Hi and nice to be a member of this forum!
I'm experiencing this problem and can't figure out for days :/
Web site has both physical and virtual directories in which php files reside. They all need to have access to a configuration file. I have created .user.ini file and placed it in a root directory. IIS can look for this file when I run php file from anywhere, any subdirectory but only located within the physical directory. It can not see it from the virtual directory. File and folder permission is not the case, I think. It does not matter if the physical folder also located in the same root folder of the web site.
So if I run DefaultWebSite/Physical1/phpinfo.php - it works, php has new configuration picked up from .user.ini
If I run DefaultWebSite/Virtual1/phpinfo.php - it does not, php has the default configuration picked up from php.ini
IIS version 10
PHP version 7.2, 74, 8 via FastCGI
Windows Server 2022
Any help is appreciated!