OWA broken on Exchange 2007 on Windows 2008 – Red X appear instead of Web pages

Installing 2007 on 2008 or 2008R2 is slightly different than installing on . This includes installing on Windows 2008R2 since the pre-requisites that were taken for granted now need to be installed explicitly, especially concerning .

I had an annoying issue on , where instead of seeing the OWA pictures I would have expected, I saw red X's. After perusing various avenues, including authentication, IIS config, etc, it boiled down to a simple missing prerequisite – the ability for IIS on Server 2008 to serve static content.


The build guy missed out the pre-requisite, so how to install is after the OS and Exchange are already installed? Quite simple actually -

  • Install the missing role
  • uninstall the role via the GUI or the command line
  • reinstall the CAS role


In order to keep the post short, I'm posting the command lines versions only.

The command line to install the static Content Compression role is

ServerManagerCmd -i Web-Dyn-Compression


Uninstall the CAS role via the GUI or the command line:

setup.com /mode:uninstall /role:c

Reboot the machine and re-install the CAS role via the GUI or the command line

setup.com /mode:install /role:c

OWA started working 🙂 Happy troubleshooting.