Monday, December 31, 2018

Chef and Microsoft Azure

Have you ever wondered that what is the capability of Azure when you are using open source tools? Azure works great when using those products such as ‘Chef’. If you’re using Chef products or open source projects, there’s never been a better time to try Azure.
Microsoft has worked hard to make the partnership and collaboration with Chef to deliver automation tools that help you with cloud adoption. Now you can use chef directly in Azure Cloud Shell, as well as the new Chef Developer Hub in Azure Docs.
Why Chef
As everyone know there are number of tools to do the automation like Ansible and Terraform that are already available and Chef delivers the new feature called Chef Inspec and pre-installed and ready to use for every Azure user in the Azure Cloud Shell. This makes bringing your Inspec tests to Azure super-simple, in fact it’s the easiest way to try out Inspec – no installation or configuration required.


Chef Developer Hub for Azure

Microsoft has announced Chef Developer Hub, so Azure customers can more easily implement their solutions using Chef open source software. Whether you’re using Chef, Inspec or Habitat, you’ll find five-minute quick starts, tutorials and reference materials to help get you started and successfully build a solution. All of our docs are open source and hosted on GitHub.

Thursday, December 6, 2018

Protect Linux containers running in IaaS with Azure Security Center

These days most of the enterprises are transforming their monolith applications to run mission-critical, containerized cloud-native applications in production. Using Containers, they can achieve multiple advantages, both for developers and IT professionals. Easy and fast to deploy, immutable, and provide fast iteration are some of them. As the number of containers deployed continues to increase, security solutions need to be in place to provide you with visibility into the security state of your containers and help protect them from threats.
Microsoft Azure team is now providing you with several new capabilities to help you secure your containers.

1.     Visibility to the containers hosted on IaaS Linux machines

There is a new tab to display all virtual machines with Docker.

There is additional information that Security Center now provides, when user exploring the security issues of a virtual machine.
E.g.: Information related to the containers on the machine, such as Docker version and the number of images running on the host.

2. Security recommendations based on the CIS benchmark for Docker

By using security center AI technology Security center scans (Reads) user’s Docker configurations and gives you visibility into misconfigurations by providing a list of all failed rules that were assessed and gives quick fixes as well as it helps you to resolve the issues quickly and save time. Security Center continuously assesses the Docker configurations and provides you with their latest state.

3. Real time container threat detection

Real-time threat detection is searching for threats for the containers using Linux machines, AuditD component
The alerts identify several suspicious Docker activities, such as the creation of a privileged container on host, an indication of Secure Shell (SSH) server run inside a Docker container, or the usage of crypto miners. You can use this information to quickly remediate security issues and improve the security of your containers.

Monday, November 26, 2018

Azure Cognitive Services in Containers

To build solutions with machine learning, requires a data scientist. Now Microsoft is enabling the cognitive services to take advantage of AI with developers, without requiring a data scientist. This is happening by getting machine learning models and the pipelines and the infrastructure needed to build a model and packaging it up into a Cognitive Service for vision, speech, search, text processing, language understanding, and more.
The advantage of this scenario is it is possible for anyone who can write a program to now use machine learning to improve an application. But if the developer tries to create Large scale applications using AI they face many problems on that. To overcome the problems Microsoft is introducing container support for Cognitive Services, making it significantly easier for developers to build ML-driven solutions.
This allows developers to build big AI systems that run at scale, reliably, and consistently in a way that supports better data governance.

Friday, November 16, 2018

Customer Lockbox for Azure

Azure is always try to ease up your data as much as confidential and secure. To improve much more Azure is introducing Customer Lockbox for Microsoft Azure.
What it does:
Customer Lockbox for Microsoft Azure is a service which is integrated into Azure portal.It gives you explicit control in the very rare instance when a Microsoft Support Engineer may need access to your data to resolve an issue.
Some instances may occur where a Microsoft Microsoft Support Engineer requires elevated permissions to resolve this issue such like debugging remote access issue.On that scenario Microsoft engineers use just-in-time access service that provides limited, time-bound authorization with access limited to the service.

Friday, November 2, 2018

Azure Monitor for Containers

Microsoft Azure team has released a useful tool for Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS) called Azure Monitor - container health monitoring capability. And it’s in public preview right now and developers are welcome to work on it. This will Enables to developers to track the health and performance of your Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS) cluster. Later, Microsoft will release new features and updates to onboarding and the portal experience.

