Why Do I Receive a "The page cannot be found" Error With ASP.NET On Windows Server 2003?

When you have installed ASP.NET on Windows Server 2003, you may receive the following 404 - Page Not Found error:

The page cannot be found

The page you are looking for might have been removed, had its name changed, or is temporarily unavailable.

Please try the following:

  • Make sure that the Web site address displayed in the address bar of your browser is spelled and formatted correctly.
  • If you reached this page by clicking a link, contact the Web site administrator to alert them that the link is incorrectly formatted.
  • Click the Back button to try another link.

HTTP Error 404 - File or directory not found.
Internet Information Services (IIS)

Technical Information (for support personnel)

  • Go to Microsoft Product Support Services and perform a title search for the words HTTP and 404.
  • Open IIS Help, which is accessible in IIS Manager (inetmgr), and search for topics titled Web Site Setup, Common Administrative Tasks, and About Custom Error Messages.

This error is only thrown with dynamic ASPX pages; static HTML files, graphics etc are served just fine.

This error is caused by the fact that IIS 6 disallows the ASP.NET 2.0 Web Service Extension. To fix this, follow these steps:

  1. Open up the Internet Information Services (IIS) Manager (which you find under Administrative Tools)
  2. Expand your server
  3. Select Web Service Extensions
  4. In the right hand pane, click ASP.NET v2.0.50727 (or a later version number) and then click the Allow button.

From now on, IIS is allowed to serve ASP.NET 2.0 pages, and won't throw 404 errors for every page in your site.

Where to Next?

Wonder where to go next? You can read existing comments below or you can post a comment yourself on this article .

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On Monday, February 7, 2005 8:16:51 AM Abdurrahmaan said:
I tried the steps you mentioned, but when I click on Web Service Extensions in IIS, only the following are listed in the right pane:

All Unknown CGI Extensions
All Unknown ISAPI Extensions
Active Server Pages
Internet Data Connector
Server Side Includes

ASP.NET is definitely installed so why can't I see it in IIS?
On Monday, February 7, 2005 10:07:04 AM Imar Spaanjaars said:
You have to make sure that you selected "Application Server" with ASP.NET as a sub component in the IIS Setup....

With that component selected, ASP.NET should show up as a Web Service Extension.....
On Wednesday, March 2, 2005 5:46:56 PM yvonatron said:
Hi there. This was very helpful. Just wanted to give a bit more info. for people that might need more detail. If IIS is already installed, you can go into Control Panel> Add Remove Programs> Windows Components.

Select "Application Server"> Click 'Details' button > Check ASP.NET and Click OK > Next .

This will install ASP.NET if it is not already installed. (for me it installed ASP.NET version 1.1)

Good luck!

On Wednesday, March 30, 2005 8:24:44 AM Kapil said:
We are getting the page not found error when we access our .NET application, that is made in .NET framework 2.0. I checked the above also this is there. I am not able to understand why we re getting this type of error. It usually comes when we access the pages from some remote machine in the lan.
Kindly help me and pls mail me on my mail id.
Thanks in advance.
On Thursday, March 31, 2005 8:49:21 PM Imar Spaanjaars said:
Did you follow the steps suggested in this article? Is ASP.NET installed correctly, and more importantly, is your site in IIS configure to run with the ASP.NET 2 version?

Depending on the release of your ASP.NET installation and server, there should be a tab called ASP.NET. Check that for your settings. Otherwise, take a look here: http://www.denisbauer.com/NETTools/ASPNETVersionSwitcher.aspx for an ASP.NET switcher....


On Tuesday, June 7, 2005 3:41:20 AM Sudath said:
This article really helped me ,
Thanks a lot
On Tuesday, July 26, 2005 3:25:12 PM Marco Alves said:

Go to C:\%WINDIR%\Microsoft.NET\Framework\v1.1.4322 (through windows command) and type aspnet_regiss /i

Back to IIS and try again

Hope this helps.
On Tuesday, July 26, 2005 3:34:46 PM Imar Spaanjaars said:
Hi Marco Alves,

How is this related to ASP.NET 2.0?? Your command simply reconfigures IIS to use the 1.1 version of the .NET Framework....


On Wednesday, July 27, 2005 1:05:03 AM Marco Alves said:

I'm not using ASP.NET 2.0 yet. But, I thing that you can make the same thing to it.

Instead of going to v1.1.4322 dir, go to v2.x.xxxx dir and try it.

Hope this helps.
On Wednesday, July 27, 2005 7:14:58 AM Imar Spaanjaars said:
Yes, I know. But what I was saying was that your response didn't relate to the original article. This FAQ dealt with enabling Web Server Extensions for ASP.NET 2 (and 1.1) so I was surprised to see you explaining how to reconfigure the 1.1 framework.

