How to setup Umbraco locally and on Azure

When I first started toying with Umbraco. I had a lot of problems getting it setup right. But it’s actually pretty darn simple when you actually know how to handle all the hidden folders and files. Im going to be using Visual Studio 2015 as well as an Azure web app and database.

Getting your project up and running

So let’s fire up Visual Studio. Hit File -> New Project.

umbraco framework selection

Umbraco doesnt support .NET Core 1.0 (.NET 5) yet. So we create a ASP.NET Web Application using .NET 4.5.1 and select an Empty project.

Umbraco template selection

Now we are ready to add Umbraco to our project. We can use either the “Manage NuGet packages” or the Package Manager Console. We are going to be using the console window since that seems like the easiest way to go for a tutorial. The command we run is: Install-Package UmbracoCms

When it’s done adding Umbraco to your project you’ll be greeted by a Readme.txt that says “Don’t forget to build!”… So let’s start by hitting F5 to start debugging. Building alone won’t do us any good really so we might as well run the project and get the configuration process going. You’ll be greeted by a popup asking you to either allow modification of the web.config file to enable debugging or running without debugging. In my experience it doesn’t really matter. You shouldn’t encounter any bugs for you too debug. So lets just hit Ok and get the process going.

Hooking up too your Azure SQL database

The above screen should open in your browser. It seems pretty easy right? Add your name, email and a password. Well what’s your default response after writing in your password? Hitting enter… I’ve made that mistake several times when setting up Umbraco. The reason why i don’t wanna hit enter after putting in my password, is because it will install with default settings. So if thats what you want go ahead. But in this tutorial we are going to setup Umbraco on Azure. So we might aswell do that right away, so go ahead and select Customize.

We select Microsoft SQL Azure and enter our database and user information. When that’s done hit Continue and it should hopefully connect to your Azure database! If you encounter problems remember to add your client IP to your firewall settings on Azure.

Almost done! Now you just gotta decide if you wanna install a starter kit or not. I’m going to be setting up a blog next, so I’ll hit No thanks and install without a starter kit.

Umbraco is now setting everything up on your machine and you’ll be shown what is called the “backoffice” in Umbraco. This is the CMS part of the system. For now we are going to leave this be and go back over to Visual Studio to deploy our application.

Deploying to Azure

One important thing to be aware off when first installing Umbraco, is that it adds a lot of hidden files that you might not notice at first.

umbraco demo

One of the mistakes I made when starting out with Umbraco, was to add all kinds of hidden folders and files to my solution and there by Git. Well don’t do that. Since we install through NuGet, the package will restore itself when another person pulls your solution from version control. The only things you wanna add to your solution and version control is files you either edit or add to the project.

umbraco install folder

Before we deploy we do need to do one thing. We wanna delete the Umbraco->Install folder

When that is done we can go ahead and deploy our application to Azure. Right click on your project and select Publish.

umbraco publish to azure

We select Microsoft Azure App Service.

azure app service

When we’re signed into our Microsoft Account you should be able to select your Subscription and find the Web App you wanna deploy too. If you havent made one you can select the New… button to the right. Once your done select OK.

azure web deploy

Now all there is left to do is click Publish and wait till your brand new Umbraco website shows up in your browser.

If you wanna enter the backoffice you just add “/umbraco” to your url and login.

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