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It is quite easy to profile Sitecore startup time on-premise, e.g. using JetBrains dotTrace. However, I can't find any good tools to do the same with Sitecore in Azure.

JetBrains dotTrace simply does not support Azure. The standard Azure .NET Profiler can record only 60 seconds and I guess it can't trigger a website start.

What tools or approaches can be used to get the details about code executions in Azure when Sitecore starts?

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I haven't personally tried this, but you might be able to profile the startup of your Sitecore Azure instance with these two configurations:

  1. Increase the profiling session duration, configuring the IIS_PROFILING_TIMEOUT_IN_SECONDS configuration setting of your App Service. The maximum value is 900 seconds.

  2. Enable the App Insights .net profiler in your app service (more info here) and configure it with a trigger on the CPU with a low threshold (the CPU will probably spike during the Sitecore instance startup). More info on trigger setup here.

A low CPU threshold should trigger the profiling session soon enough in the startup process.

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