Static website hosting in Azure Storage

You can serve static content (HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and image files) directly from a storage container named $web. Hosting your content in Azure Storage enables you to use serverless architectures that include Azure Functions and other Platform as a service (PaaS) services.

Note

The features described in this article are now available to accounts that have a hierarchical namespace. To review limitations, see the Blob storage features available in Azure Data Lake Storage Gen2 article.

Note

If your site depends on server-side code, use Azure App Service instead. Make sure to create a general-purpose v2 Standard storage account . Static websites aren't available in any other type of storage account.

Setting up a static website

Static website hosting is a feature that you have to enable on the storage account.

To enable static website hosting, select the name of your default file, and then optionally provide a path to a custom 404 page. If a blob storage container named $web doesn't already exist in the account, one is created for you. Add the files of your site to this container.

For step-by-step guidance, see Host a static website in Azure Storage.

Azure Storage static websites metrics metric

Files in the $web container are case-sensitive, served through anonymous access requests and are available only through read operations.

Uploading content

You can use any of these tools to upload content to the $web container:

Viewing content

Users can view site content from a browser by using the public URL of the website. You can find the URL by using the Azure portal, Azure CLI, or PowerShell. See Find the website URL.

If the server returns a 404 error, and you have not specified an error document when you enabled the website, then a default 404 page is returned to the user.

Note

CORS is not supported with static website.

Regional codes

The URL of your site contains a regional code. For example the URL https://contosoblobaccount.z22.web.core.windows.net/ contains regional code z22.

While that code must remain in the URL, it is only for internal use, and you won't have to use that code in any other way.

The index document that you specify when you enable static website hosting, appears when users open the site and don't specify a specific file (For example: https://contosoblobaccount.z22.web.core.windows.net).

Secondary endpoints

If you set up redundancy in a secondary region, you can also access website content by using a secondary endpoint. Because data is replicated to secondary regions asynchronously, the files that are available at the secondary endpoint aren't always in sync with the files that are available on the primary endpoint.

Impact of the setting the public access level of the web container

You can modify the public access level of the $web container, but this has no impact on the primary static website endpoint because these files are served through anonymous access requests. That means public (read-only) access to all files.

The following screenshot shows the public access level setting in the Azure portal:

Screenshot showing how to set public access level in the portal

While the primary static website endpoint is not affected, a change to the public access level does impact the primary blob service endpoint.

For example, if you change the public access level of the $web container from Private (no anonymous access) to Blob (anonymous read access for blobs only), then the level of public access to the primary static website endpoint https://contosoblobaccount.z22.web.core.windows.net/index.html doesn't change.

However, the public access to the primary blob service endpoint https://contosoblobaccount.blob.core.windows.net/$web/index.html does change from private to public. Now users can open that file by using either of these two endpoints.

Disabling public access on a storage account does not affect static websites that are hosted in that storage account. For more information, see Configure anonymous public read access for containers and blobs.

Mapping a custom domain to a static website URL

You can make your static website available via a custom domain.

It's easier to enable HTTP access for your custom domain, because Azure Storage natively supports it. To enable HTTPS, you'll have to use Azure CDN because Azure Storage does not yet natively support HTTPS with custom domains. see Map a custom domain to an Azure Blob Storage endpoint for step-by-step guidance.

If the storage account is configured to require secure transfer over HTTPS, then users must use the HTTPS endpoint.

Tip

Consider hosting your domain on Azure. For more information, see Host your domain in Azure DNS.

Adding HTTP headers

There's no way to configure headers as part of the static website feature. However, you can use Azure CDN to add headers and append (or overwrite) header values. See Standard rules engine reference for Azure CDN.

If you want to use headers to control caching, see Control Azure CDN caching behavior with caching rules.

Pricing

You can enable static website hosting free of charge. You're billed only for the blob storage that your site utilizes and operations costs. For more details on prices for Azure Blob Storage, check out the Azure Blob Storage Pricing Page.

Metrics

You can enable metrics on static website pages. Once you've enabled metrics, traffic statistics on files in the $web container are reported in the metrics dashboard.

To enable metrics on your static website pages, see Enable metrics on static website pages.

Next steps