Installing IISExpress as a Service on Windows 2003

Part A – Install

1.) Install Windows Imaging Component
This is a prerequisite of the next step, .NET Framework 4
Download Windows Imaging Component at:

http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/en/details.aspx?FamilyId=8E011506-6307-445B-B950-215DEF45DDD8&displaylang=en

2.) Install .NET Framework 4
This is a prerequisite of the next step, IISExpress.
Download it from Microsoft.

3.) Install IISExpress.
Download it from Microsoft.

4.) Install Windows Resource Toolkit
This is needed to install IISExpress as a service.
Download it from Microsoft.

Part B – Configure IISExpress

5.) Go to My Document -> IIExpress -> config.

6.) Edit “C:\Program Files\IIS Express\applicationhost.config”

7.) That is an XML file. Go to configuration -> configSections -> system.applicationHost -> sites -> site

8.) Within that node, find the “physicalPath” attribute and change its value to the folder where your webfiles are deployed.
The original value is %IIS_SITES_HOME%\WebSite1

9.) Also, within that node, find the “bindingInformation” attribute to “:80:”
The original value is :8080:localhost

10.) Save that file as
C:\Program Files\IIS Express\applicationhost.config

Part C – Configure Services

11.) Go to Start menu -> Run. Type the following and press ENTER:
“C:\Program Files\Windows Resource Kits\Tools\instsrv” IISExpress “C:\Program Files\Windows Resource Kits\Tools\srvany.exe”

srvany will allow any application to run as a service.

In case you want to remove the service, stop that service (via service.msc) then run the following:
“C:\Program Files\Windows Resource Kits\Tools\instsrv” IISExpress remove

12.) Create a registry file with the following contents:
Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\IISExpress\Parameters]
“Application”=”\”C:\\Program Files\\IIS Express\\iisexpress.exe\” /config:\”C:\\Program Files\\IIS Express\\applicationhost.config\””

14.) Merge that registry file. (double-click the reg file)

That’s it. It’s done. The newly configured service will run automatically on every boot even if no user has logged in.
But the service (IISExpress) isn’t started yet. To start it, restart your computer or run it via “services.msc”.
To test your local website, open a web browser and navigate to .

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2 comments on “Installing IISExpress as a Service on Windows 2003
  1. Checked this on WinXP – works perfectly

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