If running aspnet_regiss /i would have solved any problems you had, you didn't have the original problem (404's for dynamic pages) in the first place.


On Thursday, July 28, 2005 3:24:15 AM Marco Alves said:

First, sorry for my bad english.

Now, I understand your post. Let me explain what I'm trying to say:

After read your article, I did it`s steps. But, the ASP.NET was not in the right hand pane.

So, I go to command prompt and configure the asp.net v1.1. Then, I go back to IIS and it is in the right hand pane.

Thank you.
On Friday, May 26, 2006 1:39:16 PM Adam said:
Marco is correct, I tried this.
On Sunday, August 27, 2006 8:43:02 PM Natalia said:
Thanks for this post. Very useful. It solved my problem.
On Thursday, September 7, 2006 2:34:05 PM Jane said:
Thanks - this also worked for me. I had installed asp.net version 2 and it was available in some places in iis (such as the asp.net tab) but was not available in the web extensions tab. I ran the aspnet_regiss /i command in the 2.0.. directory and my aspx pages are now working correctly.
On Sunday, September 24, 2006 6:33:14 AM Rockstar81 said:
I am using Only ASP Pages but still i have been getting this error. This error comes only on Production Server and doesnt come on Development Server. Could u Guys help me on this
On Tuesday, October 24, 2006 3:26:01 PM Ken said:
GAAAARGH.  What a newbie error.  Frickin IIS.

Thanks for the post!
On Tuesday, November 28, 2006 11:32:10 AM Rajasekhara Reddy D said:
Thanks for this post. My problem was solved. Thanks a lot!!!
On Thursday, December 7, 2006 5:45:23 PM Flavio Teixeira said:
You are great!!! That solved it!!
On Thursday, December 14, 2006 6:35:30 AM Somchai said:
Thank you.  It's work.
On Thursday, December 14, 2006 4:54:03 PM Marco Alves said:
just for receive replies.
On Sunday, January 21, 2007 7:39:37 PM Pramod Karanjkar said:
Who ever is the owner of this thread, I would like to thank for the correct solution. We are deploying the ASP.Net 2 application on Windows 2003 server and facing the same problem since 2 days. Today I given the correct search in goggle (Thanks to goggle) and able to reach your page.

Tomorrow is our application release and we were struggling for solving this issue.

Once again thanks.

I will be putting the same query and solution as your site URL.

With regards,

Pramod Karanjkar
On Sunday, January 21, 2007 7:57:28 PM Imar Spaanjaars said:
Hi Pramod,

I am the "owner" of this thread and in fact, the entire site. Glad the article worked for you....


On Monday, January 22, 2007 9:34:45 PM Sal said:
Thank you very much! I spent some days trying to figure out how to solve this problem, and this article helped me a lot.
On Tuesday, February 27, 2007 6:22:39 AM Peter said:
Thanks guys. Very helpful post
On Monday, March 5, 2007 11:31:18 PM David W. said:
Man I finaly got it fixed when I was looking at the Web Server Extensions I was looking at the ASP.net extensions and it was allready enabled so I was like WTF lol. But just above it is the extension for "Active Server Pages" and it was disabled ARRGH enabled it and started kicking my self cause i spent like an hour going over this web server for like 1.5 hrs hahah!

So make sure you don't get confused like I did and look at the ASP.Net extensions and enable the "Active Server Pages" which like the article clearly says it is disabled by default lol.....
On Saturday, March 31, 2007 8:58:16 AM Chris said:
Thanks, this helped me immensely...
On Thursday, May 10, 2007 12:19:58 AM Mark said:
Thank you all for your comments, helped us get our server up and running quickly.
On Monday, June 4, 2007 9:56:52 AM nobody said:
Great article. It solve my problem !!!! THANKS!!!
On Monday, June 11, 2007 8:37:36 PM Matt Gremm said:
I am having a similar issue, but I havne't seen a resolution to mine yet on the Internet. This is my first time deploying VS 2005 to Windows Server 2003. I ran "Copy Website" to a location on the Win2003 server and created a virtual directory through IIS (6). When i try to run the site, I get the following error; "unrecognized configuration section system.webserver".  Has anyone else seen this particular problem? I would appreciate any help as I am at the end of my rope on this one.
On Monday, June 11, 2007 8:43:19 PM Imar Spaanjaars said:
Hi Matt,

Sounds like the application is configured for .NET 1.x. Check out the ASP.NET Tab of the web site in IIS.


On Monday, June 11, 2007 8:54:46 PM Matt Gremm said:
Hi Imar: Thanks for the quick reply. I checked the ASP.NET tab and it is set to the correct version. This is the actual error I get. AS you can see at the botton it is coming up with the proper framework and ASP.NET version. BTW, great site!!!!

