Web Solution Packages

Do you ever wonder how to deploy your project on a SharePoint Server without doing much manual work?


SharePoint Server introduces this new feature called the Solution Deployment. Managed code assemblies can be deployed to a SharePoint server this feature. 

Using this capability you can schedule the deployment of the managed code DLL file and add CAS settings to the system as a custom security policy file. Solution Deployment can also be used to deploy other things in a farm such as Master pages, Cascading Style Sheets, and even event handlers.

Web Solution Package

Before you deploy anything, let's understand the Web Solution Package. When you build a SharePoint website or solution, you end up building a Web Solution Package. A web solution package is a .cab file with a .wsp extension that includes the following files:

A manifest.xml that contains the deployment instructions for the assembly, including custom CAS policy settings

A .dll file that is the compiled managed code assembly.

Other resources to be deployed to the SharePoint server, like web parts, Features, or Cascading Style Sheets.

Deploying a Solution

To deploy a solution, you must first add it to the farm. 

You do this by running the following stsadm command line on any web front - end server in the farm:

stsadm.exe -o addsolution -filename < Solution filename > [-lcid < language > ]

The solution filename parameter should include the full path to the .wsp file. The optional language parameter can be used to install several language specific copies of the same solution.

After the solution has been added, you can use either the Central Administration or stsadm to schedule its deployment. 

Both methods allow a specific time and date to be set for the deployment. You can also limit many solutions so they are deployed to specific web applications. The Central Admin Solution Deployment link is in the Global Configuration section of the Operations tab. When you click this link, you will see a list of .wsp solution files that have been added to the farm. Clicking on a specific .wsp fi le shows. you information about the solution. Clicking Deploy Solution in the toolbar takes you to the interface shown in Figure 7.13, where you can schedule deployment of the solution.