Tip #4. Why is Alternative Access Mapping (AAM) necessary?

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Very often, depending on your infrastructure, URL of a web request received by IIS is not the same URL that the end user entered. This happens in reverse proxy publishing and load balancing scenarios. So, SharePoint needs a way to handle such URLs and return you right sites.

AAM tells SharePoint how to map web requests (for example, browsing to the homepage of a SharePoint site) to the correct web application and site so that SharePoint can serve the correct content back to you. It then tells SharePoint what URL the users should be taken to as they interact with SharePoint.

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