Server Error in '/' Application.

Configuration Error
Description: An error occurred during the processing of a configuration file required to service this request. Please review the specific error details below and modify your configuration file appropriately.

Parser Error Message: Unrecognized configuration section system.webServer.

Source Error:

Line 49: [httpModules]
Line 50: [system.web]
Line 51: [System.webServer]
Line 52: [validation validateIntegratedModeConfiguration="false"]
Line 53: [modules]

Source File: C:\Webs\Intranet 2007\web.config    Line: 51

Version Information: Microsoft .NET Framework Version:2.0.50215.44; ASP.NET Version:2.0.50215.44
On Monday, June 11, 2007 9:04:58 PM Imar Spaanjaars said:
Hi Matt,

What version do you see on the ASP.NET tab in IIS? The error message suggests you're running an old beta of .NET 2. You should see numbers like v2.0.50727 instead.

On Tuesday, June 12, 2007 1:53:45 PM Matt Gremm said:
Thank yoiu very Imar. You've solved my problem. I'm not sure where that version of .Net came from, but I uninstalled and reinstalled the new version and all is well now.

Thanks again.
On Friday, June 15, 2007 11:56:04 AM Daniel Lee said:
I have the "The page cannot be found" Error and cannot seem to get rid of it.

I have ASP.NET 2.0 installed.
I have registered ASP.NET 2.0 with IIS
I have enabled Active Server Pages and ASP.NET v2.0.50727 Web Service extensions
Also my web application is set to ASP.NET version 2.0.50727

Is there anything else I can try?? Really need to get this working...

On Wednesday, June 20, 2007 10:55:08 AM Daniel Lee said:

For anyone else who is still having problems, go to this web page:


Everything is working fine for me now!
On Tuesday, July 3, 2007 4:39:20 PM Mike said:
This worked for me, thanks a lot!
On Tuesday, October 16, 2007 3:53:57 PM Mohammed said:
thank you too much this was very helpful for me
On Wednesday, November 7, 2007 4:38:57 PM meetish said:
Regarding 404 error, I have different situation.
My app has different domains, only one domain would have 404 return for all aspx pages, I checked the remedies from this sites and none applies to my situation.
Any idea for one-domain-only 404?
On Saturday, November 10, 2007 9:57:31 AM Imar Spaanjaars said:
Hi meetish,

I am not sure I understand what you are asking. Can you post this on a forum like http://p2p.wrox.com ? If you do, please be sure to provide lots more information.


On Tuesday, November 27, 2007 11:16:39 AM JJ said:
Thanks..This article helped me for the beta release of my product on client's server
On Friday, January 4, 2008 9:35:25 AM Venkat said:
Hi Guys I have developed one asp.net application.In our lan some pc's are getting page not found error and some pc's are not getting error with the same url.If we refresh the page then it will be opened.Can I have solution for this.......waiting for ur fovourable response...
On Monday, January 21, 2008 3:36:41 PM Tom said:
Took me 2 hours and I found this solution by accident. What a pain the backside.

Then typically I found this blog post almost by accident.

Home time I think.
On Friday, February 15, 2008 4:39:10 PM Mohammad said:
Thank you for this wonderful post,  this has helped me a lot!!!
On Friday, February 29, 2008 1:42:45 PM swapnil said:
Hi, .Net Version 2 on XP System , Some time on Click of Menu i am getting Page Cannot be Found and after Refreshing i am geting that page.
this is happening so frequently.
Another probulem is with session Expiry and now i got the new problem that the page is not rendering images and css Style(Some time)
please help me

On Friday, February 29, 2008 6:34:21 PM Imar Spaanjaars said:
Hi swapnil,

Sorry, I have no idea what you are talking about. Try a forum like p2p.wrox.com.


On Saturday, May 10, 2008 10:04:07 PM Amgad Kamel said:
thanks, It works for me
On Monday, November 17, 2008 8:38:56 PM Fedor Steeman said:
Thank you so much! I have been fighting with this for weeks in my spare time!
On Thursday, March 12, 2009 10:07:10 PM Rosh said:
I have tried all the above and I am still getting the file not found error, the htm file in th same virtual directory shows up fine.

anybody has any ideas why ?
On Friday, March 13, 2009 7:45:56 PM Imar Spaanjaars said:
Hi Rosh,

Is the IIS site or virtual directory setup to handle ASP? Does it have execute permissions set?

On Tuesday, June 9, 2009 9:25:24 PM Doug said:
That worked great!!  Thanks, for saving me a lot of time.
On Thursday, July 16, 2009 5:15:01 AM Donny said:
Wow, this sure did have a lot of information. Well nothing worked for me and I was hoping your could help me out.

