Automating SharePoint Deployments in Windows Azure using PowerShell

          

Editor’s Note: The following is a post from Michael Washam, Senior Program Manager for Windows Azure.

SharePoint has proven to be one of the most popular Microsoft workloads running on Windows Azure Virtual Machines. Hosting highly customized SharePoint farms and building Internet facing websites that scale in-real time are some of the key scenarios where many customers and partners take advantage of cloud economics and scale with Windows Azure.

Now, it is even easier to provision SharePoint farms in Windows Azure. Using the new Remote PowerShell functionality and the Windows Azure PowerShell Cmdlets, we have put together new sample PowerShell scripts. You can use these new scripts to automate all the required steps when rolling out a SharePoint server farm, saving time and effort.

The sample scripts are available in the Windows Azure PowerShell Samples GitHub repository for download and use.  These scripts serve as a starting point for spinning up SharePoint farms and you can customize them for your own use case. 

Let’s take a closer look at what you can accomplish with these scripts…

Rolling Automated Deployments of SharePoint, SQL Server and Active Directory

The sample scripts allow automated provisioning of the following workloads as individual tiers or as a one complete deployment.

  • Active Directory
  • SQL Server 2012
  • SharePoint 2013

Each tier can be deployed in a single virtual machine configuration or with multiple virtual machines for a highly available solution.

Example Deployment Topologies Available with the New Scripts and Templates

Single VM Template

This template is designed to produce a SharePoint farm for evaluation, development or testing.

  • 1 Windows Virtual Machine for Active Directory – Small Instance Size (1 core and 1.75 GB memory)
  • 1 SQL Server Virtual Machine – A6 Instance Size (4 cores and 28 GB memory)
  • 1 SharePoint Server 2013 Virtual Machine with all Services – Large Instance Size (4 cores and 7 GB memory)

 

Highly Available Template

This template is designed to produce a highly available farm architecture.  You can adjust and change the default instance sizes.

  • 2 Windows Virtual Machines for Active Directory – Instance Size Small (1 core and 1.75 GB memory)
  • 2 SQL Server VMs – Instance Size A6 (4 cores and 28 GB memory)
  • 1 Windows VM for Quorum – - Small Instance Size (1 core and 1.75 GB memory)
  • 2 SharePoint Application Servers – Instance Size Large (4 cores and 7 GB memory)
  • 2 SharePoint Web Servers – Instance Size Large (4 cores and 7 GB memory)

 

You can expect us to provide similar scripts for additional scenarios in the near future. Documentation on how to configure and deploy the scripts can be found in the Windows Azure PowerShell samples GitHub Wiki. Please give them a spin and let us know what you think…We are looking for your feedback.

Michael Washam

P.S. We have introduced a detailed technical white paper on deploying SharePoint that you should review along with the deployment wiki. For a refresher on Remote PowerShell and the Windows Azure PowerShell Cmdlets see my earlier post.