Running multiple applications and ASP.NET core applications with a deployment manifest - AWS Elastic Beanstalk

Running multiple applications and ASP.NET core applications with a deployment manifest

You can use a deployment manifest to tell Elastic Beanstalk how to deploy your application. By using this method, you don't need to use MSDeploy to generate a source bundle for a single ASP.NET application that runs at the root path of your website. Rather, you can use a manifest file to run multiple applications at different paths. Or, alternatively, you can tell Elastic Beanstalk to deploy and run the app with ASP.NET Core. You can also use a deployment manifest to configure an application pool where to run your applications.

Deployment manifests add support for .NET Core applications to Elastic Beanstalk. You can deploy a .NET Framework application without a deployment manifest. However, .NET Core applications require a deployment manifest to run on Elastic Beanstalk. When you use a deployment manifest, you create a site archive for each application, and then bundle the site archives in a second ZIP archive that contains the deployment manifest.

Deployment manifests also add the ability to run multiple applications at different paths. A deployment manifest defines an array of deployment targets, each with a site archive and a path at which IIS should run it. For example, you could run a web API at the /api path to serve asynchronous requests, and a web app at the root path that consumes the API.

You can also use a deployment manifest to run multiple applications using application pools in IIS or Kestrel. You can configure an application pool to restart your applications periodically, run 32-bit applications, or use a specific version of the .NET Framework runtime.

For full customization, you can write your own deployment scripts in Windows PowerShell and tell Elastic Beanstalk which scripts to run to install, uninstall, and restart your application.

Deployment manifests and related features require a Windows Server platform version 1.2.0 or newer.

.NET core apps

You can use a deployment manifest to run .NET Core applications on Elastic Beanstalk. .NET Core is a cross-platform version of .NET that comes with a command line tool (dotnet). You can use it to generate an application, run it locally, and prepare it for publishing.

To run a .NET Core application on Elastic Beanstalk, you can run dotnet publish and package the output in a ZIP archive, not including any containing directories. Place the site archive in a source bundle with a deployment manifest with a deployment target of type aspNetCoreWeb.

The following deployment manifest runs a .NET Core application from a site archive named at the root path.

Example aws-windows-deployment-manifest.json - .NET core
{ "manifestVersion": 1, "deployments": { "aspNetCoreWeb": [ { "name": "my-dotnet-core-app", "parameters": { "archive": "", "iisPath": "/" } } ] } }

Bundle the manifest and site archive in a ZIP archive to create a source bundle.

. |-- aws-windows-deployment-manifest.json `--

The site archive contains the compiled application code, dependencies, and web.config file.

. |-- Microsoft.AspNetCore.Hosting.Abstractions.dll |-- Microsoft.AspNetCore.Hosting.Server.Abstractions.dll |-- Microsoft.AspNetCore.Hosting.dll |-- Microsoft.AspNetCore.Http.Abstractions.dll |-- Microsoft.AspNetCore.Http.Extensions.dll |-- Microsoft.AspNetCore.Http.Features.dll |-- Microsoft.AspNetCore.Http.dll |-- Microsoft.AspNetCore.HttpOverrides.dll |-- Microsoft.AspNetCore.Server.IISIntegration.dll |-- Microsoft.AspNetCore.Server.Kestrel.dll |-- Microsoft.AspNetCore.WebUtilities.dll |-- Microsoft.Extensions.Configuration.Abstractions.dll |-- Microsoft.Extensions.Configuration.EnvironmentVariables.dll |-- Microsoft.Extensions.Configuration.dll |-- Microsoft.Extensions.DependencyInjection.Abstractions.dll |-- Microsoft.Extensions.DependencyInjection.dll |-- Microsoft.Extensions.FileProviders.Abstractions.dll |-- Microsoft.Extensions.FileProviders.Physical.dll |-- Microsoft.Extensions.FileSystemGlobbing.dll |-- Microsoft.Extensions.Logging.Abstractions.dll |-- Microsoft.Extensions.Logging.dll |-- Microsoft.Extensions.ObjectPool.dll |-- Microsoft.Extensions.Options.dll |-- Microsoft.Extensions.PlatformAbstractions.dll |-- Microsoft.Extensions.Primitives.dll |-- Microsoft.Net.Http.Headers.dll |-- System.Diagnostics.Contracts.dll |-- System.Net.WebSockets.dll |-- System.Text.Encodings.Web.dll |-- dotnet-core-app.deps.json |-- dotnet-core-app.dll |-- dotnet-core-app.pdb |-- dotnet-core-app.runtimeconfig.json `-- web.config

Run multiple applications

You can run multiple applications with a deployment manifest by defining multiple deployment targets.

