Category: Architecture

ArchitectureInfrastructure

Cloud War: Microsoft vs Amazon – Feature 2 Feature Comparisons

MSAzureMountainsIt’s the middle of a war… The cloud war! Ok, not nearly as dramatic as a real war (thankfully!) but still just as intense as the browser wars in the early days of the Internet. One of the difficulties in navigating the features of each cloud provider is the ability (or lack of…) to be able to compare what feature is equivalent from one cloud provider to another. This is especially difficult with new feature announcements and updates coming out weekly! The pace has picked up, and it’s extremely difficult to keep up with!

There are very similar and some almost identical features of each Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services. Each company uses different names for each feature set that really are NOT simply Microsoft SQL vs Amazon SQL. Because of the naming and feature differences, this is extremely difficult to navigate when attempting to compare a Microsoft Azure product page to an Amazon Web Services product page. Read More

ArchitectureInfrastructure

Azure Features and Regions, Oh My!?

AzureRegionsMicrosoft Azure has tons of data centers and region. At the time of writing this, Azure is made up of 24 regions with more, new regions announced coming soon. In fact, Microsoft Azure is bigger than both Amazon’s and Google’s cloud services combined!

Microsoft Azure also has a ton of features, however, not all features are available in every data center. The majority of features are, but some are not. To help determine which Azure features are supported in each region, Microsoft has a “Services by Region” page available. This page allows you to easily see which Azure features are available in which regions, and can really help in planning out what regions and data centers you’re going to deploy to in the Microsoft Azure cloud.

The Azure Services by Region page can be found here:
https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/regions/#services

ArchitectureDevelopmentInfrastructure

Interactive Azure Platform Big Picture

The Microsoft Azure cloud platform is really big with tons of features, plus Microsoft keeps adding more, and more, and more all the time. The technology industry can generally be difficult to keep up with, and all that is in Microsoft Azure can be just as difficult to keep track of. With the help of Ricardo Niepel and his Interactive Azure Platform Big Picture graphic / website it’s easy to see all the big features that make up Microsoft Azure. The interactive part is where you can click on a feature to see a short description, as well as links to documentation and pricing to dive in further.

The below image is a screenshot, clicking on it will bring you to the website. Enjoy!

InteractiveAzurePlatformBigPicture

ArchitectureInfrastructure

Cloud vs On-Premises: Security, Reliability and Uptime

There’s a lot of buzz about the “Cloud” as a result of the rapid growth and adoption of cloud-based services like Microsoft Azure of the last 5 years or so. However, the “Cloud” is still a bit mysterious to some, and many others aren’t clear on the best way to design systems to run best in the cloud. While migrating on-premises solutions to run in the Cloud can be simple, there are many differences between Cloud and On-Premises data center and hosting environments. This article explores many of those differences, what they mean, and how to better design systems to run better in the cloud. Read More

ArchitectureHardwareInfrastructure

Why Microsoft Azure?

Many companies are migrating existing or building new systems on the Microsoft Azure Cloud Platform. There’s a lot of buzz lately around the Cloud overall, but it can be a little unclear at first glance what the benefits are. Microsoft Azure includes many different Infrastructure and Platform features that simply mirror those on-premises, as well as features that extend far beyond. Let’s explore some of the primary features of Microsoft Azure, along with reasons why they may be the right choice to use, so we can answer some of the common questions. While Microsoft Azure may be an obvious technical choice, it’s extremely important to answer these questions when conveying the benefits of Microsoft Azure to business decision makers. Read More

ArchitectureDevelopmentInfrastructure

Which Azure Portal do I use?

AzurePortalAvailabilityChartScreenshotThe Azure Portal duality has been a source of confusion for many almost since the original launch of Microsoft Azure. There’s been 2 separate portals for a really long time. Recently, they’ve been renamed the “Current Azure Portal” and the “Classic Azure Portal”. However, neither portal has the same Azure feature support. This makes for a bit of confusion until you learn what can be managed from which portal.

Thankfully to make things much easier than pure discovery, Microsoft has an Azure portal availability chart. Like much of the documentation on any product, things can get buried in the mass. So, I thought I’d bring this little nugget to light and draw some attention to it. Read More

ArchitectureCertificationDevelopmentOpen Source

Open Source Azure Certification Practice Tests

Studying for the Azure certification exams can be a daunting task. One of the most difficult things is knowing whether you’re ready to sit the actual exam or not. Take the exam too early, you’ll fail. Not understand how the questions will be written, you could fail. Over prepare, and you’ll pass but possibly waste some time. To really hone in on a certification exam, the use of a practice test / exam can be extremely useful. In an effort to help others studying for these exams, I have started creating a couple Free, Open Source Azure certification practice exams. Read More

Architecture

Messaging Architecture: What is AMQP?

Messaging has become pretty fundamental with the wider adoption of Microservices and other cloud design pattern. There are many ways to transmit a message. Many messaging systems today, like Azure Service Bus, use a protocol called AMQP, or the Advanced Message Queuing Protocol. While AMQP is used behind the scene in messaging systems, let’s explore a little bit of what it is. Read More

ArchitectureBookDevelopment

Free eBook: Building Cloud Apps with Microsoft Azure (DevOps, Availability, Storage, more)

eBook-MSPress-BuildingCloudAppsMSAzureThe “Building Cloud Apps with Microsoft Azure” book written by Scott Guthrie, Mark Simms, Tom Dykstra, Rick Anderson and Mike Wasson has been made a free eBook by Microsoft Press. This books goes through a pattern-based approach to building real-world solutions with Microsoft Azure. Among these practices covered include topics coving both Architecture and coding practices. The content of this book is based off the presentation Scott Guthrie gave at the Norwegian Developers Conference (NDC) in June, 2013, as well as Microsoft Tech Ed Australia in September, 2013. Read More