Unrecognized configuration section appSettings


Problem description: A 64bit managed .Net service crashes with an exception “Configuration system failed to initialize” on a Win7 X64 OS.

I launched the App.exe in the debugger(http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/hardware/gg463009) and took a crash dump http://support.microsoft.com/kb/286350 You may also run the following command: cscript adplus.vbs -crash –sc “<Path>App.exe”

After analyzing the crash dump, I found the below information:

0:000> |
.  0 id: 1f920 examine name: C:\Program Files\xxxxxxx\App.exe

0:000> kL100
Child-SP          RetAddr           Call Site
00000000`001aab20 000007fe`e6c3001f KERNELBASE!RaiseException+0x39
00000000`001aabf0 000007fe`e70d8ef5 mscorwks!RaiseTheExceptionInternalOnly+0x2ff
00000000`001aace0 000007fe`da68dedc mscorwks!JIT_Rethrow+0xe5
00000000`001aae80 000007fe`e6b75a21 System_Configuration_ni!System.Configuration.ClientConfigurationSystem.EnsureInit(System.String)+0x33c
00000000`001aaee0 000007fe`e6b5ba9a mscorwks!ExceptionTracker::CallHandler+0x145
00000000`001aafe0 000007fe`e6bef7db mscorwks!ExceptionTracker::CallCatchHandler+0x9e
00000000`001ab070 00000000`77109dad mscorwks!ProcessCLRException+0x2ab
00000000`001ab110 00000000`770f8a4c ntdll!zzz_AsmCodeRange_End
00000000`001ab140 000007fe`e6c6d246 ntdll!RtlUnwindEx+0x539
00000000`001ab7e0 000007fe`e6bef787 mscorwks!ClrUnwindEx+0x36
00000000`001abcf0 00000000`77109d2d mscorwks!ProcessCLRException+0x257
00000000`001abd90 00000000`770f91cf ntdll!RtlpExecuteHandlerForException+0xd
00000000`001abdc0 00000000`77131248 ntdll!RtlDispatchException+0x45a
00000000`001ac4a0 000007fe`fd39940d ntdll!KiUserExceptionDispatch+0x2e
00000000`001aca60 000007fe`e6c3001f KERNELBASE!RaiseException+0x39
00000000`001acb30 000007fe`e7162380 mscorwks!RaiseTheExceptionInternalOnly+0x2ff
00000000`001acc20 000007fe`da68dded mscorwks!JIT_Throw+0x130
00000000`001acdd0 000007fe`e6b75a21 System_Configuration_ni!System.Configuration.ClientConfigurationSystem.EnsureInit(System.String)+0x24d
00000000`001ace30 000007fe`e6b5ba9a mscorwks!ExceptionTracker::CallHandler+0x145
00000000`001acf30 000007fe`e6bef7db mscorwks!ExceptionTracker::CallCatchHandler+0x9e
00000000`001acfc0 00000000`77109dad mscorwks!ProcessCLRException+0x2ab
00000000`001ad060 00000000`770f8a4c ntdll!zzz_AsmCodeRange_End
00000000`001ad090 000007fe`e6c6d246 ntdll!RtlUnwindEx+0x539
00000000`001ad730 000007fe`e6bef787 mscorwks!ClrUnwindEx+0x36
00000000`001adc40 00000000`77109d2d mscorwks!ProcessCLRException+0x257
00000000`001adce0 00000000`770f91cf ntdll!RtlpExecuteHandlerForException+0xd
00000000`001add10 00000000`77131248 ntdll!RtlDispatchException+0x45a
00000000`001ae3f0 000007fe`fd39940d ntdll!KiUserExceptionDispatch+0x2e
00000000`001ae9b0 000007fe`e6c3001f KERNELBASE!RaiseException+0x39
00000000`001aea80 000007fe`e7162380 mscorwks!RaiseTheExceptionInternalOnly+0x2ff
00000000`001aeb70 000007fe`da76eb46 mscorwks!JIT_Throw+0x130
00000000`001aed20 000007fe`da690ae9 System_Configuration_ni!System.Configuration.ConfigurationSchemaErrors.ThrowIfErrors(Boolean)+0xce8e6
00000000`001aed60 000007fe`da68dd2c System_Configuration_ni!System.Configuration.BaseConfigurationRecord.ThrowIfInitErrors()+0x39
00000000`001aeda0 000007fe`da690698 System_Configuration_ni!System.Configuration.ClientConfigurationSystem.EnsureInit(System.String)+0x18c
00000000`001aee20 000007fe`da6905f7 System_Configuration_ni!System.Configuration.ClientConfigurationSystem.PrepareClientConfigSystem(System.String)+0x28
00000000`001aee50 000007fe`da6a3ba4 System_Configuration_ni!System.Configuration.ClientConfigurationSystem.System.Configuration.Internal.IInternalConfigSystem.GetSection(System.String)+0x17
00000000`001aee90 000007fe`da697ee6 System_Configuration_ni!System.Configuration.ConfigurationManager.GetSection(System.String)+0x94
00000000`001aeed0 000007fe`dfdd4222 System_Configuration_ni!System.Configuration.ConfigurationManager.get_AppSettings()+0x26
00000000`001aef10 000007fe`d16772fc CoreManagementService_ni!DoubleTake.Internal.Service.ManagementService.ReadApplicationSettings()+0x22
00000000`001aef60 000007fe`dfdd5e72 DoubleTake_Common_ni!DoubleTake.Common.Service.ServiceBase.Start(System.String[])+0x1c
00000000`001aefa0 000007fe`e6d1d432 CoreManagementService_ni!DoubleTake.Internal.Service.Program.Main(System.String[])+0x32
00000000`001aefe0 000007fe`e6c0b7a3 mscorwks!CallDescrWorker+0x82
00000000`001af030 000007fe`e70fa981 mscorwks!CallDescrWorkerWithHandler+0xd3
00000000`001af0d0 000007fe`e6c686db mscorwks!MethodDesc::CallDescr+0x2b1
00000000`001af310 000007fe`e6c8bd54 mscorwks!ClassLoader::RunMain+0x22b
00000000`001af570 000007fe`e71e6c9d mscorwks!Assembly::ExecuteMainMethod+0xbc
00000000`001af860 000007fe`e6c9929f mscorwks!SystemDomain::ExecuteMainMethod+0x47d
00000000`001afe30 000007fe`e6c7bfdc mscorwks!ExecuteEXE+0x47
00000000`001afe80 000007fe`f91974e5 mscorwks!_CorExeMain+0xac
00000000`001afee0 000007fe`f9235b21 mscoreei!_CorExeMain+0xe0
00000000`001aff30 00000000`76ed652d mscoree!_CorExeMain_Exported+0x57
00000000`001aff60 00000000`7710c541 kernel32!BaseThreadInitThunk+0xd
00000000`001aff90 00000000`00000000 ntdll!RtlUserThreadStart+0x1d

