Review Category : Windows Azure

Along with the announcements about big data and insights, Microsoft today released the preview of a powerful new Azure service: Microsoft Azure Automation. With Azure Automation, Microoft has combined the scalability, reliability, and availability of the Azure platform with the management capabilities of System Center. Azure Automation looks and functions similarly online in Azure as SMA does on-prem in the Windows Azure Pack – but it has been built specifically for cloud-based app/workload management. This means that you can automate the management of your public cloud resources using PowerShell, without an on-prem connection at any point in the process. And because Azure Automation operates as a service, there’s no installation, configuration, or maintenance of the service necessary to get (and stay) up and running. Azure Automation allows for powerful integration, automation, and orchestration that has until now been nearly impossible to do at scale: Integrate: Build new and import existing Windows ...

Read More →

The Internet of Things promises vast opportunities, but it also poses challenges for businesses that seek to take action and realize tangible results, as it can seem overwhelming, complicated and expensive. With its latest announcements, Microsoft is trying to help enterprises drive business value while building on existing technology assets, devices and data. Microsoft today announced the Microsoft Azure Intelligent Systems Service helps enterprises embrace the Internet of Things (IoT) by securely connecting, managing and capturing machine-generated data from a variety of sensors and devices. You can watch this video to see how IoT built on Microsoft’s platform is transforming the world’s first underground railway in London. The Microsoft Azure Intelligent Systems Service marks a critical expansion of the comprehensive Microsoft cloud-first data platform. This includes addressing challenges enterprises face securely connecting, managing and capturing machine-generated data from industry devices, sensors and other line-of-business (LoB) assets across a range of OS platforms. Enterprises ...

Read More →

Microsoft today announced that the European Union’s data protection authorities have found that Microsoft’s enterprise cloud contracts meet the high standards of EU privacy law. This enables enterprise customers to use Microsoft services to move data freely through cloud from Europe to the rest of the world. This approval applies to Microsoft’s enterprise cloud services – in particular, Microsoft Azure, Office 365, Microsoft Dynamics CRM and Windows Intune. The EU’s 28 data protection authorities acted through their “Article 29 Working Party” to provide this approval via a joint letter. Importantly, Microsoft is the first – and so far the only – company to receive this approval. By acknowledging that Microsoft’s contractual commitments meet the requirements of the EU’s “model clauses,” Europe’s privacy regulators have said, in effect, that personal data stored in Microsoft’s enterprise cloud is subject to Europe’s rigorous privacy standards no matter where that data is located. This ...

Read More →

The Heartbleed Bug is a serious vulnerability in the popular OpenSSL cryptographic software library. This weakness allows stealing the information protected, under normal conditions, by the SSL/TLS encryption used to secure the Internet. Popular internet services like Yahoo Mail, Yahoo Messenger and many others are affected by this bug. Microsoft today confirmed that Microsoft Account and Microsoft Azure, along with most Microsoft Services, were not impacted by the OpenSSL vulnerability. The Heartbleed vulnerability in OpenSSL (CVE-2014-0160) has received a significant amount of attention recently.  While the discovered issue is specific to OpenSSL, many customers are wondering whether this affects Microsoft’s offerings, specifically Microsoft Azure. Microsoft Account and Microsoft Azure, along with most Microsoft Services, were not impacted by the OpenSSL vulnerability. Windows’ implementation of SSL/TLS was also not impacted. Microsoft Azure Web Sites, Microsoft Azure Pack Web Sites and Microsoft Azure Web Roles do not use OpenSSL to terminate SSL ...

Read More →

Microsoft today announced the expansion of Azure ExpressRoute ecosystem with new alliances with BT and Verizon. Microsoft Azure ExpressRoute ecosystem already includes AT&T, Equinix and Level 3 in the US. With these new partnerships, Microsoft is reducing barriers for adoption of cloud computing and accelerating the growth of Microsoft Azure by providing a more secure and reliable connectivity option for enterprise customers. BT announcement: BT and Microsoft announced today a global agreement to provide customers with high performance and more secure connectivity to Microsoft Azure, Microsoft’s public cloud platform, with Microsoft Azure ExpressRoute. Customers will be able to take advantage of the flexibility and agility offered by cloud resources, with the assurance of a dedicated, more secure connection to their data and applications. Azure ExpressRoute allows customers to bypass the public Internet when connecting to Azure through a private connection based on BT’s IP Connect VPN service. As a result, ...

