Just got hip to this post by Maarten Balliauw, who did something very similar to what I did for doing PHP deployment to Azure. He adds a few extra goodies (automated .bat files, etc.) and goes into a little more detail, so definitely worth reading.

He also calls out that there is more than one way to skin this cat, which Jas Sandu called out as a comment to my blog post, directing folks to the PHP Commandline tools for Azure. There's a few differences between the methodologies.  The PHP Commandline tools assume you are building/deploying your Azure PHP package from the same box that you are developing your PHP application on.  It picks up your instance of PHP -- and all necessary modules that you may require -- right from the box.  The other big difference is that the PHP command line tools install PHP using the web.roleconfig methodology, pointing the <fastCgi> application element to the php-cgi-exe.  This is different from the way Maarten and I do it, which uses the Web Platform Installer to install PHP and then installs any modules using a custom script.  You'll notice that Maarten and my method never actually references the locaiton of PHP in the web.config or web.roleconfig.

Boy, wouldn't this all be easier if the Azure folks would just provision PHP to any and all of the Azure VMs?