Microsoft Windows Cloud Servers and Microsoft WebMatrix

Traditionally web developers, web designers and marketing agencies (collectively Web Professionals) tend to shy away from Cloud Servers, whether they run Microsoft Windows or Linux, because they’re concerned about the complexity of managing a server, keeping the operating system up-to-date and spending more time working on their server than working for their customers. However, when you combine WebMatrix and a Microsoft Windows based cloud server you’ll quickly realize that you’re able to do more, quicker and faster than ever before.

Take WordPress for example. When deploying a WordPress site for the first time you have to publish all of the WordPress core files, then you have to create a MySQL database, then you have to modify the wp-config.php file to point at the MySQL database, then you run through the installer, then you upload your theme, your plug-ins, customize your CSS and finally you have your WordPress site! All of that in itself is quite a task. Then when dealing with a new cloud server, you have to add on top of that, configure the web server, install and configure PHP, install and configure MySQL and lock the entire thing down! Oh and let’s not forget, in three months you’ll have to install security updates and test and debug all of this again to make sure the updated doesn’t break your site!

But when you leverage Microsoft WebMatrix and a cloud server running Microsoft Windows Server, much of this is automated for you!

Installing and Configuring the Pre-Requisites on Microsoft Windows Web Server, the easy way!

In the past when you deployed a new Microsoft Windows Web Server, you’d have to install and configure IIS, install and configure PHP and install and configure MySQL if you wanted to run WordPress on top of a web server running Microsoft Windows Server. Today, there’s something called the Web Platform Installer (or WebPI) that actually installs all of this for you. It’s like a one click installer for configuring your entire Web Platform (Web Server, Database Server and the Application Engines like PHP, ASP.NET, etc).

To get started the first thng you’ll do is visit: www.microsoft.com/web/ and download and install the Web Platform Installer (WebPI) and once that’s installed you’ll select the options:

  • Recommended Configuration for Hosting Providers

This option will install the recommended IIS configuration as well as MySQL, it’s dependencies and PHP and it’s dependencies In addition, it will configure these features for optimal configuration for most workloads. In the case of PHP this includes enabling FastCGI and WinCACHE (which enable superior PHP Performance!).

Once this is done you’ll want to enable Web Deploy. Now manually configuring webdeploy can be difficult but most control panels today (including WebsitePanel which is available FREE with all Microsoft Windows Cloud Servers). If however you wish to manually configure Web Deploy you can follow guidance at: http://learn.iis.net/page.aspx/1075/installing-and-configuring-web-deploy/

A Quick Overview of Microsoft WebMatrix and Benefits it offers when combined with a Windows Cloud Web Server

Now that your server is configured and ready to host web applications like WordPress, Drupal and Joomla, on Microsoft Windows Server, the next step is creating a development environment that closely resembles your production environment. Microsoft WebMatrix makes it easy!

Microsoft WebMatrix will install a user-mode version of IIS that is based on the same codebase as the IIS installed Windows Server 2008 R2, plus it will configure: ASP.NET, PHP, MySQL and MS SQL Express all allowing you to precisely emulate your production web platform environment with your development web platform environment. This allows you to develop using the same web platform you’ll publish to and ultimately rule out any conflicts or configuration conflicts between your development and production web platform.

Microsoft WebMatrix also includes a wealth of developer friendly feature including a rich code editor that includes intellisense for PHP and ASP.NET, a database editor, Search Engine Optimization recommendations, FTP publishing built in as well as web deploy publishing which allows you to publish not only your site files but also your database, application settings and file permissions all with a single click to your Windows Cloud Servers!

Microsoft WebMatrix and Microsoft Windows Cloud Servers, an optimized development, publication and hosting web platform

As you can see, by leveraging Microsoft WebMatrix and Microsoft Windows powered Cloud Servers you’re able to streamline your web platform development with open-source applications like WordPress and spend less time dealing with issues around deploying web applications, debugging your web platform and ultimately stop dealing with managing your windows cloud servers and start focusing on your business.

If you’re ready to try Microsoft WebMatrix and your own Microsoft Windows Cloud Server, now’s a great time! Applied Innovatios is offering a special $29.95/month promotion on Microsoft WebMatrix enabled Windows Cloud Servers at: https://www.appliedi.net/windows-cloud-server-promo/









About the Author

Jess Coburn

It's Jess's responsibility as CEO and Founder of Applied Innovations to set the direction of Applied Innovations services to ensure that as a company we're consistently meeting the needs of our customers to help drive their success. In his spare time, Jess enjoys many of the things that made him a geek to begin with. That includes sexy new hardware, learning new technology and even a videogame or two! When you can’t find him at the office (which admittedly is rare), you’ll likely find him at the grill or in front of his smoker getting ready for some lip-smacking ribs to enjoy with his wife and two kids.

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