PowerShell Script to Configure Search in SharePoint Server 2010

This morning I thought I'd share one more very useful PowerShell script for SharePoint Server 2010.

When using Central Administration and/or the Farm Configuration Wizard to create and configure the Search Service Application, the resulting databases are named Search_Service_Application_DB_{GUID}, Search_Service_Application_CrawlDB_{GUID}, and Search_Service_Application_PropertyStoreDB_{GUID}.

Personally, I'm not a fan of these lengthy database names. While the "_{GUID}" naming convention might be great for supporting multitenancy deployments (that's the only reason I can think of why SharePoint does this by default), I'd much rather see database names like SearchService, SearchService_CrawlStore, and SearchService_PropertyStore. [Actually, in all honesty, I'd much rather see SharePoint use far fewer distinct databases and instead leverage database schemas to segregate the various functional areas (or at least provide the option to do this) -- but that's obviously just wishful thinking.]

In order to avoid the lengthy database names containing GUIDs, I recommend that you create and configure the Search Service Application using PowerShell.

When researching how to do this, I found a number of sample scripts that show how to configure Search in SharePoint Server 2010 using PowerShell and they all seemed to follow the same general approach, including creating new query and search topologies and then deleting the original search/query topologies that are created by default.

The following post does a great job of explaining the fundamental problem that occurs when configuring Search using PowerShell and why the "create new topologies/delete original topologies" process is necessary:

SharePoint 2010 Configuring Search Service Application using PowerShell


The other thing I noticed about the scripts that I came across -- and the primary reason why I'm sharing my own version -- is they appear to be missing one key piece: setting the default content access account to some service account other than the SharePoint farm account.

The following table lists the service accounts that I recommend when configuring Search in SharePoint Server 2010:

Service accounts related to Search in SharePoint Server 2010
User logon name Full name Description
{DOMAIN}\svc-sharepoint Service account for SharePoint farm

The server farm account is used to create and access the SharePoint configuration database. It also acts as the application pool identity account for the SharePoint Central Administration application pool, and it is the account under which the SharePoint 2010 Timer service runs. The SharePoint Products Configuration Wizard adds this account to the SQL Server dbcreator and securityadmin server roles.

The farm service account must be a domain user account, but it does not need to be a member of any specific security group on the servers in the farm. It is recommended to follow the principle of least privilege and specify a user account that is not a member of the Administrators group on any of the servers in the farm.

{DOMAIN}\svc-index Service account for indexing content Provides read-only access to any content that needs to be indexed (and thus included in search results)
{DOMAIN}\svc-spserviceapp Service account for SharePoint service applications Used as the application pool identity for SharePoint service applications


For each service account listed in the table above, corresponding “-dev” and “-test” service accounts need to be created for the Development and Test environments. This allows the Development and Test teams to install and configure their environments without knowing the passwords for the Production environment.

Note that the following script is based on my fictitious Fabrikam sample solution and thus uses the FABRIKAM_DEMO_URL environment variable to automatically override the service account names for development and test environments.

Configure SharePoint Search.ps1

 $ErrorActionPreference = "Stop"

Add-PSSnapin Microsoft.SharePoint.PowerShell -EA 0

function ConfigureSharePointSearch(
    [Microsoft.SharePoint.Administration.SPIisWebServiceApplicationPool] $appPool,
    [System.Management.Automation.PSCredential] $crawlCredentials,    
    [string] $serviceAppName = "Search Service Application",
    [string] $searchDatabaseName = "SearchService",
    [string] $searchServer = $env:COMPUTERNAME,
    [string] $adminServer = $env:COMPUTERNAME,
    [string] $crawlServer = $env:COMPUTERNAME,
    [string] $queryServer = $env:COMPUTERNAME)
    Write-Host "Configuring SharePoint Search..."

    Write-Debug "appPool: $appPool"
    Write-Debug "crawlCredentials: $($crawlCredentials.Username)"
    Write-Debug "serviceAppName: $serviceAppName"
    Write-Debug "searchDatabaseName: $searchDatabaseName"
    Write-Debug "searchServer: $searchServer"
    Write-Debug "adminServer: $adminServer"
    Write-Debug "crawlServer: $crawlServer"
    Write-Debug "queryServer: $queryServer"

    If ($appPool -eq $null)
        Throw "The application pool must be specified."
    ElseIf ($crawlCredentials -eq $null)
        Throw "The crawl credentials must be specified."

