How to precompile a web application (not a web site) in a 2005 deployment project

I have a vs2005 based web application with some 300 aspx pages, one asmx page, and 6 standalone executables, one of which is a service. I already have a deployment project created and working. This is a proper vs2005 web application project, and not just opening a website.

I want to be able to deliver precompiled web pages as the system is very slow after installation/reboot.

I recently downloaded the "web deployment projects" thing as recommended by scottgu, but when I add this to my solution it always fails with

      "aspnet_compiler.exe" exited with code 1

Now I've googled all over for this and tried the command line version of aspnet_compiler with verbose error listings - and no errors reported.

Can anyone tell me what is the best and most established way of precompiling a web application and including the compiled output in a deployment project ?


9/20/2007 3:14:28 PM 5668 articles. 1 followers. Follow

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You have to successfully run aspnet_compiler to produce “compilation for deployment” to a different target output directory. You then must create your web deployment project against the compiled target directory.  

Keep in mind that this will install a completely non-updatable web application, meaning that the only thing that will run at that site is your application. If your client tries to create or upload any other page to this site, it will fail. That may be exactly what you’re looking for.  However, if you need your application to be updateable after it is installed, you might want to try ASPNitro

 You would run ASPNitro on your existing site before generating your deployment package, this will cause your project pages to be completely compiled, while also allowing just-in-time compilation for any other page your client may wish to install to the site. This method will also allow you to distribute incremental updates, assuming your client also has a copy of ASPNitro, cost $49. Your customer would need to run “Re-Optimize Site” within ASPNitro after applying your incremental update. Hope this helps…


10/2/2007 1:14:28 AM

Shouldnt the slow running be experienced first time only and subsequent request will be faster, but if precompiled is what you want with the updateable option then you can seperate the webpages including asmx to go as one updateable publish, which will allow you to update this pages to put fixes and have the ability of precompilation as well.

Please Mark Post that helped you as answer, also include a summary of what solved the problem as it helps others in similar situations
10/2/2007 8:33:16 AM

If you run aspnet_compiler with the updatable (-u) option, then will still "just-in-time" compile all of your front-end pages. The only thing that will be pre-compiled is your application code and "code-behind" files. As a result, first-time delays will still be present, and so will subsequent delays.

Most developers, which I communicate with, pre-compile their classes into assemblies to begin with, and then have their front-end pages inherit the pre-compiled classes. However, this still doesn’t solve the first-time delay problem, or the subsequent delay problems. This is because of the same issue I described above; continues to "just-in-time" compile the front-end pages (entirely, html and all) and therefore continues to incur the associated overhead of deciding whether or not to re-compile each subsequently requested page.

The only approach that I’ve discovered, which completely eliminates these all too familiar delays, is the product I recommended in my previous post, ASPNitro. It is evident when you run it; you’ll see the improvement for yourself, not just the first time, but on subsequent requests too. If there’s another way to achieve this, it has eluded me, and for $49 I’m not going to spend further time finding out.

10/2/2007 12:28:40 PM

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