Using Kudu to Access Azure Website Extensions

There’s a little-known but excellent feature of Azure web apps that makes it easy to access the debugging and development extensions of your Azure website. If you navigate directly to https://your_site.scm.azurewebsites.net/ (replace “your_site” with the real name of your web site) you will find Microsoft’s Kudu service – the engine behind git deployments for Azure web sites.

There’s tons of useful  information you can see using this tool, such as process information, environment variables, server variables and a lot more.

More importantly, it’s also a portal to easily install and access site extensions, such as Visual Studio Online (which you can use to edit files in place on your web site).

For example, to access Visual Studio Online, select the ‘Site Extensions’ menu. There you will find listed all the available site extensions. The first should be VSO. You will need to enable it first, which requires a website restart, but once done, you can access VSO anytime using the following URL format:

https://your_site.scm.azurewebsites.net/dev/

There are a lot more tools available through Kudu, and exhaustive documentation is available on their wiki: https://github.com/projectkudu/kudu/wiki/Azure-Site-Extensions

Kudu is a fantastic tool for development and debugging of your Azure web sites.

For everyday management and monitoring of a web site, the new Azure Portal is a great tool, but to easily access tools and information that are useful to a development team, Kudu is far more powerful.

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