Microsoft Azure: what is it, description, features, instructions for use

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Microsoft Azure: what is it, description, features, instructions for use
Microsoft Azure: what is it, description, features, instructions for use

Many users still don't know that Microsoft Azure is a Microsoft cloud product that uses an ever-expanding network of data centers to create, deploy and manage services and applications anywhere. It allows you to add capabilities to an existing network through a platform as a service model (PaaS) and trusts Microsoft to perform computing and network operations using the service infrastructure (IaaS).

Any of these options provide secure and reliable access to cloud data based on the proven Microsoft architecture. Azure provides an ever-expanding set of products and services designed to meet all needs with an easy-to-manage platform. Consider Microsoft Azure - what it is, and also talk about what it can offer users.

TechnicalMicrosoft Azure features

Microsoft Windows Azure
Microsoft Windows Azure

Microsoft maintains a growing catalog of Azure services that provides all the elements needed to create a virtual network and deliver services or applications to a global audience, including:

  1. Microsoft or Linux virtual machines (VM).
  2. One to unlimited SQL-managed relational databases as Microsoft Azure services.
  3. Azure Active Directory Domain Services powered by proven Windows Active Directory technology. Allows remote control of group policy, authentication, and everything else.
  4. App Services compatible with all popular web ports and portable platforms.
  5. Reliable, scalable access to cloud resources allows you to quickly respond to the outflow and inflow of information, saving time and money.
  6. Team Visual Studio Services creates an additional service available as part of the Team Visual Studio Service for a complete application lifecycle management (ALM) solution, which is especially valuable in this Microsoft Azure.
  7. Storage space that allows you to store infrequently accessed data at huge savings.

Self-sustaining data centers are becoming obsolete and are being replaced by increasingly affordable cloud solutions.

Advantages of the cloud platform

Microsoft Azure services
Microsoft Azure services

The combination of Microsoft's extensive infrastructure, continuous development of applications and services, and a strong presence in the global IT market, have madeMicrosoft Windows Azure solutions are the choice of two-thirds of the world's Fortune 500 companies. Azure's infinite scalability makes it also suitable for personal use, thanks to its advantages:

  1. Flexibility. With the help of the cloud, new services are offered with the ability to geometrically scale data storage capabilities on the fly. Users claim that there is no competition for Microsoft Azure.
  2. Cost. Cloud solutions not only make it faster and easier to add and scale infrastructure, but also make it cheap. Using the experience of Microsoft, Azure reduces the annual IT budget of users.
  3. Applications. With maintenance services such as Visual Studio Team Services, Visual Studio Application Insights, and the scalable Microsoft Azure cloud with requirements for both frequent access and cold data, Microsoft makes development and testing of mission-critical applications. It also offers significant discounts on licensing for migration of existing Microsoft Azure machine learning applications and machine learning, which is a good help for savings.
  4. Disaster recovery. Another advantage of the cloud is its high-speed and geographically decentralized infrastructure, which creates unlimited possibilities for disaster recovery plans.

Azure products and services

As of the end of 2018, Microsoft classifies cloud services using multiple product types:

  1. Calculation - allowuser to deploy and manage virtual machines, containers, and batch processing, and maintain access to remote applications.
  2. Microsoft Azure Web Use - Supports the development and deployment of web applications, and offers features for search, content delivery, application programming interface (API) management, notification, and reporting.
  3. Data storage. This category of service provides scalable cloud storage for structured and unstructured data, and supports large projects, persistent storage (for containers), and archive storage, such as for using Microsoft Azure for students.

Analytical services

Provides storage as well as features for real-time analytics, big data analytics, machine learning, business intelligence (BI), Internet data streams (IoT) and their storages.

Network. This group includes virtual networks, dedicated connections and gateways, as well as services for traffic management and diagnostics, load balancing, domain name hosting (DNS), network protection from denial of service attacks (DDoS).

Media and Content Delivery Network (CDN). These services include on-demand streaming, digital rights protection, media encoding, playback and indexing.

Hybrid integration. These are services for backing up a server, restoring a site, and connecting private and public clouds.

Identity and Access Management (IAM). These proposals ensure thatonly authorized users access services, help protect encryption keys and other sensitive information in the cloud. Services include support for Active Directory and Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA), which is the backbone of Microsoft Azure.

Technologies within the Azure Cloud

Using Microsoft Azure
Using Microsoft Azure

Internet services help users obtain, control and analyze data from IoT sensors and other devices. Services include notifications, analytics, monitoring and support for coding and execution.

Development services help application developers share code, test, and track potential issues. The Microsoft Windows Azure cloud platform supports a range of application programming languages, including JavaScript, Python,. NET, and Node.js. Tools in this category also include support for Visual Studio, software development kits (SDKs), and locking.

These products provide capabilities for identifying and responding to cloud security threats, as well as managing encryption keys and other sensitive resources.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning - a wide range of services a developer can use to bring machine learning, AI and cognitive computing capabilities to applications and datasets.

Common Docker and Kubernetes platforms

Microsoft Azure for students
Microsoft Azure for students

Containers - these services help an enterprise create,register, organize and manage vast amounts of information in the cloud using common platforms such as Docker and Kubernetes.

Databases. This category includes service offerings (DBaaS) for SQL and NoSQL, as well as other data instances such as Azure Cosmos DB and Database for PostgreSQL. It also includes support for SQL Data Warehouse, caching, hybrid integration and database migration.

