Setting up Umbraco with Visual Studio

Umbraco is a very powerful, very flexible, open-source CMS for .NET.It is a great tool when developing web sites and even services for things like mobile apps but, like with every new tool, it takes some time and effort to learn how to use it properly.

But believe me, once you overcome those scary hours of going through tutorials and documents, you will see how easy it is to work with this wonderful tool.

In this series, I will show you the basics of working with Umbraco, things I would have loved someone had told me on the first place.

This post is intended to serve as the starting point for other Umbraco posts I plan to write.

Creating a Visual Studio 2013 web application and setting up Umbraco

In order to start working with Umbraco, you need to create a new Web Application project.

Figure 1

Figure 1. Creating a new web application project.

Select an empty ASP.NET application project from the dialog and press OK.

Figure 2

Figure 2. Select an empty ASP.NET application template.

Now, in order to install Umbraco into your solution, open the NuGet package manager and search for “Umbraco”. Once the results appear, install the package called “Umbraco CMS”.

Figure 3

Figure 3. Installing Umbraco CMS from NuGet.

During the installation process, you will be asked if you want to overwrite the web.config file. This is because Umbraco adds several configuration values necessary for it to work. Select “No”,  Umbraco will overwrite your web.config file anyway, but it will create a backup in the App_Data folder. After the installation is finished you can merge your files and make sure they’re up to date.

Figure 4

Figure 4. Overwrite the web.config file.

Once the installation is done, you will notice that several folders were added to the project.

Figure 5

Figure 5. Solution Explorer.

Now, you need to setup your Umbraco site. To do this, run the solution with the browser of your preference. You will see a configuration screen with some fields you need to fill. Once you’re done click “Install” and wait for Umbraco to run the necessary tasks.

Figure 6

Figure 6. Umbraco installation screen.

This is it! Now you have Umbraco up and running in your solution.

Figure 7

Figure 7. Umbraco’s admin page.

Note. The installation process I followed in this post created a local data base. You can find the .sdf file in the App_Data folder, it is called Umbraco.sdf.

If you need to set up Umbraco to work with an SQL Server database, you can do so by clicking “Customize” in the setup page you were presented when you first ran the application. You will need to provide the server and database information.

3 thoughts on “Setting up Umbraco with Visual Studio

  1. I have had some trouble when updating an Umbraco website that was installed using Nuget. It was some time ago and I dont remember. Would you recommend updating through Nuget and how should I handle that?


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