As part of my demo preps for all the conferences I’ve spoken at recently I’ve been deploying my LightSwitch apps to Azure websites and I can honestly say that it is by far the easiest way to get a LightSwitch application up and running. Of course you can always manually set up your own server, database and network if you want a purely internal business app like I’ve showed in these deployment posts. However, it’s always hard to troubleshoot what goes wrong when a deployment goes bad because everyone’s environment is a little bit different. The great thing about Azure websites is the environment is hassle-free and already ready for you to deploy your LightSwitch applications.
In this post I’ll detail step-by-step how to deploy a LightSwitch application to Azure websites. But first, you may be wondering what the heck is an Azure website and what’s the difference between that and a cloud service? LightSwitch applications can be deployed to both through the Publishing Wizard, but why would you choose one over the other?
Azure Cloud Services provide reserved, infinitely scalable, n-tier options running on a Platform as a Service (Paas). Azure Websites are for quick and easy web application and service deployments. You can start for free and scale as you go. So if you do not need all the other services like caching, blob storage, CDN, etc. that the Azure cloud services provide and you only have a LightSwitch application to deploy, then an Azure website is the right choice.
If you’re interested in deploying to cloud services see Andrew & Brian’s post: Publishing LightSwitch Apps to Azure with Visual