Andrew Maddison


Yet Another Server Migration - IIS7 SQL Express and Subtext

Hokay - I’ve just managed to migrate this blog over to yet another new server, this time a shiny (if slightly expensive) windows 2008 vps hosted by the nice people at I doubt anyone cared or noticed, but sorry for the 24hrs of downtime.

I had the standard day of fighting with server 2008 and IIS 7, which are both still a bit new to me. First configuring the server role to get IIS to work at all, then having to install Chrome to download SQL express because IE simply refused to work with the active-x control on Microsoft’s own download page and after that a simple (once I looked it up) firewall configuration to allow FTP through.

The final stolen hour was spent trying to figure out how to assign permissions to an application pool identity account (the new magic windows accounts / aliases created for each app pool in IIS7). It turns out the magic incantation is to use ”IIS APPPOOL” as the domain, for example  ”IIS APPPOOL\myapppoolname” and not “machinename\myapppoolname” as you might assume.

Having done all of that, installing subtext was an absolute breeze. I simply restored the backed up database from my old host, unpacked the latest subtext code, edited the connection string in web.config, and fired it up. The blog started up and instantly ran the version upgrade tool (as I was running an older version on my old host) and within a couple of minutes it was up and running again complete with my preferred skin (although without the css hacks to fix said skin). I even took the opportunity to move the blog from the /blog/ subfolder into the root of the website. I’ve had a check using fiddler, and the old urls are throwing 301 (permanent) redirects to the correct new urls, which is awesome.

The only thing still missing is the images from the posts, which are unfortunately backed up on a computer down in London which I can’t access until I head home at the weekend, but they will return.