Anatomy of an IIS7 configuration path

If you have worked with IIS6 and previous versions of IIS, you are most likely familiar with the IIS metabase paths.  You know, the ones that look like LM/W3SVC/1/ROOT.  These metabase paths serve as a mechanism to identify a part of the IIS website hierarchy, or a url therein, for the purposes of read/writing their configuration settings. 

As you know, IIS7 repaces the metabase with a whole new configuration system, based on a distributed hierarchy of XML configuration files also used by the .NET Framework/ASP.NET.  This confguration system is fundamentally different from the metabase, and so it should come as no suprise that the way configuration paths work is also different. 

The concept of configuration paths is fundamental to managing and operating an IIS server, so I wanted to spend some time explaining it in hope that this can help everyone enjoy their IIS7 server just a little bit more :)  If you have come here wondering exactly what the hell is MACHINE/WEBROOT/APPHOST, you have come to the right place.

Read all about IIS7 configuration paths at

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