Microsoft DevRadio: Spring Azure Update Review - IaaS, Web Sites, Licensing and more!

Abstract: Brian Hitney and Peter Laudati review and demo some of the latest updates and features made to Windows Azure such as the general availability of Windows Azure Infrastructure as a Service, Azure Web Sites, the Azure SDK 2.0 for .NET and the new licensing and pricing model. After watching this video, follow these next steps: Step #1 – Try Windows Azure: No cost. No obligation. 90-Day FREE trial. Step #2 – Download the Tools for Windows 8 App Development Step #3 – Start building your own Apps for Windows 8 Subscribe to our podcast via iTunes, Windows Phone Podcast Marketplace or RSS If you're interested in learning more about the products or solutions discussed in this episode, click on any of the below links for free, in-depth information: Blogs & Articles Brian Hitney’s blog Peter Laudati’s blog Windows Azure: General Availability of Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) Windows Azure: Improvements to Virtual Networks, Virtual Machines, Cloud Services and a new Ruby SDK Announcing the release of Windows Azure SDK 2.0 for .NET Videos: Microsoft DevRadio: How to Get Started with Windows Azure Microsoft DevRadio: (Part 1) What is Windows Azure Web Sites? Microsoft DevRadio: (Part 2) Windows Azure Web Sites Explained Microsoft DevRadio: How to Integrate TFS Projects with Windows Azure Web Sites Virtual Labs: MSDN Virtual Labs: Windows Azure Download MP3 (Audio only) MP4 (iPod, Zune HD) High Quality MP4 (iPad, PC) Mid Quality MP4 (WP7, HTML5) High Quality WMV (PC, Xbox, MCE)

Microsoft DevRadio: (Part 5) Using Windows Azure to Build Back-End Services for Windows 8 Apps – Adding Push Notifications

Abstract: In Part 5 of of their “Using Windows Azure to Build Back-End Services for Windows 8 apps” series Peter Laudati, Brian Hitney and Andrew Duthie  show us how to quickly add the ability to implement push notifications for his GameLeader Service using Azure Mobile Services. Check out the full article here. Watch Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 After watching this video, follow these next steps: Step #1 – Try Windows Azure: No cost. No obligation. 90-Day FREE trial. Step #2 – Download the Tools for Windows 8 App Development Step #3 – Start building your own Apps for Windows 8 Subscribe to our podcast via iTunes or RSS If you're interested in learning more about the products or solutions discussed in this episode, click on any of the below links for free, in-depth information: Register for our Windows Azure Hands-on Lab Online (HOLO) events today! Windows Azure Hands-on Labs Online Blogs: Brian Hitney’s blog Peter Laudati’s blog Andrew Duthie’s Blog Videos: Microsoft DevRadio: How to Get Started with Windows Azure Microsoft DevRadio: (Part 1) What is Windows Azure Web Sites? Microsoft DevRadio: (Part 2) Windows Azure Web Sites Explained Microsoft DevRadio: How to Integrate TFS Projects with Windows Azure Web Sites Virtual Labs: MSDN Virtual Labs: Windows Azure Download MP3 (Audio only) MP4 (iPod, Zune HD) High Quality MP4 (iPad, PC) Mid Quality MP4 (WP7, HTML5) High Quality WMV (PC, Xbox, MCE)

Microsoft DevRadio: (Part 4) Using Windows Azure to Build Back-End Services for Windows 8 Apps – Azure Mobile Services

