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Quick Tip To Resolve “Turn on TLS” Error with SharePoint On-Premises

Microsoft 365, SharePoint, Teams

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I had this come up with a client recently and wanted to be sure to share the easy resolution given the vague information out there on this topic.  This just reminds me how important it is to not just blindly troubleshoot the symptom, but investigate fully before continuing in your attempts at resolution.

The Issue

This environment was running SharePoint 2013 over SSL, and over a weekend reported a problem to me.  The error I started with was a typical “This Page Can’t Be Displayed” but slight different.  It stated to “Turn on TLS 1.0, 1.1 and 1.2 in my IE Advanced Settings:

Go ahead and do what it says, but in my case all 3 checkboxes were already checked.  So now what?  I saw the error change slightly depending on what browser you use but still nothing helpful. 

Everything you find when researching this is that it appears to be a client issue.  But this error was only effecting one SharePoint farm, the other production farm was fine.  I also checked with IT and no new GPOs or network / firewall changes had been made.

Troubleshooting

Then I dove into the event logs, and in the System log I found a more relevant error in the form of tons of ID 15021 errors. 

An error occurred while using SSL configuration for endpoint 0.0.0.0:443. The error status code is contained within the returned data.

It’s more like a server-side issue and not a client-side issue.  When you research this error, you see lots of folks telling you to run like netsh commands to check the SSL certificates which in my case were all fine.  You do not want to use netsh to kill your certificates as that very well not be your problem!

The quick fix in my case showed itself when I went into IIS on the web server.  The application pools and website was started.  Then I looked at the bindings of the website.  Notice anything wrong in this picture?

Our SSL certificate wasn’t being used!  A quick selection of the proper wildcard certificate and warmup of IIS and we were back in business. 

Learn your lesson kids, always check the Event Viewer on your SharePoint servers before trying some weird fix from the internet!

Please reach out to us if you have any issues with your SharePoint farms caused by bad IT or Microsoft updates or anything else.  We’ve likely seen it or heard about it!

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