0:000> !pe
Exception object: 000000000245e1d8
Exception type: System.Configuration.ConfigurationErrorsException
Message: Configuration system failed to initialize
InnerException: System.Configuration.ConfigurationErrorsException
StackTrace (generated):
    SP               IP               Function
    00000000001ACDD0 000007FEDA68DEDD System.Configuration.ClientConfigurationSystem.EnsureInit(System.String)
    00000000001AEE20 000007FEDA690699 System.Configuration.ClientConfigurationSystem.PrepareClientConfigSystem(System.String)
    00000000001AEE50 000007FEDA6905F8 System.Configuration.ClientConfigurationSystem.System.Configuration.Internal.IInternalConfigSystem.GetSection(System.String)
    00000000001AEE90 000007FEDA6A3BA5 System.Configuration.ConfigurationManager.GetSection(System.String)
    00000000001AEED0 000007FEDA697EE7 System.Configuration.ConfigurationManager.get_AppSettings()
    00000000001AEF10 000007FEDFDD4223 DoubleTake.Internal.Service.ManagementService.ReadApplicationSettings()
    00000000001AEF60 000007FED16772FD DoubleTake.Common.Service.ServiceBase.Start(System.String[])
    00000000001AEFA0 000007FEDFDD5E73 DoubleTake.Internal.Service.Program.Main(System.String[])

StackTraceString: <none>
HResult: 80131902
There are nested exceptions on this thread. Run with -nested for details

0:000> !do 000000000245e1d8
Name: System.Configuration.ConfigurationErrorsException
MethodTable: 000007feda6b3388
EEClass: 000007feda653e00
Size: 168(0xa8) bytes
GC Generation: 0
(C:\Windows\assembly\GAC_MSIL\System.Configuration\2.0.0.0__b03f5f7f11d50a3a\System.Configuration.dll)
Fields:
              MT            Field           Offset                 Type VT             Attr            Value Name
000007fee5fb7d90  40000b5        8        System.String  0 instance                0 _className
000007fee5fb6138  40000b6       10 …ection.MethodBase  0 instance                0 _exceptionMethod
000007fee5fb7d90  40000b7       18        System.String  0 instance                0 _exceptionMethodString
000007fee5fb7d90  40000b8       20        System.String  0 instance          245e168 _message
000007fee5faf3b0  40000b9       28 …tions.IDictionary  0 instance                0 _data
000007fee5fb8058  40000ba       30     System.Exception  0 instance          245db98 _innerException
000007fee5fb7d90  40000bb       38        System.String  0 instance                0 _helpURL
000007fee5fb7680  40000bc       40        System.Object  0 instance          245e418 _stackTrace
000007fee5fb7d90  40000bd       48        System.String  0 instance                0 _stackTraceString
000007fee5fb7d90  40000be       50        System.String  0 instance                0 _remoteStackTraceString
000007fee5fbf000  40000bf       70         System.Int32  1 instance                0 _remoteStackIndex
000007fee5fb7680  40000c0       58        System.Object  0 instance                0 _dynamicMethods
000007fee5fbf000  40000c1       74         System.Int32  1 instance      -2146232062 _HResult
000007fee5fb7d90  40000c2       60        System.String  0 instance                0 _source
000007fee5fba798  40000c3       68        System.IntPtr  1 instance                0 _xptrs
000007fee5fbf000  40000c4       78         System.Int32  1 instance       -532459699 _xcode
000007fee5fb7d90  400315d       80        System.String  0 instance                0 _filename
000007fee5fbf000  400315e       7c         System.Int32  1 instance                0 _line
000007fee5fb7d90  4000254       88        System.String  0 instance                0 _firstFilename
000007fee5fbf000  4000255       98         System.Int32  1 instance                0 _firstLine
000007fee5fa5b80  4000256       90      System.Object[]  0 instance                0 _errors

