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I hit this error today while working with an MVC3 application.  It appeared out of the blue – but don’t they always?  Fortunately, I make a habit of committing my work into SVN every time my tests pass, so I could have just reverted back to my last Revision, but I wanted to know what I did to cause this.

Much to my demise, the optimistic fixes didn’t work:

  • Restart the debugger several times, because surely that will fix it :-)
  • Close Visual Studio and reopen it.

Just kidding.  But we do tend to try those don’t we?

Back on topic, I looked at the changes between my current work space and the last working revision.  Turns out somehow the web.config in the Views directory was deleted.  Once I restored the file from SVN, all worked wonders again.

Wonderfully descriptive error message, isn’t it?

Happy Coding!

About the Author

Phil Japikse

is an international speaker, a Microsoft MVP, ASPInsider, INETA Community Champion, MCSD, CSM/ CSP, and a passionate member of the developer community. Phil has been working with .Net since the first betas, developing software for over 20 years, and heavily involved in the agile community since 2005. Phil also hosts the Hallway Conversations podcast ( and serves as the Lead Director for the Cincinnati .Net User’s Group ( You can follow Phil on twitter via, or read his personal blog at


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