Posted by mikeb on April 5, 2012
This was a fun issue. I’ve seen it before when setting up SharePoint WSS3.0 but, sadly, I forgot.
So you will find a lot of various postings on this and they will lead you all around in various directions.
Provided you are working with a “vanilla” install (as it were) you will find one funny omission that just futzes (http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/futz) with your time…
Make sure that you go to the IIS Manger>Application Pools>StsAdminAppPool (and repeat for StsAppPool1)>right click>properties>identity tab
Now, if you have not defined the username/password you can use a Predefined of Local System … but the default of “Network Service” is more than likely why you are actually having a problem.
When I change the predefined to “Local System”>Apply>stopped the app pool and start it back up … now go to your SharePoint Central Admin Site …
Hope this helps someone else as well.