Abhishek Bhowmick | SharePoint Blog

Unable to connect the Virtual PCs to the internet in Windows Server 2003

Posted in Virtual PC by Abhishek Bhowmick on November 30, 2008

This is a common situation we all virtual techies face when we use Microsoft’s Virtual PC when we need to the internet traffic from the host system to your virtual machines.  There is this blog which gives us a clear explanation what happens and how does it work under the hood (Link to the source blog mentioned below).

Normally using Shared Networking is very simple.  You just enable it and set the guest operating system to use DHCP – and everything works.  This is not the case with a Windows Server 2003 guest though.  The problem is that Shared Networking configures the guest operating system to use the same DNS servers as are used by the physical computer.  However – all DNS packets are actually returned from ‘192.168.131.254’ – which is the virtual gateway used by Shared Networking.  Windows Server 2003 looks at the DNS packet, sees that it is coming from a source other than the DNS server it requested the information from, and rejects it.  A simple fix for this is to manually assign the DNS server inside the virtual machine to 192.168.131.254 – then everything will work just fine.

Source: http://blogs.msdn.com/virtual_pc_guy/archive/2005/01/06/347965.aspx

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Unable to add active directory users to the sharepoint groups

Posted in Sharepoint by Abhishek Bhowmick on November 27, 2008

This was something really new we figured out while working on this sharepoint site.  We were unable to add the active directory users to the exisiting sharepoint groups in the site.  We encountered the following error message “Operation aborted (Exception from HRESULT: 0x80004004 (E_ABORT)”. We had no clue where to look at and how to move ahead! Had some SQL expert advice on this one and eventually figured out the cause. This is how we progressed to resolution…

We edited the web.config file of the affected virtual server in the IIS and set the value for “CallStack” as true and set the value for “Custom Error” as off.  We saved the file and reset the IIS.  We tried to reproduce the error again and found the following error thread as follows:

Operation aborted (Exception from HRESULT: 0x80004004 (E_ABORT))   at Microsoft.SharePoint.Library.SPRequestInternalClass.UpdateMembers(String bstrUrl, Guid& pguidScopeId, Int32 lGroupID, Int32 lGroupOwnerId, Object& pvarArrayAdd, Object& pvarArrayAddIds, Object& pvarArrayLoginsRemove, Object& pvarArrayIdsRemove, Boolean bSendEmail) at Microsoft.SharePoint.Library.SPRequest.UpdateMembers(String bstrUrl, Guid& pguidScopeId, Int32 lGroupID, Int32 lGroupOwnerId, Object& pvarArrayAdd, Object& pvarArrayAddIds, Object& pvarArrayLoginsRemove, Object& pvarArrayIdsRemove, Boolean bSendEmail)

Upon research found that there is option in the SQL Server Instance called XACT_ABORT under Default Connection Options which needs to be unchecked.  How would we do that?  Follow these simple steps.  Open the SQL Server Management Studio and check for the properties of the SQL Server Instance.  Select Connection and under Default Connection Options, uncheck XACT_ABORT and save changes.  Now that we are done with this we were able to add the users from the active directory to the existing sharepoint groups with no errors.

Here is the cause explained:

When SET XACT_ABORT is ON, if a Transact-SQL statement raises a run-time error, the entire transaction is terminated and rolled back. So, if we look at a sharePoint content database, if SQL runs into a transaction that fails, it will roll the changes back, essentially editing the database. If you break the role inheritance on a group you get two membership adherence lines into the database for that group and then when you try to add new users, and you get a SQL exception error, something like ” Violation of PRIMARY KEY constraint “Webmembers_PK”. Cannot insert duplicate key in object ‘dbo.members’. SharePoint functionality is not hindered by this error message but if the “xact abort” SQL option is enabled on the SQL server in the properties of the default instance under connections, then the transaction is rolled back by the SQL server and this generates a HRESULT abort error in SharePoint. This option is turned unchecked by default.

Unable to open sharepoint sites without default.aspx

Posted in Sharepoint by Abhishek Bhowmick on November 27, 2008

There was this case that we were working on where the user was unable to open the sharepoint sites using the site url viz. http://sharepoint and gets the error message “HTTP 404 – Page not found”.  But when the users types in “default.aspx” at the end of the specified url viz. http://sharepoint/default.aspx the site just comes up fine.  This issue is multi-faceted but the resolution that we figured out in our case was to get the aspnet.isapi.dll added to the IIS virtual server’s Home Directory.  How do we do that?

Here it is… Open Internet Information Services and right click the website (virtual server) and click properties.  In the properties dialogue box click on the tab Home Directory.  Under Application Settings click on the Configuration button.  Under Wildcard Application Maps check whether there is an entry like “C:\WINDOWS\Microsoft.NET\Framework\v2.0.50727\aspnet_isapi.dll”.  Select it and remove it. Click on the Insert button and browse to the correct Aspnet installation folder viz. “C:\WINDOWS\Microsoft.NET\Framework\v2.0.50727”and select the file aspnet_isapi.dll.  Save changes and reset the IIS.  And you’re done!  Try the sharepoint site url without the “default.aspx” this time and you’re back in business.

Note: This is one side of a resolution that worked for us but however there may be other causes for the site to not load without manually entering “default.aspx” which may need another approach for troubleshooting.

Unable to save .pdf files to Sharepoint document library

Posted in Sharepoint by Abhishek Bhowmick on November 20, 2008

Unable to save .pdf files from Adobe Acrobat Reader to the Sharepoint Document Library.  As per http://support.microsoft.com/kb/265867/en-us this is a known issue and the workaround is mentioned in the Microsoft KB article.  During troubleshooting it is discovered there is another way this can be done.

For this we first need to ensure that WebDav is enabled in Web Service Extensions in the IIS.  Also make sure that the WebClient service is running in the Services.msc in Windows Server 2003.  Once we have this done, we add a network place using the UNC path.  For instance, if your document library url is http://sharepoint/documents then type in the path as \\sharepoint\documents and this would ask for your valid credentials.  Once you enter your credentials, a network share folder would be created in your My Network Places.  Now you can open your favorite .pdf files in the Adobe Acrobar Reader and save a copy of it directly into the Sharepoint Document Library using the netwrok share in My Network Places.

Note:  The above procedure can be used only to create network shares for folder in the Sharepoint site running on port 80 only.  This is because Web Folders are created for other port numbers and as per the above quoted Microsoft KB article, it is a known issue that .pdf files cannot be saved.  This applies to all non Office applications like .jpg, .rtf etc…

Users prompted for credentials three times for every link on Central Administration page

Posted in Sharepoint by Abhishek Bhowmick on November 20, 2008

I happened to bump into this issue today.  Users prompted for credentials three times for every link on Central Administration page and upon clicking “OK” three times after entering the credentials, the user gets to the next page.  Installing Windows Server 2003 Service Pack 2 again resolves the issue.  There is no cause identified but this happened during the course of troubleshooting.  I hope this helps others too…

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