Newsletter June 2014

Announcements

Run SAP applications on Microsoft Azure

Azure is now certified for SAP Business Suite, SAP Business All-In-One, SAP NetWeaver, and SAP HANA Developer Edition, all of which include full support from both Microsoft and SAP. Plus, you can deploy and provision reconfigured SAP solutions in minutes directly to Azure using the SAP Cloud Appliance Library tool. For more information, visit the SAP on Azure website.

Brazil South region generally available

Earlier this month we announced the general availability of the Brazil South region, located in the São Paulo state. Azure customers can now host their services in Brazil South with the same service-level coverage they receive in Azure regions worldwide. Learn more about the new region in The Official Microsoft Blog.

Hyper-V Recovery Manager adds replication feature, gets new name

Hyper-V Recovery Manager, now called Azure Site Recovery, added an important new preview feature. Now you can replicate running virtual machines from your site to Azure, and use Azure as your disaster recovery location, avoiding the complexity and expense of a secondary datacenter. Learn more or try the new capability in preview mode in the Azure Management Portal.

Introducing Scheduler Premium tier and updates to Standard tier

Now Scheduler offers two important updates that enable you to operate at even higher scale:

  • Scalable Standard tier. Scale to up to 10 Standard units, which at 10 job collections per unit enables you to create up to 100 job collections.
  • New Premium tier. Receive 10,000 job collections per month with every Premium unit.

By using Scheduler, you can invoke actions—such as calling HTTP/S endpoints or posting a message to a storage queue—on any schedule. For more information, visit the Scheduler website.

Improved Azure Status dashboard

The Status dashboard, which shows at-a-glance Azure health info, has a new look and features. Check it out. We also send personalized details about incidents affecting your account directly to your Management Portal. If you use the RSS feeds, make sure to update them to the new dashboard URL: status.azure.com.

Gain insights about your Azure blobs with HDInsight

Experiment with HDInsight (Hadoop) on your existing Azure Blob data to uncover insights that can drive your business. With Hadoop, you can process extremely large volumes (terabytes to petabytes) of unstructured blob data and gain insights on data in blobs like logs, clickstreams, social media, machine telemetry, sensor data, and geolocation. Plus, Apache HBase™, a NoSQL database, is now included as a beta feature. Download the free white paper or visit the HDInsight Service website for more information.

Azure Store now available in Norway

Customers with accounts based in Norway (enrolled in Direct Enterprise Agreements or via azure.microsoft.com) can now purchase application and data services (add-ons) from Microsoft partners through the Azure Store. You can manage add-ons through the Management Portal, and usage will be conveniently billed to your Azure account. Visit the Azure Store today.

Learning

Inside Azure Web Hosting Plans

Discover web hosting plans, which were recently introduced in the new Azure Management Portal. Azure expert Chandrika Shankarnarayan gives Azure Friday’s Scott Hanselman a lesson in how they can save you money and more. Watch the video.

Everything you wanted to know about cloud computing but were afraid to ask!

Are you wondering how you get to Cloud City without getting double-crossed by Lando? Dear Azure answers your cloud questions in a way that forums can only dream of. Have a question on moving your app to the cloud? Looking for options to autoscale your app? Wondering about migrating that massive database of yours to the cloud? Answers to these and many more questions are featured on DearAzure.com. So go ahead, ask away!

Get started with ExpressRoute

Learn everything you need to know about Azure ExpressRoute, recently announced as generally available. Get information about ExpressRoute basics, exchange providers, network service providers, pricing, case studies, and more. Read the blog post by Ganesh Srinivasan.

The future of cryptography with Azure Websites

Securing your site with SSL has never been more important. Even though encryption isn’t new, cryptographers keep looking for ways to be more secure, and the Websites team is always looking for ways to support the latest and greatest. Today the greatest is Elliptic Curve Cryptography (ECC) certificates, which is now supported by Websites. For more information, read this blog post by Erez Benari.

Debugging Azure Websites? That’s SO easy!

When you’re building high-end scalable enterprise-class apps, efficient debugging is key in getting the job done. With Azure Websites, debugging your app in the cloud is as easy as debugging it on your own computer! Want to learn how? Check out Jaime Espinosa’s three-part series on remote debugging.

You too can run Drupal, pal!

One out of every 50 websites in the world is powered by the Drupal content management platform, and if that’s on your radar, Azure Websites is the right place to do it. Running Drupal on Websites is not only easy but also extremely robust. You can scale across multiple instances and across the globe, and spend your time on your content rather than on administrative legwork. Check out some best practices for running Drupal on Azure Websites in this post by Azure Program Manager Sunitha Muthukrishna.

Active Directory for Windows Store apps

Interested in learning how to use the Azure Active Directory service to authenticate users, add multifunction authentication, and more? Watch and learn from expert Vittorio Bertocci, Program Manager for Azure Active Directory. Check out the video.

Microsoft Research project Orleans simplifies development of scalable cloud services

This Channel 9 video with Chris Risner, Haishi Bai, and Sergey Bykov, Principal Development Lead at Microsoft Research on project Orleans, explain how to use Orleans to simplify development of scalable cloud services. Watch the video.

IT camp on demand: Moving to Hybrid Cloud with Azure

Learn how to use Azure to extend on-premises networks and to embrace the power and scale of the cloud. Our experts will help you solve some of your most pressing IT issues. Watch the on-demand video sessions.

TechEd Europe: Register by July 7 and save!

Learn the latest on Microsoft Azure at TechEd Europe October 28–31, 2014, in Barcelona. Conference tracks include Datacenter and Infrastructure Management, Developer Platform and Tools, and People-Centric IT. Join with industry experts and peers, and return to work with insights and connections that will enhance your career. Register by July 7 and save €300.

Worldwide Partner Conference, July 13–17, 2014 | Washington, DC, US

The Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference (WPC) is an annual, global convergence of top Microsoft partners. It’s where businesses come together to network, drive business growth, and identify new profitability opportunities. If you are a partner, register to expand your professional network and your business, and learn more about specific opportunities for software vendors at the conference.

Partners

"Data and analytics delivery through Microsoft Azure will lead to greater choice and faster innovation for our financial markets clients and partners."
—Brian Sentance, CEO

Xenomorph provides analytics and data management solutions to financial markets. Risk, trading, quantitative research, and IT staffs use Xenomorph solutions at investment banks, hedge funds, and asset management institutions across the world’s financial centers.

Learn more

"Whether it’s researching the next groundbreaking drug, running marketing analytics, or connecting CRM with financial packages, with Microsoft Azure, Helium customers can access hundreds of routines via the Helium Marketplace to get their work done in record time."
—Robert Cooper, Business Unit Leader

Ceiba empowers life sciences and healthcare data while reducing management costs. Its Helium solution delivers application reporting functions and associated information within common user applications, simplifying data access, and increasing productivity.

Learn more

Success Stories

Mazda gains better data protection, 95 percent lower costs using hybrid cloud storage

"With StorSimple, data is copied to the cloud in half the time, and files can be brought back from Microsoft Azure in minutes instead of 24 hours."
—Kai Sookwongse, Group Manager, Enterprise Infrastructure

To improve disaster protection for applications that its dealers use to run their businesses, Mazda North American Operations revamped its data protection using a StorSimple hybrid cloud storage solution based on Microsoft Azure. Mazda now has more reliable, real-time data protection and can restore data in minutes. It has eliminated backup work for engineers and reduced data protection costs by 95 percent.

Read the full story

Precious metals dealer ups IT reliability, trims costs by 40 percent by moving to cloud

"With Infor/Lawson and other critical applications running in Microsoft Azure, we have gained much higher availability without the cost of maintaining a highly available datacenter."
—Tom Grounds, Chief Information Officer

Dillon Gage, one of the largest international precious metals dealers, migrated nearly all of its business-critical applications—including Infor/Lawson enterprise resource planning software—to Azure. With applications running in Azure, Dillon Gage has been able to create a highly available infrastructure that is easy to extend globally. It avoided the US$1 million expense of building new primary and backup datacenters and will reduce its IT spending by 40 percent going forward.

Read the full story

Azure Store

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Partner updates

Alert Logic’s recently published Cloud Security Report contains data-driven research on cyberthreats in cloud, hosting, and on-premises environments, based on six months of data from more than 2,200 customers. Alert Logic now offers two editions of its Log Manager service in the Azure Store—Security and Security & Compliance—with multiple capabilities to help Azure customers employ best practices in active protection, forensic analysis, and compliance.

Visit Store page

Featured services

"I'm thrilled about Auth0. The product is extremely easy to use, ideal for customers who need a service that ‘just works’ for single sign-on and identity federation scenarios. [Auth0 handles] most scenarios a customer could require, [and] I just love working with the team. They are incredibly responsive to issues and questions and really listen to feature requests."
—Michele Leroux Bustamante, CIO, Solliance

Auth0 eliminates the need to write your own code for authentication and authorization, with a secure, easy-to-use API that allows easy logon, single sign-on, and authentication with Microsoft accounts, Google, Facebook, Amazon, Active Directory, Microsoft Office 365, LDAP, Google Apps, Salesforce, and many more.

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New in Store

Datwendo Cloud Connector, an innovative software-as-a-service solution, interconnects cloud applications, syncs data, keeps things simple, and boosts operations.

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Nodejitsu makes using Redis databases with your Azure servers as simple as clicking a mouse. Scaling up or down, unlimited databases, and daily backups are included in all paid plans.

Learn more

The Noxum Workflow Service is a browser-based platform for business process management. Create workflows and business processes across systems and websites, to help manage your IT processes and resources more efficiently.

Learn more