Windows Azure - Moving Staging Deployment to Production

In the previous article we have found how to deploy a new build to staging. In this article we can explore how things are moved fro staging to production.

Information on Staging and Production

For those who are new to the terms staging and production, I can include a brief description on them.

Staging Environment

Staging environment will be having a configuration similar to the production environment. Before an application is released to production (where real users will be using), the application is test deployed to the staging environment. This gives us a chance to find potential bugs, security problems, configuration issues etc. It will save the team from entering into serious problems.

Production Environment

Production Environment will be the actual environment which the real users will be using. A build which was tested perfect in the staging environment is moved to the production environment.

The series of operation and the servers involved will be as following for a typical deployment. Typically, there will be a development machine where the application is created, deployed to a testing machine for the tester to find any bugs, deployed to staging and on successful validation deployed to Production server.


Windows Azure - Staging to Production Deployment

We can deploy a successful staging build to production, using the Swap VIP button in the Azure portal.

Step 1: Select the Deployment item

Sign in to the Azure Portal and select the appropriate item to deploy. In our case, the Deployment 1 is the item to be selected.


Step 2: Click on the Swap VIP

Click on the Swap VIP button from the top toolbar after selecting the deployment item. The following dialog box appears


Step 3: Click on the production url

Now the status of the deployment selected changes to Ready as shown below.


Click on the production url shown on the right pane to open the web role in a browser. The web role is shown below. Please note the url of the browser. The previous staging GUID urls are replaced by the production url.



That concludes the deployment from staging to production in the Windows Azure Portal. The web role is now deployed and available to the public.

More Information

The Swap VIP option does not actually deploy a new build. Instead, it will switch the production and staging builds by switching the DNS addresses internally. Thus the deployment seems to be faster as there is only switching of addresses internally.


The billing of the service will be there for both staging and production deployments. If the usage exceeds the trial limit charges will be levied on your credit card. Please take care.