Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Powershell and MSDeploy.exe

As some people may know, I've been playing with Powershell a lot for work lately. Most recently I've also been using joining powershell with a Web Deploy executable, msdeploy.exe. And I've run into a couple of bugs I've noticed some other people have also had issues with.

At my place of employment we have a multi-tier development environment. This consists of 3 tiers we adoringly call "dev," "test," and "prod." We also have some lateral environments (lateral to our test environment mostly) which we call "staging" and "training." On to the problem and solution...

The issue was syncing a remote server's IIS AppHostConfig settings to my local machine. I tried to sync our dev environment's settings to a package locally, which I will later sync that package to my localhost environment. This script's goal is to allow us to rebuild a development box in rapid order when a developer gets a new or re-imaged machine. Here's the command I was using:

msdeploy.exe -verb:sync -source:appHostConfig="Site1",computername=devserver -disableLink:ContentExtension -disableLink:CertificateExtension -disableLink:FrameworkConfigExtension -disableLink:HttpCertConfigExtension -dest:package=c:\

This was pretty much stolen right out of Synchronize IIS 7 and was very disappointing to see this error occur:

Error: Unrecognized argument '"-source:appHostConfig=Site1  computername=devserver"'. All arguments must begin with "-".
Error count: 1.

Pretty much my first response was a lipping of  "W.T.F." (we have Mormons in the office who may otherwise be offended if I yelled this top of my lungs) followed by an intense urge to Google the error.

So I did.

I did not find any great results...

Then I realized of course, this is probably because all the information I need is in the error! Unrecognized argument "-source:" So what follows the colon must be the expected argument... which we have "appHostConfig=Site1 computername=devserver" wait a second... That isn't what I typed, there is no space, I used a comma! Where'd it go? I am gonna guess it was stripped out by powershell which then invalidates the whole argument for -source.

The Solution you ask? A little quotation magic:

msdeploy.exe -verb:sync -source:"appHostConfig='Site1',computername=devserver" -disableLink:ContentExtension -disableLink:CertificateExtension -disableLink:FrameworkConfigExtension -disableLink:HttpCertConfigExtension -dest:package=c:\

And presto, the double quotes force the whole inner text to be 1 argument, without stripping out the comma. Which is precisely what msdeploy.exe expects. IIS synced.


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