VS 2010 Web Deployment
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by Scott Guthrie
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Web Deployment Packages

VS 2010 also supports a packaging option that enables you to package up your ASP.NET Web Application (together with its dependencies like web.config, databases, ACLs, etc) into a .zip based deployment package file that you can optionally hand-off to an IT administrator who can then easily install it either via the IIS Admin Tool or via a command-line/powershell script. 

The deployment package you create can optionally expose application configuration settings that can be overridden (like directory locations, database connection-strings, etc).  When using the IIS7 Admin Tool, the install wizard can prompt the administrator for each setting to be customized – enabling you to provide a clean customization experience without having to write any custom code to-do so.  The settings can also obviously be passed as arguments on the command-line when using a command-line or Powershell script to deploy the application.

To create a web package within Visual Studio 2010, just right click on your ASP.NET Web Project node in the solution explorer and select the “Build Deployment Package” menu item:


This will compile your application, perform appropriate web.config transforms on it, optionally create .sql scripts for your database schema and data files, and then package them all up into a .zip deployment package file.  Adjacent to the .zip file you’ll file a deployment script file that you can use to automate deployment of the package to a remote server.

I will dive deeper into how to create web deployment packages in future blog posts.

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