Microsoft FAST Search Administration – Unexpected error occurred while communicating with Administration Service

UPDATE: 6-Oct-2011 Added info on installing FAST certificate on SharePoint 2010 servers

I have a SharePoint 2010 Enterprise installation that is using Microsoft FAST for SharePoint 2010 to index Intranet content. The search content is working successfully and content is being returned, but trying to administer any of the managed properties or crawled properties always displays an error. The errors occur when I visit the Search Administration area for FAST property management:

  1. Open the Central Admin website
  2. in Application Management, Service Applications, select “Manage service applications”
  3. Locate your FAST Query search service application and click the manage link (i.e. click on “FAST Query SSA”)
  4. In the left-hand menu, under Administration, click FAST Search Administration
  5. Clicking any of the links on this page may show the error “Unexpected error occurred while communicating with Administration Service”

Further investigation does not provide much additional support beyond this error. The areas that I got errors for were:

Property Management
Managed properties
Crawled property categories

Property Extraction
Manage property extraction

Spell Checking
Spell checking management

Additionally, under the SharePoint site, Site Settings, Site Collection Administration, the following also gave the same error:

FAST Search keywords
FAST Search site promotion and demotion

There are a couple of areas to check.

SharePoint Application Pool Account Permissions on FAST Admin Servers

The Central Admin site application pool account requires permission to connect to the FAST admin web service on your FAST admin server. To resolve this:

  1. On your FAST admin server, check that you have a local security group “FASTSearchAdministrators”
  2. Add the active directory account for your central admin app pool to the local security group on your FAST admin server “FASTSearchAdministrators”

FAST Service Account Permissions on FAST Service Applications in SharePoint

The Central Admin service applications may require permissions to be allocated to the app pool accounts.

  1. Open Central Admin website
  2. In Application Management, Service Applications, select Manage Service Applications
  3. Hilight your FAST Search Connector service application and click the “Permissions” button
  4. Check that the FAST service account has “Full Control” permissions assigned
  5. Click “OK”

SharePoint Certificate Installed on FAST

Follow the instructions in Enable queries from Microsoft SharePoint Server (FAST Search Server 2010 for SharePoint) to ensure the SharePoint certificate used to communicate is trusted by the FAST admin web service. Note that it states “Configure claims authentication”, but I have had to do this on claims-based sharepoint sites as well as “classic” windows authenticated sites. Thus I believe this is a necessary step to remove this error.

FAST Certificate Installed on SharePoint

On installation, FAST creates a PFX certificate that is used to secure communication between the SharePoint server and the FAST Admin server. To install this certificate on your SharePoint server(s):

  1. Copy the script securefastsearchconnector.ps1 from the FAST Search Server 2010 for SharePoint server to the SharePoint 2010 Server. The securefastsearchconnector.ps1 script is in the installation folder, under installer\scripts\
  2. Copy the certificate file FASTSearchCert.pfx from the FAST Search Server 2010 for SharePoint admin server to the SharePoint 2010 Server. The certificate file is in the installation folder, under data\data_security\cert\
  3. Open a Microsoft SharePoint 2010 Administration Shell with the Run as administrator option on the SharePoint 2010 Server. Navigate to the directory where you copied the securefastsearchconnector.ps1 script and run it, replacing the necessary parameters with the values for your environment. The domain and username should reflect the details of the user running the SharePoint Server Search 14 (OSearch14) service.
    .\SecureFASTSearchConnector.ps1 -certPath "path of the certificate\certificatename.pfx" -ssaName "name of your content SSA" -username "domain\username"

When prompted to enter the certificate password, enter the certificate password that you supplied when you ran the post-setup configuration of FAST Search Server 2010 for SharePoint.

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6 Responses to “Microsoft FAST Search Administration – Unexpected error occurred while communicating with Administration Service”

  1. Scott Says:

    I had the same problem and the way I resolved it was by adding the user running the application pool (for the application giving me problems) to the FASTSearchAdministrators group on the FAST Server. In the case above I presume that the application pool account running Central Admin and the application causing problems was the same account so it worked by adding the central admin app pool account.

    Thanks for the help.

  2. Kalashnikov Says:

    Hey this article might help

    http://kalashnikovtechnoblogs.blogspot.in/2012/02/troubleshooting-crawl-issues-for-ssl.html

  3. Yogesh Kenkare Says:

    i had the same problem..
    Corrected the problem with the following steps
    1) Find out the FQN of the server where FAST was installed
    2) Ping the FQN from the Sharepoint server where you are having this problem
    3) Check if it is pingable… For me it was not.. so added a DNS alias and started working fine

  4. Unexpected error occurred while communicating with Administration Service at Toaster Tech Says:

    […] permissions for the FAST service account to the Fast Search Service Applications, as suggested by Gavin McKay, but the problem was still […]

  5. lex Says:

    Thanks! I changed the account without realizing I needed to grant it in Query connector too.. Thanks for your detail blog.

  6. Microsoft FAST Search Administration – Unexpected error occurred while communicating with Administration Service | Pornjed's Blog Says:

    […] https://gavinmckay.wordpress.com/2010/09/13/microsoft-fast-search-administration-unexpected-error-occ… […]

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