What is Azure Monitor for container

Azure Monitor for containers works as the performance visibility by collecting memory and processor metrics from controllers, nodes, and containers that are available in Kubernetes through the Metrics API and Logs even. After User enable monitoring from Kubernetes clusters, these metrics and logs are automatically collected for you through a containerized version of the Log Analytics agent for Linux and stored in your Log Analytics workspace.

Friday, October 26, 2018

Azure Monitor for virtual machines

In Microsoft Ignite Microsoft VM team have announced number of services and products that they are going to launch in near future. And one of its service was public preview of Azure Monitor for VMs which provides an in-depth view of VM health, performance trends, and dependencies.

How to access?

To view Azure Monitor for VMs, navigate to Azure VM resource blade and view details about VMs. From there users can identify compute issues at scale, and from the Resource Group blade to understand whether all the VMs in a common deployment are behaving as you expect.

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Azure VM Image Builder: Private Preview

Windows Azure were more popular in creating VMs (Virtual Machines) in your cloud and login remotely to them and access them as remotely. By the time Microsoft has implemented number of images (OS) to install in to it. Now they are expanding the ability to create images by users or customers. They have introduced the private preview of Azure VM Image Builder, a service which allows users to have an image building pipeline in Azure. To configure the image creation set up with Azure VM Image Builder, you can take an ISO or Azure Marketplace image and start creating your own golden images in a few steps.

Monday, October 8, 2018

Azure Front Door Services - Public Preview

In the earliest era of Microsoft there were huge struggle to increase the scalability and performance. People / Users asked several times to scale the products without decreasing performance or security. So this led Microsoft to build large, enterprise grade network and application infrastructure to solve reliability, scalability, performance and agility problems and took around 10 years via cloud journey. The result was the y made some enterprise services from Bing, Office, Skype, Azure, etc to overcome those challenges. And it led to developing unique infrastructure and services, battle-tested by years of constant support for Microsoft’s largest businesses.

Now they are releasing another huge project called Azure Front Door Service and its enterprise-grade  service and the public preview of newest addition to the Azure Networking and Azure’s application delivery suite of products. It is highly secure and highly available entry point for delivering your high performance global hyperscale apps.

Sunday, September 30, 2018

Azure Boards for DevOps

As Microsoft started to transform VSTS in to Azure DevOps Azure boards does a tremendous work on it. It manages all the work for your software project and brining you a rich set of capabilities including native support for Scrum and Kanban, customizable dashboards, and integrated reporting.
You will get a basic idea that what can do with azure boards.

Work items

Work item is the artifact which runs behind the task tracking. You can create your task items according to your project and the team. Each work item uses a state model to track and communicate progress. As an example the states model is New > Active > Resolved > Closed. From using this display anyone has access to the project work items can view the progress of the project.


Friday, September 28, 2018

Ethereum Proof-of-Authority for Blockchain on Azure

What is Proof-of-Authority

This is called a Sybil-resistance mechanism. This is reducing computation costs to self-regulate the network and allow fair participation. This is more suitable when there is a competition for cryptocurrency promotes security on the network, anonymously and open networks. But in private networks it doesn’t have any value of it. As an alternative it has a protocol Proof-of-Authority, is more suitable for permissioned networks which consensus participants are known and reputable. No need of mining and Proof-of-Authority is more efficient while still retaining Byzantine fault tolerance.

How it works in Enterprise

Microsoft has created this solution with the same principles that they use to create all their products and services. Using Proof-of-Authority, each and every consensus node on the network has its own Ethereum identity. Whenever a node goes down, and member shouldn’t lose the consensus participation. Which means every member needs to run redundant consensus nodes because of highly available network presence. To ensure highly available network presence Microsoft has built an abstraction which allows each consensus participant to delegate multiple nodes to run on their behalf. Each Azure Proof-of-Authority network comes with our identity leasing system that ensures that no two nodes carry the same identity. In the case of a VM or regional outage, new nodes can quickly spin up and resume the previous nodes’ identities.

Thursday, September 13, 2018

An Overview of Azure DevOps

Microsoft VSTS did a tremendous help for developers to maintain their code, Tasks, Deployments. After that DevOps came to the scene. So Microsoft is releasing Azure DevOps to make developers life easier and for team success.
 there are couple of services that feature in DevOps. The services are span the breadth of the development lifecycle to help developers ship software faster and with higher quality.

What's Include:
Azure Boards
Can be track your tasks with Kanban boards, backlogs, team dashboards, and custom reporting

Azure Artifacts

Maven, npm, and NuGet package feeds from public and private sources

Monday, September 10, 2018

Azure IOT Hub integration with Azure Event Grid

Couple of years ago Azure Released Azure IoT Hub based on Microsoft Azure to control and manage billions of devices, transferring data to the cloud to gain some business insights for their customers. Now a days its growing rapidly. Now they have released IoT Hub integration with Azure Event Grid to simplify their customer needs. It will gain more insights into actions by simplifying the architecture of IoT solutions.