Abstract: In Part 4 of of their “Using Windows Azure to Build Back-End Services for Windows 8 apps” series  Peter Laudati, Brian Hitney and Andrew Duthie show us how to build the same game leaderboard service on top of Windows Azure Mobile Services. Tune in as Andrew demos for us how to get started as well as lays out what some of the +/- are for using Azure Mobile Services for this kind of service.  Check out the full article here. Watch Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 After watching this video, follow these next steps: Step #1 – Try Windows Azure: No cost. No obligation. 90-Day FREE trial. Step #2 – Download the Tools for Windows 8 App Development Step #3 – Start building your own Apps for Windows 8 Subscribe to our podcast via iTunes or RSS If you're interested in learning more about the products or solutions discussed in this episode, click on any of the below links for free, in-depth information: Register for our Windows Azure Hands-on Lab Online (HOLO) events today! Windows Azure Hands-on Labs Online Blogs: Brian Hitney’s blog Peter Laudati’s blog Andrew Duthie’s Blog Videos: Microsoft DevRadio: How to Get Started with Windows Azure Microsoft DevRadio: (Part 1) What is Windows Azure Web Sites? Microsoft DevRadio: (Part 2) Windows Azure Web Sites Explained Microsoft DevRadio: How to Integrate TFS Projects with Windows Azure Web Sites Virtual Labs: MSDN Virtual Labs: Windows Azure Download MP3 (Audio only) MP4 (iPod, Zune HD) High Quality MP4 (iPad, PC) Mid Quality MP4 (WP7, HTML5) High Quality WMV (PC, Xbox, MCE)

Microsoft DevRadio: How to Integrate TFS Projects with Windows Azure Web Sites

Never too late to post!  Here’s an episode of DevRadio Peter and I did on TFS Projects in Azure!   Abstract: Peter Laudati and Brian Hitney are back for today’s show as they show us how we can integrate TFS (Team Foundation Server) projects with Windows Azure Web Sites. They also discuss Windows Azure’s latest price reduction for Storage as well as tee up new features in Windows Azure Mobile Services. After watching this video, follow these next steps:   Step #1 – Try Windows Azure: No cost. No obligation. 90-Day FREE trial. Step #2 – Download the Tools for Windows 8 App Development Step #3 – Start building your own Apps for Windows 8   Subscribe to our podcast via iTunes or RSS   If you're interested in learning more about the products or solutions discussed in this episode, click on any of the below links for free, in-depth information: Register for our Windows Azure Hands-on Lab Online (HOLO) events today! Windows Azure Hands-on Labs Online   Blogs: Brian Hitney’s blog Peter Laudati’s blog   Videos: Microsoft DevRadio: How to Get Started with Windows Azure Microsoft DevRadio: (Part 1) What is Windows Azure Web Sites? Microsoft DevRadio: (Part 2) Windows Azure Web Sites Explained   Virtual Labs: MSDN Virtual Labs: Windows Azure   Download MP3 (Audio only) MP4 (iPod, Zune HD) High Quality MP4 (iPad, PC) Mid Quality MP4 (WP7, HTML5) High Quality WMV (PC, Xbox, MCE)  

Microsoft DevRadio: (Part 2) Windows Azure Web Sites Explained

Peter Laudati , Brian Hitney and Windows Azure Technical Evangelist Brady Gaster conclude their Windows Azure Web Sites intro series by going over the differences between Azure and shared hosting, pricing, scaling, cpu consumption, the reserved vs. shared model, custom DNS, and much, much more. Watch Part 1 After watching this video, follow these next steps: Step #1 – Start Your Free 90 Day Trial of Windows Azure Step #2 – Download the Tools for Windows 8 App Development Step #3 – Start building your own Apps for Windows 8 Subscribe to our podcast via iTunes, Zune, or RSS If you're interested in learning more about the products or solutions discussed in this episode, click on any of the below links for free, in-depth information: Websites: Learn more about Windows Azure Blogs: Brian Hitney’s blog Peter Laudati’s blog Brady Gaster’s blog Virtual Labs: MSDN Virtual Labs: Windows Azure Download MP3 (Audio only) MP4 (iPod, Zune HD) High Quality MP4 (iPad, PC) Mid Quality MP4 (WP7, HTML5) High Quality WMV (PC, Xbox, MCE)

Microsoft DevRadio: (Part 1) What is Windows Azure Web Sites?