0:000> !do 245db98
Name: System.Configuration.ConfigurationErrorsException
MethodTable: 000007feda6b3388
EEClass: 000007feda653e00
Size: 168(0xa8) bytes
GC Generation: 0
(C:\Windows\assembly\GAC_MSIL\System.Configuration\2.0.0.0__b03f5f7f11d50a3a\System.Configuration.dll)
Fields:
              MT            Field           Offset                 Type VT             Attr            Value Name
000007fee5fb7d90  40000b5        8        System.String  0 instance                0 _className
000007fee5fb6138  40000b6       10 …ection.MethodBase  0 instance                0 _exceptionMethod
000007fee5fb7d90  40000b7       18        System.String  0 instance                0 _exceptionMethodString
000007fee5fb7d90  40000b8       20        System.String  0 instance          245ab90 _message
000007fee5faf3b0  40000b9       28 …tions.IDictionary  0 instance                0 _data
000007fee5fb8058  40000ba       30     System.Exception  0 instance                0 _innerException
000007fee5fb7d90  40000bb       38        System.String  0 instance                0 _helpURL
000007fee5fb7680  40000bc       40        System.Object  0 instance          245e038 _stackTrace
000007fee5fb7d90  40000bd       48        System.String  0 instance                0 _stackTraceString
000007fee5fb7d90  40000be       50        System.String  0 instance                0 _remoteStackTraceString
000007fee5fbf000  40000bf       70         System.Int32  1 instance                0 _remoteStackIndex
000007fee5fb7680  40000c0       58        System.Object  0 instance                0 _dynamicMethods
000007fee5fbf000  40000c1       74         System.Int32  1 instance      -2146232062 _HResult
000007fee5fb7d90  40000c2       60        System.String  0 instance                0 _source
000007fee5fba798  40000c3       68        System.IntPtr  1 instance                0 _xptrs
000007fee5fbf000  40000c4       78         System.Int32  1 instance       -532459699 _xcode
000007fee5fb7d90  400315d       80        System.String  0 instance                0 _filename
000007fee5fbf000  400315e       7c         System.Int32  1 instance                0 _line
000007fee5fb7d90  4000254       88        System.String  0 instance          244aa40 _firstFilename
000007fee5fbf000  4000255       98         System.Int32  1 instance                3 _firstLine
000007fee5fa5b80  4000256       90      System.Object[]  0 instance          245df38 _errors

0:000> !do 245ab90
Name: System.String
MethodTable: 000007fee5fb7d90
EEClass: 000007fee5bbe560
Size: 120(0x78) bytes
GC Generation: 0
(C:\Windows\assembly\GAC_64\mscorlib\2.0.0.0__b77a5c561934e089\mscorlib.dll)
String: Unrecognized configuration section appSettings.
Fields:
              MT            Field           Offset                 Type VT             Attr            Value Name
000007fee5fbf000  4000096        8         System.Int32  1 instance               48 m_arrayLength
000007fee5fbf000  4000097        c         System.Int32  1 instance               47 m_stringLength
000007fee5fb97d8  4000098       10          System.Char  1 instance               55 m_firstChar
000007fee5fb7d90  4000099       20        System.String  0   shared           static Empty
                                 >> Domain:Value  00000000003f2d10:00000000023a1308 <<
000007fee5fb9688  400009a       28        System.Char[]  0   shared           static WhitespaceChars
                                 >> Domain:Value  00000000003f2d10:00000000023a1b10 <<

It indicates that appSettings section in C:\Windows\Microsoft.NET\Framework64\v2.0.50727\CONFIG\machine.config file has an invalid entry. Hence, the solution would be to compare the appSettings section in machine.config file on a working  system. It should be like this:

–><configuration>
<configSections>
  <section name=”appSettings” type=”System.Configuration.AppSettingsSection, System.Configuration, Version=2.0.0.0, Culture=neutral, PublicKeyToken=b03f5f7f11d50a3a” restartOnExternalChanges=”false” requirePermission=”false”/>

Sometime, you may also find that machine.config itself is missing on the system. In that scenario, copy the machine.config file from a working system(similar configuration) as the .NET Framework 2.0 is included as an OS component (Windows Vista, Windows Server 2008, Windows 7 and above OSs).


Comments (2)

  1. Rupert says:

    Thanks so much, been tearing my hair out (what's left of it!) all day trying to fix the above error… turned out the machine.config file had disappeared from my machine..

    cheers,

    Rupert

  2. Ramalingam G says:

    Excellent, thank you very much. I really confused in this problem