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Sharepoint 2003 unable to access RSS / XML feeds

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My Sharepoint 2003 server is unable to access RSS / XML feeds.

When I add an XML URL to an XML Web Part, I get the message "Cannot retrieve the URL specified in the XML Link property. For more assistance, contact your site administrator." I am the site admin, and the message isn't very helpful to me.

I can't even add a normal web site address into the XML Web Part (not that I would normally want to); that also gives the same message.

Note that I get exactly the same results whether I do this on the server that hosts Sharepoint or a client. That is, Internet Explorer on the server is able to display the raw XML feed when the XML URL is entered in the address field of the web browser.

What is strange is that if I add the same (or any) XML URL to the "Page Viewer Web Part", or test the XML URL link in the XML Web Part, it will give me the raw XML feed! I can do this on the server as well as a client. So the server can retrieve the feed, but it doesn't seem able to process it or transform it using the XML Web Part. Could this be a problem somewhere within .Net or even somewhere is IIS?

I have checked my proxy settings in the web.config file in C:\Inetpub\wwwroot on the Sharepoint server, also checked the proxy settings in Site Settings => Central Admin => Manage Search Service => Configure Account and Proxy Settings, and they all have my proxy server set up in there.

Sharepoint 2003 SP1 sits on a Windows 2003 server with SP1 behind a proxy server and firewall, and does have internet access, e.g. it can perform Windows Updates and browse websites etc. It is a member server in a Windows 2000 domain.

All problems were present prior to Windows 2003 being upgraded to SP1.

An article at http://msmvps.com/cg...06/26/9045.aspx talks about setting ISA server to allow the XML requests, but I don't know how to apply that to my network, as I don't have ISA server. We use WebMarshal which I have access to, and also a firewall running on Linux which I don't really have immediate access to as it is administered by a supplier. The article above mentions creating an outbound packet filter on port 80, and it seems to describe my problem exactly. How do I do that in my environment? But note as above, it is the XML Web Part that can't seem to get access to anything, not neccessarily a problem with the XML streams themselves.

The only other strange thing of note I can think of is that if I try to create a new virtual folder in the Default Web Site which is where my portal is situated in IIS I cannot browse to it in IIS or IE, you get a typical page not found error. The correct index page is there and IIS has been told to look for it in "Home Directory". I can't see how that relates to my problem, but it is something else I have been struggling with and I was wondering if it could be related (or of course resolved somehow).

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I have now been able to partly RESOLVE this issue, by further reviewing WebMarshal which we use as our proxy server.

WebMarshal performs Microsoft authentication on port 8080, however, on port 8081, it accepts network IP requests. Setting port 8081 in my web.config file allows my XML Web Part and any other web part to grab external RSS feeds!

I still cannot however view the Online Gallery, I keep getting an error message sent to me from the proxy server saying that a non-authenticated user was trying to access 'http://r.office.micr.../hlidAwsGallery'
I don't know which service account Sharepoint uses for the Online Gallery, but if it is the Windows 2003 Network Service account, I don't know how to access that in Window 2000 Active Directory.

However, it is far more important to get RSS working, which I have, and am very happy about.
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