What is include:
·       To automate workflows with apps like Azure Functions and Azure Logic Apps is now easy with the event grid. Since they are serverless architectures, it works well with event hub. Even the user can downstream the processes.

·       Will always alert about the device status such as creation, deletion, connection, and disconnection of devices. And the response time is really quick.

·       It will always reduce the complexity expense of polling services. This is integrated with events, with 3rd party applications using webhooks such as ticketing, billing system, and database updates

Saturday, September 1, 2018

Azure Blockchain Workbench 1.3.0 provides Multi-member consortium support

Recently Azure Blockchain workbench has released and seems its popular now. The Happy News is the Azure Blockchain Workbench 1.3.0 has released with Multi-member consortium support. Users can now upgrade their deployments to 1.3.0 or either users can create a new instance of workbench. To upgrade you can use upgrade script that released by Microsoft.

Once upgrade following enhancements will be added
It is fast and more reliable
Microsoft always check their telemetry to identify issues that affect to their customers, and decided to made some changes to make deploying Workbench more reliable. And faster.
Transaction reliability is much better
Microsoft has made a massive improvement for monitoring in version 1.1.0 and there are reliability improvements to the DLT (Distributed Ledger Technology) Watcher and DLT Consumer microservices. There may be some errors like, “It looks like something went wrong …”

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

MySQL and PostgreSQL gets VNet Service Endpoints

Recently Microsoft has released Azure database services for MySQL and PostgreSQL.
What’s it offers?
These include the high availability of the community versions of MySQL and PostgreSQL (99.99%) and also include elastic scaling for performance, and industry-leading security and compliance on Azure.
And as a part of the service Microsoft has introduced new features and capabilities such as increased storage and availability across more regions worldwide.
Now they have announced the general availability of Virtual Network (VNet) service endpoints for Azure Database for MySQL and PostgreSQL in all regions where the service is available for General Purpose and Memory Optimized servers.
You can check the service availability by visiting region expansion for MySQL and PostgreSQL.

Thursday, August 23, 2018

SQL Database Reserved Capacity is now generally available

The general availability of Azure SQL Database reserved capacity has released by Microsoft Azure team. It’s now available on single and elastic pool databases. This will be the most cost-effective cloud for your workloads. And the pricing tier saves up to 33% compared to license-included pricing by pre-paying for your SQL database vCores for a one or three-year term.

What makes Azure as the most cost-effective cloud for SQL Server workloads

Now a days users can save up to 55 percent using Azure Hybrid Benefit for SQL Server with the new vCore-based purchasing model in SQL Database. By using reserved capacity on single databases and elastic pools users can save even more up to 80%. And the best part is you combine your Azure Hybrid Benefit with reserved capacity as well.

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Azure CosmosDB JavaScript SDK 2.0: Public Preview

The Azure Cosmos DB team has released the latest version (version 2.0 RC) of the JavaScript SDK for SQL API, now in public preview!
It is available in npm now and install it to your project using following command. You can get the latest version through npm

npm install @azure/cosmos

Cosmos DB is
A globally distributed, multi-model database service. It offers turnkey global distribution, guarantees single-digit millisecond latencies at the 99th percentile, and elastic scaling of throughput and storage.
Microsoft supports a JavaScript SDK For the SQL API to enable development against Azure Cosmos DB from JavaScript and Node.js projects. Now the Version 2.0 of the SDK is written completely in Typescript, and we’ve redesigned the object model and added support for promises as well.

Sunday, August 19, 2018

Windows Container Support in Azure App Services: Public Preview

When a developer wants to have more control over what is installed in their containers, now can use Windows Server Containers in Web App. The public preview has released to community.

Now it supports Windows Containers on Azure App Service and enables number of opportunities for Application 
  •    Relaxed security restrictions – The Windows Container is an isolation and security boundary, When deploying a containerized application. Normally Libraries will be blocked by Azure App Service and instead of it will be succeed when running inside of a Windows Container
  •        Lift and Shift to PaaS – When a developer wants to  migrate .NET Framework and .NET Core applications to Azure, and is trying to transform straight to a PaaS service to get the many productivity benefits from the App Service platform.
  •        Third-party application migration – Customers often have business critical applications developed by third parties with which the company no longer has a relationship. Containerizing these types of applications unlocks the opportunity to migrate applications to Azure App Service.
  •        Applications with dependencies – Ina scenario, when a developer deploying an app within a Windows Container, it allows to install custom dependencies. Even when a developer wants to install libraries into  Global Assembly Cache (GAC) done by easily.

