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Unleash It
Unleash It, formerly known as WebDeploy, is a utility built with web developers in mind. It started as a simple application that would allow you to transfer files from one directory to another based on their file extension. Due to the growing nature of successful applications, and the need for more options, Unleash It grew to being able to transfer files based on a source directory or a Visual Studio Project to a destination directory, FTP site, or zip file.
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Many have asked why Unleash It should be used over traditional utilities like XCopy, Visual Studio .NET’s “Copy” functionality, RoboCopy, etc. As each utility has their own pros and cons, Unleash It was built to try and brigve the gap between all other utilities, then expand on those features to make a well-rounded product.

Current Usage Statistics (v2.4.1.0)
Deployments: 419286
Installations: 2815
Uninstallations: 1118

Total Usage Statistics
Deployments: 462203
Installations: 4585
Uninstallations: 2286

Visual Studio 2005 will have some of the functionality Unleash It provides built directly into the IDE. However, it doesn't provide the leve of flexibility that Unleash It provides.

Unleash It is also a utility for which those users who do not own Visual Studio .NET, or do other programming (such as PHP or “Classic” ASP development) can use. The only thing Unleash It is dependant on, is having a Windows Operating System installed with the .NET Framework 1.1.

As such, putting everything else aside, Unleash It has been an accomplishment in development for myself. It truly has been a great utility to work on, and I will strive to make it the way YOU want it. However, some features just don’t “cut” it with my original mission statement for developing this utility, so some ideas may be left out. With that said, I think its useful to mention the original mission statement, one that hasn’t changed over the lifetime of this utility:
“An easy to use tool that would allow a developer to deploy applications without having to really think about it.”
Key Features of Unleash It
  1. Rich Windows Based User Interface
  2. Command Line Version (useful for scripts or processes)
  3. Visual Studio .NET 2003 Add-In (no current support for past or future versions)
Linking to Unleash It
If you are huge supporter of Unleash It, and would like to display that you are, I would advice using the following graphic on your weblog or website using the code to the right of it.


(right click to download image above)
Revision History
Version 2.4 (released 12/8/2004)
  • Added: New update downloader to handle downloading, unzipping, and launching the setup of new versions.
  • Added: Horizontal scrolling for listboxes that can have lengthy text.
  • Fixed: Memory leak when testing FTP profiles.
  • Fixed: Unleash It did not close when downloading new version when Minimize to System Tray on Close was enabled.
  • Fixed: Was not closing all readers of VS.NET project files, causing possible file locks on the project file.
  • Fixed: Copy Empty Directories was not working correctly if no files existed in a directory.
  • Fixed: Intermittent error received when adding the same profile to the same multiple profile.
  • Fixed: New plugins were not detected if dropping in the Plugins directory.
  • Changed: Password textboxes now use Visual Styles.
  • Changed: Updated Skybound.VisualStyles to version 1.5.5
Version 2.3.1 (released 11/23/2004)
  • Fixed: Multiple Deployment only deploying the active profile indicated in single deployment.
  • Fixed: Deleting multiple profile configurations always deleted the last profile.
  • Fixed: Message on multiple profile tab not representing the actual problem why deployment can not continue.
  • Changed: A new process dialog indicating the progress of testing your FTP settings and allows you to cancel has been put in place.
  • Changed: Updated Skybound.VisualStyles to version 1.5.4
Version 2.3 (released 11/8/2004)
  • Added: Ability to have N number of multiple deployment profiles.
  • Added: Tooltips for most controls on the main user interface.
  • Added: Ability to multi-select profiles to move in the multiple deployment.
  • Added: Ability to specify which build actions are to be included for VS.NET deployment. Configured in Tools->Options.
  • Added: Plugin functionality for deployments, with ability to disable plugins via Tools->Options.
  • Added: Ability to force the saving of selected file / folder masks via Tools->Options.
  • Added: Ability to globally remove file and folder masks.
  • Added: Ability to define command line parameters for pre/post commands.
  • Added: GUI now aware of the location when it was shut down and restores that.
  • Added: Splash Screen on startup.
  • Fixed: Invalid characters in VS.NET project files were throwing exceptions.
  • Fixed: Progress bar did not increment properly for UNC deployments.
  • Fixed: Logfile for UNC deployment showed the same path for both source and destination.
  • Fixed: Profile name was not being updated on form and on the combo box through quick editing of profile.
  • Fixed: File / Folder masks have to be clicked twice in the configuration to check them.
  • Changed: Updated VisualStyles component to 1.5.3
  • Changed: Files / Folders to be Deployed dialogs are now resizable.
Version 2.2 (released 10/8/2004)
  • Added: Ability to clear the log file when viewing it.
  • Added: Ability to cancel a FTP profile editing.
  • Added: Security checking for FTP testing.
  • Added: Additional file masks (*.asax, *.css, *.js, and *.png) to the default masks
  • Added: CLS Compliance
  • Added: Ability to add file and folder masks globally with the profile listing.
  • Fixed: Exception being thrown when accessing the logfile during a deployment.
  • Fixed: Directories with periods now successfully work.
  • Fixed: FTP Settings now get validated and saved if not saved manually when clicking OK.
  • Fixed: Error when submitting a bug and cannot contact bug server. Now have the option to save bug report to send manually.
  • Fixed: Duplicate button was still enabled after deleting a profile.
  • Fixed: When duplicating a profile, and click Cancel, the profile is not saved.
  • Fixed: Overflow exception when loading a VS.NET project file with invalid characters.
  • Changed: Now using Xceed's FTP library.
  • Changed: File / Folder mask lists are now sorted.
  • Changed: Adding File / Folder masks will be checked by default.
  • Changed: Double clicking a profile in the Profiles dialog will open up the edit dialog for that profile.
  • Changed: Files Copied and Exceptions dialogs are now re-sizable.
  • Changed: Notification of application running during install can now be cancelled.
  • Changed: The "Deploy" button in the context menu for the VS.NET plugin is now below "Build" and "Rebuild"
Version 2.1.1.1 (released 9/24/2004)
  • Added support for displaying folders / files to include for VS.NET Project Files as the source.
  • Added ability to name your FTP profiles.
  • Added checking to see if Unleash It is currently running during installation / uninstallation.
  • Fixed error when parsing a file mask with an underscore.
  • Fixed the logfile button being enabled after a deployment when that profile isn't using logging.
  • Fixed mis-spelling of "changed" in the logfile for FTP deployment.
  • Fixed directories not being excluded during a VS.NET Project deployment.
Version 2.1 (released 9/9/2004)
  • Optimization of code, now starts faster!
  • Upgraded to #ziplib 0.81
  • Added ability to duplicate profiles.
  • Added notification in the Windows Application when the profiles configuration is changed.
  • Fixed destination label oversight.
  • Fixed VS.NET plugin now correctly loads the configuration.
  • Fixed intermitten problems with testing FTP profile settings.
  • Fixed delay of file deployment notification in status bar area.
Version 2.0 (released 9/1/2004)
  • Lots of enhancements over WebDeploy

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