Create a CI/CD pipeline for PHP with the Azure DevOps Project

The Azure DevOps Project presents a simplified experience which creates Azure resources and sets up a continuous integration (CI) and continuous delivery (CD) pipeline for your PHP app in Visual Studio Team Services (VSTS), which is Microsoft's DevOps solution for Azure.

If you don't have an Azure subscription, you can get one free through Visual Studio Dev Essentials.

Sign in to the Azure portal

The Azure DevOps Project creates a CI/CD pipeline in VSTS. You can create a free new VSTS account or use an existing account. The DevOps Project also creates Azure resources in the Azure subscription of your choice.

  1. Sign into the Microsoft Azure portal.

  2. Choose the Create a resource icon in the left navigation bar, then search for DevOps project. Choose Create.

    Starting Continuous Delivery configuration

Select a sample application and Azure service

  1. Select the PHP sample application. The PHP samples include a choice of several application frameworks.

  2. The default sample framework is Laravel. Leave the default setting, and then choose Next.

  3. Web App For Containers is the default deployment target. The application framework, which you chose on the previous steps, dictates the type of Azure service deployment target available here. Leave the default service, and then choose Next.

Configure VSTS and an Azure subscription

  1. Create a new VSTS account or choose an existing account. Choose a name for your VSTS project. Select your Azure subscription, location, and choose a name for your application. When you're done, choose Done.

    Enter VSTS info

  2. In a few minutes, the project dashboard loads in the Azure portal. A sample application is set up in a repository in your VSTS account, a build executes, and your application deploys to Azure. This dashboard provides visibility into your code repository, VSTS CI/CD pipeline, and your application in Azure. On the right side of the dashboard, select Browse to view your running application.

    Dashboard view

The Azure DevOps project automatically configures a CI build and release trigger. You're now ready to collaborate with a team on a PHP app with a CI/CD process that automatically deploys your latest work to your web site.

Commit code changes and execute CI/CD

The Azure DevOps project created a Git repository in your VSTS or GitHub account. Follow the steps below to view the repository and make code changes to your application.

  1. On the left-hand side of the DevOps project dashboard, select the link for your master branch. This link opens a opens a view to the newly created Git repository.

  2. To view the repository clone URL, select Clone from the top right of the browser. You can clone your Git repository in your favorite IDE. In the next few steps, you can use the web browser to make and commit code changes directly to the master branch.

  3. On the left-hand side of the browser, navigate to the resources/views/welcome.blade.php file.

  4. Select Edit, and make a change to some of the text. For example, change some of the text for one of the div tags.

  5. Choose Commit, then save your changes.

  6. In your browser, navigate to the Azure DevOps project dashboard. You should now see a build is in progress. The changes you just made are automatically built and deployed via a VSTS CI/CD pipeline.

Examine the VSTS CI/CD pipeline

The Azure DevOps project automatically configured a full VSTS CI/CD pipeline in your VSTS account. Explore and customize the pipeline as needed. Follow the steps below to familiarize yourself with the VSTS build and release definitions.

  1. Select Build Pipelines from the top of the Azure DevOps project dashboard. This link opens a browser tab and opens the VSTS build definition for your new project.

  2. Move the mouse cursor to the right of the build definition next to the Status field. Select the ellipsis that appears. This action opens a menu where you can perform several activities such as queue a new build, pause a build, and edit the build definition.

  3. Select Edit.

  4. From this view, examine the various tasks for your build definition. The build performs various tasks such as fetching sources from the Git repository, restoring dependencies, and publishing outputs used for deployments.

  5. At the top of the build definition, select the build definition name.

  6. Change the name of your build definition to something more descriptive. Select Save & queue, then select Save.

  7. Under your build definition name, select History. You see an audit trail of your recent changes for the build. VSTS keeps track of any changes made to the build definition, and allows you to compare versions.

  8. Select Triggers. The Azure DevOps project automatically created a CI trigger, and every commit to the repository initiates a new build. You can optionally choose to include or exclude branches from the CI process.

  9. Select Retention. Based on your scenario, you can specify policies to keep or remove a certain number of builds.

  10. Select Build and Release, then choose Releases. The Azure DevOps project created a VSTS release definition to manage deployments to Azure.

  11. On the left-hand side of the browser, select the ellipsis next to your release definition, then choose Edit.

  12. The release definition contains a pipeline, which defines the release process. Under Artifacts, select Drop. The build definition you examined in the previous steps produces the output used for the artifact.

  13. To the right-hand side of the Drop icon, select the Continuous deployment trigger. This release definition has an enabled CD trigger, which executes a deployment every time there is a new build artifact available. Optionally, you can disable the trigger, so your deployments require manual execution.

  14. On the left-hand side of the browser, select Tasks. The tasks are the activities your deployment process performs. In this example, a task was created to deploy to Azure App service.

  15. On the right-hand side of the browser, select View releases. This view shows a history of releases.

  16. Select the ellipsis next to one of your releases, and choose Open. There are several menus to explore from this view such as a release summary, associated work items, and tests.

  17. Select Commits. This view shows code commits associated with the specific deployment.

  18. Select Logs. The logs contain useful information about the deployment process. They can be viewed both during and after deployments.

Clean up resources

When no longer needed, you can delete the Azure App service and related resources created in this quickstart by using the Delete functionality on the Azure DevOps project dashboard.

Next steps

When you configured your CI/CD process in this quickstart, a build and release definition were automatically created in your VSTS project. You can modify these build and release definitions to meet the needs of your team. To learn more see this tutorial: