Exclude files from web site publish in Visual Studio

Exclude files and folders by adding ExcludeFilesFromDeployment and ExcludeFoldersFromDeployment elements to your project file (.csproj, .vbproj, etc). You will need to edit the file in a text editor, or in Visual Studio by unloading the project and then editing it.

Add the tags anywhere within the appropriate PropertyGroup (Debug, Release, etc) as shown below:

<PropertyGroup Condition=" '$(Configuration)|$(Platform)' == 'Debug|AnyCPU' "> 

Wildcards are supported.

To explain the example above:

  • The 1st ExcludeFilesFromDeployment excludes File1.aspx (in root of project) and Folder2\File2.aspx (Folder2 is in the root of the project)
  • The 2nd ExcludeFilesFromDeployment excludes all files within any folder named .svn and any of its subfolders
  • The ExcludeFoldersFromDeployment excludes folders named Folder1 (in root of project) and Folder2\Folder2a (Folder2 is in the root of the project)

For more info see MSDN blog post Web Deployment: Excluding Files and Folders via the Web Application’s Project File

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