Troubleshooting ASP errors on your server

What to do when your ASP pages aren't working properly. It isn't always a script error.

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This issue was beating me up for a long time. I finally figured out what it was, and thought I'd save everyone some aggravation:

The issue was that ASPs wouldn't run, but basic HTML pages would. Because I'm not the greatest ASP scripter, it took a long time for me to look to the server for the problem.


  • IIS was set to run scripts... [ok]
  • permissions on the folder allowed scripts to run [ok]

    Everything I checked was OK...until I looked in the system Event Viewer. Two events in particular were worth noting:


  • "Event ID: 36." "src: w3svc". DCOM got error "Logon failure: unknown user name or bad password," and was unable to logon "DOMAINIWAM_SERVERNAME" in order to run the server: {3D14228D-FBE1-11D0-995D-00C04FD919C1}.


  • "Event ID: 10004" "src: DCOM". In this case, the server failed to load the application "/LM/W3SVC/1/ROOT." The error was: "The server process could not be started because the configured identity is incorrect. Check the username and password."

    Obviously something with the IWAM account was amiss. (That stands for Internet Web Application Manager.)

    Further investigation into TechNet and other resources led me to the conclusion that the IWAM account in Active Directory and the IWAM account settings in the IIS metabase were out of sync. There are several articles that describe how to fix this, one of which invloves running the "synciwam.vbs" script in "c:wwwrootadminscripts." However, running this script yielded a long numerical error: "80110414."

    After hours of digging in the DCOM section of "Component Services" and "Active Directory", I finally found that the IWAM account had the "Use Cannot Change Password" checkbox checked in its account.

    Unchecking this and re-running the "synciwam.vbs" script fixed everything.

    I hope this saves someone the headache that I had.

This was first published in May 2002
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