We have a handful of intranet sites on a Server 2008 instance with IIS 7. Access to these sites is through Windows authentication; if a user is in our AD domain, then he or she can use the site.

Starting this morning, all users are getting HTTP 403 errors when attempting to connect to the default web site and apps underneath it. I'm able to see the sites when I RDP into the server and reach them via localhost, but I'm an admin.

I know there are many issues that could have caused this sudden change, so I'm asking where to look: Where can I find the error message on the server side that's causing the HTTP 403 to be thrown to the user?


I presume you've done the old "ok, did anybody touch $SERVER recently? If so, what did you mess with?" step already. If not, try that. Or looking at access logs.

Failing the human element, the first place to start would be FREB -- see this page for a good intro. Typically that will give you enough error data to give you some vector to look down in terms of permissions.

If for some reason FREB don't help, or you need more data, the sysinternals suite can be a lifesaver here as it will show you some very, very low level details of who is accessing what and where they are failing.

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