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Publishing a LightSwitch HTML Application to Office 365 via SharePoint 2013

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In the final article of his series introducing the new HTML client in Visual Studio LightSwitch 2012, Alessandro Del Sole, author of Microsoft Visual Studio LightSwitch Unleashed, describes a great organizational opportunity: publishing LightSwitch HTML apps to Office 365.

Part 3 of this series showed you how to deploy a LightSwitch HTML application to Windows Azure and how to take advantage of a cloud-based platform. The HTML client also has integrated support for another interesting opportunity: publishing a LightSwitch HTML app to SharePoint 2013. LightSwitch can actually publish HTML apps to on-premises SharePoint installations and to the cloud-based version offered by the Microsoft Office 365 platform. This article concludes this series by discussing the latter option.

Introduction

Office 365 is a subscription-based service built on the Microsoft Office 2013 suite. With Office 365, your business can have an online place to work with Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook and Exchange, OneNote, Publisher, Access, Lync, SkyDrive Pro, and SharePoint. As you can imagine, Office 365 offers a great opportunity to share Office applications, tools, and documents within your business, and it's hosted on Windows Azure.

Based on what you learned in Part 3, you might wonder why you'd need to publish an app to the online version of SharePoint 2013, when you already can publish to Windows Azure. There are multiple reasons for using this approach:

  • Many companies use SharePoint to share internal documents and information. If yours is one of them, enabling support for SharePoint online lets you take advantage of existing business data, tools, and documents within your enterprise.
  • LightSwitch allows you to connect to a SharePoint list and use it as a data source, so you can build apps that connect to lists from your SharePoint 2013 account, hosting them in the same SharePoint environment.
  • Apps can be sold through this specific marketplace for Office 365.
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