Web Deployment Projects

One of several out-of-band releases for VS2005 and VS2008 has been the Web Deployment Project, an additional project type to add to your solution, which will automatically compile and deploy your Web Site Project for you according to the settings you’ve set for it. It also works with Web Application Projects, but is targeted at Web Site Projects to give them a build script to automate. Web Application Projects already have a build script—their .csproj project file—of which the Web Deployment Project will work independently. Web Site Projects do not have a .csproj file.

It fits in rather neatly between XCOPY deployment and using a Web Setup Project, automating the deployment of your website, but performing when you build the website in VS2008 rather than when a user runs an installer. This makes the Web Deployment Project excellent for deploying the latest build of a website to a staging server for testing, either manually or through some sort of automated integration server such as Cruise Control or Team System.


The VS2008 Web Deployment Project was released to the Web in January 2008; it is available for download from http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyId=0AA30AE8-C73B-4BDD-BB1B-FE697256C459.

Download hotfixes for it at https://connect.microsoft.com/VisualStudio/Downloads/DownloadDetails.aspx?DownloadID=10826.

Once you’ve installed the Web Deployment Project (admin rights required, Vista users!), right-click a Web Site Project in the Solution ...

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