DSS Content Location Best Practices, How to Move DSS Content to a New Location.

Product: CMS

Version: CMS 8, 8.x

Published: February 24, 2014

Last updated: 1/30/2021



To explain Dynamic Site Server (DSS) setup Best Practices.

To explain the configuration changes and steps necessary to move existing DSS content to a new location.


Administrator access to CMS.

Administrator access to the server where DSS is or will be installed.


I. Rationale and best practices

Beginning with CMS 8, a new publishing model became available and certain considerations must be taken into consideration due to ASP.NET 4.0 file change monitoring, which can cause an unscheduled application pool recycle in your envirnoment.  As a result, we recommend separating DSS content from the DSS application files. Before running the Dynamic Server Setup, we recommend the creation of two sibling folders. Under our standard model, we create a folder structure such as the following:

  • DSSsite
  • DSSsite\DSS
  • DSSsite\Content

Ensure that the file permissions allow full control for the following user accounts:

  • IUSR
  • Network Service

What is most important is to keep the DSS application files and the DSS content separated. When running the Dynamic Site Server Setup Wizard, you may now reference the newly-created folders.

II. Instructions for moving DSS content to another location; or to move DSS content out of the DSS site root

These steps should only be performed during a maintenance period, as stopping the Application Pool is a requirement. Note that DSSPreview is not the same as the DSS server, and it is not necessary to move its content out of the CMS root.

  1. From within IIS, stop the DSS application pool for the site in question.
  2. On the filesystem, create a sibling folder within the DSS site, eg. "Content"; alternatively, it may be placed in a location of choice.
  3. Ensure that the IUSR and Network Service user accounts have full access to the folder and its children.
  4. Move all DSS content to the newly-created folder.
  5. Open the web.config file within the DSS site root and update the PageFilesLocation value to reflect the new location.
  6. From within IIS, navigate under DSS site to the "prebuilt" virtual directory and select it.
  7. Click "Basic settings" in the right pane of IIS and update the "Physical path" to reflect the location created in step 2.
  8. Open CMS and update the replication target to point to the new location.
  9. Start the application pool for the DSS site.
  10. Perform a replication.


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