Home > sharepoint > I can’t retract my solution!

I can’t retract my solution!

Ok, I have seen this issue a bunch and the first time I ran across it I didn’t know what to do. I should have written a blog about it then, but forgot. Then, the other day a colleague of mine ran across the same issue. So, I decided to write a blog and hopefully help someone else in the future.

Have you ever tried to retract a solution in Central Administration and it then sits on “Retracting”. Then, after it is done it still says “Deployed”. And, to make matters worse, you don’t see an error message. Why does this happen?

Well, I know of one way that is very common. If you originally deployed to all webs, instead of specifying the web applications to deploy to, then you can get this issue. In fact, if you use a tool like WSPBuilder, and you use their deploy command in Visual Studio, you are deploying to all web applications.

Here is the issue, after you do a retract and use “allcontenturls”, which is the default if you just say retract all web applications in Central Administration, then it has an issue. The issue is that it won’t retract the solution from Central Administration itself. In order to retract the solution from Central Administration, you have to choose it specifically to retract. You can do this through stsadm and point directly to the central administration url. Or, you can go into Central Administration and when you go to the retraction screen you can pick the Central Administration web application from the dropdown list.

Usually I just do my retractions in Central Administration. So, when I originally do a “deploy to all web applications”, I then have a 2 step process to retract. Step 1: Retract from all Web Applications. Step 2: Retract specifically from Central Administration.

Hopefully this helps someone in this situation. I am sure there are more reasons why a web application won’t retract, but this is a common scenario I have seen.

Categories: sharepoint
  1. erugalatha
    April 7, 2009 at 1:36 pm


    It takes hours to troubleshoot things like this – and luckily I came across you post … only for that I would have been hours longer troubleshooting.

  2. Ian
    August 3, 2009 at 8:20 am

    Superb time saving post.

    thanks very much


  3. Joe
    September 23, 2009 at 12:31 pm

    Thanks, it makes sense once you know what is going on, but at first can be quite frustrating. Saved me some time!

  4. November 21, 2009 at 12:35 am

    Many thanks.

    Im also getting peeved with endless Sharepoint bugginess though .

  5. Greg
    February 11, 2010 at 11:11 am

    Thanks dude.. was pulling my hair out .. not having a good day

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