Layne  Fadel

Layne Fadel

1623958020

Working with Azure Image Builder

Virtual machines have been part of cloud infrastructures since the early days of AWS and Azure. They’re key to bringing familiar workloads to the cloud, allowing existing applications and skill sets to lift and shift from on-premises to a global-scale platform. The resulting virtual infrastructures are now coming back to our data centers, running on hyperconverged hardware where dense compute and virtual storage act as a bridge between traditional architectures and cloud-native environments. Even as cloud platforms move to providing serverless functions and offering more effective PaaS, the familiar IaaS business model remains important.

Managing virtual infrastructures by managing VM images

A well-designed virtual infrastructure builds on common images, using them as the foundation for applications and services, simplifying both management and maintenance. With a standardized image you can bake in security and configuration settings, as well as define common policies and software installations. It’s a process that takes discipline and time, both in building your image creation pipeline and in training developers and administrators.

It’s important to ensure that only the images in your repositories are used, as any that don’t meet your standards could be a back door into your systems, adding unexpected weaknesses to a security model. You need to respond quickly to user demands for custom images; otherwise, they might be tempted to deploy unapproved images just to get the job done.

Increased demand for images causes a new problem: They take time to build and more time to customize. What’s needed is a way to automate the process and bake it into your continuous delivery pipelines so that applications are built and deployed on the latest images. That approach allows you to begin the shift to idempotent infrastructures, tying virtual infrastructures to builds and deployments, ensuring that every change to an application is deployed with a complete, secure, and tested infrastructure.

Introducing Azure Image Builder

Microsoft’s answer to this question is currently in public preview. General availability was originally scheduled for the fourth quarter of 2020 but is currently delayed. Azure Image Builder builds on HashiCorp’s open source Packer image creation tool, integrating it into the Azure command line and focusing on building both Linux and Windows Azure virtual machines. Packer produces both Hyper-V and VMware images for AWS, Google Cloud Platform, Azure, and Docker images. Microsoft’s version is purely for creating Hyper-V images, with support for Gen 1 VMs for both Azure and for on-premises Azure Stack instances.

The preview doesn’t have all the planned features, but it does have most of what you need to build and manage your library of images automatically. Start by using it to build baseline images that can then be modified and deployed once configured. It can patch images as updates release, ensuring that your library is up to date and that deployments have the latest security updates.

#azure image builder #azure

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Working with Azure Image Builder
Layne  Fadel

Layne Fadel

1623958020

Working with Azure Image Builder

Virtual machines have been part of cloud infrastructures since the early days of AWS and Azure. They’re key to bringing familiar workloads to the cloud, allowing existing applications and skill sets to lift and shift from on-premises to a global-scale platform. The resulting virtual infrastructures are now coming back to our data centers, running on hyperconverged hardware where dense compute and virtual storage act as a bridge between traditional architectures and cloud-native environments. Even as cloud platforms move to providing serverless functions and offering more effective PaaS, the familiar IaaS business model remains important.

Managing virtual infrastructures by managing VM images

A well-designed virtual infrastructure builds on common images, using them as the foundation for applications and services, simplifying both management and maintenance. With a standardized image you can bake in security and configuration settings, as well as define common policies and software installations. It’s a process that takes discipline and time, both in building your image creation pipeline and in training developers and administrators.

It’s important to ensure that only the images in your repositories are used, as any that don’t meet your standards could be a back door into your systems, adding unexpected weaknesses to a security model. You need to respond quickly to user demands for custom images; otherwise, they might be tempted to deploy unapproved images just to get the job done.

Increased demand for images causes a new problem: They take time to build and more time to customize. What’s needed is a way to automate the process and bake it into your continuous delivery pipelines so that applications are built and deployed on the latest images. That approach allows you to begin the shift to idempotent infrastructures, tying virtual infrastructures to builds and deployments, ensuring that every change to an application is deployed with a complete, secure, and tested infrastructure.

Introducing Azure Image Builder

Microsoft’s answer to this question is currently in public preview. General availability was originally scheduled for the fourth quarter of 2020 but is currently delayed. Azure Image Builder builds on HashiCorp’s open source Packer image creation tool, integrating it into the Azure command line and focusing on building both Linux and Windows Azure virtual machines. Packer produces both Hyper-V and VMware images for AWS, Google Cloud Platform, Azure, and Docker images. Microsoft’s version is purely for creating Hyper-V images, with support for Gen 1 VMs for both Azure and for on-premises Azure Stack instances.

The preview doesn’t have all the planned features, but it does have most of what you need to build and manage your library of images automatically. Start by using it to build baseline images that can then be modified and deployed once configured. It can patch images as updates release, ensuring that your library is up to date and that deployments have the latest security updates.

