Since the recent releases a few folks have been asking “Can I run v0.8.1 in a Windows Azure Web site today?” The answer is YES and in this post I will show you how to do it.
How to do it
By default when you deploy a node app to an Azure Web site, we use the default version of node that is preconfigured in Azure, which is currently v0.6.17. You can however deploy your own version of node.exe and via iisnode.yml tell us to use it instead.
Create the site and configure it
- Create a new folder where to store your node app.
- Add a server.js to the folder. I am going to use the following code which will just output the version.
- Now create your site. I’ll call mine “node081test” using this command:
- Now comes the part about setting node version. First create a child bin folder and change to it.
- Next go download node.exe from nodejs.org and put it in that folder. If you have curl you can use this command.
- Next open up your iisnode.yml in your favorite editor and add the following entry. This specifies the absolute location for your node.exe.
- For your site you will need to change node081test in the path to whatever name you chose.
- Logger.js is a loader that will override node’s logging mechanism so that it writes to our Azure logs location. It will also load your app startup js file i.e. app.js or server.js.
Now that the site is configured, we can go push it to github.
And voila, we’ve deployed Node v0.8.1
Upgrading later to a different version
One caveat here, once you have a site with a custom node version deployed, you need to stop the site before you push the upgrade. This is because the file may be locked by iisnode. To do this just just use the “azure site stop” command from the directory where your app lives and then restart it with “azure site start”. You only have to do this if you are changing the version.
What about versioning for Web sites in general?
One question you might be asking is what about our versioning story in general, will we only support 0.6.17 out of the box for the foreseeable future and then require you to push a specific node after that?
The answer is no ;-). We are planning to add versions pretty frequently (monthly) and are about to roll out a versioning story for in-the-box versions in a few weeks.
In the meanwhile, you can get going with using 0.8.1 now. Also using this technique you will always be able to get the version you want, when you want it!