Mr. Script

Virtual Control

IIS gives you the power to create and manage virtual directories—for jobs big (and little).

Last month I went to the obstetrician with my wife for her sonogram. Not only did they record the whole thing on VHS so we can bore people with it on home-movie night, but they printed out four “key” pictures, two of which indicate the gender (a boy!). My wife was able to look at the pictures for a full three seconds before I took custody of them. Upon returning to work, I promptly scanned them; posted them on my Web site; and e-mailed everyone in the family, inviting them to take a look. I plan on shooting digital video during the delivery, although I’m not sure my wife will so readily allow me to post that on the Web!

While using an area of my Web site to display pictures of my unborn son (son!) may not seem like a highly complex use of IIS’s talents, I did manage to set up everything using ADSI scripts for IIS administration. It seemed like a timely opportunity, as I’m discussing that very topic this month. Before I jump into creating and managing virtual directories, let’s see how you did on your homework. As I recall, we needed to stop and restart the IIS service.

' StopNGo.vbs
Dim objServer, colService
Set objServer=GetObject("WinNT://domain/iiscomputer,computer")
Set colService=objServer.GetObject("service","W3SVC")


Set colService=Nothing
Set objServer=Nothing


I know what you’re thinking. “How did he know what the name of the service was?” Well, I looked it up.

' ShowServices.vbs
Dim objComputer, clsService
Set objComputer=GetObject(
For Each clsService in objComputer
   Wscript.Echo clsService.Name

Since we’ve been working with IIS, we’re assuming that the service was already started. However, it might not be a bad idea to check for this first.


This returns a long integer value that corresponds to a particular status:

1 - Stopped
2 - Start Pending
3 - Stop Pending
4 - Running
5 - Continue Pending
6 - Pause Pending
7 - Paused
8 - Error

You might also want to make sure that the objService.StartType is either 2 or 3 (Automatic or Manual), not 1 (Disabled). You can’t start a disabled service, no matter how many times you run the script. Now, let’s move on to manipulating the virtual directories of the site.

I Can Do Virtually Anything
Virtual directories are the areas of your Web site to the right of the slash ( They’re called “virtual” directories because they don’t necessarily have to reside on the Web server. They can, in fact, be anywhere, as long as the server can get to them and has the proper access permissions to read them. This only pertains to the first “slash.” All subsequent directories aren’t virtual. They’re folders underneath the virtual directory folder, wherever it may be. I’ll use as an example the following:

Let’s start by creating a virtual directory in the site root called “sales.”

' NewVirDir.vbs
Dim objServer, clsVirDir
Set objServer=GetObject("IIS://MyWebServer/W3SVC/1/ROOT")
Set clsVirDir=objServer.Create("IIsWebVirtualDir", "sales")

You’ll notice that I have two “SetInfo” statements. That’s because I have to create the virtual directory before I can point it to a path. Once I set the path, I must execute another “SetInfo” to save the information. Another step in this process is to ensure that there’s a “sales” directory under “wwwroot.” This is easy enough using Windows Explorer, but let’s go ahead and script it, remembering to check to see if the folder already exists before I create it — just to be on the safe side.

' NewVirDir2.vbs
Dim objServer, clsVirDir, objFSO, objFolder, bExists
Set objServer=GetObject("IIS://MyWebServer/W3SVC/1/ROOT")
Set clsVirDir=objServer.Create("IIsWebVirtualDir", "sales")
Set objFSO=CreateObject("Scripting.FileSystemObject")
If bExists=False Then   objFolder=objFSO.CreateFolder("c:\Inetpub\wwwroot\sales")   Else
End If

F-T-P, as easy as 1-2-3
A key to professional Web sites is the ability to download files, and IIS includes an FTP service for just this task. Creating a virtual directory for the FTP service is similar to the www service, with just a few exceptions.

' NewFTPDir.vbs
Dim objServer, clsVirDir, objFSO, objFolder, bExists
Set objServer=GetObject(
Set clsVirDir=objServer.Create("IIsFTPVirtualDir", "pub")
Set objFSO=CreateObject("Scripting.FileSystemObject")
If bExists=False Then    objFolder=objFSO.CreateFolder("c:\Inetpub\ftproot\pub") Else
End If

Cut ’Em Off!
In your homework, you learned that in order to stop and restart the Web service you had to use the WinNT provider to access NT Services. However, IIS gives you the ability to stop and restart a particular Web site using the IIS provider. As you may recall, last month I discussed virtual servers, each with its own IP address and index number.

Let’s assume you’re a Web-hosting company. You host several small sites on one Web server to save money. They don’t get a lot of traffic and your server is fairly robust, so you can accommodate five sites without placing undue load on the server. Let’s further assume that your accounting department has told you to cut off one of the sites for delinquent payment. This is likely a temporary measure, as the client will no doubt pay eventually, so you don’t want to delete the entire site only to have to create it again in a week or two. Here’s how you can use ADSI to do this:

' CutEmOff.vbs
Dim objSite
Set objSite=GetObject("IIS://MyWebServer/W3SVC/4")

And, just like that, it’s cut off! Note how I needed to use the site index number I discussed last month. This is the “/4” in the “GetObject” statement above. I’ll hope you wrote this information down when you created the customer’s site. If not, you’ll have to run the script we wrote last month to enumerate the sites based on their friendly names. Be sure to write it down this time.

Next month, I’ll finish my romp through the world of ADSI by looking at the LDAP provider. As such, I’m not assigning you any homework. I have homework, though. My wife and I have to come up with a name for our son (our son!). I think we’re leaning toward Samuel Garrett. Of course, if we go with Samuel Michael his initials will be SMB. He’ll already be on his way to becoming a full-fledged NT geek!

About the Author

Chris Brooke, MCSE, is a contributing editor for Redmond magazine and director of enterprise technology for ComponentSource. He specializes in development, integration services and network/Internet administration. Send questions or your favorite scripts to [email protected].

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