Unable to activate publishing features.

I've seen a bug a couple of times where you for no great reason just can't activate publishing features on your site collection.  I click the button to activate the feature, and absolutely nothing happens, it stays deactivated.  The error appears to be caused because the application pool that the sharepoint site is running as can't activate that particular feature. 

There are a couple of blog posts out there with solutions to these, such as the following :


The fixes suggested are to changing the user your application pool runs as to the one used by CA, but I'm pretty lazy, and that seems like alot of work.

My way of fixing it?  Open up a command prompt and run the following for your site.

stsadm -o activatefeature -name PublishingSite -url http://sitecollection/
stsadm -o activatefeature -name PublishingWeb -url http://sitecollection/site

Same result, much less effort 🙂


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