Wednesday, 19 September 2012

403 Access is denied due to invalid credentials, MVC3, IIS7

I had a MVC3 application that compiled and ran fine locally, but when deployed to the UAT server running IIS7, the application failed and returned a 403 Access Denied error.

After a long debugging session I determined this was due to the fact that certain MVC DLLs were not present on the target machine. One way to get round this is to explicitly add them as references to the Web project, and select Copy Local to true.

The DLLs I had to add were

System.Web.WebPages
System.Web.WebPages.Razor

Other reasons why it may return such an unhelpful error are:

the application errors in the startup routines
the directory permissions are not correct
Windows authentication is not enabled for the application in IIS7

....and others

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