• 9 min read

Azure.Source – Volume 71

Catch up on Azure - Preview: Distributed tracing support for IoT Hub; Update to Azure DevOps Projects support for Azure Kubernetes Service; More reliable event-driven applications in Azure with an updated Event Grid; and more.

Now in preview

Preview: Distributed tracing support for IoT Hub

Announcing distributed tracing support for IoT Hub now in public preview. As with most IoT solutions, including our Azure IoT reference architecture, an IoT message travels from a device through a dozen or more services before it is stored or visualized. It can be very challenging to pinpoint when something has gone wrong in the flow. To completely understand the flow of messages through an IoT Hub, you must trace each message's path using unique identifiers. IoT Hub is a managed service, hosted in the cloud, that acts as a central message hub for bi-directional communication between your IoT application and the devices it manages. You can use Azure IoT Hub to build IoT solutions with reliable and secure communications between millions of IoT devices and a cloud-hosted solution backend. You can connect virtually any device to IoT Hub.

Screenshot showing UI for enabling distributed tracing for Azure IoT Hub

Now generally available

Update to Azure DevOps Projects support for Azure Kubernetes Service

Kubernetes is gaining strength as adoption across the industry continues to grow. However, many customers coming to container orchestration for the first time are also building familiarity with Docker and containers in general. To help with container adoption, we updated our Azure Kubernetes Service (a fully managed Kubernetes container orchestration service) and released Azure DevOps Projects (a simplified experience to help you launch an app on an Azure Service of your choice) to help you deploy multiple apps to a single Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS) cluster. These features are now generally available in the Azure portal.

Animation showing how to use Azure DevOps Projects in the Azure portal to deploy apps to an AKS cluster

More reliable event-driven applications in Azure with an updated Event Grid

Event-driven programming as a core building block for cloud application architecture has been on the rise. Enabling you to build more sophisticated, performant, and stable event-driven applications in Azure is important. Announcing the general availability of features previously in preview: Dead lettering, Retry policies, Storage Queues as a destination, Hybrid Connections as a destination, and Manual Validation Handshake. To take advantage of the these features, use 2019-01-01 API and SDKs. If you are using CLI or PowerShell, use versions 2.0.56 or later for CLI and 1.1.0 for PowerShell.

Class schedules on Azure Lab Services

Classroom labs in Azure Lab Services makes it easy to set up labs by handling the creation and management of virtual machines, enabling infrastructure to scale. Schedules management is one of the key features requested by classroom labs customers who also need to easily create, edit, and delete schedules. Through continuous enhancements, the latest deployment of Azure Lab Services now includes added support for class schedules.

News and updates

Modernize alerting using Azure Resource Manager storage accounts

Azure Monitor is a unified monitoring service that includes alerting and other monitoring capabilities. Classic alerts in Azure Monitor reach retirement in June, 2019. We recommend you migrate your classic alert rules defined on your storage accounts if you want to retain alerting functionality with the new alerting platform. If you have classic alert rules configured on classic storage accounts, you should upgrade your accounts to Azure Resource Manager (ARM) storage accounts before you migrate alert rules.

Additional news and updates

Technical content

Use GraphQL with Hasura and Azure Database for PostgreSQL

Azure Database for PostgreSQL provides a fully managed, enterprise-ready community PostgreSQL database as a service for easily migrating existing apps to the cloud or for developing cloud-native applications using the languages and frameworks you choose. Learn how to take advantage of the Hasura GraphQL Engine that can instantly provide a real-time GraphQL API on a PostgreSQL database.

Introduction to Linux on Azure

An introduction to running a Linux virtual machine on Azure. This workshop has been a collaboration between Researc/hers Code and Microsoft. Researc/hers Code supports women in tech and academia by running skills workshops and podcasting the talent of women in tech and research.

New Reference Architecture: Batch scoring of Spark models on Azure Databricks

Reference architectures provide a consistent approach and best practices for a given solution. Each architecture includes recommended practices, together with considerations for scalability, availability, manageability, security, and more. The full array of reference architectures is now available on the Azure Architecture Center. This reference architecture shows how to build a scalable solution for batch scoring an Apache Spark classification model.

