Thursday, May 5, 2011

Debugging the FS4SP Configuration Wizard

Topic: SharePoint 2010, FAST Search for SharePoint 2010 (FS4SP), Configuration Wizard, psconfig.ps1
Subject:  Manually running the FS4SP Configuration Wizard to configure and debug a FS4SP installation.
Problem: I am continually getting errors when running the FS4SP Configuration Wizard.  The log file produced does not give me enough information.  What can I do?
Response: The Microsoft FAST Search Server 2010 for SharePoint configuration wizard can be run manually with more verbose logging which can help in identifying issues with a FS4SP installation. In the solution\example I will not cover all the details of a FS4SP installation as TechNet does a good job so I will cover the high-lights surrounding the Configuration Wizard.  The configuration wizard can be run manually on any FS4SP server in the FARM but I will focus on a single server stand-alone FS4SP farm.  The same principals can be applied for running the configuration on multi-node farms.
1.      It is very important to run installation “As Administrator” when installing software on Windows Server 2008

a.      Right Click on PrerequisiteInstaller and run as Administrator

b.      Install FS4SP
                                                    i.     Double Click fsserver.msi

                                                   ii.     Alternative to running fsserver.msi
1.      Open Command prompt a Administrator
2.      Issue the Command “fsserver.msi”
a.      This would eliminate all questions regarding Permissions if you ever believe the installation is failing due to permission issues on Windows Server 2008.

2.      Open the FAST Command Shell as Administrator

a.      Navigate to the <FAST Install Drive>\FASTSearch\install\scripts directory

b.      Use the psconfig.ps1 to Configure the FAST Farm

c.      Side Notes:
                                                    i.     Issue the following command replacing the appropriate values <>
                                                   ii.     I parsed my Command for readability. This is a single line command.

                      .\psconfig.ps1 -action i -roleName single 
                            -userName <yourdomain>\<fastuser>
                            -localMachineName <FAST2010server>.<yourdomain>
                            -databaseConnectionString <yoursqlserver>.<yourdomain>
                            -databaseName FASTAdminDB
                            -logFileName C:\FASTSearch\WizardLog.txt
                            -logLevelAsString Debug
                            -SharePointInstalledMode Basic
                            -SharePointServerName <SP2010server>.<yourdomain>
                            -SharePointUserIdentity <yourdomain>\<spuser>

                     Response to Command:

                     Password for user <yourdomain>\<fastuser> : *********
                     Self signed certificate password for FAST Search Server for SharePoint : *********
                     Please wait while Windows configures FAST Search Server for SharePoint.
                     Configuration may take several minutes...
                     WARNING: System cannot determine if the Firewall is on. Please make sure
                      it is turned on, in order to create IP Security rules.
                     ...........................You must now reboot to activate configuration

3.      Site Notes:
a.      I ignored providing any options to enter passwords but the psconfig.ps1 prompted were needed because they were not supplied.
b.      –SharePointInstalledMode [Basic/Advanced]  Basic is for a Stand-alone SharePoint Server /Advanced for a Farm

4.      I also changed the Log Level to Debug and provided a path to a log file

a.      When running the Configuration Wizard through the UI the log level is Warning.

b.      Changing to Debug level will provide a full step by step of all the configuration steps being performed

c.      With this high-level of debugging detail not only can you see every step being performed but it is much easier to find specific issues.

d.      Once the issue is identified you can edit the psconfig.ps1 command and find the exact command being executed when the error occurred. Many times you can run it individually outside of the wizard. I have seen many debug sessions which are focused on non-issues.  If they had run the command individually they would have verified it was not the piece of the puzzle which was broken.

5.      After successfully debugging and configuring the FAST Server continue with the TechNet deployment instructions for deploying and securing the FARM.

6.      The psconfig.ps1 can be run on multi-node farms as well for both Admin and non-admin nodes.

a.      A deployment file will need to be created by hand just like through the wizard

b.      To obtain the usage definitions for the psconfig.ps1 command issue “psconfig.ps1” at the FAST Command prompt without specifying any options.

Conclusions: Having the ability to run the Configuration Wizard manually with an increased log level can greatly increase the ability to find a configuration problem when the UI Wizard fails.  As always error messages aren’t always clear so being able to track the configuration on a detail level can lead to the exact point of failure.


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