    Write-Host "Creating $serviceAppName..."
    $searchApp = New-SPEnterpriseSearchServiceApplication -Name $serviceAppName `
        -ApplicationPool $appPool -DatabaseName $searchDatabaseName -Debug:$false

    Write-Host ("Starting the SharePoint Search Service instance and Search Admin" `
        + " component...")
    $adminSearchInstance = Get-SPEnterpriseSearchServiceInstance -Debug:$false |
        Where { $_.Server -match $adminServer }
    $admin = $searchApp |
        Get-SPEnterpriseSearchAdministrationComponent -Debug:$false

    if($adminSearchInstance.Status -ne "Online")
        Write-Host "Provisioning SharePoint Search Service instance..."
        Start-Sleep 10

    $admin | Set-SPEnterpriseSearchAdministrationComponent `
        -SearchServiceInstance $adminSearchInstance -Debug:$false

    $admin = ($searchApp | Get-SPEnterpriseSearchAdministrationComponent `

    Write-Host -NoNewLine "Waiting for Search Admin component to initialize..."
    While (-not $admin.Initialized) 
        Write-Host -NoNewLine "."
        Start-Sleep -Seconds 5
        $admin = $searchApp |
            Get-SPEnterpriseSearchAdministrationComponent -Debug:$false
    Write-Host "Setting the default content access account..."
    $searchApp | Set-SPEnterpriseSearchServiceApplication `
        -DefaultContentAccessAccountName $crawlCredentials.Username `
        -DefaultContentAccessAccountPassword $crawlCredentials.Password `

    Start-SPEnterpriseSearchQueryAndSiteSettingsServiceInstance $adminServer `

    # By default, a search application created in PowerShell has a crawl
    # topology but is missing the following:
    #   - crawl component
    #   - query component
    # You cannot add a crawl\query component to the default crawl\query topology
    # because it's set as active and the property is read only.  The easiest way
    # around this is creating a new crawl topology and new query topology. After
    # creating both, they will be set as inactive by default.  This allows for
    # both crawl components to be added to crawl topology and query component to
    # be added to newly created query topology. Finally, you can set this new
    # crawl topology to active.
    # https://blogs.msdn.com/b/russmax/archive/2009/10/20/sharepoint-2010-configuring-search-service-application-using-powershell.aspx)

    # Save initial topologies so they can be removed later
    Write-Host "Getting initial topologies..."
    $initialCrawlTopology = $searchApp |
        Get-SPEnterpriseSearchCrawlTopology -Debug:$false
    $initialQueryTopology = $searchApp |
        Get-SPEnterpriseSearchQueryTopology -Debug:$false

    # Create new crawl topology
    Write-Host "Creating new crawl topology..."
    $crawlTopology = $searchApp |
        New-SPEnterpriseSearchCrawlTopology -Debug:$false
    $crawlDatabase = Get-SPEnterpriseSearchCrawlDatabase `
        -SearchApplication $searchApp -Debug:$false

    # Populate new crawl topology
    Write-Host "Populating new crawl topology..."
    $crawlInstance = Get-SPEnterpriseSearchServiceInstance -Debug:$false |
        Where { $_.Server -match $crawlServer }
    $crawlComponent = New-SPEnterpriseSearchCrawlComponent `
        -CrawlTopology $crawlTopology -CrawlDatabase $crawlDatabase `
        -SearchServiceInstance $crawlInstance -Debug:$false

    # Activate new crawl Topology
    Write-Host "Activating new crawl topology..."
    $crawlTopology | Set-SPEnterpriseSearchCrawlTopology -Active -Debug:$false

    Write-Host -NoNewLine "Waiting for initial crawl topology to be inactive..."
        Start-Sleep 5
        Write-Host -NoNewLine "."
    } While ($initialCrawlTopology.State -ne "Inactive")

    # Create new query topology
    Write-Host "Creating new query topology..."
    $queryTopology = $searchApp |
        New-SPEnterpriseSearchQueryTopology -Partitions 1 -Debug:$false

    # Create Property Store database
    Write-Host "Creating Property Store database..."
    $propertyDatabase = Get-SPEnterpriseSearchPropertyDatabase `
        -SearchApplication $searchApp -Debug:$false

    # Set index partition to use Property Store database
    Write-Host "Setting index partition to use Property Store database..."
    $indexPartition = Get-SPEnterpriseSearchIndexPartition `
        -QueryTopology $queryTopology -Debug:$false
    $indexPartition | Set-SPEnterpriseSearchIndexPartition `
        -PropertyDatabase $propertyDatabase -Debug:$false

    # Populate new query topology
    Write-Host "Populating new query topology...."
    $queryInstance = Get-SPEnterpriseSearchServiceInstance -Debug:$false |
        Where { $_.Server -match $queryServer }
    $queryComponent = New-SPEnterpriseSearchQueryComponent `
        -QueryTopology $queryTopology -IndexPartition $indexPartition `
        -SearchServiceInstance $queryInstance -Debug:$false

    # Activate new query topology
    Write-Host "Activating new query topology..."
    $QueryTopology | Set-SPEnterpriseSearchQueryTopology -Active -Debug:$false

    Write-Host -NoNewLine "Waiting for initial query topology to be inactive..."
        Start-Sleep 5
        Write-Host -NoNewLine "."
    } While ($initialQueryTopology.State -ne "Inactive")


