Episode 27 - Azure Automation

by Sujit D'Mello May 7, 2014


Automate (resource on Azure environment)


  • Creation
  • Deployment
  • Monitoring
  • Maintenance




Frequent or time-consuming jobs 


  • WebSites
  • Cloud Services
  • Virtual Machines
  • Storage
  • SQL Server




Extend by importing a PowerShell module or writing in C#




Write runbooks in PowerShell Workflow syntax


Extensible Workflows






Logs processing


Command line tools





Media: http://azpodcast.blob.core.windows.net/episodes/Episode27.mp3 


Azure Datacenter in Brazil:  http://blogs.msdn.com/b/windowsazure/archive/2014/04/17/microsoft-azure-brazil-region-now-in-public-preview.aspx



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Episode 26 - Intelligent Systems Service

by Sujit D'Mello April 30, 2014

Keywords: ,

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Episode 25 - Notification Hubs

by Sujit D'Mello April 23, 2014


Notification Hubs provide a push infrastructure with the following advantages:


  • Multiple platforms : iOS, Android and Windows
  • Works with any back-end. Cloud or on-premises, .NET, PHP, Java, Node, etc.
  • Scale. Notification Hubs scale to millions of devices without the need of re-architecting or sharding. Available in all regions.
  • Rich set of delivery patterns. Associate devices with tags, representing logical users or interest groups.
  • Personalization. Each device can have one or more templates, to achieve per-device localization and personalization without affecting back-end code.
  • Security. Shared Access Secret (SAS) or federated authentication.
  • Rich telemetry. Available in the portal and programmatically.




Media file: http://azpodcast.blob.core.windows.net/episodes/Episode25.mp3


Device APIs


Device APIs are only used to register devices from mobile apps (for security reasons, they do not expose Send methods). They automate the management of Notification Hubs-related information in the device local storage, and they support registration for a single PNS (for example, the Windows Store device APIs only register Windows devices).


Notification Hubs currently provides the following device API sets:





Back-end APIs


Back-end APIs are used to send notifications and for registration management from the back-end for all platforms.


Notification Hubs currently provides the following back-end API sets:







All Notification Hubs functionality is available using REST APIs. For more information, see Notification Hubs REST APIs.



The Build video on Notification Hubs is at http://channel9.msdn.com/Events/Build/2014/2-616.



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Episode 24 - Mobile Services

by Sujit D'Mello April 17, 2014

Evan and Cale talk about Azure Mobile Services which allows app developers on any platform to spin up a quick 'n easy back-end for storing data ad do authentication.


Media file: http://azpodcast.blob.core.windows.net/episodes/Episode24.mp3



SQL Server 2014 and Windows Azure Blob Storage Service: Better Together


Summary: SQL Server 2014 introduces significant new features toward a deeper integration with Microsoft Azure, thus unlocking new scenarios and provide more flexibility in the database space for IaaS data models. This technical article will cover in depth SQL Server 2014 Data Files on Azure Blob storage service, starting from step-by-step configuration, then providing guidance on scenarios, benefits and limitations, best practices and lessons learned from early testing and adoption. Additionally, a fully featured example of a new (Windows Server Failover Clustering) - like feature will be introduced to demonstrate the power of Microsoft Azure and SQL Server 2014 when combined together. 


SQL Server 2014 and Windows Azure Blob Storage Service: Better Together




Script Browser for Windows PowerShell ISE


Script Browser for Windows PowerShell ISE enables you to search for over 9000 script samples in the TechNet Script Center from within the scripting environment.


Script Browser for Windows PowerShell ISE




Microsoft Analytics Platform System


The Microsoft Analytics Platform System is your turnkey big data analytics appliance combining a high performance MPP SQL Server data warehouse with Hadoop into a single solution that offers seamless integration for of all of your data.






Microsoft Azure Intelligent System Service


Built on Windows Azure, the Microsoft Azure Intelligent Systems Service (ISS) makes it easier for enterprises to securely connect, manage, capture and transform machine-generated data from Line of Business (LoB) assets, such as industry devices and sensors, regardless of OS platform.  When enterprises use ISS to harness machine-generated data, they can drive improvements in operations and unlock new business opportunities by leveraging Microsoft assets like Power Business Intelligence (BI) and HD Insight for analytics to produce meaningful insights.


Link to request preview




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Episode 23 - More BUILD Goodness

by Sujit D'Mello April 9, 2014


Express Route


Dynamic Gateway / P2S


Basic Instances


IoT - Orleans - Framework for massive scale




Media file: http://azpodcast.blob.core.windows.net/episodes/Episode23.mp3


Azure SDK 2.3 for .NET is available.

