Abhishek Bhowmick | SharePoint Blog

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.


16 Responses

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  1. Adrienne said, on December 2, 2008 at 12:04 am

    I tried this and it didn’t work. Do you have any other suggestions?

  2. Abhishek Bhowmick said, on December 2, 2008 at 12:58 am

    Looks like this may be a permission issue or a file not present at all. We will need to check a couple of things like whether the default.aspx page is present at all or not. For this you will need to open the Sharepoint site in the web folder view and check for the default.aspx file. You could also do this using the Sharepoint Designer to open the site and check for the default.aspx. If not copy the default.aspx file from a different site location and paste it there. Also check if the site is not a root site collection, whether it inherits permission from the parent site or if there is a broken permission for the site. Hope this helps.

  3. Aby said, on December 2, 2008 at 10:35 pm

    For the root site opens if we don’t give default.aspx. But few subsites are not opening.Default.aspx file is existing for those sites. If we add default.aspx manually at the end of the site it opens…..
    Please help.


  4. Abhishek Bhowmick said, on December 3, 2008 at 12:36 am

    In this case we may need to re-register the aspnet for the server. Run this command in C:\WINDOWS\Microsoft.NET\Framework\v2.0.50727>aspnet_regiis -r. This updates all of the script maps in the IIS metabase and below to point to the ASP.NET ISAPI version that is associated with Aspnet_regiis.exe. All existing script maps are updated to point to the ASP.NET ISAPI version that is associated with the ASP.NET IIS Registration tool, regardless of the current version. Try the steps in the blog post above again and check for results.

  5. Manuel Cerdas said, on February 27, 2009 at 12:22 am

    Worked like a cham! In my case I was installing Codl Fusion 8 and it messed up that seeting in my sites. Dindn’t have a clue until I found your blog


  6. Abhishek Bhowmick said, on February 27, 2009 at 1:46 pm

    It is always been a pleasure when my posts assist people in troubleshooting. I seek active participation from all readers to make this blog grow! Thank you…

  7. Jimmy said, on April 1, 2009 at 10:10 am

    I have a bit of an unusual issue. If I am on a domain computer, sharepoint works like a champ; however, if i am on a nondomain computer, sometimes it works to use the default.aspx and sometimes it still just does not work.

  8. Hueby said, on April 17, 2009 at 7:49 pm

    Same issue as Aby above, ran the re-register on both FE’s as you mentioned, then performed the remove / Add / reset on the isapi.dll as explained above. still getting an “http 500 internal server error” only on 2 child sites about 3 levels down from the top of the site collection.

    add the default.aspx to the end and they work. all other child sites and parents work as expected and new sites added at the same child level work. Have even reset the sites to the site definition, default master pages and confirmed the default page is really set as “home” nothing seems to fix these sites. all permissions for these two sites are inherited from its parent.

    this error also prevents the sites from being stsadm -export/import throws error:
    (this is how we stumbled upon the error, the user wanted their site moved elsewhere, then mentioned the site links did not work until they entered default.aspx)

    userIndex) at System.Data.DataRowCollection.get_Item(Int32 index) at Microsoft.SharePoint.Deployment.ObjectHelper.RetrieveDataFromDatabase(ExportObject exportObject) at Microsoft.SharePoint.Deployment.FolderObjectHelper.RetrieveData(ExportObject exportObject) at Microsoft.SharePoint.Deployment.ExportObjectManager.GetObjectData(ExportObject exportObject) at Microsoft.SharePoint.Deployment.ExportObjectManager.MoveNext() at Microsoft.SharePoint.Deployment.ExportObjectManager.ExportObjectEnumerator.MoveNext() at Microsoft.SharePoint.Deployment.SPExport.SerializeObjects() at Microsoft.SharePoint.Deployment.SPExport.Run() at Microsoft.SharePoint.Publishing.Internal.DeploymentWrapper.Copy(String[] sourceSmtObjectIds, String destSmtObjectId) at Microsoft.SharePoint.Publishing.Internal.WebControls.CopyObjects.Copy() at Microsoft.SharePoint.Publishing.Internal.WebControls.CopyObjects.DoWork() at Microsoft.SharePoint.Publishing.Internal.LongRunningOperationJob.<>c__DisplayClass16.<ThreadEntryPoint>b__11() at Microsoft.Office.Server.Diagnostics.FirstChanceHandler.ExceptionFilter(Boolean fRethrowException, TryBlock tryBlock, FilterBlock filter, CatchBlock catchBlock, FinallyBlock finallyBlock)

    Any assistance you or anyone can offer is much appreciated.


  9. Hueby said, on April 17, 2009 at 7:52 pm

    sorry, missed first line of error msg…. here it is:
    There is no row at position 0.System.IndexOutOfRangeException: There is no row at position 0. at System.Data.RBTree`1.GetNodeByIndex(Int32 userIndex)…..

  10. Ewoud Smit said, on August 13, 2009 at 1:04 am

    One addition to above solution is to make sure when inserting the above DLL you leave the checkbox to verify the image unchecked. Otherwise you will get 404 errors when accessing the site.

  11. Kamaldeep said, on November 4, 2009 at 12:32 pm

    I am not able to see any file by the name of “aspnet_isapi.dll” when I browse.. any help !!!

    • Kamaldeep said, on November 4, 2009 at 2:40 pm

      Thanks, I only missed out certain point in the above article.. but the said article does not helped me and did not resolved the issue.

      Any Help !!!

  12. Andy said, on June 22, 2010 at 1:16 pm

    Thanks man, it worked. In my case the dll was missing altogether!

  13. Deep said, on December 29, 2010 at 8:34 am

    Thanks a lot. I was having issue with sharepoint site and it did the trick for me. Thanks much !!

  14. ProdigyDK said, on September 9, 2011 at 9:55 am

    When I tried it, my site broke. We had to uncheck the ‘check if file exists’ checkbox to start the website. The trick didn’t work for me though.

  15. Greg said, on December 13, 2011 at 2:06 am

    Repair “site collection” root
    My root site collection is broken.
    So I’ve tried to create a new one using Central Admin and it doesn’t work. (getting unknown error)
    I’ve tried to open the site collection root using the SharePoint designer; I cannot.
    I’ve thought the default.aspx file has been deleted by mistake but how I can copy a new one (using SharePoint designer I cannot)?

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