Very bottom - did you update the DatabaseInstanceName and DatabaseServer entries in the registry? I have run into weird issues with this before. Usually when I want to check for DB connectivity errors, I check eventparser.log
I checked in the registry, and the DatabaseServer name was incorrect, so I corrected it, and rebooted. I am still getting the 500 error though and cannot launch either page.
In the eventparser.log file, im getting the following:
COM Error 0x800004005, source=Microsoft OLE DB Provider for SQL Server, desc=[DBNETLIB][ConnectionOpen (Connect()).] SQL Server does not exist or access denied., msg=Unspecified error
Some weirdness, especially as you checked the SQL connection before the reboot. As from the sound of it you moved from a local SQL server to a remote SQL server, have you removed the DependOnService reg keys also (same KB)? To be completely honest, I am grasping - the initial connection verification proves that network and port access is ok, so there is likely something under the hood that is causing an issue leading on to the current SQL Server connection issue (ie the connection issue isn't the root cause).
At this stage I would be mashing around in my lab environment :-\
thanks for the response.
the production and test environments have always been split config, so there was never any local sql. i may try to take another copy of the production db, and import it. not sure if there is some hidden sql issue or not. it still doesnt make sense though, why i wouldnt be able to access /core/config. It seems this page should always be available.