Quickstart: Create your first function in Azure using Visual Studio

In this article, you use Visual Studio to create a C# class library-based function that responds to HTTP requests. After testing the code locally, you deploy it to the serverless environment of Azure Functions.

Completing this quickstart incurs a small cost of a few USD cents or less in your Azure account.

Prerequisites

To complete this tutorial, first install Visual Studio 2019. Ensure you select the Azure development workload during installation. If you want to create an Azure Functions project by using Visual Studio 2017 instead, you must first install the latest Azure Functions tools.

Install Visual Studio with the Azure development workload

If you don't have an Azure subscription, create a free account before you begin.

Create a function app project

The Azure Functions project template in Visual Studio creates a project that you can publish to a function app in Azure. You can use a function app to group functions as a logical unit for easier management, deployment, scaling, and sharing of resources.

  1. From the Visual Studio menu, select File > New > Project.

  2. In Create a new project, enter functions in the search box, choose the Azure Functions template, and then select Next.

  3. In Configure your new project, enter a Project name for your project, and then select Create. The function app name must be valid as a C# namespace, so don't use underscores, hyphens, or any other nonalphanumeric characters.

  4. For the Create a new Azure Functions application settings, use the values in the following table:

    Setting Value Description
    Functions runtime Azure Functions v3
    (.NET Core)
    This value creates a function project that uses the version 3.x runtime of Azure Functions, which supports .NET Core 3.x. Azure Functions 1.x supports the .NET Framework. For more information, see Azure Functions runtime versions overview.
    Function template HTTP trigger This value creates a function triggered by an HTTP request.
    Storage account (AzureWebJobsStorage) Storage emulator Because an Azure Function requires a storage account, one is assigned or created when you publish your project to Azure. An HTTP trigger doesn't use an Azure Storage account connection string; all other trigger types require a valid Azure Storage account connection string.
    Authorization level Anonymous The created function can be triggered by any client without providing a key. This authorization setting makes it easy to test your new function. For more information about keys and authorization, see Authorization keys and HTTP and webhook bindings.

    Azure Functions project settings

    Make sure you set the Authorization level to Anonymous. If you choose the default level of Function, you're required to present the function key in requests to access your function endpoint.

  5. Select Create to create the function project and HTTP trigger function.

Visual Studio creates a project and class that contains boilerplate code for the HTTP trigger function type. The boilerplate code sends an HTTP response that includes a value from the request body or query string. The HttpTrigger attribute specifies that the function is triggered by an HTTP request.

Rename the function

The FunctionName method attribute sets the name of the function, which by default is generated as Function1. Since the tooling doesn't let you override the default function name when you create your project, take a minute to create a better name for the function class, file, and metadata.

  1. In File Explorer, right-click the Function1.cs file and rename it to HttpExample.cs.

  2. In the code, rename the Function1 class to `HttpExample'.

  3. In the HttpTrigger method named Run, rename the FunctionName method attribute to HttpExample.

Now that you've renamed the function, you can test it on your local computer.

Run the function locally

Visual Studio integrates with Azure Functions Core Tools so that you can test your functions locally using the full Azure Functions runtime.

  1. To run your function, press F5 in Visual Studio. You might need to enable a firewall exception so that the tools can handle HTTP requests. Authorization levels are never enforced when you run a function locally.

  2. Copy the URL of your function from the Azure Functions runtime output.

    Azure local runtime

  3. Paste the URL for the HTTP request into your browser's address bar. Append the query string ?name=<YOUR_NAME> to this URL and run the request. The following image shows the response in the browser to the local GET request returned by the function:

    Function localhost response in the browser

  4. To stop debugging, press Shift+F5 in Visual Studio.

After you've verified that the function runs correctly on your local computer, it's time to publish the project to Azure.

Publish the project to Azure

Before you can publish your project, you must have a function app in your Azure subscription. Visual Studio publishing creates a function app for you the first time you publish your project.

  1. In Solution Explorer, right-click the project and select Publish.

  2. In Target, select Azure Select Azure target

  3. In Specific target, select Azure Function App (Windows)

    Select Azure Function App

  4. In Function Instance, select Create a new Azure Function... and then use the values specified in the following table:

    Setting Value Description
    Name Globally unique name Name that uniquely identifies your new function app. Accept this name or enter a new name. Valid characters are: a-z, 0-9, and -.
    Subscription Your subscription The Azure subscription to use. Accept this subscription or select a new one from the drop-down list.
    Resource group Name of your resource group The resource group in which to create your function app. Select an existing resource group from the drop-down list or choose New to create a new resource group.
    Plan Type Consumption When you publish your project to a function app that runs in a Consumption plan, you pay only for executions of your functions app. Other hosting plans incur higher costs.
    Location Location of the app service Choose a Location in a region near you or other services your functions access.
    Azure Storage General-purpose storage account An Azure Storage account is required by the Functions runtime. Select New to configure a general-purpose storage account. You can also choose an existing account that meets the storage account requirements.

    Create App Service dialog

  5. Select Create to create a function app and its related resources in Azure.

  6. In the Functions instance, make sure that Run from package file is checked. Your function app is deployed using Zip Deploy with Run-From-Package mode enabled. This is the recommended deployment method for your functions project, since it results in better performance.

    Finish profile creation

  7. Select Finish, and on the Publish page, select Publish to deploy the package containing your project files to your new function app in Azure.

    After the deployment completes the root URL of the function app in Azure is shown in the Publish tab.

  8. In the Publish tab, choose Manage in Cloud Explorer. This opens the new function app Azure resource in Cloud Explorer.

    Publish success message

    Cloud Explorer lets you use Visual Studio to view the contents of the site, start and stop the function app, and browse directly to function app resources on Azure and in the Azure portal.

Test your function in Azure

  1. In Cloud Explorer, your new function app should be selected. If not, expand your subscription > App Services, and select your new function app.

  2. Right-click the function app and choose Open in Browser. This opens the root of your function app in your default web browser and displays the page that indicates your function app is running.

    Function app running

  3. In the address bar in the browser, append the string /api/HttpExample?name=Functions to the base URL and run the request.

    The URL that calls your HTTP trigger function is in the following format:

    http://<APP_NAME>.azurewebsites.net/api/HttpExample?name=Functions

  4. Go to this URL and you see a response in the browser to the remote GET request returned by the function, which looks like the following example:

    Function response in the browser

Clean up resources

Other quickstarts in this collection build upon this quickstart. If you plan to work with subsequent quickstarts, tutorials, or with any of the services you have created in this quickstart, do not clean up the resources.

Resources in Azure refer to function apps, functions, storage accounts, and so forth. They're grouped into resource groups, and you can delete everything in a group by deleting the group.

You created resources to complete these quickstarts. You may be billed for these resources, depending on your account status and service pricing. If you don't need the resources anymore, here's how to delete them:

  1. In the Cloud Explorer, expand your subscription > App Services, right-click your function app, and choose Open in Portal.

  2. In the function app page, select the Overview tab and then select the link under Resource group.

    Select the resource group to delete from the function app page

  3. In the Resource group page, review the list of included resources, and verify that they're the ones you want to delete.

  4. Select Delete resource group, and follow the instructions.

    Deletion may take a couple of minutes. When it's done, a notification appears for a few seconds. You can also select the bell icon at the top of the page to view the notification.

Next steps

In this quickstart, you used Visual Studio to create and publish a C# function app in Azure with a simple HTTP trigger function.

Advance to the next article to learn how to add an Azure Storage queue binding to your function: