Category: Web App Gallery

Using Umbraco CMS with Multiple Environments on Azure App service

Why use multiple environments? Working directly on your production site is a recipe for disaster you may regress issues or create new issues/bug with your production site breaking critical or non-critical functionality. Once you have a broken production site, rolling out a fix could take from minutes to hours or days during which period your site is down.

More and more developers are using CMS based solutions for developing their websites. Umbraco CMS is one of the popular .NET CMS solutions used by many developers. In this blog post I will share with you how to setup multiple environments for a staging and production sites for Umbraco CMS on Azure Web Apps.

What you will learn

  1. Setup local development site
  2. Setup a staging environment
  3. Setup Courier2 deployment module
  4. Deploy from staging to production site

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WordPress with Memcached on Windows Azure websites

Are you looking to improve the performance of you WordPress website running on Azure websites service? If yes, then what you need a cache to help speed up your website. If you website gets heavy traffic, it is optimum to set up some form of distributed memory caching mechanism.

Memcached is a general purpose distributed memory caching system. It is often used to speed up dynamic database-driven websites by caching data and objects in RAM to reduce the number of times an external data source (such as a database or API) must be read. Memcached system uses a client–server architecture. The Client which would be your website will use client-side libraries, in this case PECL memcached library to contact the servers which expose their service at port 11211. Each client knows all servers; the servers do not communicate with each other.

If a client wishes to set or read the value corresponding to a certain key, the client’s library first computes a hash of the key to determine the server to use. Then it contacts that server. The server will compute a second hash of the key to determine where to store or read the corresponding value.

Memcached Client must treat memcached server as a transitory cache; they cannot assume that data stored in Memcached is still there when they need it. MemcacheDB, Couchbase Server,
Varnish and other database servers provide persistent storage while maintaining Memcached protocol compatibility.

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BugNET on Windows Azure Websites

If you are looking for a cloud based solution for Project Management and bug tracking, then you should give BugNET a try. BugNET is now available on Windows Azure Websites Gallery and can be set up in just a few minutes. This is an Open source licensed version of BugNET written in ASP.NET that allows you to:

  • Create Unlimited projects
  • Track bug & Issue for your projects
  • Track the status of your project
  • Integrate with Gravatar, Source control (SVN, Mercurial), Open ID etc.

To learn more about the features, check this article.

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Migrate your existing WordPress site to Windows Azure

Windows Azure Websites is a PaaS solution offered by Microsoft which offers a great foundation to power your web applications. It is built to manage millions of requests per day and load balances requests as needed. You don’t need to worry about maintenance of your servers since Windows Azure websites takes care of it for you.

In this tutorial I will show you how to migrate your existing WordPress blog on or any other hosted service to Windows Azure Websites. Login to the dashboard for your blog on and select Toolsà Export to export your blog content

Export tool creates a WXR (WordPress extended RSS) file that contains all the your content information and is ready to be imported .

Now login to Azure Management portal. If you don’t have an account sign up for the free trial and get $200 credit towards Windows Azure services like Websites, VM, Mobile Services and many more J . Create a new WordPress website from the Gallery following these steps shown below :

In two minutes you have a new WordPress site up and running on Azure Websites service. The site will be created under “Free” mode which does not support high availability and conforms to Azure websites SLA. I recommend you configure your website in Standard mode. Standard Mode allows you choose which sites run on dedicated virtual machines that correspond to standard Windows Azure compute resources. Azure websites services provides a 99.9% SLA when you run in the Standard Mode. Go to your website dashboard and select SCALE. Set the mode to STANDARD and save your configuration. For the sake of this tutorial I am using 1 small instance.

Now let’s login to the dashboard and install Plugin WordPress Importer which will allow you to import the WXR file that was created earlier from your blog.

We can now import the WXR file into your WordPress site on Azure websites. In your site’s dashboard, select Toolsà Import à WordPress

Upload the WXR file created from your existing blog. If your blog includes other authors, add them or set the new author to your user account. Since my blog has one user, I will re-assign all the posts to use the administrator user of this WordPress site, “admin” .

Now click on Posts to view all your imported posts from blog. Enjoy blogging on your new WordPress blog powered by Windows Azure J


WordPress with SQL Azure on Windows Azure Websites

WordPress now comes with SQL Azure support built by Brandoo Group for Windows Azure Websites.  In this tutorial you will learn how to create a WordPress site with SQL Azure .

Once you are logged into the Management portal , you will need to create a new site “from gallery” as shown below


Choose Blogs category and then select Brandoo WordPress


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