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Creating Web Deployment in Asp.Net

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Deployment is the process of copying all the items of your web application from source machine to the target location and configures the environment for the web application. This process is almost true for all the simple applications but if your Web application contains any type of database, you need to perform some additional task to deploy your web application to the server. You have to create and configure Database and IIS (Internet Information Service) according to your web application.

There are some important items/files that you need to copy at server during deployment to run the application properly.
  • .aspx pages

  • .aspx.vb or .aspx.cs files (code files)

  • Web service files (.asmx )

  • Asp.Net User controls (.ascx)

  • .htm or .html files

  • Image files (.jpg, .jpeg, .gif, .png etc)

  • Flash files (.swf)

  • App_Code, App_Themes, Bin folders(Asp.Net System generated folder)

  • .mdb files

  • JavaScript files (.js)

  • .css files

  • .NET components and compiled assemblies

  • web.config file

  • Skins files etc.

Methods of deployment

There are many methods to deploy a web application to server but we will discuss three important methods to deploy a web application.
  1. By using the Virtual Directory

  2. By copy a Website

  3. By creating a Web Setup of the project.

The Virtual Directory

The virtual directory is a directory on server such as IIS, in which the web application is deployed virtually. It is a folder which contains all the .aspx , .aspx.vb or .aspx.cs files, user controls and all other data source files.
The virtual directory is useful for security purpose because a user cannot get a direct access to the source machine’s web application folder.

Here is an example of creating Virtual Directory.

Copy a Website method

Copy Website method is very simple method to deploy a website. In this method files are simply copied from source site (Web application in local computer) to remote site (Web application on server). A remote site can be A file-based website, A local IIS website or A FTP website.
In this method you can download files from remote site to local machine and upload all types of file from source site to remote site as aspx file, code file, images or HTML files easily. A developer can also perform many operations like edit a file, delete a file, rename a file at server.

Here is an example to publish a website using Copy Website utility

Web Setup project

Creating a Web Setup of any web application is another way to deploy a website. Web Setup project creates an executable files with .msi and .exe extensions. These files are used to install the web application on server. Web Setup automatically configures the IIS and creates a Virtual Directory and also provides the uninstalling files facility.

Here is an example to create a Web Setup
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