    # Remove initial topologies
    Write-Host "Removing initial topologies..."
    $initialCrawlTopology |
        Remove-SPEnterpriseSearchCrawlTopology -Confirm:$false -Debug:$false
    $initialQueryTopology |
        Remove-SPEnterpriseSearchQueryTopology -Confirm:$false -Debug:$false

    # Create service application proxy and add to Default proxy group
    Write-Host "Creating service application proxy..."
    $searchProxy = New-SPEnterpriseSearchServiceApplicationProxy `
        -Name "$serviceAppName" -SearchApplication $searchApp -Debug:$false

    Write-Host -Fore Green "Successfully configured SharePoint Search."

function GetServiceAppsAppPool(
    [string] $appPoolName,
    [string] $appPoolUserName)
    Write-Debug "Trying to get existing service application pool ($appPoolName)..."
    $appPool = Get-SPServiceApplicationPool $appPoolName -Debug:$false -EA 0

    If ($appPool -ne $null)
        Write-Debug "The service application pool ($appPoolName) already exists."
        return $appPool
    Write-Host "Creating service application pool ($appPoolName)..."

    Write-Debug "Get service account for application pool ($appPoolUserName)..."
    $appPoolAccount = Get-SPManagedAccount -Identity $appPoolUserName `
        -Debug:$false -EA 0

    If($appPoolAccount -eq $null)
        Write-Host "Registering managed account ($appPoolUserName)..."

        Write-Debug "Get credential ($appPoolUserName)..."
        $appPoolCredential = Get-Credential $appPoolUserName

        $appPoolAccount =
            New-SPManagedAccount -Credential $appPoolCredential -Debug:$false

    If ($appPoolAccount -eq $null)
        Write-Host -Force Red ("Unable to find or create the managed account" `
            + " ($appPoolUserName).")

        Exit 1

    $appPool = New-SPServiceApplicationPool -Name $appPoolName `
        -Account $appPoolAccount -Debug:$false

    Write-Host -Fore Green ("Successfully created service application pool" `
        + " ($appPoolName).")
    return $appPool

# https://powershell.com/cs/blogs/ebook/archive/2009/04/10/chapter-19-user-management.aspx#logging-on-under-other-user-names
function ValidateCredentials(
    Write-Debug "Validating credentials ($($credentials.UserName))..."

    $password = [Runtime.InteropServices.Marshal]::PtrToStringAuto(
    $currentDomain = "LDAP://" + ([ADSI]"").distinguishedName

    $domain = New-Object DirectoryServices.DirectoryEntry(
    trap { $script:err = $_ ; continue } &{
        $domain.Bind($true); $script:err = $null }

    if ($err.Exception.ErrorCode -ne -2147352570)
        Write-Host -Fore Red $err.Exception.Message
        Exit 1
    Write-Debug "Successfully validated credentials ($($credentials.UserName))."

function Main()
    $searchServer = $env:COMPUTERNAME
    $adminServer = $searchServer
    $crawlServer = $searchServer
    $queryServer = $searchServer
    $serviceAppsAppPoolName = "SharePoint Service Applications"
    $serviceAppsAppPoolUserName = $env:USERDOMAIN + "\svc-spserviceapp"
    $serviceAppName = "Search Service Application"
    $searchDatabaseName = "SearchService"
    $crawlServiceAccount = $env:USERDOMAIN + "\svc-index"

    $webAppUrl = $env:FABRIKAM_DEMO_URL
    if ($webAppUrl -eq $null)
        $webAppUrl = "https://www.fabrikam.com"

    if (($webAppUrl -eq "https://www-local.fabrikam.com") -or
        ($webAppUrl -eq "https://www-dev.fabrikam.com"))
        Write-Debug "Overriding variables for Development environment..."
        $serviceAppsAppPoolUserName = $env:USERDOMAIN + "\svc-spserviceapp-dev"
        $crawlServiceAccount = $env:USERDOMAIN + "\svc-index-dev"
    elseif ($webAppUrl -eq "https://www-test.fabrikam.com")
        Write-Debug "Overriding variables for Test environment..."
        $serviceAppsAppPoolUserName = $env:USERDOMAIN + "\svc-spserviceapp-test"
        $crawlServiceAccount = $env:USERDOMAIN + "\svc-index-test"

    Write-Host ("Please enter the password for the default content access account" `
        + " ($crawlServiceAccount)...")
    $crawlCredentials = Get-Credential $crawlServiceAccount
    ValidateCredentials $crawlCredentials

    $appPool = GetServiceAppsAppPool $serviceAppsAppPoolName `
    ConfigureSharePointSearch $appPool $crawlCredentials $serviceAppName `
        $searchDatabaseName $searchServer $adminServer $crawlServer $queryServer