If you’re in SharePoint Central Admin and you’re either trying to commence a gradual upgrade or create a new Shared Service Provider, you may encounter a situation where you have to assign an indexing server to settings, but none are available. In the case of the gradual upgrade upgrade, the screen will look something like this:
The problem is that indexing was not assigned to a server properly. If you have a single server, it probably was never configured and if you have a server farm, the index server might not be configured correctly. Follow these steps to remedy your situation:
1. Begin by clicking the “Operations” tab in the top horizontal menu bar.
2. Now, in the “Topology and Services” section, click the “Services on server” link.
3. By default the current server will be listed with all its services. If you have a single server environment, you can skip step 4.
4. If you have a server farm, click the server name to change to the indexing server.
5. Ensure that the “Office SharePoint Server Search” service is running. If it is not running, start the service by clicking the “Start” link under the “Actions” column.
6. Once the service is running, click the “Office SharePoint Server Search” link itself.
7. In a single server environment, you want to be sure that in the “Query and Indexing” section, both the “Use this server for indexing content” as well as the “Use this server for serving search queries” check boxes are selected.
8. In a server farm, in the “Query and Indexing” section, ensure that only the “Use this server for indexing content” check box is selected for the Indexing server. On the web front end server, ensure that only the “Use this server for serving search queries” check box is selected.
9. Enter your contact email address.
10. Enter the user ID of the services account that will be used to process search for the entire farm in DOMAIN\USER format. This is normally the same account as the content access account.
11. Enter the password of the services account.
12. Scroll further down to reveal the remaining options on the screen.
13. For the “Indexer Performance” setting, the default should be “Partly Reduced”. This is a good setting to use initially and it can be changed later as you experiment with performance settings.
14. If you have a single server environment, ensure that the “Web Fron End Crawling” section has the “Use all web front end computers for crawling” option selected.
15. For a server farm, change the “Web Front End Crawling” setting from “Use all web front end computers for crawling” to “Use a dedicated web front end computer for crawling”. The Indexing server should be showing up in this drop down. If it is not, select it from the drop down.
16. Click the “OK” button to continue.
17. If you have a web farm, repeat these steps for the web front end server but set it instead to “Use this server for serving search queries”. Once completed, the Indexing server should show up in your assignment screens as expected.
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