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At the moment, I'm having trouble deploying an ASP.NET Web Forms application (now targeting .NET 3.5) onto a Windows Server 2003 running IIS 6. For a long time, I did all of my development in VS 2008 on Windows XP. But then XP died. Now I have VS 2013 on Windows 7 running IIS 8 Express. I can compile and run the code, and everything looks great locally until I deploy it.

Previously, from VS 2008, I would simply publish the website into an empty network folder, then deploy by copy-/ftping the whole thing into web app's document root, first onto a Test server (actually just a virtual co-existing with the production website and various other apps), and then onto Production, all while never bouncing the server.

Now I get mysterious 404 and 500 errors, as if the code I modify and run locally is not actually getting compiled and deployed. I did discover that someone had upgraded Crystal Reports (used to populate PDFs with data) without my knowing it, which I have since accommodated, but every time I deploy, I don't have time to regression test every possible click path throughout the entire website.

I welcome any advice.

  • is the site precompiled, or compile-on-the-fly? is there a valid web.config in the root of the web application/site? have you restarted the app pool (not just recycled; IIS6 was really bad about not relaunching its app pools as it should)? – Frank Thomas Jun 15 '15 at 22:51
  • When I run it locally, it appears to compile on-the-fly. When I publish it, I delete all existing files prior to publish, precompile (updatable) and do not merge the assemblies. Earlier, I tried each of the 5 merge options, but am unclear about how these differ from the 2 available in VS 2008. And no, I do not restart the IIS 6 server, as it hosts other important applications (also under "Default Websites") unrelated to my work. – Rick Edwards Jun 16 '15 at 16:22
  • your apps should be running on a differant application pool than the other apps so that you can start and stop it independently. try just building the site on your dev box, and copy the file with bin directory up to the server. you can trim out the .pdb files, but leave the aspx and cs/vb files and all the dlls in \bin\ – Frank Thomas Jun 16 '15 at 20:33

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