URL Aliases for your SharePoint site

We have a server that we installed SharePoint on to use for our new production intranet site.  We needed the site to be accessible from a friendly name.  We installed it on a server with the name of prod05 (not the real name, just an example).  We wanted users to be able to use the url http://portal/ to access the site and not have to type http://prod05/.  The first thought would be to set up a DNS alias.  That is easy, but SharePoint refuses to serve the site when the more friendly URL is used.  The solution is to use the “Alternate Access Mappings” feature of WSS 3.0.

Head to Central Administration > Operations.  Under the Global Configuration section, click Alternate Access Mappings.  You will see an entry for http://prod05 (Zone: Default).  Click Add Internal Urls at the top.  Click the drop down next to “Alternate Access Mapping Collection:” and choose the main SharePoint site.  Enter the friendly name into the “URL protocol, host and port” box. (In our case: http://portal)  Make sure you choose Extranet as the Zone.  This is the crucial part.  Leaving the zone as Default will allow SharePoint to serve up the page to that URL, but it will redirect the user’s browser to the unfriendly name.

12 Responses to “URL Aliases for your SharePoint site”

  1. Tina Says:

    Thanks for these clear and concise directions! Your warning about choosing “Extranet” was the piece I was overlooking. You solved my problem.


  2. abi Says:

    I tried the steps you have stated for alternate access mappings but was not able to link to the sharepoint site it was intended to.
    I even tried creating the primary zone with that name in the dnsmgmt , Forward Lookup zones but was not successful.
    Can you please tell me where I go wrong or if something else needs to be configured to give a friendly name to the sharepoint site.


  3. links for 2010-03-02 « Jet Grrl Says:

    […] URL Aliases for your SharePoint site « Dot Net Engineer (tags: sharepoint) […]

  4. Samuel Says:

    I have a problem of a different type, which I hope you can assist me with.

    I am running SharePoint 2010.

    I have the following URL:

    I want to create an alias that looks like the following, but points to the above:

    Is this possible?

    I hope you can help.

    Thank you,

  5. Santhony Says:

    Thanks. This saved me today.

  6. 1234566778 Says:

    Great read and solution. Well done!

  7. Jeremy Lewis Says:

    Thanks, we just did an upgrade / migration today and throuth an Alias in with it and this pulled us out of the fire.

  8. Richard Thomas (@ret56fe) Says:

    Five years since you wrote it, this is still the clearest and most concise explanation of how to do this I’ve found. Nice work, thanks.

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