After installing some updates (around 30 in total, between reboots) I noticed that msdeploy was failing to synchronise the IIS Metabase and files from another server.
I’ve ran into this problem before and, if I recall correctly, it also occurred after running Windows Update.
The following error was returned when trying to run msdeploy.
Error: Object of type ‘webServer’ and path ” cannot be created.
Error: Configuration system failed to initialize
Error: Unrecognized configuration section startup. (C:\Program Files\IIS\Microsoft Web Deploy V2\msdeploy.exe.config line 2)
Error count: 1.
Also, when trying to load Internet Information Services (IIS) Manager, a warning popped up saying “Configuration system failed to initialize”.
The problem appeared to be with the following files.
The first file had a size of 18KB on the server in question. However, the same file on another server in the cluster had a size of 74KB. The other files were also of different sizes.
In addition to the above, I noticed that the following files from the C:\Windows\System32\inetsrv\config\schema directory were also missing.
I don’t know what went wrong, but can only presume (based on past experience and the modified timestamp of the first file) that Windows Update broke this.
The fix was easy – simply restore the files from a backup. You can always copy them from another server in the cluster, which is what I did.