Websites are new in Azure From conversations and talks at Teched:
|Web Roles ||Websites |
|The standard offering ||New (summer 2012). In preview and discounted at time of writing. |
|For asp.net/php/html ||same |
|Use Azure SQL/Blobs/Table storage. Can use the new Caching. ||same |
|- ||Has a persistent shared disk. |
|Production and staging. Instant switch for releases. ||No. You upload to the live site, so a long release will mean the site is broken for that time ( but see below- you can do diff releases) |
|Can install dependencies (3rd party installations etc, GAC) ||Bin-deployment of dlls only - or one of a small number of packages like Umbracco. |
|Release as cspack. Spins up new VMs for each release. ||Release by web deploy, git, TFS, FTP. |
|RDP access ||No. Just FTP. |
| || |
Web sites simplify the story for simple web sites. But having no staging is a bit limited.
Web roles are better for more complex sites, with dependencies and/or worker roles.
There is no option to upgrade a website to a web role.
All the above will probably be obsolete is 6 months as the features expand.