Sunday, January 12, 2014

SharePoint 2013 - First Deployment Problems

Set up a SharePoint 2013 server on a Windows 8 virtual machine.
First issue - the VM was set up with dynamic memory allocation. Don't use dynamic memory allocation with a SharePoint VM!

Next issue. You have to run IE as an administrator to go to the SharePoint Central Administration site. If you don't you will get in to the site but you will be missing some functionality such as "Manage services on a server" or you will get "Sorry, this site hasn't been shared with you" messages.

The biggest problem that I had was with the Distributed Cache. Symptoms were: "Cannot start service AppFabricCachingService ..." when executing Start-CacheCluster command. I tried a lot of "solutions" that I found on the web to get the AppFabric Caching Service to start but nothing worked. Finally found the solution to my problem here. Here's what worked for me:
Run PowerShell as an administrator.
Added the SharePoint snap-in to the PowerShell.
Run Remove-SPDistributedCacheServiceInstance on all servers in the farm.
Create a PowerShell file with the following code:

$SPFarm = Get-SPFarm
$cacheClusterName = "SPDistributedCacheCluster_" + $SPFarm.Id.ToString()
$cacheClusterManager = [Microsoft.SharePoint.DistributedCaching.Utilities.SPDistributedCacheClusterInfoManager]::Local
$cacheClusterInfo = $cacheClusterManager.GetSPDistributedCacheClusterInfo($cacheClusterName);
$instanceName ="SPDistributedCacheService Name=AppFabricCachingService"
$serviceInstance = Get-SPServiceInstance | ? {($_.Service.Tostring()) -eq $instanceName -and ($_.Server.Name) -eq $env:computername}
#here's the key. we can't provision, unprovision, start, or stop a Cache Service because we still have a Cache Service that have no server attached 

Execute the PowerShell file on all servers using ".\" in front of the name.
Run Add-SPDistributedCacheServiceInstance on all servers.
In Central Administration confirm that the Distributed Cache Service has been started.
If this didn't work, retrace your steps.
See: Manage the Distributed Cache service in SharePoint Server 2013

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