Read More →

  Microsoft today announced that they are revamping the Azure Management Portal with a whole new UX that will delight developers and IT admins. It now offersa fully integrated experience that will enable customers to develop and manage an application in one place, using the platform and tools of their choice. The new portal combines all the components of a cloud application into a single development and management experience. New components include the following: Simplified Resource Management. Rather than managing standalone resources such as Microsoft Azure Web Sites, Visual Studio Projects or databases, customers can now create, manage and analyze their entire application as a single resource group in a unified, customized experience, greatly reducing complexity while enabling scale. Today, the new Azure Manager is also being released through the latest Azure SDK for customers to automate their deployment and management from any client or device. Integrated billing. A new ...

Read More →

  Microsoft is keeping up to its promise of matching the price of Amazon for its Windows Azure services. As Amazon announced price reductions last week, Microsoft followed up with theirs today. Consistent with our previously announced commitment to match Amazon on prices for commodity services, we are cutting prices on compute by up to 35% and storage by up to 65%. We recognize that economics are a primary driver for some customers adopting cloud, and stand by our commitment to match prices and be best-in-class on price performance. Microsoft has also announced new Basic instance, On April 3, we will introduce a new tier of General Purpose Instances called “Basic” (A0-A4) that offers similar machine configurations as the Standard tier of instances offered today (Extra Small [A0] to Extra Large [A4]). These instances will cost up to 27% less than the corresponding instances in use today (which will now be ...

Read More →

Along with the announcement about the launch of Office for iPad and Enterprise Mobility Suite, Microsoft also announced the general availability of Azure Active Directory (AD) Premium service in April 2014. Azure AD Premium is an identity and access management service designed to meet the demanding requirements of large enterprises. With Azure AD Premium customers can reset forgotten passwords, manage their groups and set up company branded portals for launching these SaaS applications with a single set of corporate credentials. Azure AD Premium provides identity and access management capabilities in the cloud with a 99.9% SLA, and no limitation on the number of resources in your directory. Application access management. Azure AD provides employees with single sign-on access to their cloud applications from many different browsers and mobile devices. With recent additions there over 1200 cloud applications in the AD Application Gallery. Azure AD Premium lets you assign application access ...

Read More →

As expected, Microsoft announced Enterprise Mobility Suite at the press event today. EMS is the comprehensive cloud solution to address consumerization of IT, BYOD, and SaaS challenges for the Enterprise IT. The EMS is the most complete platform for organizations to embrace these mobility and cloud trends. Microsoft claims that EMS is simply the only solution that has combined all of the capabilities needed to fully enable users in this new, mobile, cloud-enabled world. The suite is the most cost effective way to acquire all of the included cloud services: Microsoft Azure Active Directory Premium Windows Intune Microsoft Azure Rights Management The capabilities packaged in the EMS are a giant step beyond simple MDM. The EMS is a people-first approach to identity, devices, apps, and data – and it allows you to actively build upon what you already have in place while proactively empowering your workforce well into the future. The EMS ...

Read More →

Microsoft today officially announced the general availability of Windows Azure in China, with that Microsoft becomes the first global public cloud provider in China. Last year, Microsoft launched a public preview of Windows Azure in China to meet the demands of local cloud needs. 21Vianet will be operating Windows Azure for Microsoft in China. In May of last year, we announced that Microsoft Azure would be coming to China, launching a public preview to support the growing appetite for cloud services in this important region. Today, I am pleased to share that Microsoft Azure, operated by 21Vianet, is now generally available for our customers in China. This significant milestone makes us the first global company to make onshore public cloud services available to customers in China, through 21Vianet. To ensure a compliant, enterprise-grade public cloud experience, Microsoft has partnered with 21Vianet within China to deliver Microsoft Azure to our customers ...

Read More →

As we reported yesterday, Microsoft has officially announced that they are rebranding Windows Azure to Microsoft Azure. Microsoft did this re-branding to highlight the fact that Microsoft Azure supports broadest set of operating systems, languages, and services of any public cloud not just Windows. Today we are announcing that Windows Azure will be renamed to Microsoft Azure, beginning April 3, 2014. This change reflects Microsoft’s strategy and focus on Azure as the public cloud platform for customers as well as for our own services Office 365, Dynamics CRM, Bing, OneDrive, Skype, and Xbox Live. Our commitment to deliver an enterprise-grade cloud platform for the world’s applications is greater than ever. Today we support one of  the broadest set of operating systems, languages, and services of any public cloud—from Windows, SQL and .NET to Python, Ruby, Node.js, Java, Hadoop, Linux, and Oracle. In today’s mobile-first, cloud-first, data-powered world, customers want a ...