DevOps - This team provides project and collaboration tools such as Visual Studio Team Services that make it easy to develop DevOps software. The group also offers features for application diagnostics, integration of DevOps tools and test labs for testing and build experiments.

Migration - Toolkit helps an organization estimate the cost of migrating workloads and perform the actual migration of workloads from on-premises data centers to the cloud.

Mobile - These products help the developer build mobile cloud applications, provide notification services, background task support, tools for building APIs, and the ability to associate geospatial (local) context with data.

Manage - These services provide a range of backup, restore, compliance, automation, scheduling, and monitoring tools that can help a cloud administrator manage an Azure deployment.

Logging function

Azure comes with built-inhe alth monitoring and alert functions, so the user is instantly aware of any performance issues or system failures.

Smart event alert levels:

  1. Azure Diagnostic Infrastructure - information about how the cloud network works. Necessary steps are being taken to address slowdowns, bottlenecks, or service outages.
  2. Windows IIS logs. View activity on virtual web servers and respond to traffic or login anomaly with data. Azure builds IIS 7.
  3. Emergency dumps. Even virtual machines have blue screen issues and other hardware failures that can disrupt any operation. With this function, you can record crash dump data and troubleshoot.
  4. Custom error logs. Set Azure alerts to inform the user about error events. This is useful when hosting private applications that generate internal analysis of operations, so the user can add these errors to the he alth checklist.

Basic Networking Tools

Microsoft Azure Basics
Microsoft Azure Basics

Azure supports the user network with the tools needed to log and monitor errors, diagnose and troubleshoot to ensure continuous service delivery in the cloud.

Even with Azure's own logging and analytics tools, the amount of data that runs across the network and applications can behuge. The volume, variety and speed of cloud data should not be underestimated. With Sumo Logic (a Microsoft trusted partner), managing this data is easy.

The Sumo Logic platform combines logs and metrics from structured, semi-structured, and unstructured data in a Microsoft environment. Machine learning algorithms process a huge amount of log data and indicators, look for anomalies and deviations from the normal patterns of activity, alerting the user in time.

Using Log Reduce, Log Compare and Outlier Detection, users extract continuous intelligence from the application stack and respond to operational and security issues.

Sumo Logic apps for Azure Audit, Internet Information Services (IIS) get real-time machine data and turn it into clear, interactive visualizations to complete the picture.

DR and backup

Microsoft Azure cloud
Microsoft Azure cloud

As with other cloud platforms, some organizations use Backup and Disaster Recovery (DR). In addition, some organizations use Azure as an alternative to having their own datacenter rather than investing in on-premises servers. These organizations choose to run some or all business applications.

As of the end of 2018, services are available in 54 regions covering 140 countries. Since the services are not available in all regions of the world, Azure users should ensure that the locationsloading and storing data complied with all existing requirements for compliance with the laws of the country of residence.

Germany has four clouds, the UK, France and Switzerland have two each, Ireland and the Netherlands have one each. China and Australia each have four units, India three, Japan and Korea two each. Hong Kong and Singapore accept the cloud as one region. For the Middle East, South Africa and the UAE, there are two clouds per region.

Pricing model

Azure primarily uses a pay-as-you-go pricing model based on actual service volume. If a single application uses multiple services, each includes multiple pricing tiers. Additionally, if a user makes a long-term commitment to services such as compute instances, Microsoft offers a discount.

Taking into account the factors associated with cloud service pricing, users analyze and manage the cloud service in order to minimize costs. Azure-native tools such as Azure Cost Management can help you control, visualize, and optimize cloud computing costs. You can also use third-party tools (Cloudability or RightScale) to manage resource usage and associated costs.

For example, the cost of storage depends on the reservation and distribution parameters. In the US Central region, Hot Locally Redundant Block Block Storage (LRS-HOT) with 3 copies in a single data center starts at $0.0184 per GB(approximately 1.2 rubles). Geographically redundant storage (GRS-HOT) with 3 copies in one datacenter and 3 instances in a second geographically dispersed datacenter starts at $0.0388/GB (2.56 RUB). Read-Access GRS (RAGRS-HOT), which allows read access in a second data center, starts at $0.046 per GB.

Operating instructions

Microsoft Windows Azure cloud platform
Microsoft Windows Azure cloud platform

The toolbar is the main part of the real estate on the azure portal. It allows you to drag and drop services, counters, and other relevant information onto a web page. You can create multiple dashboards, for example, for monitoring purposes. It shows the status of Azure services and current billing, and focuses on the services included in the application (with errors, consoles, and logs).

The dashboard may contain information about Azure resources, access to tutorials, links to the Azure Marketplace, and details to view. To create a toolbar, go to the Azure portal and click on the "New Toolbar" link, give it a name, and start adding tiles to the page.

To open the toolbar, go to the Azure portal and click on the Share link, resulting in a sidebar. In this area, fill in the required information and click the "Publish" button.

Azure will prompt the owner to manage access to the shared dashboard. Before sharing a dashboard, exercise rightssecurity. For example, if individual users don't have access to billing information in Azure, then the tile won't matter to them.

It is often necessary to add resources or groups of resources that are not in the slab gallery. The owner will need to find the resource group to provide. To do this, select the context menu, and in it - the output element for the toolbar.

To change the color of the portal, double-click an empty area on the toolbar. As a result, various theme colors will appear. You can also click the Gear icon at the top of the page to try other colors.

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