Host ASP.NET Core app on IIS

Host ASP.NET Core app on IIS

In this article we will host our ASP.NET Core app on Internet Information Services (IIS) in Windows. Make sure you have .NET SDK installed in your system. You can download it from here.

This tutorial is a part of the .NET Hosting Series which contains a total of 5 tutorials, which are:

  1. How to Host ASP.NET Core App in a Windows Service
  2. Host ASP.NET Core app on IIS
  3. Host ASP.NET Core on Apache in Windows
  4. Host ASP.NET Core on Apache in Linux
  5. Host ASP.NET Core on Nginx in Linux

Installing IIS

In Windows, open “Control Panel”, click Programs, and then click Turn Windows features on or off.

Control Panel Windows Features

This opens Windows Features dialog box, select “Internet Information Services” and all options given inside it, these are :

  • FTP Server
  • Web Management Tools
  • World Wide Web Services

Windows Features

Click “OK” button to install all of them.

To verify that IIS installed successfully, type http://localhost into a web browser which should open the default IIS Welcome page.

IIS Default Page

The .NET Core Hosting Bundle

Next, install .NET Core Hosting Bundle from here. Also note that if you installed the Hosting Bundle before IIS, then run the installer again. You will see repair option, choose this option to repain the the Hosting Bundle.

Hosting .NET app on IIS

Let’s create a new ASP.NET Core MVC app by running the following CLI command on the command prompt.

dotnet new mvc --name MyIISApp

Create ASP.NET Core app IIS

The MVC app by the name of MyIISApp will be created.

Next, go inside the app’s directory – cd MyIISApp, and then run the publish command:

dotnet publish --configuration Release

ASP.NET Core IIS app Publish

The app get’s published inside the \bin\Release\net8.0\publish\ location.

We need to copy the published files to IIS default path for web app. This path is C:\inetpub. Here apps get necessary resources and permissions to run on IIS.

So, create a new folder called myiisapp inside the “inetpub” directory and copy all the files that are inside the “publish” folder to inside C:\inetpub\myiisapp.

Open IIS Manager from windows menu. Once it opens, see on it’s Connections panel on the left, you will find Sites area. Right click on it and select Add Website.

Adding new Website to IIS

Add Website window opens here enter the following:

  • Site name – enter “myiisapp”.
  • Physical path – recall it is C:\inetpub\myiisapp.
  • Port – 80 or any other free port.
  • Host name – enter “localhost”. For production enter your domain name like

Add Website IIS

Restart IIS, you can do this by selecting top node in the Connections panel on the left. Then you will see “Actions” panel on the right side. Here you can find the Restart option. I have maked this in the below image.

Restart IIS

Now you can open the apps’ url on the browser which is http://localhost and start playing with it.

App hosted on IIS Browser


If we host the app from other than C:\inetpub folder then we have to give the IIS_IUSRS user full permissions to this app’s folder. Example – suppose the app folder is D:\myiisapp, then right click on the folder and select “Properties”. Next, select “Security” tab and click “Edit” button. Next, click the “Add” button to add the user “IIS_IUSRS” and give it the full permissions. See below image:

IIS IUSRS permissions

IIS and SSL Certificate

We can generate a Self Signed SSL Certificate from Powershell. Run Powershell in the Adminstrator mode then run the New-SelfSignedCertificate command to generate your SSL. The command is given below.

$params = @{
    DnsName = 'localhost'
    CertStoreLocation = 'Cert:\LocalMachine\My'

New-SelfSignedCertificate @params 

We used “localhost” for the DnsName since we will be running the app locally. For production enter your domain name like See the below image:

New-SelfSignedCertificate command

The command will give the thumbprint of the created SSL. Let’s export it in a .pfx file.

The Export-PfxCertificate command does this exports of the SSL to a Personal Information Exchange (.pfx) file. Run the below given 2 command to do this work. Note that in the first command we used the password for the .pfx file as 1234, you can use anything you want. While in the second command replace the thumbrint with your generated SSL certificate’s thumbprint.

$mypwd = ConvertTo-SecureString -String '1234' -Force -AsPlainText

Get-ChildItem -Path Cert:\LocalMachine\My\EE3D5FC94AB23AB3D03F8F24384E779A6CF53C3C | Export-PfxCertificate -FilePath d:\mypfx.pfx -Password $mypwd

The SSL Certificate “mypfx.pfx” is generated at the “D” drive.

SSL Creation Powershell

Let’s import the SSL to IIS.

You might be interested in learning – How to use Self Signed Certificate in ASP.NET Core

Click the top node in Connections panel on IIS Manager. Then on the middle section double click the Server Certificates

IIS Server Certificates

Ther Server Certificates section opens, on the Action panel on the right, there is “Import” window. Click it to open Import Certificate dialog. Select the certificate pfx file and for password enter 1234. Click the OK button to import the SSL.

Import Certificate dialog IIS

Import SSL IIS

We now have to edit the site’s bindings on IIS Manger. So select the site “myiisapp” on the Connections panel then on Actions panel select Bindings. Check below image:

IIS Site Bindings

Site Binding window opens here click the “Add” button to open a new window called Add Site Binding.

IIS Site Binding Window

Do the following things:

  • For the “Type” select “https”.
  • “localhost” for Host name.
  • Select the check box Require Server Name indication.
  • For the SSL certificate drop down, select the SSL we previously imported to IIS.
  • Click the OK.

I have shown all these in the below image.

SSL Settings IIS

Now open http://localhost in your browser. You will be redirected to the https version with is https://locahost. See below image.

SSL ISS Site on Browser

Congrats, we leaned and implemented the hosting of ASP.NET Core app on IIS with SSL Certificate. Hope you liked this long tutorial, let me know your thoughts on the comments section below.


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