Six tips for securing identity in the cloud

Many customers are turning to cloud services as an asset in fighting evolving cybersecurity threats. In this three-part series on Azure Government security, learn to use best practices for securing your Azure Government resources with essential steps needed to secure identities in the cloud. Also learn specific actions you can take to create more secure identity management within your agency or organization.

Diagram showing the built-in security controls in Azure

2018 Guidance from AzureCAT: SAP on the Microsoft Platform

Technical documentation for getting up-to-speed and staying up-to-date with features and industry trends in development is vital. This past year was a busy one for the Azure Customer Advisory Team. Stay informed with this useful reference list of all the SAP guidance that was published or refreshed in 2018.

Create a CI/CD pipeline for your Azure IoT Edge solution with Azure Pipelines

New CI/CD tools can help developers deliver value faster and more transparently, but the need for customized scripts that address different kinds of edge solutions still presents a challenge for some CI/CD pipelines. Now, with the Azure IoT Edge task in Azure Pipelines, developers have an easier way to build and push the modules in different platforms and deliver to a set of Azure IoT Edge devices continuously in the cloud.

Getting Started with Ansible on Azure

Cloud Advocate Jay Gordon discusses how to get started with Ansible on the Azure Cloud.  You'll get the easy first steps to use Ansible on the Cloud Shell and create a Linux VM!

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Cross-Platform Container Builds with Azure Pipelines

Choosing distribution options aren’t just based on personal preference. There is usually a solid technical reason for wanting a CI build deployed on a particular platform. To aid in developing your CI/CD pipeline, Azure Pipelines enables virtual machines for running your own Docker images that have the exact version of the dependencies that you want as part of your CI/CD pipeline. Now you can have confidence that your deployment works correctly on whatever platform you choose.

Keep Calm, and Keep Coding with Azure Cosmos DB and Node.js

In this quick read, John Papa shows you how to get up and running – with links to docs to get started ASAP. In John's case, he wanted a list of heroes from his database (“Just give them to me without making me work so hard!”) and he shares how the Azure Cosmos DB SDK delivers with a simple line of code.

John Papa’s Sketchnote of Cosmos and Node Together

Quick look at the Azure Shared Image Gallery

Shared Image Gallery is a service that helps you build structure and organization around your custom managed VM images. Using a Shared Image Gallery you can share your images to different users, service principals, or AD groups within your organization. Shared images can be replicated to multiple regions, for quicker scaling of your deployments. In this post, Thomas Maurer provides an overview and shows how to get started.

AZ-202 Microsoft Azure Developer Certification Transition Study Guide

Microsoft has published the exam guide for AZ-202 Microsoft Azure Developer Certification. This helpful study guide contains a list of resources you can use to help you study for the exam.

Azure shows

Episode 267 – What the Hack? | The Azure Podcast

Microsoft Cloud Solution Architects Gino Filicetti and Peter Laudati talk to the Azure Podcast team about an innovative approach to getting your team to learn Azure. They have developed a set of challenge-based hacks which allow for better retention of knowledge.

Episode 267 – What the Hack? transcript

Third Party Azure IoT solution accelerators | Internet of Things Show

Several Microsoft partners have developed solutions ranging from edge video analytics, to digital signage, to remote well monitoring for oil and gas. These are published under our partner's GitHub repositories and free for anyone to use, rebrand, or even resell. Here’s how to leverage those partner built, open sourced, Solution Accelerators to expedite your IoT solution development.

Using Azure Boards with GitHub | The DevOps Lab

As your organization and projects grow, it can get challenging to stay focused on what's most important and to organize the various types of work involved to make progress. Now you can integrate Azure Boards with your code repository on GitHub to reduce the integration tax of using multiple systems by simply mentioning work items in your commits or pull requests. See how to integrate Azure Boards with your GitHub project.

An overview of Azure Integration Services | Azure Friday

Azure Integration Services brings together API Management, Logic Apps, Service Bus, and Event Grid as a reliable, scalable platform for integrating on-premises and cloud-based applications, data, and processes across your enterprise.

Blockchain based registries | Block Talk

Registries are used in every industry and in multiple scenarios. Blockchain-based registries that are shared, immutable and cryptographically secure serve an important need, but it's not often apparent how to write these sort of contracts. In this episode we review a blockchain devkit accelerator that can help generate the contracts from simple JSON based descriptions.

