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Internal Site Redirecting to .Com Site

Posted on 2014-09-18
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Last Modified: 2014-09-26
I work for a city government and we are running a web-based app called Cityworks on a server called pwapp. To access the app you just open up http:\\pwapp\cityworks in your browser.

What's happening is that random times throughout the week, the site will stop working and give "page cannot be displayed" errors on individual pages. If you refresh 2 or 3 times, the page will eventually come up. Sometimes it will pull up hugedomains.com when you hit refresh at the login screen.

It turns out that hugedomains owns pwapp.com, which tells me that something on the site is not responding and causing a redirect from local pwapp to pwapp.com. However, it does this in IE, Firefox, and Chrome, so I don't think it's a browser-specific setting.

I've already contacted Cityworks support and they were like, "Ummmm....never heard of that one before" and I'm waiting to hear back from their tech. That was four days ago.

We are running a virtual Windows Server 2008 R2 with IIS 7. Nothing is set in HTTP Redirect.

Sometimes I can run iisreset from an elevated command prompt and that fixes it for a few hours or even a few days, and other times it does nothing. Rebooting the server gets the same results. Fixes are always temporary.

I'm not sure if it is an IIS issue or a DNS problem or something wrong with Cityworks' app.

Any ideas?
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Question by:William Fulks
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LVL 17

Accepted Solution

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BudDurland earned 1600 total points
ID: 40332403
This is a DNS issue on either the client, or the proxy server (if a proxy server is in play).  How does it behave if you use the fully qualified host name for the IIS server?  (http://pwapp.OurDomain.local/CityWorks).  Make sure your internal DNS servers are all replicating properly, and if you have WINS running, check those servers too.  Make sure the clients are using the correct DNS servers -- the ones that know the 'real' address of the IIS server.

A guaranteed approach is to add the IP address of the IIS server to the workstation HOSTS file, but that can quickly become a management headache.  Best to have the infrastructure working properly.

Although I do recall a client that had a similar issue that turned out to be the users typing the URL into the MSN search box, rather than the Internet Explorer address bar.  I had to go on site and make them demonstrate to me what was going on to see it.
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LVL 30

Assisted Solution

by:Rich Weissler
Rich Weissler earned 400 total points
ID: 40332420
Concur with BudDurland.  Couple additional thoughts if you aren't going to be fully qualifying hosts:
First, would be to confirm that the clients are configured with the appropriate DNS Suffix(es).  Either explicitly, or if everything is a member of the domain.
Second, have your considered, or do you already have a GlobalNames zone configured in DNS?
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LVL 15

Author Comment

by:William Fulks
ID: 40333804
Thanks for the input. When I get back to work on Monday I will do some more tests and let you know.
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LVL 15

Author Comment

by:William Fulks
ID: 40344636
Well guys, I suggested that they use the FQDN and they have not reported any more problems this week. I'm going to keep this open one more day and then close this and give points. Thanks again!
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LVL 15

Author Closing Comment

by:William Fulks
ID: 40346704
Thanks for the input, guys. We haven't had any more issues this week.
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