I am running IIS6 on 2003 Server. I have an intranet that is in asp. I have tried everything. Parent Top Level (Enabled), Permissions, ASP.Net in the web services extentions are correct, ASP in the webservice extentions is enabled. But nothing is working. I am constantly getting the 404 file or directory not found.

Can someone help please
On Thursday, July 16, 2009 6:45:09 AM Imar Spaanjaars said:
Hi Donny,

I don't think I can help much remotely. If this article doesn't help and you're really really sure the files exist on disk, I don't know what else to recommend.



On Wednesday, October 21, 2009 4:44:47 PM Faisal Lodhi said:
Thank you Abdurrahmaan for the comment, that worked for me.  That was stressful.  Btw, previously I was using the wrong version, mine is a 64 bit machine and I had registered the x86 version in the Framework folder manually (by right clicking on WebServiceExtentions and clicking on Add new...).  When I tried to run aspnet_regiis from the command line, it failed b/c it was x86, thats when I realized I needed to register the x64.  MS really should have a better error message for this.
On Thursday, October 22, 2009 9:03:52 AM bharati said:
On Wednesday, March 24, 2010 11:48:04 AM Rick S said:
This whole article help me out more then 2 seperate support teams could.. lol.. amazing how google beats tech support :)

One thing I didnt find on my issue was my netframe 1.1 was not giving me aspx in my iis manager... So for kicks and giggles I tried using netframe 2.0 and it worked..

Solution was installing netframe 2.0, and it added the aspx service.
On Monday, May 17, 2010 4:56:28 AM Jyoti said:

I have in the making of .com website. I have uploaded all my html and they run fantastically. Now I have uploaded my ASP page but it does not work, neither it gives any error. How do I make them work.

Please help.

On Monday, May 17, 2010 5:48:05 AM Imar Spaanjaars said:
Hi Jyoti,

That's a bit too vague and off-topic for me to answer here. Try posting your question on a forum such as this one: http://p2p.wrox.com/index.php?referrerid=385


On Tuesday, January 18, 2011 9:00:14 AM rajkumar said:
Thanks... Its Working ...
On Wednesday, February 2, 2011 12:32:55 PM LP said:
This is working...!! THX
(Because most application are .net 4.0 these days, first install .net framework 4.0 ; reboot the server and then do above -easy- steps.
On Friday, July 8, 2011 12:08:11 AM Ajith said:
I tried this but still same error is coming 404
On Friday, July 8, 2011 12:08:12 AM Ajith said:
I tried this but still same error is coming 404
On Thursday, July 21, 2011 5:30:21 AM Jose said:
enabling the active page extension helped me
On Thursday, October 13, 2011 7:40:02 AM Daniel LaSalle said:
The time is now 2011 and all of this doesn't work anymore w/ a fully patched Win Server 2003 running nothing but IIS 6, all frameworks, ASPs v1, 2 & 4.  Most of the infos found in this thread aren't even locate-able anymore (Such as what's listed in here: http://blog.angrypets.com/2005/08/iis_6_vs_2005_a.html)

Also, "Go to C:\%WINDIR%\Microsoft.NET\Framework\v1.1.4322 (through windows command) and type aspnet_regiss /i" should read :
"Go to %WINDIR%\Microsoft.NET\Framework\v1.1.4322\aspnet_regiis /i""  This will add v1 of ASP under the ASP tab but who still uses ASP 1.x nowadays? :P

On Thursday, October 13, 2011 7:46:18 AM Imar Spaanjaars said:
Hi there,

Not sure I understand what you're saying or why you're bringing up .NET 1.1, This article clearly targets .NET 2....

And yes, it's 7 years old...

On Thursday, October 13, 2011 8:33:45 AM Daniel LaSalle said:
"Not sure I understand what you're saying or why you're bringing up .NET 1.1, This article clearly targets .NET 2...."

That article also applies to NET 4 ....
On Thursday, October 13, 2011 10:53:27 AM Imar Spaanjaars said:
Then I still don't get it. Are you complaining about out-dated content? Are you asking a question? Are you posting a follow up for the poor fellow stuck on .NET 1.1? Confused....

On Thursday, October 13, 2011 11:05:35 AM Daniel LaSalle said:
Oh no, i get you.  I just wanted to give a fresh view to new visitors (like me) who have this problem, went thru all of the steps and it still doesn't work.

So it was just my 2 cents.
On Saturday, August 16, 2014 5:21:01 AM syed abdul basit said:
when i go to my mail box that's not opened and says the page you are request is not found.what is this?
On Saturday, August 16, 2014 6:38:17 AM Imar Spaanjaars said:
Hi there,

What mailbox are you talking about?


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