The following deployment manifest configures two .NET Core applications. The WebApiSampleApp application implements a simple web API and serves asynchronous requests at the /api path. The DotNetSampleApp application is a web application that serves requests at the root path.

Example aws-windows-deployment-manifest.json - multiple apps
{ "manifestVersion": 1, "deployments": { "aspNetCoreWeb": [ { "name": "WebAPISample", "parameters": { "appBundle": "", "iisPath": "/api" } }, { "name": "DotNetSample", "parameters": { "appBundle": "", "iisPath": "/" } } ] } }

A sample application with multiple applications is available here:

Configure application pools

You can support multiple applications in your Windows environment. Two approaches are available:

  • You can use the out-of-process hosting model with the Kestrel web server. With this model, you configure multiple applications to run in one application pool.

  • You can use the in-process hosting model.With this model, you use multiple application pools to run multiple applications with only one application in each pool. If you're using IIS server and need to run multiple applications, you must use this approach.

To configure Kestrel to run multiple applications in one application pool, add hostingModel="OutofProcess" in the web.config file. Consider the following examples.

Example web.config - for Kestrel out-of-process hosting model
<configuration> <location path="." inheritInChildApplications="false"> <system.webServer> <handlers> <add name="aspNetCore" path="*" verb="*" modules="AspNetCoreModuleV2" resourceType="Unspecified" /> </handlers> <aspNetCore processPath="dotnet" arguments=".\CoreWebApp-5-0.dll" stdoutLogEnabled="false" stdoutLogFile=".\logs\stdout" hostingModel="OutofProcess" /> </system.webServer> </location> </configuration>
Example aws-windows-deployment-manifest.json - multiple applications
{ "manifestVersion": 1, "deployments": {"msDeploy": [ {"name": "Web-app1", "parameters": {"archive": "", "iisPath": "/" } }, {"name": "Web-app2", "parameters": {"archive": "", "iisPath": "/app2" } } ] } }

IIS doesn't support multiple applications in one application pool because it uses the in-process hosting model. Therefore, you need to configure multiple applications by assigning each application to one application pool. In other words, assign only one application to one application pool.

You can configure IIS to use different application pools in the aws-windows-deployment-manifest.json file. Make the following updates as you refer to the next example file:

  • Add an iisConfig section that includes a subsection called appPools.

  • In the appPools block, list the application pools.

  • In the deployments section, define a parameters section for each application.

  • For each application the parameters section specifies an archive, a path to run it, and an appPool in which to run.

The following deployment manifest configures two application pools that restart their application every 10 minutes. They also attach their applications to a .NET Framework web application that runs at the path specified.

Example aws-windows-deployment-manifest.json - one application per application pool
{ "manifestVersion": 1, "iisConfig": {"appPools": [ {"name": "MyFirstPool", "recycling": {"regularTimeInterval": 10} }, {"name": "MySecondPool", "recycling": {"regularTimeInterval": 10} } ] }, "deployments": {"msDeploy": [ {"name": "Web-app1", "parameters": { "archive": "", "iisPath": "/", "appPool": "MyFirstPool" } }, {"name": "Web-app2", "parameters": { "archive": "", "iisPath": "/app2", "appPool": "MySecondPool" } } ] } }

Define custom deployments

For even more control, you can completely customize an application deployment by defining a custom deployment.

The following deployment manifest tells Elastic Beanstalk to run an install script named siteInstall.ps1. This script installs the website during instance launch and deployments. In addition to this, the deployment manifest also tells Elastic Beanstalk to run an uninstall script before installing a new version during a deployment and a restart script to restart the application when you choose Restart App Server in the AWS management console.

Example aws-windows-deployment-manifest.json - custom deployment
{ "manifestVersion": 1, "deployments": { "custom": [ { "name": "Custom site", "scripts": { "install": { "file": "siteInstall.ps1" }, "restart": { "file": "siteRestart.ps1" }, "uninstall": { "file": "siteUninstall.ps1" } } } ] } }

Include any artifacts required to run the application in your source bundle with the manifest and scripts.

. |-- aws-windows-deployment-manifest.json |-- siteInstall.ps1 |-- siteRestart.ps1 |-- siteUninstall.ps1 `--