I haven’t blogged in a while, mainly because work has been busy and I have been administering new servers for a project going live soon.

Those servers have led to this quick blog entry, if you enjoy a good rant, read on.

For this new project one of the developers informed me that they needed ISAPI rewrite to work.

No Problem, I thought, until I found out that this works different for IIS7 and onwords than what I have been used to. (I haven’t really spent much time on Windows Servers for the last year or so since I passed them on to other members of my team.

For this project I am working with Server 2008, and IIS7.5.

Issue is, that URL rewrites is not installed in IIS by default in the latest version of Microsofts Web Publishing Service. To get URL rewrites to work you have the option of either installing one of a few commercially available third party add-on modules, OR you can install RewriteModule built by Microsoft themselves.

I have a personal rule when working with servers: “If a vendor provided native module is available, try it before trying third-party modules.”

Following this rule I went with RewriteModule, and that is where the trouble started.

First off, I had to install the module via Internet Explorer with the Microsoft Web Installer. Off went the firewall to allow the server to connect to the Microsoft Installer service.

Let the installer run, and go through the hoops of installing.

Restart IIS, and lo and behold the MODULE IS NOT THERE. Faan[censored]tastic.

Tool around forums to find a solution, or pointer in a direction of any kind, no luck. I guess I have been pampered by the Open Source community and their helpful and complete guides that are just a Google search away.

I decide to knuckle down and try and find the problem myself.

I see the module is listed as “Native” when I list the IIS add-ons, but no URLRewrite module is visible in the IIS admin interface.

Troll around some more and I go back to the Web Installer, maybe the installation did not complete? I retry the installation, it downloads the complete package, extracts it, and a ONLY THEN [censored] tells me that the module is already installed.


Dig around some more and find the 64bit MSI installer.

I decide to uninstall the previous module and add the 64bit version manually. Remove the RewriteModule, and find that Microsoft Web Installer has [censored] installed the [censored] 32bit MODULE.

Way to go folks.

Remove the 32bit version of RewrideModule for IIS, and NOW THE [censored] server wants to reboot!

Really, Server2008 is supposed to be an operating system for high availability environments. How is it [censored] high availability if it has to reboot every time something important needs to be done on the bloody thing?

Anyhow, installing the 64bit MSI fixed the issue, the module was now available, save for that I had to give one of the developers remote desktop access to the server to set up his rewrite rules.

The mind boggles.

Ps, if you have noted the [censored] all over my post, it is my tiny little protest against SOPA, and below is my protest against the new Secrecy Bill that the South African Government is pushing through into law:


Have fun folks.

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