Peter Laudati and Brian Hitney welcome Windows Azure Technical Evangelist Brady Gaster to the show as they discuss Windows Azure Web Sites. In part one of this series, tune in as they chat about what it is, what its key benefits are for web developers and agencies, how the Azure Web Sites infrastructure works for easier site deployment, an intro to the web sites gallery, as well as a special announcement for .NET applications. After watching this video, follow these next steps: Step #1 – Start Your Free 90 Day Trial of Windows Azure Step #2 – Download the Tools for Windows 8 App Development Step #3 – Start building your own Apps for Windows 8 Subscribe to our podcast via iTunes, Zune, or RSS If you're interested in learning more about the products or solutions discussed in this episode, click on any of the below links for free, in-depth information: Websites: Learn more about Windows Azure Blogs: Brian Hitney’s blog Peter Laudati’s blog Brady Gaster’s blog Virtual Labs: MSDN Virtual Labs: Windows Azure Download MP3 (Audio only) MP4 (iPod, Zune HD) High Quality MP4 (iPad, PC) Mid Quality MP4 (WP7, HTML5) High Quality WMV (PC, Xbox, MCE)

Microsoft DevRadio: How to Get Started with Windows Azure

Peter Laudati and I kick off our new Windows Azure series by giving us a tour of what’s new in Azure with Windows Azure Web sites, Virtual Machines and Mobile Services. Tune in as we provide a brief overview of Azure’s many services and features as well as how to get started with a free 90 day trial. After watching this video, follow these next steps: Step #1 – Start Your Free 90 Day Trial of Windows Azure Step #2 – Download the Tools for Windows 8 App Development Step #3 – Start building your own Apps for Windows 8 Subscribe to our podcast via iTunes, Zune, or RSS If you're interested in learning more about the products or solutions discussed in this episode, click on any of the below links for free, in-depth information: Websites: Learn more about Windows Azure Blogs: Brian Hitney’s blog Peter Laudati’s blog Virtual Labs: MSDN Virtual Labs: Windows Azure Download MP3 (Audio only) MP4 (iPod, Zune HD) High Quality MP4 (iPad, PC) Mid Quality MP4 (WP7, HTML5) High Quality WMV (PC, Xbox, MCE)

Windows Azure Dev Camps Soon!

It’s that time – Windows Azure Dev Camps are coming really soon.  Here’s the schedule: Date Location   May 24th, 2012 Alpharetta, GA Register May 30th, 2012 Reston, VA Register May 31st, 2012 Iselin, NJ Register We’re pretty excited to mix up the format a little, with some time to jump into some new areas we haven’t typically talked about in our previous shows: 1. The Azure Platform – An Overview (60 minutes) Let’s start off the day with a dive into Windows Azure. We’ll talk about what Windows Azure offers, from hosting applications to durable storage. We’ll look at Windows Azure roles types, hosting web applications and worker processes. We’ll also cover durable storage options, both traditional relational database that is offered as SQL Azure, or more cloud-centric offerings in Windows Azure Storage for files, semi-structured data, and queues. 2. Hands on @home with Azure (120 minutes) For this hands-on portion of the day, we’ll work on the @home with Windows Azure project. The @home project will give you a solid understanding of using Windows Azure in a project that contributes back to Stanford’s Folding@home distributed computing project. We’ll walk through the code, provisioning an account, and getting the application deployed and running. 3. Caching – A Scalable Middle Tier (45 minutes) Creating a stateless application is a difficult but fundamental aspect of building a scalable application in the cloud. In this session, we’ll talk about the Windows Azure Cache service and using it as a middle tier to maintain state and cache objects that can be shared by multiple instances. 4. SQL Azure, Data Sync, and Reporting (45 minutes) SQL Azure offers a scalable database as a service without having to configure and maintain hardware. We’ll look at the subtle differences between on premises SQL Server databases and SQL Azure, and how Data Sync can be used to synchronize data between multiple databases both in the cloud and on premises. We’ll also look at SQL Azure Reporting. 5. Windows 8 and Azure – Better Together (60 minutes) The consumer preview of Windows 8 is out, and it’s the perfect time to ramp up on developing native Metro-style applications. In this session, we’ll give an overview of Windows 8, and delivering a richer user experience by leveraging a cloud backend.

Windows Azure Trust Center

The Windows Azure team recently posted about the Windows Azure Trust Center.   One of the most frequent conversations that comes up when discussing moving applications to the cloud revolves around security and compliance, and it’s also one of the most challenging conversations to have.  What makes it particularly challenging is the fact that the responsibility of compliance is typically shared between the hardware, platform, and software. The site has a few sections that in particular drill down into security, privacy, and compliance related information.  Definitely good information to refer to when evaluating a move into the cloud!

