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Webadmin.axd replacement / deploying vs 2005 "Web site administration tool"

Posted on 2006-05-15
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It seems like the Webadmin.axd tool was removed to vs 2005 during public beta 2. I haven't had any success finding out what the replacement is supposed to be.

I understand that the Webadmin.axd file mapped to a virtual directory but it also seems like the <WebSiteAdministrationTool> section was removed.

Has anyone had success deploying the "web site administration tool"? I'm running several different sites on a Windows 2000 server. I've been able to successfully manage the different users and roles from a common database with no problems using the configuration settings but I'd like to be able to deploy a version of the web site administration tool for each site that can only see their users and roles (hopefully one that they could eventually deploy on their own server).

Any help would be greatly appreciated.
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Question by:BrentHemple
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TornadoV earned 1500 total points
ID: 16685087
Create your own WebAdmin link outside of Visual Studio 2005:

WARNING: THIS HAS NOT BEEN THOROUGHLY TESTED.  USE AT OWN RISK.

Create a virtual directory at the root of your default website
Name the virtual WebAdmin
Set the Path of the Virtual Directory to "C:\WINDOWS\Microsoft.NET\Framework\v2.0.50727\ASP.NETWebAdminFiles" where 50727 is the appropriate build version for your installed .NET 2.0 framework.
After the Virtual Directory has been created, right click on the Virtual Directory and got to properties.  Select the ASP.NET tab and make sure the ASP.NET version is set to a 2.0 version.
Open a browser and browse to the following url:
http://localhost/webadmin/default.aspx?applicationPhysicalPath=D:\wwwroot\timetracker\&applicationUrl=/YourAppName
Make sure to change the applicationPhysicalPath and applicationUrl querystring parameters to match whatever they are on your system.
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Author Comment

by:BrentHemple
ID: 16685311
That seems to work but I have multiple sites hosted on the same server for different domain names. Is it possible to programmatically set the applicationPhysicalPath and application url in the web.config for each so I could use:

http://www.firstdomain.com/some_application/webadmin
http://www.seconddomain.com/another_application/webadmin

I'm pretty sure it's possible I just don't know what the key would be.

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Author Comment

by:BrentHemple
ID: 16685340
One other thing... I'd really like to be able to control access using forms authentication. For example, there was a configuation section:

<WebSiteAdministrationTool>
   <authorization>
    <allow roles="Administrators"/>
    <deny users="*"/>
   </authorization>
</ WebSiteAdministrationTool>
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Expert Comment

by:TornadoV
ID: 16685417
Why don't you create another app with one page that would take care of redirecting to a proper domain name based on a querystring passed in URL?  

You can also specify your access rules right in there.

I mean something like

if request is coming with valid credentials for http://your custom web admin redirect app?app=firstApp

then redirect to:
http://localhost/webadmin/default.aspx?applicationPhysicalPath="Physical Path to your first domain app"\&applicationUrl=/FirstApp

else redirect to another app:

http://localhost/webadmin/default.aspx?applicationPhysicalPath="Physical Path to your second domain app"\&applicationUrl=/SecondApp


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Author Comment

by:BrentHemple
ID: 16685479
I want them to be able to access the administration page remotely so they can do it on their own administration without access to the server. It also needs to be able to be hosted eventually on a commercial hosting provider. Locahost won't work. It also is using windows authentication, and I need forms authentication.

It seems like a lot of this was built into the Webadmin.axd originally but has been removed.
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Expert Comment

by:TornadoV
ID: 16685573
I'm using this tool to administer several websites remotely.  "localhost" is relative to the remote server and not to my local desktop.
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Author Comment

by:BrentHemple
ID: 16685671
I can access the link remotely, and I get a page back that has the web site administration tool header but it simply says "this tool cannot be remotely accessed." Also, it is still using windows authentication. I still need to be able to manage this using forms authentication.
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Expert Comment

by:TornadoV
ID: 16685712
It means there is a configuration issue on your part.  I'm able to see ALL tabs and administer roles, users, providers, app settings, etc. - all done remotely.  

Check your settings again.
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Expert Comment

by:TornadoV
ID: 16685756
The admin site on a remote server has to have windows authentication, otherwise it will not work.  My apps use forms authentication and admin is using windows authentication.  The only way to change this paradigm is to put another app with forms authentication in front of admin site and apply your access rules there.  Once credentials are validated then redirect to the appropriate management link.
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Author Comment

by:BrentHemple
ID: 16686393
Getting the application to accept remote requests required commenting out the block of code in App_Code\WebAdminPage.cs as explained on http://forums.asp.net/1155428/ShowPost.aspx

Code block to comment out:
            if (!application.Context.Request.IsLocal) {
                SecurityException securityException = new SecurityException((string)HttpContext.GetGlobalResourceObject("GlobalResources", "WebAdmin_ConfigurationIsLocalOnly"));
                WebAdminPage.SetCurrentException(application.Context, securityException);
                application.Server.Transfer("~/error.aspx");
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Expert Comment

by:TornadoV
ID: 16686442
You are absolutely correct, my appologies, I didn't paste the entire set of instructions.
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