Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
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Keep in mind that this new site collection is in an existing web application, so you want to do this
only if you want the site collection to be constrained by the web application settings (such as
anonymous access, user permissions, custom por t number, and so on). As a last caveat, also note that SSL
will not work for a host header site collection unless it is using a wildcard certificate and the host
header is in the same domain. Because site collection host headers are not listed in Alternate Access
Mapping, searches may also return unexpected links in query results. Despite these shortcomings,
the option to use site collections with their own host headers is here if you need it.
Alternate Access Mapping
With the creation of multiple web applications, multiple sites, host headers, and a complex
SharePoint deployment, there will come a time when you want to start providing access
to SharePoint sites from multiple places and for multiple people. At the very least, you might
want to open your server to outside access, opening a port in your firewall and forwarding
it to the SharePoint server. Of course, no one in the outside world is going to browse to your
server using the URL http://spf2/ or http://spf2.dem0tek.lcl. They’re going to use a
real address, such as You know how to make a new web
application with this URL, but what about adding the URL to an existing web application? This is
done through alternate access mapping.
Alternate access mapping lets you do the following:
Map a new URL to an existing web application
Send a URL other than the one received back to the client browser
Allow different security policies, based on the URL, for a single web application’s content
(with zones and extended web applications)
Provide access to a web application’s content on a second port
To understand how alternate access mapping works, you first need to consider how
SharePoint treats URLs. Fundamentally, a URL is how a user gets to a SharePoint site. The URL
is also used by SharePoint to generate links on the page. A good example of this is with search
results. The links in SharePoint aren’t hard-coded in an HTML file somewhere; they’re
generated on the fly, just as SharePoint pages are. When you perform a search request on a SharePoint
site and you get back some possible results, each result shows you a clickable link to that result’s
location. The links need to have the correct path to work. See Figure 10.70.
Notice that the result link has the site’s path (http://spf2:8080/ pathtoresult ) in it. This
link works great if the user can resolve the URL http://spf2:8080/, but it would be pretty
useless if the user were connecting to the server from outside your firewall and couldn’t resolve
http://spf2:8080/. In that case, all those search result links would be dead.
SharePoint resolves this issue by using alternate access mapping, allowing each web
application to have up to five different public URLs. That means that the same web application, with
all the enclosed site collections, can be accessed from multiple URLs, and SharePoint is smart
enough to use the corresponding public URL in all its internal links and paths, making them
useful again. For example, the web application http://spf2:8080 could also respond to the
URL As such, you would have two different URLs, both pointing
at the same web application content.
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