The Microsoft Solution for Windows-based Hosting 4.5 is a set of services and tools that allow hosting providers to configure, deploy, provision, manage, monitor and update their servers to provide Web, Data and Collaboration hosting using the Microsoft platforms of IIS, SQL Server and Windows SharePoint Services. Wbh consists of a number of different infrastructure components including Automated Deployment Services, Active Directory, MS System Center, Windows Server Update Services and the Microsoft Provisioning System (MPS).
The MPS is the platform that allows the hosting provider to provision services - such as the Web hosting, Data hosting and SharePoint hosting for their customers using a simplified control panel front end. However, setting up the infrastructure of MPS is quite complex and requires 8-9 server just for the management infrastructure alone. I've been working with a large number of hosters in India for enabling them on the WbH platform and this turned out to be a major stumbling block for them - both in terms of number of servers to setup and the complexity of the procedure. Microsoft India then went ahead and asked me to create a proof-of-concept for deploying MPS on a single server for demo and low end usage scenarios. I decided to do this inside a Virtual PC and install everything within it.
The WbH solution requires Windows 2003 or Windows 2008. However, the MPS service can only run on Windows 2003. To install the MPS part of the WbH infrastructure you will need to download the following two components from the WbH Download Page.
- Service Provisioning.zip
Installing everything into a single machine/VPC requires some creative manipulation of the Deployment Walkthrough for MPS. I will be linking to a detailed walkthrough that shows how this can be achieved a little later. However, as the title of the post says, there is a showstopper error that comes a good way into the deployment process and solving it took a fair amount of time.
When you use the Deployment Tool to go ahead and deploy the MPS Core Platform and Hosting Platform they work fine. However, when you try to install the Business Web Service on the machine, you run into a major issue. you get an exception that says:
MSI log returned non-zero error code 1603
As soon as you get this error, the system rolls the deployment of this step back and you lose the Web application and the web services that were extracted. You can check the log file for MPSWebServices.msi in the c:\ConfigShare\log folder to see the cause of this error. Open the log file in Notepad and do a search for "value 3". Look at the line above this that says:
Error setting new DACL for: C:\WINDOWS\Temp
Now this error seems innocuous enough and you might think that giving Everyone, Full Control on c:\Windows\Temp will solve the issue. Unfortunately it doesn't. Nor does deleting the folder and recreating it, changing setting in Domain Security Policy or a myriad of other things that I tried. In fact, a bunch of searches on Live and Google did not get me any answers at all on this - other than some forum posts (here, here, & here) that detailed the same error but with no resolution. In fact, the last answer on the 3rd post linked says that it is simply not possible to provision MPS on an AD server.
Further investigation in the log showed me that there is a InstallHelper.vbs script that runs a bunch of commands that perform this deployment. Searching around everywhere did not get me this file. I did get a InstallHelper.msi that unfortunately only had a DLL file within it. Extracting the MPSWebServices.msi file got me the files of the Web services itself but the installation was not complete.
It was late at night when I finally found the fix to this issue. More...
, msi error 1603
| Windows Server 2008