The new Azure SDK 2.3 for .NET supports the following additional features:

  • Virtual Machines: Remote debug native or managed code [Article] and create virtual machines from Server Explorer [Article]
  • Web Sites: View and edit remote files and logs [Article] and easily publish Web apps using the improved Publish Web experience [Article]
  • Cloud Services: General availability of Emulator Express [Article] with Run as Normal User support & Remote debugging for native code [Article]
  • Storage: Updated Storage Emulator & Storage Client 3.0 now included in new projects [Storage Dev Center]
  • PowerShell, X-Plat CLI and .NET Automation (separate downloads from Azure SDK 2.3): Support for using Resource Manager [PowerShell ArticleX-Plat CLI Article], and lots of new commands for automating Web Sites, Cloud Services, VMs and more [PowerShell ArticleX-Plat CLI Article]

The Azure SDK 2.3 can be downloaded from the Azure .NET Developer Center




A selection of Microsoft Azure Active Directory Samples on github


Process automation capability to simplify Azure cloud management

Use runbooks (in a form of a PowerShell script) to automate the manual, long-running, error-prone, and frequently repeated tasks that are commonly performed in a cloud environment.






Internet of Things with Azure Service Bus


A nice video on the advent of the Internet of things and how connected devices are presenting numerous integration and messaging challenges, which can be tackled with Service Bus. In this session, Todd Holmquist-Sutherland & Paolo Salvatori  demonstrates how to use queues and topics to enable a variety of M2M scenarios--everything from command/control to telemetry.



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Episode 22 - BUILD Announcements

by Sujit D'Mello April 3, 2014

At the Build 2014 conference, we introduced the new Microsoft Azure Preview portal and the new Basic tier of compute instances.

We also announced the general availability of the Web Sites Basic tier along with enhancements to the Web Sites Standard tier, Active Directory Premium, Scheduler, RA-GRS, Dynamic Routing Gateways and Point-to-Site, AutoScale, and Visual Studio Online.

In addition, Azure Automation public preview was announced and Azure Backup pricing was reduced

Media file: http://azpodcast.blob.core.windows.net/episodes/Episode22.mp3










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Episode 21 - What's In A Name?

by Sujit D'Mello March 26, 2014


Latest news that Microsoft is choosing to rename Windows Azure to Microsoft Azure


What is this saying about how Azure fits into Microsoft's entire ecosystem


OSS @ Microsoft


Drupal, DotNetNuke, NodeJS 


What is support of Linux OS on Azure vs Windows? 


Media file: http://azpodcast.blob.core.windows.net/episodes/Episode21.mp3












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Episode 20 - Azure Cache

by Sujit D'Mello March 19, 2014

 Why caching?

History of caching on Windows

Cache Service (Preview) gives you access to a secure, dedicated cache that is managed by Microsoft.

In-Role Cache - Use the memory in your VM or cloud service as a distributed cache

Programming the cache

Capacity Planning http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/windowsazure/dn386139.aspx

Monitor Windows Azure Cache Service

Learn how to monitor and configure key performance metrics through the Windows Azure Management Portal.

Troubleshooting and debugging for Windows Azure Cache Service

Change diagnostic level via log files or programmatically.


Media file: http://azpodcast.blob.core.windows.net/episodes/Episode20.mp3


Links & Updates:


Windows-based Oracle software images are now generally available.


Dear Azuresupplies unique answers to all of your cloud questions. Want to host your Java application in the cloud? Need to scale resources dynamically? Answers to these and many more are featured on DearAzure.com.   


Windows Azure Traffic Manager now supports Windows Azure Web Sites 


HDInsight: Hadoop 2.2 support is now GA.



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Episode 19 - Special guest Bill Zack

by Sujit D'Mello March 12, 2014


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Episode 18 - The Internet of Things

by Sujit D'Mello March 5, 2014


Special Guest Ryan Berry talks to use of an project he worked on to connect .NET Embedded to Azure. This was an end to end solution using SQL Azure, Service Bus, Queue, SQL Azure DB, worker role and a web role.


Solution Block Diagram:



Built Using a FeZ Spider: https://www.ghielectronics.com/catalog/product/297

   - Runs .NET Micro Framework

Small Memory footprint .NET CLR

Optimized for low-memory devices

512KB ROM/256KB RAM for the full feature set

Windows CE and .NET CF require 10 MB ROM/10MB RAM

Subset of the desktop .NET Framework Object Model

Supports interoperability with  WCF

Device/IO Interaction abstracted w/ event-driven code


Media file: http://azpodcast.blob.core.windows.net/episodes/Episode18.mp3


Updates to Azure 


  • ExpressRoute: Dedicated, private, high-throughput network connectivity with on-premises
  • Web Sites: Backup and Restore Support
  • Mobile Services: .NET support, Notification Hub Integration, PhoneGap support
  • HDInsight: Hadoop 2.2 support
  • Management: Co-admin limit increased from 10->200 users
  • Monitoring: Service Outage Notifications Integrated within Management Portal
  • Virtual Machines: VM Agent and Background Information Support
  • Active Directory: More SaaS apps, more reports, self-service group management, Japan DCs live 
  • BizTalk Services: EDIFACT protocol support, Service Bus Integration, Backup and Restore



Informational blogs and links:






New whitepaper ‘Application Patterns and Development Strategies for SQL Server in Windows Azure Virtual Machines’ is published:


How to setup a Minecraft Server on Windows Azure! 



How to manage your Azure Website with IIS Management Console (here)


3rd-party solution for Azure usage / chargeback management & IT self-service



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