Web Deploy as a site extension

In the latest version of Azure Websites, we have enabled a new Web Deploy endpoint which lives as a site extension on each customer’s site.  If you’re not familiar with site extensions, they’re essentially plugins that allow website owners to enhance the manageability of their site.  Web Deploy is a good fit as a site extension because it allows each site to host their own instance of the service, as well as give us the ability to update it more frequently.

How to tell if you’re using the new endpoint

With the new endpoint enabled, any new publishing profile that you download will be configured to point to it.  To confirm if your publish profile uses the new endpoint, open it up and look for the publishUrl attribute under the MSDeploy profile node.  If the publishUrl looks something like “sitename.scm.*” then your profile is pointing to the new endpoint.  If it looks like “*.publish.azurewebsites.windows.net” than it’s still pointing to the old one.  Here’s an example of what it might look like:

 

Elliott Hamai - Web Deploy as a site extension - image1a

The left profile has the old endpoint while the right profile has the new endpoint

How do I move back to the old endpoint?

For the moment we are keeping the previous Web Deploy endpoint available to ease the transition. If needed you can get a publish profile that points to the old publishUrl by doing the following steps:

1. Open your site in the Azure management portal and click on the “Configure” tab.

 Elliott Hamai - Web Deploy as a site extension - image2

 

2. Add the app setting “WEBSITE_WEBDEPLOY_USE_SCM” and set it to “false”.  Don’t forget to click “save” to commit your changes.

 Elliott Hamai - Web Deploy as a site extension - image3

3. Go back to the dashboard and re-download your publishing profile.  The publishUrl should now point back to the old *.publish.azurewebsites.windows.net address.

 Elliott Hamai - Web Deploy as a site extension - image4

 

4.      Publish with the new publish profile.

 

Limitations of the new endpoint

There are a small set of known limitations for the new endpoint that have simple workarounds via Azure Portal and are usually one-time actions.  These limitations include any actions which attempt to:

  1. Modify any application pool settings
  2. Create new sub-applications