Antimalware in the Windows Azure

On most (or perhaps even all?) of the production servers I’ve worked on, antivirus/antimalware detection apps are often not installed for a variety of reasons – performance, risk of false positives or certain processes getting closed down unexpectedly, or the simple fact most production machines are under strict access control and deployment restrictions. Still, it’s a nice option to have, and it’s now possible to set this up easily in Windows Azure roles.   Somewhat quietly, the team released a CTP of Microsoft Endpoint Protection for Windows Azure, a plug in that makes it straightforward to configure your Azure roles to automatically install and configure the Microsoft Endpoint Protection (MEP) software.  The download includes the necessary APIs to make it simple to configure.  Upon initial startup of the VM, the Microsoft Endpoint Protection software is installed and configured, downloading the binaries from Windows Azure storage from a datacenter of your choosing.  Note: *you* don’t have store anything in Windows Azure Storage; rather, the binaries are kept at each datacenter so the download time is fast and bandwidth-free, provided you pick the datacenter your app resides in. So, to get started, I’ve downloaded and installed the MSI package from the site.    Next, I’ve added the antimalware module to the ServiceDefinition file like so: <?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?><ServiceDefinition name="MEP" xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/ServiceHosting /2008/10/ServiceDefinition"> <WebRole name="WebRole1" vmsize="ExtraSmall"> <Sites> <Site name="Web"> <Bindings> <Binding name="Endpoint1" endpointName="Endpoint1" /> </Bindings> </Site> </Sites> <Endpoints> <InputEndpoint name="Endpoint1" protocol="http" port="80" /> </Endpoints> <Imports> <Import moduleName="Antimalware" /> <Import moduleName="Diagnostics" /> <Import moduleName="RemoteAccess" /> <Import moduleName="RemoteForwarder" /> </Imports> </WebRole></ServiceDefinition> Specifically, I added Antimalware to the <imports> section.  The other modules are for diagnostics (not needed necessarily but useful, as you’ll see in a bit) and remote access, so we can log into the server via RDP.   Next, the ServiceConfiguration will configure a bunch of options.  Each setting is spelled out in the document on the download page:   <?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?><ServiceConfiguration serviceName="MEP" xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/ ServiceHosting/2008/10/ServiceConfiguration" osFamily="1" osVersion="*"> <Role name="WebRole1"> <Instances count="1" /> <ConfigurationSettings> <Setting name="Microsoft.WindowsAzure.Plugins.Diagnostics.ConnectionString" value="xxx" /> <Setting name="Microsoft.WindowsAzure.Plugins.Antimalware.ServiceLocation" value="North Central US" /> <Setting name="Microsoft.WindowsAzure.Plugins.Antimalware.EnableAntimalware" value="true" /> <Setting name="Microsoft.WindowsAzure.Plugins.Antimalware.EnableRealtimeProtection" value="true" /> <Setting name="Microsoft.WindowsAzure.Plugins.Antimalware.EnableWeeklyScheduledScans" value="true" /> <Setting name="Microsoft.WindowsAzure.Plugins.Antimalware.DayForWeeklyScheduledScans" value="1" /> <Setting name="Microsoft.WindowsAzure.Plugins.Antimalware.TimeForWeeklyScheduledScans" value="120" /> <Setting name="Microsoft.WindowsAzure.Plugins.Antimalware.ExcludedExtensions" value="txt|log" /> <Setting name="Microsoft.WindowsAzure.Plugins.Antimalware.ExcludedPaths" value="e:\approot\custom" /> <Setting name="Microsoft.WindowsAzure.Plugins.Antimalware.ExcludedProcesses" value="d:\program files\app.exe" /> <Setting name="Microsoft.WindowsAzure.Plugins.RemoteAccess.Enabled" value="true" /> <Setting name="Microsoft.WindowsAzure.Plugins.RemoteAccess.AccountUsername" value="xxx" /> <Setting name="Microsoft.WindowsAzure.Plugins.RemoteAccess.AccountEncryptedPassword" value="xxx" /> <Setting name="Microsoft.WindowsAzure.Plugins.RemoteAccess.AccountExpiration" value="2013-03-21T23:59:59.000-04:00" /> <Setting name="Microsoft.WindowsAzure.Plugins.RemoteForwarder.Enabled" value="true" /> </ConfigurationSettings> <Certificates> <Certificate name="Microsoft.WindowsAzure.Plugins.RemoteAccess.PasswordEncryption" thumbprint="xxx" thumbprintAlgorithm="sha1" /> </Certificates> </Role></ServiceConfiguration> Many of these settings are self-explanatory, but essentially, we’re setting up weekly scans at 2am on Sunday, excluding app.exe, and everything in e:\approot\custom.   