I have been developing using SharePoint for several years but the other day I needed to create a new page to be displayed in Central Administration. Since I had already installed CKSDev on my development environment I was able to use the ‘Central Administration Page’ template which creates the aspx page and the custom actions for a custom group and link.
I used this as a starting point and set about modifying it to meet my requirements. As with all projects/code I started to encounter some errors but I was unable to see the actual error detail. Instead I just got the standard error screen, see figure 1, telling me to configure the settings in the web.config.
I think most developers have seen this message a thousand times or more so I knew I had to set the CallStack attribute of the SafeMode element under the SharePoint element to true. In addition I set the mode attribute of the customErrors element to Off. As I mentioned most developers have done this several times so this in its self wasn’t new but what I found was even with these settings I still received the standard error screen, figure 1.
My first thought was I must have either set the wrong web.config or the settings were wrong but after checking and rechecking everything was correct. At this point I turned to Google and I found a few generic articles on setting the customErrors and CallStack but this wasn’t what I was interested in.
Eventually I found an article Custom errors in web.config and SharePoint 2010 which had a little section at the bottom which explains that if you put pages in certain locations then you also need to update additional web.configs. In my case I had deployed my page to the admin folder under 14/template. Once I updated the web.config here the full error details started to display and I could work out the actual issue.
Just go to show no matter how long you are doing something you can always learn