Saturday, March 5, 2016

Enable Web Administrator Tool in Visual Studio 2015

I stumble upon a dilemma in enabling the great Web Administrator Tool in visual studio 2015 which is a no longer an accessible component in Visual Studio 2013 and 2015. The cause of that is that they removed the Visual Studio Development Server from the product.

There was a great article on Microsoft MSDN in how to get it back. As apparent from the too many comments in that post, the ended up with it not working (including me at first). Here are the steps as in the article and below each one I will point out the error.

  1. Open the Command Prompt (not as administrator)
    • I repeat not as administrator
  2. Navigate to the folder where IIS Express is installed on your machine.
    • usually it is in "Program Files\IIS Express"
  3. In the command line spin up a IISExpress site with the following prompt: iisexpress.exe /path:C:\Windows\Microsoft.NET\Framework\v4.0.30319\ASP.NETWebAdminFiles /vpath:/ASP.NETWebAdminFiles /port:[port] /clr:4.0 /ntlm using the following values for the [param]
    • [port] – any port you have free in IISExpress (I use 8082 in the example below)
    • remove the extra spaces in line with /clr: and /path:
    • remove the quotations marks around /ASP.NETWebAdminFiles
  4. This should launch an IISExpress instance of the Configuration Manager Site
  5. Open your browser
  6. In the URL enter the following http://localhost:8082/asp.netwebadminfiles/default.aspx?applicationPhysicalPath=[appPath]&applicationUrl=/
    • [appPath] is the absolute path to the Visual Studio Project folder with the solution file in it.
With this you will have a flawless initiation of Web Administrator Tool.

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