Read More →

ZDNet today reported that Microsoft is planning to rebrand its “Windows Azure” services to ”Microsoft Azure”. It was also reported that Microsoft will make this rebranding announcement this week, specifically tomorrow (March 25). The rebranding will go live on April 3, on the 2nd day of Microsoft’s BUILD developer conference in San Francisco. I guess this rebranding effort is to symbolize Azure as a cross-platform/heterogeneous cloud solution rather than just a Windows based Cloud service. The rebranding makes sense, given Windows Azure isn’t all about Windows. Azure customers can run Linux in virtual machines on the operating system. Azure users also can run Oracle databases and middleware, and use non-Windows-specific development tools, including Java, Ruby, PHP and Python. Are you happy with Microsoft Azure name? Source: ZDNet ...

Read More →

Microsoft had its first Windows Azure conference in India for the past two days. During the conference, Microsoft shared many details about the Windows Azure business in India and their momentum. Bhaskar Pramanik, Chairman, Microsoft India said, “We are adding over 2000 commercial cloud customers every month in India and these are customers across all industry sectors – banking, manufacturing, healthcare and media, and across large, mid-sized and small companies.” Microsoft said that scalability, reduced costs, flexibility, business agility and speed in new service roll-out are some of the reasons Windows Azure is chosen Enterprise customers.  Microsoft has 10,000 partners and engages with an ecosystem of 1.6 million developers in the country. Windows Azure Enterprise Customers in India include Three leading private banks Five leading auto manufacturers Four leading healthcare organizations Three leading media houses Five leading Indian SIs are also building solutions on Windows Azure for global consumption “Our ...

Read More →

Age of Ascent is a Massively Multiplayer Online game that will be released in early 2015. The first of which is a public alpha test of the PvP dogfighting component is going to be done today. The game developers are using Windows Azure for their game backend and attempting for a Guinness World Record on having the greatest number of concurrent players in the same battlezone at the same time. Age of Ascent will soon be attempting to earn a Guinness World Record. Can you tell us more about that? Yes. During the public alpha of AoA’s PvP dogfighting module we’re hoping to break the current world record for Largest Videogame PvP Battle. What does the record currently look like? Don’t other games have millions of players? The current holders are the excellent folk (and players) at CCP Games for Eve Online, with 4,070 players in a single system; a ...

Read More →

  At Microsoft’s Federal Executive Forum, an annual event where people from around the federal government gather together to discuss how technology can be used to improve their workflow and others. As we are seeing in the other industries, Cloud computing is a hot topic among Federal agencies too. The popular public cloud services from Amazon, Salesforce, etc, does not suit their needs. As agencies explore moves to the cloud, many may have solutions already in place, and they need a partner who can help them leverage those, lower security risks and reduce training and implementation costs. In some cases, agencies may often be looking at some new combination of private cloud or even public or dedicated community cloud for government. Our hybrid cloud gives complex government environments the flexibility of working with us on their terms and within their architecture choice. Instead of coming to the table with predisposed ideas of what is best ...

Read More →

Netcraft today reported that Microsoft has passed Amazon to become the largest Windows hosting company. The report was measured by the number of web-facing Windows computers. It reported that Microsoft now has 23,400 web-facing Windows computers against Amazon’s 22,600. Netcraft cited Windows Azure as the main reason behind this growth. They also speculated that Windows Azure’s new Web Sites service could also be the reason. Microsoft’s growth is predominantly a result of the growth of Windows Azure: Azure now accounts for close to 90% of all web-facing computers at Microsoft. Windows Azure has grown by almost 50% since May 2013, during the February 2014 Web Server survey Netcraft found 27,000 web-facing computers (both Windows and Linux) using the cloud computing platform.  Many of Microsoft’s own services are powered by Windows Azure including Office 365, Xbox Live, Skype, and OneDrive. Windows Azure Web Sites service — available to the general public since June ...

Read More →