to give the new portal a hostname. Did not work. Every hostname or IP just redirected to the ugly Companyweb (even if I updated AAM in CA). Crazy. I ended up adding a new IP-address to the server and dedicate the new portal to that address instead. Removed all “old” shit in the IIS like old application STS-pools and stuff. In this order: added a new IP, added a new record in DNS pointing to that IP, changed the IIS web site to the new IP, added a new AAM-record in Central Administration. IISreset. Worked like a charm 🙂 You just have to do things in the correct order, or everything will freak out. Now I just need a SSL cert and all is done. And me too…