IIS Configuration Files (1/2)


In this part of our series of IIS tutorials we focus on some aspects of the IIS configuration files that we use in the other tutorials. A lot of material is already covered in the official documentation [1] [2] [3] so we don't intend to cover everything here.

The Configuration Files

As explained in the official documentation [1], IIS 7 and later versions use an XML-based configuration system. The configuration files have the .config extension.

If we look into the %WinDir%\System32\inetsrv\config directory, we find the following files:

applicationHost.config is the main configuration file. It holds the settings for the sites and applications. This file is part of a hierarchy of configuration files. These configuration files are described on page 2.

administration.config is the configuration file for IIS management including the settings for the IIS Manager tool.

redirection.config is used when multiple IIS servers use a centralized configuration file. We don't intend to discuss this file in this tutorial at this time.


  1. iis.net: The Configuration System in IIS 7
  2. MSDN: Introducing IIS 7.0 Configuration Architecture
  3. iis.net: IIS Configuration Reference

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