Karthik Murugesan Posted on October 26th, 2013

So you are using NetBIOS names to access SharePoint URL. And have an Alternate Access Mapping to the FQDN. You might still run into issues when trying to do one of the following.

You are using a cloud based analytics solution that requires FQDN. In this case you are going to completely loose the metrics of users accessing your SharePoint site through the NetBIOS name (http://intranet).

Lets assume your NetBIOS name is http://intranet. And your FQDN is http://intranet.domain.com.

Mobile enable SharePoint where users are coming from cellular network without VPN through some kind of Mobile Device Management solution. In either case just deleting updating Default Zone URL in Alternate Access Mapping seems like a good solution. But what about the user experience of all your users who got used to the simplicity of the NetBIOS name (http://intranet)

IIS URL Rewrite to the Rescue

Consider the following URL Rewrite map. These rules go into the Web.config file of the concerned SharePoint application.

<rule name="Intranet redirect" stopProcessing="true">
    <match url="(.*)" />
    <conditions>
        <add input="{HTTP_HOST}" pattern="^intranet$" />
        <add input="{HTTPS}" pattern="^OFF$" />
    </conditions>
    <action type="Redirect" url="http://intranet.domain.com/{R:0}" />
</rule>

This will match any requested path (url="(.*)") on the host exactly named http://intranet(pattern="^intranet$" and with https been turned off) and redirect it to http://intranet.domain.com/{R:0} (where {R:0} is a back reference containing whatever path was requested).

This will redirect all requests coming in with NetBIOS URL format to FQDN URL format so users typing in the url as http://intarnet will get redirected to http://intarnet.domain.com.

A word of caution though. With this approach the NetBIOS name has no impact on SharePoint because it gets blocked and transformed at the web server level in IIS and SharePoint will never get a chance to process the NetBIOS name. So you have to make sure your Alternate Access Mapping is properly set-up to use FQDN as the default zone. And you’ll have to help fix some issues related to users using SharePoint workspace or any client tools to access SharePoint data. They will have to change their site URL with the FQDN.

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