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Web Deploy Command Line Syntax

Updated: January 27, 2010

Applies To: Windows 7, Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2003 R2, Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows Vista, Windows XP

The principal elements of the Msdeploy.exe command line are a verb (also called an operation), a source, an optional destination, and optional operation settings. The verb and source are required. A destination is required by some verbs, but not others. Optional operation settings modify how the command runs.

The following shows the Msdeploy.exe command-line syntax. Arguments are shown in italics enclosed in angle brackets (for example, <verbName>). Optional arguments are enclosed by square brackets (for example, [-dest]).

msdeploy.exe -verb:<verbName>
             [-<MSDeployOperationSetting> ...]



Specifies a Web Deploy verb. A verb determines the action to be taken on a source or destination object. <verbName> must be one of the following: delete, dump, getDependencies, getSystemInfo, or sync. The sync verb requires both the -source and -dest arguments. The delete verb requires only the -dest argument. For more information about verbs, see Web Deploy Operations.



Specifies the source of the data for the verb argument. source is a required argument for the sync and dump operations, but not delete. The <provider> is a Web Deploy code feature that handles a specific kind of Web server-related source or destination object. The following settings are used with <provider>. For more information about providers, see Web Deploy Providers.


Setting Description


Specifies a path of the provider object. Some providers require a path and some do not. If required, the kind of path depends on the provider.


Provider settings optionally specify additional information about how the source or destination provider will be accessed. <provider> or <provider>=<pathToProviderObject> may be followed by one or more settings. Provider settings are separated from the provider and from each other by a comma and no spaces.

For possible values for <providerSetting> and <providerSettingValue>, see Web Deploy Provider Settings. One frequently used provider setting is computerName, which specifies the name of a source or destination computer.


-dest: <provider>

Specifies the destination of a synchronization operation. The destination argument is required only if the sync or delete verb is specified. The provider, provider paths, and provider settings that can be used with -dest are the same as those described for -source.


[-<MSDeployOperationSetting> ... ]

Operation settings affect the execution of an entire Web Deploy operation. More than one operation setting can be used in a single command. Each operation setting is preceded by a space and a hyphen. For more information about operation settings, see Web Deploy Operation Settings.


/?, -?

Displays command-line help and version information. Typing msdeploy, msdeploy /?, or msdeploy -? after the command prompt shows summary help on Web Deploy syntax, operation settings, verbs, providers, and provider settings. For more detailed help, add the -help argument to any partial command line (for example, for help on the apphostconfig provider, type msdeploy -help -source:apphostconfig).

To display just the version of the Web Deployment Tool that you are using, type msdeploy | find "Version".

With a minor modification to its usual syntax, Web Deploy commands can be run from a Windows PowerShell prompt. To do this, change the colon character (:) after the verb, source, and dest arguments of the Web Deploy command to an equal sign (=). In the following example, compare the Web Deploy command with its PowerShell version.

Web Deploy command: msdeploy -verb:sync -source:metakey=/lm/w3svc/1 -dest:metakey=/lm/w3svc/2 -verbose

PowerShell command: .\msdeploy.exe -verb=sync -source=metakey=/lm/w3svc/1 -dest=metakey=/lm/w3svc/2 -verbose

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