#azure image builder #azure

Birdie  Daniel

Birdie Daniel

1593279660

How to get started with Azure Image Builder | Azure Tips and Tricks

In this edition of Azure Tips and Tricks, you’ll learn how to get started with Azure Image Builder. For more tips and tricks, visit: https://aka.ms/azuretips

#azure #builder #image #tips #tricks

Eric  Bukenya

Eric Bukenya

1624713540

Learn NoSQL in Azure: Diving Deeper into Azure Cosmos DB

This article is a part of the series – Learn NoSQL in Azure where we explore Azure Cosmos DB as a part of the non-relational database system used widely for a variety of applications. Azure Cosmos DB is a part of Microsoft’s serverless databases on Azure which is highly scalable and distributed across all locations that run on Azure. It is offered as a platform as a service (PAAS) from Azure and you can develop databases that have a very high throughput and very low latency. Using Azure Cosmos DB, customers can replicate their data across multiple locations across the globe and also across multiple locations within the same region. This makes Cosmos DB a highly available database service with almost 99.999% availability for reads and writes for multi-region modes and almost 99.99% availability for single-region modes.

In this article, we will focus more on how Azure Cosmos DB works behind the scenes and how can you get started with it using the Azure Portal. We will also explore how Cosmos DB is priced and understand the pricing model in detail.

How Azure Cosmos DB works

As already mentioned, Azure Cosmos DB is a multi-modal NoSQL database service that is geographically distributed across multiple Azure locations. This helps customers to deploy the databases across multiple locations around the globe. This is beneficial as it helps to reduce the read latency when the users use the application.

As you can see in the figure above, Azure Cosmos DB is distributed across the globe. Let’s suppose you have a web application that is hosted in India. In that case, the NoSQL database in India will be considered as the master database for writes and all the other databases can be considered as a read replicas. Whenever new data is generated, it is written to the database in India first and then it is synchronized with the other databases.

Consistency Levels

While maintaining data over multiple regions, the most common challenge is the latency as when the data is made available to the other databases. For example, when data is written to the database in India, users from India will be able to see that data sooner than users from the US. This is due to the latency in synchronization between the two regions. In order to overcome this, there are a few modes that customers can choose from and define how often or how soon they want their data to be made available in the other regions. Azure Cosmos DB offers five levels of consistency which are as follows:

  • Strong
  • Bounded staleness
  • Session
  • Consistent prefix
  • Eventual

In most common NoSQL databases, there are only two levels – Strong and EventualStrong being the most consistent level while Eventual is the least. However, as we move from Strong to Eventual, consistency decreases but availability and throughput increase. This is a trade-off that customers need to decide based on the criticality of their applications. If you want to read in more detail about the consistency levels, the official guide from Microsoft is the easiest to understand. You can refer to it here.

Azure Cosmos DB Pricing Model

Now that we have some idea about working with the NoSQL database – Azure Cosmos DB on Azure, let us try to understand how the database is priced. In order to work with any cloud-based services, it is essential that you have a sound knowledge of how the services are charged, otherwise, you might end up paying something much higher than your expectations.

If you browse to the pricing page of Azure Cosmos DB, you can see that there are two modes in which the database services are billed.

  • Database Operations – Whenever you execute or run queries against your NoSQL database, there are some resources being used. Azure terms these usages in terms of Request Units or RU. The amount of RU consumed per second is aggregated and billed
  • Consumed Storage – As you start storing data in your database, it will take up some space in order to store that data. This storage is billed per the standard SSD-based storage across any Azure locations globally

Let’s learn about this in more detail.

#azure #azure cosmos db #nosql #azure #nosql in azure #azure cosmos db

Ruthie  Bugala

Ruthie Bugala

1620435660

How to set up Azure Data Sync between Azure SQL databases and on-premises SQL Server

In this article, you learn how to set up Azure Data Sync services. In addition, you will also learn how to create and set up a data sync group between Azure SQL database and on-premises SQL Server.

In this article, you will see:

  • Overview of Azure SQL Data Sync feature
  • Discuss key components
  • Comparison between Azure SQL Data sync with the other Azure Data option
  • Setup Azure SQL Data Sync
  • More…

Azure Data Sync

Azure Data Sync —a synchronization service set up on an Azure SQL Database. This service synchronizes the data across multiple SQL databases. You can set up bi-directional data synchronization where data ingest and egest process happens between the SQL databases—It can be between Azure SQL database and on-premises and/or within the cloud Azure SQL database. At this moment, the only limitation is that it will not support Azure SQL Managed Instance.

#azure #sql azure #azure sql #azure data sync #azure sql #sql server

Ron  Cartwright

Ron Cartwright

1600624800

Getting Started With Azure Event Grid Viewer

In the last article, we had a look at how to start with Azure DevOps: Getting Started With Audit Streaming With Event Grid

In the article, we will go to the next step to create a subscription and use webhook event handlers to view those logs in our Azure web application.

#cloud #tutorial #azure #event driven architecture #realtime #signalr #webhook #azure web services #azure event grid #azure #azure event grid #serverless architecture #application integration