What is Infrastructure as Code?

As DevOps has been taking hold within the software industry there’s been a strong push towards automating everything. This include automating build, testing, deployments, as well as server and infrastructure configurations. Server and Infrastructure configuration automation was not a trivial task in the old days of on-premises datacenter where each server was on its own dedicated hardware. However, with the adoption of the cloud and Microsoft Azure along with the use of Virtualization, the automation of server and infrastructure configuration is now fairly easily done. In fact the automation of deploying servers and infrastructure is now possible through the scriptability of modern virtualization technology; such as what makes up the Microsoft Azure platform.

Automation scripts have been run for decades, this is not a new concept. However, the term Infrastructure as Code (IaC) is fairly new in the industry. As with any new term there’s starting to get a buzz around it, and with buzz comes misconceptions and misinterpretations. The purpose of this article is to describe some context surrounding the Why, What, and How surrounding Infrastructure as Code. Read More


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


Microsoft Azure Cost Estimator Tool

The Microsoft Azure Cost Estimator Tool allows for the necessary hosting resources of an enterprise environment to be mocked up as the appropriate Azure instances that match, then it will estimate out the total cost of hosting those resources in Microsoft Azure. The Azure Pricing Calculator available online can be helpful if you know what Azure Services you need, but the Azure Cost Estimator tool can be more helpful for more complex scenarios. This is a free tool available directly from Microsoft. Read More


Free DevOps Virtual Workshop Sessions

Microsoft recently hosted a DevOps Virtual Workshop where they provided a deep dive into topics covering how to manage, automate, and transform applications and workloads within Microsoft Azure. This was held as a half day, virtual event that was recorded so it can be viewed afterwords. The sessions from this event provide tons of information and demos on DevOps and ALM integration for Architects, Developers and IT Pros. Read More


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


What is Azure Operations Management Suite?

The Microsoft Operations Management Suite (OMS) is a SaaS (Software as a Service) offering that is part of the Microsoft Azure Cloud Platform. The Operations Management Suite is a DevOps tool that allows you to create customized dashboards that merge both Azure Cloud and On-Premises environment data. To underline the importance and relevance Microsoft is putting on OMS the Architecting Microsoft Azure Solutions Exam has recently been updated to include OMS in the exam objectives.

MSFT_OperationsManagementSuite_Overview_Screenshot Read More


Microsoft Virtual Security Summit: March 29, 2016

The Microsoft Virtual Security Summit is a 3 hour long, virtual event packed with information on protecting your organization in a mobile-first, cloud-first world. Cybersecurity has become a priority IT concern due to the nearly weekly announcements of cyberattacks. Cybersecurity is extremely important for every organization. At this event you will learn about modern cyberattacks, and the tools you can use to keep your devices, platforms, and people safe. Read More


Microsoft Data Platform Specialist Certifications

exam-MSAzure-logoThe list of Microsoft Azure certification exams and Microsoft Specialist certifications that can be earned is slowly growing. The first certifications were the Developer, Infrastructure, Architecture, and bigger MCSD Azure Solutions Architect certifications. As Azure grows, so does the need to fill out the Microsoft Certification lineup with additional certification credentials for professionals to prove their expertise. The latest in the bunch are the 2 new “Cloud Data Platform Solutions” and “Big Data Analytics Solutions” exams and associated Microsoft Specialist certifications. Read More


Cloud Platform University Online – Free Azure Training

CloudPlatformUniversityThere are plenty of resources available on how to implement and manage Microsoft Azure services; both for Developers and IT Pros. However, over the past few years there really haven’t been many resources to help learn how to affectively sell Microsoft Azure services. Whether you’re needing to make the case for your enterprise to adopt Microsoft Azure, or you work in Sales or Pre-Sales there is finally a resource to fit those training needs. The Microsoft Cloud Platform University Online (CPO) provides Free, Online, MOOC (massive open online course) courses targeted at Sales and Pre-Sales Technical roles. Read More