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Hi I just finished the basic configuration of a new 2016 SharePoint farm. I went with the standard min roles so I have a front end, search, app, distributed cache, and sql server. I setup the app server to host central admin. When it tried to open the first time I got a 500 internal server error.

After playing around a little I tried changing the account for the central admin application pool from the farm admin account to the SharePoint setup account and it started working. The only difference I can tell is the setup account is in the admin group on the box. I know this is not recommended so I don't want to leave it. Any suggestions?

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Central admin and SharePoint Timer service run under the farm admin account. As a practice, farm admin account is part of Local admin on the SharePoint Servers.

we have couple of SharePoint 16 farms, where farm admin account is in local admin. I think you can put your farm admin into local admin without any issue.

On the side, check the event log for any clues why it is not working for the farm admin? Does you account have the following rights (set in Policy settings):

  • Log on as a batch job;
  • Impersonate a client after authentication.

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