Java Web Apps with Visual Studio Code
This tutorial shows you how to create a Java web application with Visual Studio Code. You'll learn how to run, debug, and edit the Java web app locally and eventually on the cloud.
A simple Spring Boot Getting Started web app
Before you begin
Before running and deploying this sample, you must have the Java SE Development Kit (JDK) and Apache Maven build tools on your local development environment. If you don't have, please install them.
Download and install the Java SE Development Kit (JDK), version 8:
JAVA_HOMEenvironment variable must be set to the install location of the JDK to complete this tutorial.
Download Apache Maven version 3 or greater:
Install Apache Maven for your local development environment:
Download and test the Spring Boot app
Clone the Spring Boot Getting Started sample project to your local machine. You can clone a Git repository with the Git: Clone command in the Command Palette (⇧⌘P (Windows, Linux Ctrl+Shift+P)). Paste
https://github.com/spring-guides/gs-spring-boot.git as the URL of the remote repository and then decide the parent directory under which to put the local repository. After that, open the cloned repository in VS Code by navigating to the repository folder and typing
From within VS Code, navigate to the
complete folder that contains the project which is ready to run. Open any of the Java files in the repository (for example
complete\src\main\java\hello\Application.java). If you don't have the Java language extensions installed for VS Code, you will be prompted to install the Microsoft Java Extension Pack. Follow the instructions and reload VS Code after the installation.
Once you have the Java Extension Pack installed, it will automatically build the project for you (this may take several minutes). You can run the application within VS Code by pressing F5 and selecting the Java environment. The Java Debug extension will generate a debugging configuration file
launch.json for you under a
.vscode folder in your project. You can see build progress in the VS Code Status Bar and when everything is finished, the final active debug configuration is displayed.
You can learn more about how VS Code launches your application in Debugging Launch Configurations. Press F5 again to launch the debugger.
Test the web app by browsing to
http://localhost:8080 using a web browser. You should see the following message displayed: "Greetings from Spring Boot!".
Make a change
Let's now edit
HelloController.java to change "Greetings from Spring Boot!" to something else like "Hello World". VS Code provides a great editing experience for Java, check out Editing and Navigating Code to learn about VS Code's editing and code navigation features.
Click the Restart button on the top of the editor to relaunch the app and see result by reloading the browser.
Debug the application
Set a breakpoint (F9) in the application source code, and reload your browser to hit the breakpoint.
If you would like to learn more about debugging Java with VS Code, you can read Java Debugging.
Congratulations, you have your first Spring Boot web app running locally! Read on to learn how to host it in the cloud.
Deploy Web Apps to the cloud
We just built a Java web application and ran it locally. Now you will learn how to deploy from Visual Studio Code and run it on Azure in the cloud.
Install the Azure App Service extension
The Azure App Service extension is used to create, manage, and deploy to Azure App Service with key features including:
- Create new Azure Web App/Deployment Slot
- Deploy to Azure Web App/Deployment Slot
- Start, stop, and restart the Azure Web App/Deployment Slot
- View a Web App's log files
- Swap Deployment Slots
To install the Azure App Service extension, open the Extensions view (⇧⌘X (Windows, Linux Ctrl+Shift+X)) and search for
azure app service to filter the results. Select the Microsoft Azure App Service extension. For a more command-line Maven-centric experience, you can also check out the Maven plugin for Azure App Service Linux tutorial.
Create a new Web App
Once the extension is installed, you can take the following steps to create a new Web App.
- Click Create New Project button on the APP SERVICE Explorer view.
- Select a subscription.
- Enter a unique name for the new Web App.
- Select a location for the new Web App.
- Select the OS as
- Select the runtime of the Web App, for example
Tomcat 8.5 (JRE8).
Build and deploy to a Web App
The deploy process leverages the Azure Account extension (installed along with the Azure Functions extension as a dependency) and you need to sign in with your Azure subscription. If you do not have an Azure subscription, sign up today for a free 30 day account and get $200 in Azure Credits to try out any combination of Azure services.
To log into Azure, run Azure: Sign In from the Command Palette (⇧⌘P (Windows, Linux Ctrl+Shift+P)). You can then sign into your account using the Device Login flow. Click on Copy & Open to open your default browser.
Paste in the access code and continue the sign in process.
Once you have signed in, you can open the command prompt or terminal window and build the project using Maven commands. This will generate a new
name.jar file in the
mvn clean package
After building the project, open the
target directory in VS Code Explorer. Right-click on the
name.jar file and choose Deploy to Web App, and follow the prompts to choose the Web App for your deployment.
Open the Output window in VS Code to view the deployment logs. Once the deployment is completed, it will print out the URL for your Web App. Click the link to open it in a browser, you can see the web app running on Azure!
Note: For more advanced features of App Service, you can check out the Azure App Service extension.