Cryptic WSE 2.0 Error (WSE032 "configuration error" and System.Net.Dns.GetHostName())

Published 02 December 04 09:34 PM | Scott Mitchell

While I was teaching my .NET Web Services class tonight I stumbled upon an esoteric error with WSE 2.0 that I had not encountered before - an error that ruined two demos of mine. I had tried the demos literally 15 minutes before class and theyh worked great. When I had a full classroom, though, it crapped out. The error message I got was the standard WSE032, saying:

An unhandled exception of type 'System.Configuration.ConfigurationException' occured in microsoft.web.services2.dll

Additional information: WSE032: There was an error loading the microsoft.web.services2 configuration section

This is a pretty common error message when something has gone awry in WSE. For example, if you are using UsernameToken authentication, but mistype any values in the Web.config file you'll get this error. What was a bit perplexing was that, (a) the demos had worked earlier, and (b) the stack trace of the error message referred to a problem with System.Net.Dns.GetHostName(). As I said, my demos bombed out, but afterwards I did a quick search on Google and found this blog entry: WSE 2.0 (sp1 & earlier) - The mistory [sic] of error code WSE032.

This blog entry had a fix for my problem. It appears that WSE uses the GetHostName() method, and this caused some problems, perhaps because my computer's wireless connection died, or my DNS entries timed out, or something. Anywho, the solution - which worked for me - was to add a line to the HOSTS file in C:\WINDOWS\system32\drivers\etc. This did the trick. Probably the most esoteric bug I've faced in my experiences with Web services.

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