Application Insights integrations and service updates | On .NET

In this episode, Michael Milirud returns to give us updates on some new capabilities that are available Azure Application Insights. He shows us demos covering Azure DevOps, dependency tracing, Azure Functions integration, and much more.

Inception with Azure DevOps | Visual Studio Toolbox

In this episode, Donovan is joined by Gopinath Chigakkagari from the Azure DevOps team. Gopinath shows how they use Azure DevOps to build Azure DevOps! He also shows how to integrate Azure DevOps to multiple 3rd party tools and deploy to multiple clouds with a single pipeline.

How to use the Azure Virtual Machines Serial Console | Azure Tips and Tricks

In this edition of Azure Tips and Tricks, learn how to use the Azure Virtual Machines Serial Console to easily troubleshoot your virtual machines. The Azure Virtual Machine Serial Console feature is available for Windows and Linux VM images.

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How to configure a new virtual machine with the Azure Portal | Azure Portal Series

Microsoft Azure provides many virtual machine configuration options for any workload or application. In this video of the Azure Portal “How To” series, learn about some of the configuration options that are available when setting up a virtual machine in the Azure Portal.

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Scott Hunter on DevOps Capabilities in Azure – Episode 24 | The Azure DevOps Podcast

Learn the differences between .NET Core and .NET Framework and when and why you should move to .NET Core 3.0 in the future. In this episode of the Azure DevOps Podcast, Scott Hunter joins Jeffrey Palermo to discuss DevOps capabilities in Azure. Hear how .NET Standard bridges the gap between .NET Core and .NET Framework, where all the different architectures fit into the .NET ecosystem. The two also give an update and overview on WebAssembly and Blazor, as well as a preview of and their motivation for writing their upcoming book, .NET DevOps for Azure.


IoT in Action: New innovations making IoT faster and simpler

Several events are scheduled this week where you can learn more about IoT solutions: Mobile World Conference in Barcelona, IoT in Action global event and Embedded World in Nuremberg, and Solution Builder Conference in Houston. As the Internet of Things (IoT) disrupts global business across every industry, opportunities abound. Partners are building on Microsoft IoT innovations and expanding solution accelerators, while customers of every size are reaping the rewards through increased productivity and efficiency, new revenue streams, and broader market share. Learn how Microsoft and our partners are making IoT faster, easier, and more cost effective through innovations in Windows IoT, Azure IoT, and Azure Sphere.

Register Now: Free Hybrid Cloud Virtual Event

Join us on March 28, 2019, 8 AM-9:30 AM Pacific Time to be among the first to see new hybrid product announcements. Hear from your peers and technology leaders to gain valuable insights on ways to accelerate your hybrid cloud roadmap. Register now for free.

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Azure webinar series – Migrate Your Web Applications to Azure for Scale and Agility

Thursday, February 28, 2019 10:00 AM–11:00 AM Pacific Time – Learn the simple steps for modernizing a wide variety of web apps to Azure. Esteemed Microsoft engineer Jay Schmelzer shares implementation stories of how customers scaled with Azure and solved performance and security considerations across their apps; including .NET, PHP, and Node.js. This series also features Q&A and a learning path for hosting your web apps on Azure.

Live stream analysis using Video Indexer

Video Indexer is an Azure service designed to extract deep insights from video and audio files offline. At the EBU Production Technology Seminar in Geneva last month, an end-to-end solution was demonstrated by Microsoft that uses Video Indexer in near real-time resolutions on live feeds. Several live feeds were ingested to Azure using Dejero technology or the webRTC protocol, and sent to Make.TV Live Video Cloud to switch inputs. The selected input was sent as a transcoded stream to Azure Media Services for multi bitrate transcoding and OTT delivery in low latency mode.  The same stream was also processed in near real time with Video Indexer. The full code and a step-by-step guide to deploy the results is available on GitHub.

Azure This Week – 22 February 2019 | A Cloud Guru – Azure This Week

This time on Azure This Week, Lars talks about machine learning in Stream Analytics to detect evil doings, new Azure Maps service, and Azure DevOps pipelines team have created an app for your Slack.

Thumbnail from Azure This Week - 22 February 2019 from A Cloud Guru on YouTube