I recently provisioned a SharePoint Server 2010 farm and, due to changing requirements, needed to move the Central Administration (CA) site. By default it is hosted on the first server provisioned in the farm but in my case this was redefined as one of the web front-end servers. Microsoft strongly recommend against hosting CA on your front-end servers but instead host it on one or more servers in the farm that are not generally accessible. If the farm is servicing an internet/extranet presence the the CA server(s) should not be externally addressable.
Anyway, the process to move the CA site was fairly simple in the end.
1. On the server currently hosting the CA site login and run the SharePoint 2010 Products Configuration Wizard (Start –> All Programs –> Microsoft SharePoint 2010 Products)
2. Click Yes to restart the services and you will be presented with the following screen.
3. Ensure that ‘Do not disconnect from this server farm is selected’ and click Next
4. This is the screen that will allow you to control which server hosts the CA site. On the server currently hosting the CA site select ‘Yes, I want to remove the web site from this machine’ and click Next and continue the process until the wizard is finished.
5. Now on the server which you want to move the CA site to, run through the same process as above but at step 4 you will be presented with the following screen instead.
6. Click on Advanced Settings and the following screen will be displayed.
7. Select ‘Use this machine to host the web site’ and click OK to set up the current server as the CA host.
After the wizard finished I did notice that it took a while for things to catch up and was directed to the old location a few times before the change seems to propagate.
I have also noticed that the Start Menu link to Central Administration on the various servers in the farm seems to continue to point at the old location for the CA site. I’ll update this post when I work out how to update the menu item.
23/06/2010 – I worked it out. It looks like rerunning the wizard as described in the process above moves the CA site but doesn’t update the Alternate Access Mapping for the CA site on the original server. Instead an additional entry is added for the new location based on the old location. Simply update the details of the original entry to reflect the new entry and problem fixed.