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An interesting solution to problems with ColdFusion 10 and IIS 404 handlers

Note: This blog post is from 2014. Some content may be outdated--though not necessarily. Same with links and subsequent comments from myself or others. Corrections are welcome, in the comments. And I may revise the content as necessary.
There was an interesting solution proposed today on the Adobe forums, to address a problem some folks are having with CF10, where they find problems using an IIS 404 error handlers set to pass to a CF page. I found it helped with one of my consulting clients, so I wanted to share the news with others readers here who may benefit.

The problem is that some folks are finding that their CFML-based IIS 404 handlers either don't work at all or work only sometimes, other times getting connection reset errors. It's plagued folks for months, and while Adobe has suggested a pending new connector may help, it's caused a lot of heartburn, as discussed in this particular forum thread.

About the proposed new fix

So some good news is that today someone offered an interesting different solution that worked for one of my clients. (The person identified themselves only as chickity china, which some may recognize as a BNL song but I know from a funny radio phone prank audio clip from the 90's, and which I just found on youtube.)

Anyway, he (or she) offers some XML to modify the iis configuration, to implement an alternative processing of 404's using an IIS rewrite rule instead. Unfortunately, he doesn't offer much explanation of his approach.

So I followed up with a comment explaining things in more detail, especially if you can't edit the XML or prefer to use the IIS interface features, or want to do it at the server level.

The actual fix

See first the poster's original comment (it's #36 in the very long thread going back almost 18 months, so you may not want to read them all.)

But before applying what he says, do see my follow-on comment for more.

And indeed I then followed with a couple other follow-up comments, one confirming that it did work for a client suffering the problem, and another pointing out something else to be wary of when having IIS pass *all failed file requests* to CF. See my comments there for more.

Hope all this may help some folks.

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As readers of the forum thread will see, the poster who shared the approach above is Ben Holland. He also chimed in with some more comments of some further tweaks he's made to his IIS configuration for addressing this issue. Thanks, Ben! :-)

I've also heard privately from some more folks who have confirmed that it helped them. Great to hear. Hope some might choose to reply here, so others can see how it's helping, and especially if they may have any further suggestions about improving the configuration approach.
# Posted By Charlie Arehart | 3/13/14 11:29 AM
I can not believe Adobe still have not fixed this bug :( I am now on update 13 and connector is rebuilt and re-installed and bug is still happening heavily.. So fed up :(
# Posted By Alex | 8/1/14 11:06 PM
I have found a temp workaround to the 404 issue as well. Mine is at the coldfusion code level but it seems to work. If you capture your 404 content as a variable and then force the content length using a cfheader tag before you output the content, your page should render as expected. This worked for me after a month of pulling my hair out.
# Posted By Erin Duvall | 12/11/14 11:46 AM
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