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Deploying LightSwitch Applications

You deploy your finished LightSwitch applications to make them available to users. The process of deploying a LightSwitch-based application differs depending on the application type and deployment scenario that you select.

The possible deployment scenarios are:

  • Desktop client, 2-tier. This deployment scenario creates an application that runs on the end-user’s Windows desktop. The database and server components run on a networked computer.

  • Desktop client, 3-tier. This deployment scenario creates an application that runs on the end-user’s Windows desktop. The database and server components run on a server that is running Internet Information Services (IIS) or on Windows Azure.

  • Browser client, 3-tier. This deployment scenario creates an application that runs in the end-user’s web browser. The database and server components run on a server that is running IIS or on Windows Azure.

  • Service only. This deployment scenario creates an OData web service that other applications can access. For more information, see How to: Deploy a LightSwitch OData Service.

The application type can be set in the Application Designer. For more information, see How to: Change the Application Type

There are two ways to deploy a LightSwitch-based 3-tier application, by either publishing or packaging it. In either case, the LightSwitch Publish Application Wizard guides you through the deployment process. You can launch the LightSwitch Publish Application Wizard by clicking Publish <application name> on the Build menu, or by clicking the Publish button on the Application Type page of the Application Designer.

  • A published application can be run on client computers immediately after the wizard has been completed. The application is ready to install and the installation automatically deploys the database schema to SQL Server. You must have administrative access to the computer in order to deploy the database schema.

  • A packaged application means that everything that is required to run the application is bundled together, but additional steps must be taken to make the application available to the user. Choose this option when a server administrator will be installing the application and database schema. For more information, see How to: Install a LightSwitch Application on a Server.

Updates to a LightSwitch-based application can be deployed by running the wizard again. 3-tier browser clients need only re-navigate to the web page to get the updated version. 2-tier desktop clients will automatically receive the updates the next time they are run.

To publish a 2-tier desktop application, choose Desktop on the Application Type page of the Application Designer, and choose the Publish button to display the LightSwitch Publish Application Wizard.

Additional options in the wizard differ depending on the choices you have made for your application. For more information, see How to: Deploy a 2-tier Application.

Once the application is published, users can install it from the publish location that you specify in the wizard by running the Setup.exe file.

NoteNote

You may need to pre-configure the client computer, following the instructions in the Install.htm file. The file is published to the same location as the Setup.exe file.

To publish updates to the application, update the Application version on the General Properties page of the Application Designer. Run the LightSwitch Publish Application Wizard again. The next time the user runs the application they will automatically receive the update from the publish location.

NoteNote

When you publish updates, you don't need to republish the database unless you change the schema. To prevent the database from being republished, clear the Publish database schema check box on the Database Connections page of the LightSwitch Publish Application Wizard.

An end user can uninstall a 2-tier desktop application from Programs and Features or Add and Remove Programs in Control Panel.

Publishing a 3-tier application requires that you have administrative access to a server that is running IIS and is preconfigured for LightSwitch, and also that you have administrative access to a computer that is running SQL Server. For more information, see How to: Configure a Server to Host LightSwitch-Based Applications. You can also publish an application to Windows Azure. For more information, see How to: Host an Application on Windows Azure.

The publishing process is the same for both desktop and browser applications. To publish a 3-tier application, choose either Desktop or Web on the Application Type page of the Application Designer, and choose the Publish button to display the LightSwitch Publish Application Wizard.

On the Publish Output page of the wizard, choose the Remotely publish to a server now option button. Additional options in the wizard differ depending on the choices you have made for your application. For more information, see How to: Deploy a 3-tier Application.

Once the application is published, users can install it from the web site that you specify in the wizard by choosing the ApplicationName link, where ApplicationName is the display name of your application. For a desktop application, the user will be prompted to install. For a Web application, the application will open in the web browser.

To publish updates to the application, update the Application version on the General Properties page of the Application Designer. Run the LightSwitch Publish Application Wizard again. The next time that the user runs the application they will automatically see the new version.

NoteNote

When you publish updates, you don't need to republish the database unless you change the schema. To prevent the database from being republished, clear the Publish database schema check box on the Database Connections page of the LightSwitch Publish Application Wizard.

An end user can uninstall a 3-tier desktop application from Programs and Features or Add and Remove Programs in Control Panel. Browser applications must be uninstalled from the server by the IIS administrator.

A packaged 3-tier application generates everything necessary to install the application on an Internet Information Services (IIS) host. The publishing process is the same for both desktop and browser applications. To package a 3-tier application, choose either Desktop or Web on the Application Type page of the Application Designer, and choose the Publish button to display the LightSwitch Publish Application Wizard. On the Publish Output page of the wizard, choose the Create a package on disk option button. Additional options in the wizard differ depending on the choices you have made for your application. For more information, see How to: Deploy a 3-tier Application.

Once the application is published, a .zip file that contains the package is placed in the publish location that you specified in the wizard. Once this package has been created, a server administrator can deploy the application to servers that are running IIS and SQL Server. For more information, see How to: Install a LightSwitch Application on a Server.

To publish updates to the application, update the Application version on the General Properties page of the Application Designer. Run the LightSwitch Publish Application Wizard again. After the server administrator has installed the new package, the next time that the user runs the application they will automatically see the new version.

NoteNote

When you publish updates, you don't need to republish the database unless you change the schema. To prevent the database from being republished, clear the Generate the SQL database script check box on the Database Configuration page of the LightSwitch Publish Application Wizard.

An end user can uninstall a 3-tier desktop application from Programs and Features or Add and Remove Programs in Control Panel. Browser applications must be uninstalled by the IIS administrator.

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