Saturday, August 11, 2018

Managed Disk Migration on Azure

Microsoft has released the capability of converting VMs with unmanaged Disks to Managed Disks. Now the migrations are available to Managed Disks in single click without requiring PowerShell or CLI scripts.

What is a Managed Disk?

Azure Managed Disks simplifies disk management for Azure IaaS VMs by managing the storage accounts associated with the VM disks. You only have to specify the type (Standard HDD, Standard SSD, or Premium SSD) and the size of disk you need, and Azure creates and manages the disk for you.

What you can do with managed Disk.
  •  You can scale your application without worrying about storage account limits
  •   Achieve high-availability across your compute and storage resources with aligned fault domains.
  • Create VM Scale Sets with up to 1,000 instances.
  • Integrate disks, snapshots, images as first-class resources into your architecture.
  • Secure your disks, snapshots, and images through Azure Role Based Access Control (RBAC)

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Azure Management Groups now Available

Volla! Microsoft has announced the general availability of Azure management groups.
What it does
It organizes all your subscriptions apply governance controls, including as Azure Policy and Role-Based Access Controls (RBAC), to the management groups. All subscriptions within a management group automatically inherit the controls applied to the management group.
Even if you have an Enterprise Agreement, Certified Solution Partner, Pay-As-You-Go, or any other type of subscription, this service gives all Azure customers enterprise-grade management at a large scale for no additional cost.
And with this Microsoft introduces a new functionality to Azure that allows customers to group subscriptions together so that you can apply a policy or RBAC role to multiple subscriptions, and their resources, with one assignment. Management groups not only allow you to group subscriptions but also allows you to group other management groups to form a hierarchy.

Azure Cloud Shell Editor with Visual Studio Code

For the Azure portal, Microsoft has announced Azure Cloud Shell and enriched with cloud-native command-line environment and can access from any device and anywhere in the world. And People loved it so much and it’s easy to use. The specialty is, it works as Bash or PS(PowerShell).
Microsoft made Cloud Shell even more powerful. There is automatic authorization for pre-installed open source tools like TerraformAnsible, and InSpec. And the best part is Visual Studio Code team team has embed Cloud Shell inside of Visual Studio Code and the Azure mobile app team has integrated Cloud Shell into the Azure mobile app. And this will allow easy access from any device to anywhere.

There are a variety of editors (vi, emacs, nano) for editing files from Cloud Shell. To bring even more flexibility to how you edit files, Microsoft has announced the launch of a graphical editor embedded directly in Azure Cloud Shell.Through collaboration with the Visual Studio Code team and their open-source Monaco project, the same web-standards based editor that powers Visual Studio Code is now integrated directly into Cloud Shell.

Monaco provides features like syntax coloring, auto completion, and code snippets. And this includes a file explorer to easily navigate the Cloud Shell file system for seamless file exploration. And the magic is, by simply typing “code .” to open the editor’s file explorer from any Cloud Shell web-based experience.

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

An Overview of Azure Firewall

Virtual Networks does a major role in Microsoft Azure. And firewall is the most important aspect for a network in Network Security. The new Azure Firewall service help to protect Virtual Network resources, with fully stateful native firewall capabilities with built-in high availability and the ability to scale automatically. You can create and enforce connectivity policies using application and network level filtering rules on multiple subscriptions and virtual networks. The Azure Firewall service is fully integrated with the Azure platform, portal UI and services.

How it Works:

Monday, July 30, 2018

Move your data to Azure with Azure Data Box Disks

 Are you looking for ruggedized, portable, and simple way to move large datasets into Azure?
Well now you got Azure data box. You can move petabytes of data into Azure using Data Box.

People now a days want lower capacity, even easier-to-use option. They cited examples such as moving data from Remote/Office Branch Offices (ROBOs), which have smaller data sets and minimal on-site tech support. This can be used for recurring, incremental transfers for ongoing backups and archives. And it should consist the same traits as Data Box – namely fast, simple, and secure. Microsoft has introduced Data box disk as their new member for such scenarios.


Data Box Disk contains the same infrastructure and management experience as Azure Data Box.
You can receive up to five 8TB disks, totaling 40TB per order. Data Box Disk is fast, utilizing SSD technology, and is shipped overnight, so you can complete a data transfer job in as little as one week.

