For this post, I want to talk about Web Apps and Deployment Slots. If you are new to Azure, or have been around for a while, you might see references to Azure Websites or its newer name Azure Web Apps. This Azure feature allows you to host your website content in the cloud.
To find out more, view these links:
- You can find a general introduction to Web Apps here.
- To see what you can do with Web Apps, read Samir’s TechNet post on using Web Apps for URL Rewrites.
If you have critical content on a Web App but you want to roll out some changes – perhaps a new component or a complete website overhaul – you will want to test it first. This is where Deployment Slots are useful. You can deploy your changes to a staging slot for testing and then you can swap it into production confident it’s working. If the changes are not to your liking, you can roll back to your last known good state.
The following links have excellent content about Deployment Slots:
- Scott Hanselman introduces the topic: A/B Testing and Testing In Production with Azure Web Apps
- This Azure document walks you through the steps: Set up staging environments for web apps in Azure App Service
- Ruslan shows you how to warm up your Web Apps before swapping from staging to production slots: How to warm up Azure Web App during deployment slots swap
- If you like videos, here is one on Deployment Slots and another on routing traffic between slots during testing.
That should be enough links to get you started with this topic. If you find other information you think is useful, please post it in the comments.