Publishing Alpha Launch Apps to Localhost for Testing

Description

Alpha Launch applications can be published to and installed from the local area network running the development server. This is a useful technique for testing Alpha Launch applications.

Discussion

Alpha Launch applications can be hosted and installed from the development server. The mobile device running Alpha Launch must be on the same network as your development machine in order to install and test apps in Alpha Launch using this technique, allowing you to work out any issues in your applications before distributing them to your users.

How to Publish and Install an Alpha Launch app Using the Development Server 

  1. Define a publish profile for Localhost. Specify a folder in the publishing profile where all Alpha Launch apps will be installed. Make a note of the folder name for later.

    You can copy the existing "Local Webroot" publishing profile to quickly create a publish profile to Localhost.

  2. In the Alpha Launch publishing dialog, select the localhost publishing profile you created.

  3. Specify the URL for your Alpha Launch Server using your computer's IP address (including the server port for the Development Server) and the directory under the webroot where Alpha Launch applications will be published. For example, if the Development Server is configured to use port 8080 and the directory where Alpha Launch applications will be installed is called "alphalaunch", the Server URL would be:

    http://192.168.70.120:8080/alphalaunch

    You can find the Server Port used by the Development Server on the General tab in the Development Server Settings. The Development Server Settings can be accessed from the Web Projects Control Panel menu: Web > Development Server.

  4. Check the option to generate a QR Code. The QR Code can be scanned from within Alpha Launch to add the Server URL to Alpha Launch.

  5. Publish your app and test the Server URL by navigating to the availableAppInfo.txt file in a web browser. The URL for the file is the Server URL with availableAppInfo.txt appended to the URL. For example:

    http://192.168.70.120:8080/alphalaunch/availableAppInfo.txt

    If the URL is blank or returns an error, first verify that the Development Server is running. If the server is running, verify the IP address, server port, and directory in the URL are correct and publish your app again.

  6. Launch Alpha Launch on a mobile device that is on the same network as the machine running the Development Server.

  7. Add the Development Server to Alpha Launch by going to Settings > Server Web Address for Downloading Apps. Use Scan to scan the QR Code or Add option to manually type in the Server URL.

  8. On the Alpha Launch Home screen, go to Manage/Add > Add. Install your app from the list of available apps.