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How to setup a production clone for testing

  Asked By: Loren    Date: Sep 05    Category: Sharepoint    Views: 1674

Anyone know of a good way to coping a WSS2 content database full of sites to a
new "testing" environment?

I am actually looking to duplicate our production environment without fully
isolating the testing environment. This means new physical server names but same
virtual names.
I am using host file entries to redirect client testing machines to the
"testing" environment.

For instance. In production I have a front-end server named sharepoint1 and a
sql server named sharepointsql1. There is an IIS virtual server named sp1
which has self-service site creation enabled and has about 1000 sites running on
it. So those sites look like http://sp1/sites/whatever.

I have a new database server and front-end that are configured identically to
the sharepoint1 and sharepointsql1 servers. They are named sharepoint2 and

I have backup/restored the configdb and contentdb to the new sql server under
the same names, installed sharepoint and configured it to use those db's.
Because the configdb will still reference the sharepoint1 database, i put an
entry in the host file on the sharepoint2 machine like "
sharepointsql1" so it gets to the right server. I am using the same AD service
accounts in both environments.

I created a new IIS virtual server and extended an existing site. All of this
seems to be working as now I am able to access all of the sites in the new
The problem I am having is that when I try to perform an administrative function
in a site like delete a webpart or add a user, I am prompted for authentication.
It really doesn't matter what I put at that point because the authentication
will fail. I am using an account which is marked as an Administrator in the
site, it is a member of the local Administrators group on the Front End server
and is a member of the sharepoint administrators group. I also made sure that
we are using NTLM for authentication.

At this point I am thinking that there must be a better way of doing this. I am
open to suggestions for an easier way (but it must duplicate production data as
closely as possible).



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