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Yet More NT Problems - 6/24/00

Since the recent NT fiasco triggered by the IP address changes, I've turned up some additional problems that I missed after reinstalling IIS. All search capability has disappeared. When I un installed IIS all the virtual directories that were created during the IIS install were erased except one I'd renamed because it had customized search forms. Where previous installs had included everything I thought I might ever want to look at, this last had only features that were being used. Obviously some things were not put back and what was put back didn't necessarily end up where it had been before or where I wanted it. I may have changed the document root from \inetpub to \inetpub\wwwroot.

When I restored the original name for the directory with the customized forms, not surprisingly they no longer worked. I put back the missing scripts where they had been from backups but this did not fix the problem. I then went through Microsoft Management Console and checked all the virtual directory settings. The virtual directory names used to form the URL pointed to the physical directories that were restored. The read, execute and security setting all look fine but the result is always "The specified procedure could not be found." In the application settings under configuration, the extension of the script is mapped to the .DLL which exists where the settings indicate. I have no idea how I'll fix this one but what I used to see as one of IIS's strengths in a stable server environment has become a major liability in an environment that's frequently changing.

The other problem is that on one of the virtual sites that's a mirror of a client site, an odd file extension is used for a number of HTML documents. Whenever Netscape requests one of these on the NT workstation, the NT server, or the Linux PC, it wants to save the file to disk rather than display it. IE displays these files normally and Netscape did before the fiasco. For some reason the server is not putting a mime type or is putting the wrong mime type in the headers that it's returning to the browser. When Netscape gets a file with no mime type or one it doesn't understand, it always saves it to disk. IE apparently looks at the contents of unknown mime types and if they appear to be text or HMTL documents, goes ahead and displays them.

Not surprisingly, there was no mime type for the odd extension in the IIS 4 setup. There must have been one before because this site used to work fine with Netscape. I put a new mime type entry in the file types for the WWW service master properties and stopped and restarted the service via the control panel. I also cleared the browser cache and exited and restarted Netscape but the same behavior continued.

Normally when you make a change at a higher level in MMC it gives you an opportunity to pick which lower level objects to apply the change to. It did not in this case. Also for most properties the lower levels get a copy of the higher level if you chose to apply it to the lower level. With mime types, the service has a long list and all the lower level sites and directories have an empty mime type list. They surely appear to be using the services master list so you would expect adding a mime type to the master list would automatically apply it to the lower level.

When adding the new mime type to the service master list didn't make any difference, I added it to the site level properties and restarted that site. This fixed the problem. This site has only one odd mime type in its list yet it continues to serve all the standard mime types for which it has no entries. It must be using the master list but somehow doesn't pick up a new entry in the master list. I don't get it.

There's a new problem on my NT workstation too. A few days ago the SDSL line was installed. It worked for two days and then the router failed. I'm waiting for a replacement to be delivered right now. Previously the workstation always connected to the Internet via a modem. While the DSL line was working it connected through the LAN. When the DSL stopped working I had to use the modem again. Now every time I connect with the modem I have to change the setting for how to access the Internet and then switch it back when I disconnect. If I leave the connect via modem setting in place, every time I try to access a web site on one of the servers on the LAN it pops up a dialog box and wants to dial out. It doesn't seem to understand that computers on the same subnet are local.

That's not all. When I don't have a modem connection and have the connection setting to connect to the Internet through the LAN, it pops up a dialog box every few minutes and wants to dial out. It says it can't find "NT". NT is the host name for my NT server which is a primary domain controller and my workstation is part of that domain. The workstation HAS to connect to the PDC via IP because TCP/IP is the only networking protocol defined on NT. I always have NT server drives mapped on the workstation so it's continuously connected to NT but something on the workstation keeps saying it can't find NT. Ping reaches NT with no problem. The workstation or perhaps IE seems to have become confused about what is the LAN and what's the Internet.

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