We’re also skipping txt and log files.  Also, the MEP bits will be pulled from the North Central US datacenter.  It’s not a big deal if your app is outside of North Central– it’s just that the install takes a few moments longer (the default is South Central).  (And, technically, since bandwidth going into the datacenter is currently free, the bandwidth isn’t an issue.)  If we log into the box (the role must be RDP enabled to do this) we’ll see these settings reflected in MEP. Weekly scans: Excluding app.exe:   And skipping txt and log files: Finally, we can also set up the Windows Azure Diagnostics agent to transfer relevant event log entries to storage – in this example, we’re just adding the antimalware entries explicitly, though getting verbose information like this is probably not desirable: private void ConfigureDiagnosticMonitor() { DiagnosticMonitorConfiguration diagnosticMonitorConfiguration = DiagnosticMonitor.GetDefaultInitialConfiguration(); diagnosticMonitorConfiguration.Directories.ScheduledTransferPeriod = TimeSpan.FromMinutes(1d); diagnosticMonitorConfiguration.Directories.BufferQuotaInMB = 100; diagnosticMonitorConfiguration.Logs.ScheduledTransferPeriod = TimeSpan.FromMinutes(1d); diagnosticMonitorConfiguration.Logs.ScheduledTransferLogLevelFilter = LogLevel.Verbose; diagnosticMonitorConfiguration.WindowsEventLog.DataSources.Add("Application!*"); diagnosticMonitorConfiguration.WindowsEventLog.DataSources.Add("System!*"); diagnosticMonitorConfiguration.WindowsEventLog.ScheduledTransferPeriod = TimeSpan.FromMinutes(1d); //Antimalware settings: diagnosticMonitorConfiguration.WindowsEventLog.DataSources.Add( "System!*[System[Provider[@Name='Microsoft Antimalware']]]"); diagnosticMonitorConfiguration.WindowsEventLog.ScheduledTransferPeriod = System.TimeSpan.FromMinutes(1d); PerformanceCounterConfiguration performanceCounterConfiguration = new PerformanceCounterConfiguration(); performanceCounterConfiguration.CounterSpecifier = @"\Processor(_Total)\% Processor Time"; performanceCounterConfiguration.SampleRate = System.TimeSpan.FromSeconds(10d); diagnosticMonitorConfiguration.PerformanceCounters.DataSources.Add( performanceCounterConfiguration); diagnosticMonitorConfiguration.PerformanceCounters.ScheduledTransferPeriod = TimeSpan.FromMinutes(1d); DiagnosticMonitor.Start(wadConnectionString, diagnosticMonitorConfiguration); } To filter the event logs from MEP, we can add some filtering like so (adding the Level 1, 2, and 3 to the filter so we’re skipping the verbose level 4 stuff): diagnosticMonitorConfiguration.WindowsEventLog.DataSources .Add("System!*[System[Provider[@Name='Microsoft Antimalware'] and (Level=1 or Level=2 or Level=3)]]"); After deploying the role and waiting a few minutes, the entries are written into Azure table storage, in the WADWindowsEventLogsTable.  In this case, I’m looking at them using Cloud Storage Studio (although, for diagnostics and performance counters, their Azure Diagnostics Manager product is fantastic for this kind of thing): While not everyone needs or desires this functionality, it’s a great option to have (particularly if the system is part of a file intake or distribution system).  

My Apps

Dark Skies Astrophotography Journal Vol 1 Explore The Moon
Mars Explorer Moons of Jupiter Messier Object Explorer
Brew Finder Earthquake Explorer Venus Explorer  

My Worldmap

Month List