  • ·         The disks can be connected via USB or SATA.
  • ·         By using commands like ‘robocopy’ or ‘drag-and-drop’ can be used to move data
  • ·         Quick and easy.
  • ·         Since Data Box Disk uses AES 128-bit encryption, once returned to the Azure DC, your data is securely uploaded, and the disks are cryptographically erased.
  • ·         Data is safe at every point in the process.

What it contains:

Comparison of data Box and Data Box disk

How to Order:

You can sign in to your azure subscription and navigate to

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Public preview of Azure Virtual WAN

Now a days networking trends such as SDWAN (Software-Defined Wide Area Network) uses to improve performance by using path selection polices at the branch offices to send Internet-bound traffic directly to the cloud eliminating the backhaul to select breakout points.

With the use of intelligent routing this traffic can quickly reach Microsoft’s global backbone network to provide the best network experience. By using this we tend to use all network branches. But in this technology we are facing a problem which is managing branch connectivity and uniformly enforcing network and security polices at scale, and complicating network policy management across all the branch offices is the trend of more employees working remotely with ever stricter security, privacy, and compliance requirements polices that vary by country/region.

Sunday, July 22, 2018

Dev Spaces for Azure Kubernetes Services Released!

The public preview of Dev Spaces for Azure Kubernetes Services (AKS) has released! Now you can build and debug applications for Kubernetes – only available on Azure

You don’t need to set up your local development to fix the bugs or development issues of complex micro services. To do such a thing it will take some time. It might take days even. Dev Spaces and AKS is the best solution for that. It’s very easy to setup and will take only seconds.

Set Up:
You just need to get ready with your IDE and Azure CLI (Command Line Interface).
Just Create a new Dev Space inside AKS and begin working on any component.

Use following command to Create a new Dev Space inside AKS

azds space select --name testDevSpace

This will create Kubernetes namespace and populates it with only the micro services that are under active development inside your IDE. It takes only few seconds. Not days.

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Azure CosmosDB Explorer

The newly added tool for azure cosmos db is cosmos db explorer.  Now you can use this instead of storage explorer.

What's Inside

  • Full screen real estate view for the queries and results
  • No need of access of azure subscription portal any more. Access your database account and collections with a connection string
  • Share your query result as read only view with your colleagues. (Does not require Azure portal access)
  • No desktop tools needed anymore. Work with cosmos db directly with Explorer

Thursday, July 5, 2018

Static website hosting for Azure Storage

The public preview of static website hosting for Azure Storage has released on June 28, 2018!
The newly released feature set is available in all public cloud regions with support in government and sovereign clouds coming soon.These new feature enable a cost-effective and scalable solution for hosting integrated modern web applications on Azure.

Usually on a static website, webpages contain static content and JavaScript or other client-side code.But when it comes to dynamic websites, it depends on server-side code, and can be hosted using Azure Web Apps.
But now a day’s deployments shift toward elastic, cost-effective models, the ability to deliver web content without the need for server management is critical.
As Azure introduces static website hosting in Azure Storage makes this possible. This will enable rich backend capabilities with server less architectures with Azure Functions and other Paas (Platform as a Service) Services.

By enabling  static websites on storage account, a new web service endpoint is created as follow


Getting started
·      Supporting Platforms
Net Client Library (version 9.3.0), Java Client Library (version 8.0.0), Python Client Library (version 1.3.0), Node.js Client Library (version 2.10.0), Visual Studio Code Extension (version 0.4.0), and CLI 2.0 (extension version 0.1.3).
Storage Explorer and Powershell support will be available soon.
Storage Services REST API is available now.
Static websites is supported by REST API version 2018-03-28 and greater (Azure recommended using the latest always)

·      How to Access
1.     Create a GPv2 Storage Account on Azure

2.     Click On the Newly Created Storage and you will see a link on settings section in the left navigation bar and Enable it.

3.     Upload web assets to $web Container. (Created when Static website enabled)

To do this you can directly access azure portal or can take advantage of the Visual Studio Code Extension to upload entire directory structures.
Visual Studio Code:
Right click on the $web container, select Deploy to static website and find the directory you want to upload
Make sure to include an index document with the name you configured. In this example, the document's name is index.html.

The web service endpoint always allows anonymous read access, returns formatted HTML pages in response to service errors, and allows only object read operations. The web service endpoint returns the index document in the requested directory for both the root and all subdirectories. When the storage service returns a 404 error, the web endpoint returns a custom error document if you configured it.

Volla! Go to your primary endpoint and test your site.