IIS Express support for local development in Windows Azure SDK 1.7
Another new feature that was brought by the new Windows Azure SDK 1.7 was the way the Compute Emulator emulates the Web Roles, since it now uses IIS Express instead of Full IIS.
You might be thinking that isn't very important, but it really is since it allows the developer to be more productive even with a less powerful machine, since IIS Express is able to run most of the roles without demanding so much from the machine as IIS does. But on the other hand, if we really have something in our Web Role that requires the use of IIS we are able to change the local development server into Full IIS. By having this we can go from a lightweight development process that doesn't require a huge machine, but changing to a much robust solution only if we require some of the features that only exist in Full IIS.
By default the local development server for the cloud project is set to "Use IIS Express".
(Figure 1 - Windows Azure Cloud Project Properties window)
In order to change to use Full IIS instead of IIS Express for emulating the Web Role locally we just need to change it to "Use IIS Web Server".
(Figure 2 - Windows Azure Cloud Project Properties window)
So, with this new feature we can get a lot more productive since the development and emulation of Windows Azure requires less machine resources, making things go faster.