I have a 3rd party control that i want to add to the web part. That 3rd party control uses a generic ASHX handler. I can always add the registration to the actual WFE web.config but it's a bit manual to my tastes. Does anyone succeeded to add to web.config using a deployment package?
i would need something like this:

      <remove name="SomeHandler" />
      <add name="SomeHandler" preCondition="IntegratedMode" 
           verb="GET" path="SomeHandler.ashx" type="SomeHandler, SomeHandler" />

Here is the code that I ended up creating in the feature receiver:

var modifications = new List<SPWebConfigModification>()
                            new SPWebConfigModification("remove[@name='BotDetectCaptachHandler'",
                                Type = SPWebConfigModification.SPWebConfigModificationType.EnsureChildNode,
                                Value = @"<remove name='BotDetectCaptchaHandler'/>"
                            new SPWebConfigModification("add[@name='BotDetectCaptchaHandler'",
                                Type = SPWebConfigModification.SPWebConfigModificationType.EnsureChildNode,
                                Value = @"<add name='BotDetectCaptchaHandler' preCondition='integratedMode' verb='GET' path='BotDetectCaptcha.ashx' type='BotDetect.Web.CaptchaHandler, BotDetect' />"

SPSecurity.RunWithElevatedPrivileges( () =>
                               var contentService = SPWebService.ContentService;
                               foreach (var modification in modifications)

When I do activate i get an error message saying that i have previously queue modifications failing to execute. Does anyone know how to query queued modifications and remove them? I tried PowerShell but was not successful. It seems that SPWebApplication.WebConfigModifications collection is always empty.

  • 1
    I think you might need to make sure you are setting the owner on those modifications so when you deactivate the feature the web.config changes get undone. I realize i forgot to put that in my code below. Apr 13, 2012 at 0:30
  • @SteveLineberry, good point. I figured if I leave the owner portion out, it'll assign the default value and that value is used during deactivation. My problem now is that i have trouble finding those queued up modifications b/c error is talking about configuration/SafeControls/... and i am not even setting that portion of the config. I am chasing ghosts for now ! :)
    – Roman
    Apr 13, 2012 at 5:49

1 Answer 1


I would use a SPWebConfigModification: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb861909.aspx

Something similar to this:

SPWebConfigModification handlerMod = new SPWebConfigModification();
handlerMod.Path = "configuration/system.webServer/handlers";
handlerMod.Name = "add[@name='SomeHandler'][@type='SomeHandler']";
handlerMod.Type = SPWebConfigModification.SPWebConfigModificationType.EnsureChildNode;
handlerMod.Value = "<add name=\"SomeHandler\" preCondition=\"IntegratedMode\" verb=\"GET\" path=\"SomeHandler.ashx\" type=\"SomeHandler, SomeHandler\" />";
  • 2
    +1 however it is worth mentioning that this will need to be deployed in a web application scoped feature. Also, be very careful with SPWebConfigModification. I would highly recommend reading Mark Wagner's entire blog post. Make sure you test it in DEV first!
    – Kit Menke
    Apr 12, 2012 at 1:53
  • 1
    Yes. I ended up working on that. I'll post a follow up shortly as web config modifications are the most tedious and error prone.
    – Roman
    Apr 12, 2012 at 21:17
  • @Steve Lineberry, the only issue that i have at this point is that for some reason web.config modification logic reorders the modifications. In handler's section, doing a remove followed by add is normal, and I cannot achieve it.
    – Roman
    May 23, 2012 at 17:53

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